Masturbation

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Save own cum?

Dear Stroker,

It's always better when it's wetter! As far as the research goes, there are no scientific studies on the preservation of pre-cum for masturbation lubrication. However, bacteria does live on the human skin and in the air at all times. Because of pre-cum's exposure to skin and air, it would be an ideal medium for bacteria to proliferate if stored in a container over time. This bacteria could then be transferred to your penis (or more specifically, openings in the head such as the urethra) during masturbation, potentially causing a urinary tract or urethral infection. Instead, why don't you splurge and try a consumer water-based lube? Greasing the wheels with a touch of this stuff will leave your engines roaring. And you may be happy to know that "a little dab'll do ya good" — that is, you won't need much to do the trick!

Alice

Dry hump on chair

Dear In love with chair,

Looks like you've discovered a pleasurable way to shine the wood! This method is perfectly normal. In fact, the dry-hump method of masturbation is used by many men. There is no risk to your groin area (unless, of course, you're rubbing against spiked furniture). Every once in a while, though, you may want to masturbate manually with your hand and a lubricant, so that if or when you have intercourse, you will know the feeling and be able to be stimulated in the more "usual" way. It is possible to get so used to one method, that a particular stimulation becomes necessary for your enjoyment. You may want to check out the related Q&As for more information. Keep on groovin'!

Alice

Wants girlfriend to masturbate

Dear Argh,

Research shows that women learn to masturbate later than men, often during or after college rather than during puberty. This process includes two parts: learning to orgasm and learning to feel good about it. In the 1970s, women would meet in women's groups with safety, humor, and support to talk about many things, including orgasm -- having them, not having them; how to have them, how to have them more frequently; what works, what doesn't work; how to have them with partners; and, their feelings about orgasm. Ironically, this is not happening today. So for similar information, she can check out some of the materials, videos, and books available at woman-sensitive, sex-positive bookstores, such as Eve's Garden based in New York City and Good Vibrations in San Francisco.

Your girlfriend is not alone. There is plenty that she can do to learn (you can learn, too!), if this is truly a path your girlfriend wants to take! She may need privacy and time alone to explore her own body and to experiment, learning for herself what sensations are pleasurable. Sometimes, a nonallergenic lotion, a lube, or a vibrator can make a difference. Practice, information , and pleasure go a long way in minimizing feelings of "dirtiness" and guilt.

Alice noticed that you signed your letter "argh" and wondered about that. What is causing your frustration? Why is it so important to you that your girlfriend learn to feel comfortable masturbating? What would change in your relationship if she were to masturbate? What would change for you? What would change for her? (These are questions to ask yourself, and the answers may prove interesting.)

If your girlfriend doesn't have an orgasm when she's with you, or has never had an orgasm in her life, read the following questions found in Alice's Sexuality archives: No orgasms for girlfriend, No orgasms with boyfriend, Am I having an orgasm?, No orgasm with intercourse (female), and Easing orgasms for women.

Alice

March 22, 2012

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Alice. When you asked why it was important that his girlfriend learn to masturbate, that actually struck a small chord with me. I would like my girlfriend to do that, too. She and I have had this...
Alice. When you asked why it was important that his girlfriend learn to masturbate, that actually struck a small chord with me. I would like my girlfriend to do that, too. She and I have had this discussion before. She has no idea where any of her "spots" are, and it crosses my mind that it could possibly make it easier for both of them to reach a "mutual climax", aside from a physical one, if they both knew what they were doing and "where" to go. I think Argh wants this because it could possibly bring him and his girlfriend closer, it could be a turn on, and it really could help him to get to "know" his girlfriend, too. Sincerely, ~Low Flyer

Surprise! It's Masturbation!

Dear Reader,

Is this type of behavior common for kids? Yes. Children and infants have been known to touch or rub their genitals for pleasure. However, this type of masturbation is not sexual in nature. Touching their genitals is just one way kids learn about their bodies. Also, young children rarely have sexual fantasies, they just know what feels good.  Movements that give pleasurable sensations are common for youngsters (as well as for oldsters).

Can it cause orgasm? Yes. If the sensations are intense enough, muscle tension and/or clitoral stimulation (or penile stimulation in males) can and does cause arousal, pleasure, and orgasm.

Alice

April 16, 2004

20545
Alice, I remember thinking, when I was about four or five, that sitting on a fence with my legs spread and wiggling a little bit felt really nice. At the time, I had no idea this was connected to...
Alice, I remember thinking, when I was about four or five, that sitting on a fence with my legs spread and wiggling a little bit felt really nice. At the time, I had no idea this was connected to anything sexual. Anyway, it's nice to know I'm not the only one out there who did this sort of thing unknowingly as a child.

Horny all the time?

Dear Horny,

It's terrific that you're aware of your sexual desires. Masturbating two or three times per week, having erections (even in relatively non-sexual settings), and thinking about your sexual wants and needs is quite normal. Horniness can increase or decrease when under stress, and also when inundated by stimuli, including memories or desires.

When you get erections in class, there are ways of remaining discreet. Undoubtedly you already have a few tricks that help you get through those moments. Erections are simply a reaction to a sexual signal. Often, if you think about something asexual, or something that is a total turn-off (like your next exam), you can lose your erection.

Have you thought about some healthy ways of discharging your (sexual) energy? How about masturbating more frequently? What about exercise? Other forms of stress relief? Keep in mind the idea that the frequency of sexual desire can (and likely will) change a number of times during the lifespan. What you choose as a way to handle situations today may not work forever. Be creative in expressing your desire and handling your needs.

In terms of the woman you have a crush on, maybe you could try talking with her. Sometimes, by acting on your feelings you can put this looming sexual energy into perspective. No need to feel bad, just about everyone has desires, crushes, and fantasies. Perhaps you two have more in common than you realize.Talking is a great first step toward exploring feelings, and may lead to a healthy and productive outlet for your sexual energy. 

Best of luck to you!

Alice

Can masturbation cause gas?

Dear Arggggh,

Gas and masturbation are highly unlikely to be connected with each other. Have you tried to stop masturbating? Has the gas subsided as a result? Perhaps you could try the same experiment by increasing the times you masturbate daily. Do you notice that the gas is increasing?

From your question, it sounds as if you could be under pressure and/or stressed out. Gas and digestive upsets are common stress responses, as well as loss of concentration and lethargy. If this is the case, you can check out some stress management tips in the Go Ask Alice! stress & anxiety archives. Masturbation, itself, can be a stress reducer, as well.

On the other hand (no pun intended), are you feeling guilty about your self-pleasure? Is your body responding physiologically to your discomfort with masturbation? Masturbation is normal, natural, and healthy, yet many people feel ashamed or guilty about it. Masturbation taboos have been around and in force for decades, and even though some societies and cultures are much more open to it nowadays, for others, the taboos are still ingrained.

Some self-detective work seems to be in order here. Is there anything else that happened in your life at around the same time that you started masturbating? There's also the possibility of a medical/digestive problem. Make an appointment with your health care provider to see if there's an underlying medical issue. If you feel you need to talk with someone about your feelings around masturbation, you can make an appointment with a mental health professional.

Alice

No privacy to masturbate

Dear Always aroused,

You clearly know what you need to function effectively. The issues seem to be logistical. You need to develop either creative ways to find privacy or creative ways to masturbate with the privacy you have.

For example, since this is such a priority, you need to find some kind of private time and private space. Some people masturbate in the shower, since that is the only place they had privacy growing up. Men sometimes soap up their penis and go to town. Some women use a mild soap on their clitoris to make it slippery, or press with their fingers without extra soap; some use the spray of the shower. Of course, if you have never masturbated standing up, this may take some adjustment, but it does add to your options.

What about going to the bathroom and closing the door for privacy? What about when you or your roommate is in the shower? It is hard to believe that there is absolutely never a time when you are in your room and your roommate isn't and you're sure s/he isn't going to come home. Did you ever have time in your room alone for private phone calls? How do you arrange them? You might say, "I need to make a private phone call tonight from 9 to 9:30 P.M. (or from 3 to 3:30 P.M.)." This gives your roommate time to plan to be invisible, and you a block of time to do your thing, although this might not work every day.

Perhaps you could run home for a "lunch break" when your roommate is away from the room. If you are worried about starting to masturbate and then hearing the key in the door, try a code, like placing something prearranged on the doorknob, i.e., a tie or a ribbon, to signal that you don't want to be disturbed. It could also be a note that says, "Do not enter till 2:30 P.M. Studying (or napping)." Your roommate may be relieved since this would give him/her permission to take time alone in the room as well.

Realistically, how much time are you actually talking about? Many men can, and do, come within two minutes of beginning to masturbate. Similarly, Alfred Kinsey found that many women orgasmed through masturbation within five minutes, a brief amount of time. While not always advocating fast orgasms, since they tend to minimize pleasure; however, what is wrong with a quickie in a pinch? You do deserve at least one orgasm a day, and, if you're creative, you can come up with a way to find the privacy to give it to yourself.

Alice

Not getting IT enough

Dear Libido-that-defies-the-confines-of-time,

Being in a relationship can be great — you have easy access to emotional and physical intimacy, a permanent date for family functions, Friday night dinners, and Saturday night movies. Other times it may not be so dreamy. In your case, it sounds like the not so great started to outweigh the great. It's mature of you to recognize your need to end it and move on. However, with the positives of ending your relationship, you may have to face the negatives such as losing your easy access to physical intimacy.

Sexual urges are completely normal and for many people, easily managed. Some may satisfy these urges by masturbating, casually hooking up with people, or seeking out more serious physical relationships. Methods of handling sky-high libido are different for everyone, though. To understand why your sex drive all of a sudden seems so uncontrollable and how you might be able to rein it back in, ask yourself a few questions: Since you seem to feel uncomfortable having sex with someone outside of a relationship, what is it about being in a relationship that makes sex acceptable? What would happen if you tried to release that tension in another way? Is your sex drive getting in the way of school, work, or other relationships?

Masturbation may be a good option for you since there's no one to "frighten away" and it certainly won't require a nine hour drive to set off the sexual fireworks. Self-pleasuring may not only help release some of your sexual tension, but it may also help you understand more about your sex drive (i.e., what lights your fuse, how often that fuse needs to be lit, etc.). However, for some people, emotional connection adds to physical chemistry in the sack. Without it, the experience may not feel as satisfying. If this is the case for you, trying a more casual relationship with someone may be another option, though it may not be right for everyone. This may not even require that the encounter turn into a serious relationship in the future. The key here is to be open with your partner. If you two are not on the same page about what you want out of your relationship with one another (whatever it turns out to be), those pyrotechnics could backfire. As with any relationship, it takes patience to find one that fits and you may have to frighten a few away before you find someone who'll stick around for the long-haul.

Learning to live without the luxuries of a committed relationship may be a big adjustment, but there are ways to deal until the next one comes along. However, if you find that you're constantly thinking about sex to the point where it is interfering with everyday life, you may want to consider talking to a health care professional. Contacting a counseling center may offer opportunities to do this.

Overall, patience and a little "handy" work may go a long way in satisfying your insatiable sex drive.  

Alice

For more information or to make an appointment, check out these recommended resources:

Counseling and Psychological Services (Morningside)

Mental Health Service (CUMC)


Masturbates=sexually active?

Dear Curious,

Alice would say that one is solitarily sexually active or sexually active with yourself. Any one else have comments?

Alice

August 3, 2001

20372

Alice,

This is a response to the question Masturbates = Sexually active? I believe that it can be argued that solo masturbation is, indeed, being sexually active....

Alice,

This is a response to the question Masturbates = Sexually active? I believe that it can be argued that solo masturbation is, indeed, being sexually active. It is so important to know that sexuality is more than just specific behaviors; it includes environment, feelings, and psychology. During solo masturbation, it is common for an individual to incorporate fantasy as a w ay of making the experience fulfilling. I would argue that this creates the same environmental, emotional, and psychological stimulus that exists in any other sexual behavior. Some people use pornographic materials to increase the pleasure. Some people even take the opportunity to use masturbation as a form of meditation, which creates an even broader definition of being sexually active. Phone-sex, cyber-sex, virtual sex, and other modern avenues of sexual expression usually include masturbation as a primary source of pleasuring. All of these examples do not, necessarily, have a partner directly in contact with the person engaging in solo masturbation, but they do have all the ingredients of sexual activity.

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