In my conversations in chat with gay guys of all ages, masturbation is a recurring theme and obviously it is not surprising, I’ve already spoken about that many times from various points of view, I intend now to focus on a specific issue that is on masturbation when it becomes a “problem.”
In the vast majority of cases, the guys live gay masturbation as a very positive moment. Masturbation for a gay guy, who does not live in couple and usually has no sexual contacts with unknown persons, is the only way to live his sexuality.
Masturbation continues to play a key role of true and free sexuality also beyond couple’s relationship, especially if couple’s relationship is random. Masturbation is so important that the couple’s sex life of a gay guy is much more satisfactory if the couple’s sex is very close to the masturbatory fantasies. A guy who leaves his masturbatory fantasies with his partner and when the partner is not there, lives them during the masturbation, is a guy sexually fulfilled.
A guy who has sex with a guy and masturbates thinking of another is living in a stressing situation and his sexual relationship is clearly not free. The discomfort is much deeper when a guy who has a heterosexual couple’s life nevertheless masturbates thinking about guys. In this sense, masturbation is an indicator of the quality of the couple’s sex life.
In most cases, masturbation, just because is felt as a manifestation of deep sexuality, is lived with strong participation, often much stronger than the one that takes place in the couple’s life. Discomfort, in these cases, doesn’t affect masturbation in itself, but the non-correspondence of masturbatory fantasies with the couple sexuality.
There is, however, also a discomfort associated with masturbation in itself. In order to understand what we are talking about, we have to think about masturbation and its positive profiles in physiological and psychological terms, these two aspects should always be considered in a unified way, but for simplicity I’ll present them separately.
First, in physiological terms, pleasure is related to the erection, to penis stimulation and to the steps leading up to the orgasm. The orgasm represents the maximum intensity phase of sexual pleasure, but also the last phase of masturbation, after which erection is lost and the guy enters a refractory phase in which, for not very short a period of time, it is almost impossible to have a second orgasm. The refractory phase is typically a phase of maximum relaxation and guys who masturbate in bed at night know that after masturbation they fall asleep easily. All guys learn by practice to postpone orgasm as much as possible, just in order to take all possible pleasure from masturbation.
Masturbation is matter of ordinary administration in the lives of all guys, gay and straight, but especially for gay guys, when you consider that for them, and even more when they are very young, couple sexuality is more the exception than the rule. The ordinariness of masturbation leads to its frequency in the majority of cases daily.
The psychological sexual fantasies, usually based on memories of early experiences related to sexuality, help to maintain the erection focusing concentration on the deepest sexual content. Sexual fantasies don’t meet generally obstacles or external impediments of any kind (moral, religious or other) and represent the absolute sexual spontaneity of the guy.
Masturbation is also useful to respond to states of emotional or sexual arousal that cannot be resolved any other way. This is the classic example of the guy who goes to the gym, sees his friends naked in the locker room, then goes home and masturbates reliving those moments.
The inconveniences related to masturbation are manifested in various ways and degrees. At indicative level only we could summarize them as follows:
1) Lack of masturbation (for longer or shorter periods, on the order of months), when a guy, who has not a sex couple’s life, does not prove any interest in masturbation. This is usually symptom of major diseases and not merely of psychological problems. I refer, however, always to guys who have already experienced masturbation and not to particular situations such as those associated with the hypersensitivity of the glans which means that for physical reasons a guy, even now fully adult, may not have ever practiced masturbation.
2) Refusal of masturbation (for longer or shorter periods, for a week or more), when a guy, who has a sex couple’s life, even though feels a strong internal urge to masturbate (erection returns despite the attempt to repress it, sexual fantasies come back to bite, despite the attempt to repress them) puts in place a deliberate attempt to resist and does not masturbate. These are typical cases of self-sexual repression and the problem is typically psychological.
3) Strong variability in the frequency of masturbation when the masturbation is not considered as something normal but as something exceptional.
4) Absence of masturbation in presence of sexual situations that normally lead to masturbation. When a guy who has been involved in situations that are usually sexually stimulating does not masturbate thinking about that situations and dissociates the experience, even normally sexually involving, from masturbation.
5) Masturbation almost exclusively with physical stimulation without or with reduced emotional participation. In this case, the aim is not the pleasure, but the orgasm, or rather the refractory phase that follows it, as if the guy wanted to download sexuality. Masturbation in these situations is short, lasting a few minutes or less than one, is not rewarding either at physical or psychological level and is followed by moments of disgust and discomfort.
6) Masturbation preceded, accompanied and followed by feelings of guilt, as if you were in contravention of a general principle.
When a guy goes through periods of deep stress or of inner tearing conflicts or for various causes his psychological balance is significantly compromised, sexuality is affected and the problems of masturbation emerge. When the guy newly finds his psychological balance, masturbation returns to be fully satisfactory and pleasant.
What are the typical situations in which disorders of masturbation are detected? I list a few.
1) When a guy who had a hetero sex life realizes that his masturbatory fantasies are gay, is inclined to think that his gay sexual interests depend only on masturbation and eliminating masturbation his sexuality would return 100% hetero. The masturbation is incorrectly seen in this case as a recessive condition in relation to heterosexual couple sexuality.
2) Reasons of religious often affect guys very heavy about masturbation, but the statement: “I am very religious, so I do not masturbate” with which the guy justifies the rejection of masturbation, should often be reversed: “because I’m sexually inhibited I’m very religious.” Often sexual inhibition doesn’t really depend on religion, but sexually inhibited guys are pleasant to be in environments where the rejection of masturbation is indeed a value.
3) The denial of sexuality avoiding masturbation is a sign of psychological dependence on authorities or on value systems that require total obedience and conformity to a well-defined path. It matters little that this claim is true only perceived.
4) The devaluation of masturbation, reduced to purely physical matter, and the absence of masturbatory reactions in situations that typically entail are sometimes associated with depressive phases or depressive mood tones.
What can we do? As usual I will respond schematically. A masturbation disorder is not a disease but a symptom. Where there are not serious diseases but only sexual psychological problems, we should always keep in mind that sexual well-being is achieved only in a context of a general psychological well-being. So putting aside completely the idea of treating the symptom without considering the overall balance, I would say that the first thing to do is to make possible a real socialization of guys so that they cannot feel alone and they never lack the debate on any subject and in particular on the subject of masturbation that must be defused and presented in a dimension of absolute normality. Talking about masturbation is not a taboo, but one of the few smart things you can do to take the guys to a view of sexuality as a dimension of ordinary life, and this is even truer for gay guys who need to feel respected and loved for what they really are.
If you like, you can join the discussion on this post on Gay Project Forum: http://gayprojectforum.altervista.org/viewtopic.php?f=16&t=14