Me & Her – Vicky Jay Documentary Premiere
Brunswick Picture House | Thursday 27 Feb | 7pm | $15
How do you feel about your clitoris? When were you told you even had one? These are some of the questions that Vicky Jay asks 53 women in her documentary Me & Her.
‘The documentary interviews 53 women, from 15–76 about how they found ‘her’ and what they were taught. It’s an in-depth dive into a woman’s relationship with her clitoris. I had always been a pretty big feminist and I have always rooted for women, and a woman’s right to pleasure’ says Vicky Jay, the Crabbes Creek-based film maker.
‘I grew up with an incredible group of friends – we knew everything about each other. When I left home at 18 and came to Australia, I learnt it wasn’t the norm to have relationships that were this open – and I struggled with it. Why aren’t we talking about it? Why aren’t we asking our partners for what we need? I just think we don’t talk about women’s pleasure very much.
‘We are starting to talk about vaginas and periods, but not one woman I interviewed was ever told about her clitoris – here it is – this is for your pleasure; its sole purpose is pleasure. In fact, we were told quite the contrary. We all know men masturbate. Women’s masturbation is not talked about. Interviewing these women a few different “whys” came out – they think it may be more about control – that women in charge of their own pleasure are powerful, and hard to control. But the doco doesn’t intend to give an absolute “why” – the mission was to start a conversation, and for people to go home and say to their partners, “Do you masturbate? What do you do?” I think it should be a talked about thing, and people would be happier.’
Vicky recorded the 53 interviews in three days – speaking to women from Melbourne, the Gold Coast and Byron Bay.
‘We had very varying women’ says Vicki. ‘The two oldest were 74 and 76. One was starting to get into tantric sex at her age – she believed she was coming into the peak of her sexual experiences. The other woman had never orgasmed or self-pleasured in her life – she says it in a way that you have to work out what she meant. She was the grandmother of the youngest girl we interviewed, who had been masturbating since 13, and was preaching all should do it.’
The lack of information is something Vicky touches on with the women she speaks to.
‘In school, everyone is told how to (not) get pregnant, and how a man ejaculates – and I interviewed a sex-ed teacher – and the word clitoris wasn’t even in the curriculum. Religion is definitely an issue; we interviewed a few women from very religious families, and a lot said the sexual oppression really affected them. There was a woman who grew up in the Mormon church who didn’t masturbate until she was 27. She didn’t realise that something as simple as touching herself could bring you into liberation.
‘About three women out of my 53 had never reached orgasm. The older woman says it all in her expression; you can see she’s disappointed, she’s missed out on something, and there is this sense of loss’ says Vicky.
‘A lot of women didn’t know a lot about the vagina. For instance, that it has the same erectile tissue mass as the penis. At the launch we will have a gynaecologist and a sexologist there to have a talk after the documentary screens. We are diving into the history after the show.’
Me & Her, a documentary about clits has its world premiere at the Brunswick Picture House on Thursday 27 February, at 7pm. Tix are $15 from brunswickpicturehouse.com