Masturbation is the sexual stimulation of one’s own genitals for sexual arousal or other sexual pleasure, usually to the point of orgasm. The stimulation may involve hands, fingers, everyday objects, sex toys such as vibrators, or combinations of these. Mutual masturbation can be a substitute for sexual penetration.
Throughout history and our not-so-distant-past, masturbation has been one of the most forbidden sex acts in many cultures, so harmful myths are still present in today’s society. However, the Kinsey Institute acknowledges that masturbation is the most common form of sexual play and between 62% of women and 92% of men get off via solo sex on a regular basis. Hurray for the majority. But it makes you wonder why some people are still afraid of self-pleasure.
Learn about 10 facts, taboos and myths about masturbation that you probably don’t know, so you can make an informed decision on whether masturbation is right for you.
Taboos and Myths of Masturbation
Cultural Pressure on Masturbation
1. Many cultures have condemned masturbation for various reasons. The oldest were the ancient Taoists who believed the “spilling of seed” endangered the survival of mankind. This is because they thought men only had a limited amount of sperm, and sperm held the life-force or “chi.” However, today we know that men produce 50,000 sperm per minute, so those ancient stigmas no longer make sense.
2. Masturbation is associated with “Onanism” in Christianity (Genesis 38:9) when Onan refuses to have sex with his brother’s widow and spills “his semen on the ground to keep from producing offspring.” However, it was “coitus interruptus” or premature withdrawal that was the actual sin committed and not masturbation.
3. Over the centuries, masturbation was thought to be an epidemic and was blamed for every type of physical and mental ailment from backache to blindness, hysteria and madness, epilepsy and death. Terrible “cures” included shock therapy, chastity belts, male and female circumcision, physical restraints, and much more sinister devices built to “discourage” erections. Today, sexologists agree that masturbation is a normal, natural act that promotes vitality and health. In fact, most believe “that a lack of masturbatory experience may be related to psychopathology, rather than the practice of autoeroticism”, which contrasts greatly with past views.
4. Oddly enough, two food manufacturers supported more negative attitudes about masturbation in the early 1900s. Graham (Graham cracker) and cereal developer John Harvey Kellogg both lead a health food crusade against sexual excess, including masturbation. Think about that next time you eat your morning cereal.
5. Some of the top ridiculous myths about masturbation include that it is addictive, that it will reduce your arousal over time, make you infertile or impotent, make you go blind, cause madness, grow hair on your palms, will stunt your growth, will make you have acne and cause you to lose your virginity. The truth is masturbation is pleasurable, healthy and sane. And, no, you won’t turn into a werewolf either.
6. Masturbation is not only a pleasurable past-time; it can actually enhance your partner relationship. Rather than destroying that “special” aspect of sexuality, masturbation actually enhances it by creating intimacy, allowing for sexual exploration and increasing communication. It can also boost the imagination and be an erotic activity that partners can share together. In fact, sexologists say that masturbation establishes a healthy philosophy about sex and helps one lose sexual inhibitions that may restrict them from having a satisfying sex life with their partners by gaining confidence and self-esteem.
7. Unlike many things that “feel good” like drugs and food, masturbation doesn’t have any bad side effects. Masturbation is actually healthy for your body. Research shows that masturbation has numerous health benefits and improves prostate health in men, reduces pre-menstrual cramping in women, provides a healthy release for sexual tension, and is the ultimate in safe sex. Masturbation also improves the immune system‘s function; helps reduce the signs of aging, symptoms of menopause, obesity, and may help reduce the risk of osteoporosis in older women by increasing bone mass.
8. Guilt is the number one reason that most individuals avoid masturbation, and have trouble reaching orgasm. The biggest barrier to successful sexual pleasuring is the mental distraction of guilty thoughts, removing one from the moment, away from the sensations of the body, and not allowing pleasure to transpire. But our negative views about masturbation and sex: that it is dirty or immoral is simply untrue.
9. Many sexologists agree that masturbation is natural, and to censor or repress it can be harmful, resulting in destructive obsessions, low self-esteem, and can even lead to intimacy problems.
10. Masturbation is natural. Did you know that animals masturbate? Birds do it, bees do it, and even chimpanzees do it. And, cats, and rats, elephants as sure as your born, the only one who doesn’t is the unicorn.
Men are Clueless than Women
Most men are still clueless about masturbation, yet they do this activity almost everyday. Thus, when people make up even the most absurd stories about masturbation, some men easily fall into the trap of believing it. These absurd stories are often called myths which are ideas that may sound really possible when you first hear about it. However, when considered more deeply, these ideas do not make sense at all. To be able to determine whether a certain story about masturbation is true or possibly just a myth, one must know more about the technicalities of masturbation. This means knowing more about the anatomy and physiology of the most banal of all activities that is masturbation.
Masturbation, as they say, is the imitation of the act of sexual intercourse when done alone. The sensations that are triggered during sex are the very same sensations that result during self-stimulation. During masturbation, men usually hold their penis loosely and make an up-and-down hand motion. This is continued until orgasm or ejaculation is achieved, which is the very same end result of sexual intercourse. Other techniques, gadgets, and styles can be used to further improve the experience of self-stimulation. Some of these techniques or gadgets can be dangerous since it may cause physical injuries. Other than that, masturbation has no other known dangers unlike what the myths suggest.
One famous myth about masturbation is that it is said to cause erection problems or erectile dysfunction in the future when masturbation is done frequently. As said earlier, myths seem true or possible when heard the first time. However, upon deeper analysis, it is only then that the truth or the possibility of the claimed statement is proven false or improbable. In this case, it may seem possible that frequent masturbation can eventually cause erectile dysfunction or erection problems. However, when analyzed further through asking, “How can this be possible?”, it will be known that masturbation has nothing to do with erection problems at all.
First, take into consideration the main causes of erectile dysfunction. Usually, these are injuries caused by physical trauma due to extremely strenuous activities or actions. Masturbation can neither cause physical trauma nor is it considered an extremely strenuous activity. Even if it is repeated several times and quite frequently, a person’s body naturally regulates the capacity of a person to endure self-stimulation for even a long period of time. Thus, it is impossible for a person to go overboard when it comes to masturbation. One reason for erectile dysfunction to possibly occur is when a device used or applied during the act of masturbation has caused an injury in the nerves of the man’s penis.
Truth is, no matter how frequent or how many times masturbation is done, it can never eventually result to erectile dysfunction. The common possible causes of erection problems are those that will have some influence on the functioning of the penal nerves. These include traumatic injuries, highly strenuous activities, health problems such as diabetes, and psychological factors such as stess or anxiety. The best way of preventing or avoiding this situation from happening is to also avoid the situations that may cause it. Since masturbation is not considered to be one of the causes, therefore, it may still be continued without worries.
Know answers to some of the complex queries (94% people asked these questions):
To become a masturbation expert, you need some simple guides, so to help you, we rounded up our top masturbation guides — from sexologists and lovemaking experts.
Yes, sometimes you can’t have sex with a partner, and masturbation is your best option to stay committed and not cheat your partner while enjoying the stimulation with fingers or toys.
Read and share the guides with your loved ones, let us help everyone to stay committed and enjoy masturbation.