The Frisky Feminist

Tell Me About Teledildonics!

Q: My boyfriend and I are facing a long-distance relationship soon. We’re planning to be living in the same country again within a year, and we should be able to visit a few times, but for the rest of the time, we’re talking about how to manage long-distance– particularly our sex life. We’re pros at Skype-sex from previous time apart, but my boyfriend has mentioned getting one of those sex toys that he can control online, for me to use while he controls the toy, and watches via Skype. I’m game, but a bit apprehensive about this for two reasons:

1) We’ve never used sex toys together before (just never been something we’ve been particularly interested in).

2) I really don’t know much about this type of sex toy and am having trouble finding good info on them.

Any advice or tips? Brand recommendations? Or other tips for long-distance sexual relationships in general?

A: Great question! And Persephoneers who have experience with sex and long-distance relationships (or who have experience with this particular kind of toy), please chime in in the comments with any additional suggestions and tips.

Neither of us have any personal experience with this kind of sex toy, but we were excited to research them to see what we could find, and along the way we learned a new word – teledildonics! Or, sex toys that can be controlled via computer. But “teledildonics” just sounds so much cooler.

Now, the downside is, it seems like most toys like this, while cool, did not last very long and were often riddled with problems. Violet Blue has a great summary of various cyber toys here, and most of them are no longer on the market, or aren’t exactly what you’re looking for, or both. (She also discusses teledildonics in her book The Adventurous Couple’s Guide to Sex Toys, wherein she cautions that because this is still a relatively new field, many of the widely available “cybercontrol” toys that connect to your computer via the USB port are often buggy and can’t deliver what they promise to.) One option that’s still on the market is the Sinulator, but the price might be prohibitive ($149 for the base technology and software alone), and we’re having difficulty telling whether there are just some problems with its website and store or whether it may be defunct now too. (We have to say, though, that the demo [NSFW, cartoon vibrator] was fun to play with.)

Unless anyone reading is more knowledgeable about cyber sex toys than we are and can find out more than we’ve been able to, the info we’ve found leads us to recommend against going that route, at least for now – you don’t want to spend a lot of money on something that may not do what it claims to do, especially if you’re not completely sold on the idea to begin with.

Does the prospect of using other kinds of sex toys (regular old vibrators, dildos, etc.) while Skyping appeal to you? If you feel similarly game but apprehensive, do you have time before you’ll be apart to play with them together and see how you like it? And would that maybe make you feel more comfortable using them on Skype once you’re apart? As always, different things work for different people – for some couples, using toys in front of or with/on one another is the epitome of hot, for other couples it’s just not that appealing. It may be the sort of thing that you discover you really enjoy even though it didn’t interest you before, or you may find that your initial impression was right and you’re still meh about it.

The two of us have a little experience with semi-long-distance relationships – we were in different cities for the first six months of our relationship, and the length of time in between visits varied a lot (towards the end of that time we got to see each other every other weekend, but in the beginning we were apart for weeks and months in between visits). One thing that kept us horny and happy was fantasizing about how much fun we’d have when we were back together – if you’re both comfortable with fantasy and some dirty talk, describing different scenarios to each other could be enjoyable and satisfying in the moment but also give you something specific to look forward to during your next visit.

If you both are porn-watchers, sending each other video clips and pictures that strike your fancy could be fun as well. And we know that different people have very different feelings about 1. taking naughty pictures 2. sending naughty pictures and 3. receiving naughty pictures, but if you two enjoy any or all of the above, that could offer some fun possibilities as well. We’re both very visual and very touchy-feely people, so sending each other intimate and sexy pictures helped us feel closer and was just really hot.

Anything else to add, Persephoneers?


Keep the great questions coming! (Hee.) Got a ques­tion to ask, subject you’d like us to dis­cuss, or myth you’d like us to bust? You can e-mail us at, and we’ve also set up a Tum­blr for the sole pur­pose of receiv­ing com­pletely anony­mous ques­tions here.

By paperispatient

I recently earned my MA in women’s studies. I enjoy reading, working out, playing Scrabble, watching cheesy movies, and cooking yummy vegetarian meals with my partner and Frisky Feminist co-author, Future Mr. paperispatient.

5 replies on “Tell Me About Teledildonics!”

I JUST got a Mojowijo last week and used it with my boyfriend (I’m 5 states away because of a temporary job opportunity).  It’s FANTASTIC!  Seriously,  I was a little skeptical at first, but we gave it a shot and I’m really glad we did.  I can’t wait to use it again!

Is it me, or are there just getting to be too many things you can control with your computer?!?!
Paperispatient – I have a possible idea for an article. How about an anatomy lesson? I absolutely hate it when people (or media) use the word vagina when they are actually talking about any other part of the vulva or female genitalia. When did ‘vagina’ become the go to term for any part of a woman’s crotch, anyway?

I have to admit that I’d TOTALLY try a computer-controlled sex toy if there were any options that weren’t really expensive and that I knew weren’t full of bugs, though I definitely see how that wouldn’t be appealing to everyone. :)

I share your pet peeve about “vagina” being used when what people mean is “vulva.” We have a question in line to respond to for next week, but we can definitely do an anatomy lesson the week after – thanks for the suggestion!

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