Tuesday, November 19, 2019

It's No Fap November - Let's Talk About Masturbation!

BE FOREWARNED: I use graphic images and gifs in this post that may actually induce a masturbation session. I recommend reading this article when you are free and won't be disturbed, or that you are sure you can resist the temptation to masturbate.

Ever heard of "No Fap November?"

Well if you hadn't, now you have.

"No Nut November" is a time when men abstain from masturbation for a number of reasons.
Some organizations like NoFap encourage abstinence from masturbation to "overcome porn addiction." Some people believe that masturbation itself can be an addiction, and that No Nut November is a good time to demonstrate to yourself that you are "master of your domain."

It's been a while since my last post, so I'd like to take advantage of this year's No Fap November to talk about masturbation, how intact men masturbate, masturbation techniques to try, and masturbation techniques to avoid. I'd like to tell my personal story of how I discovered masturbation, how I developed bad masturbation habits, how they affected my sex life, and how I overcame them.

How do intact guys masturbate?
Most intact men discover masturbation by rubbing their foreskin back and forth over the glans, or head of the penis.

Intact male playing with his foreskin

They discover the pleasurable sensations this gives, and eventually find the point of no return learn to go past it. Eventually, they learn to masturbate by grasping the skin on the shaft of the penis and moving the foreskin up and down.

 Typical shaft stroke

Shaft hold as seen from the top

Circumcised men learn to masturbate in a similar way, grasping the shaft and moving the hand up and down along it...

...with the exception that most of them find they need the aid of some form of lubricant.

There is an entire market for personal lubricant. Nowadays Albolene and Coconut Oil are very popular.

That is one of the advantages we intact men have; the foreskin provides a natural buffer between our hands an the shaft of the penis, resulting in an ease of masturbation; you're not dependent on a bottle or canister of lube.

The rubbing of the inner mucosa of the foreskin against the mucosa of the glans makes the friction smooth and gentle. Additionally, the foreskin is a double-layered sleeve that rolls over itself, allowing it to glide over the shaft, unlike the skin on the shaft of the circumcised penis, which is immobile. It is a fact that for most intact men, lubrication is not necessary, though some men may choose to use it. It's also not cut-and-dried that circumcised men absolutely need lubrication; some can actually "go dry," though they might find that the friction begins to chafe after a while.

One thing is for sure; having a foreskin makes masturbation easier and more enjoyable. It was making masturbation difficult or impossible for boys and men which attracted early Victorian physicians to the practice of circumcision.

What are other ways in which men masturbate?

Grasping the shaft with the hand and moving it up and down is probably the most common way for men to masturbate, although they have been known to experiment using other methods and techniques.

A different way to masturbate is to reverse one's grip like this:

Some men learn to use a lighter grip, and even develop a technique using only the tips of the fingers, and hold the penis as they would a pen or pencil like this:

Notice the mobility of the skin on the shaft of the penis.

Sometimes men use both hands to rub the shaft between them like this:

Note that having a foreskin makes the above technique easier, as it provides rolling action.

Still more men prefer to use masturbation toys, such as plastic sleeves or tubes, that will allow them to mimic the action of penetrating a vagina. Quite possibly the most famous masturbation toy out there is the Fleshlight, which comes in a variety of styles.

Men can use it to glide up and down the penis...

...or they can fix it in place and thrust into it as they would a partner.

I've only listed some of the more common ways in which men masturbate, but the reality is that there is a whole lot more out there, as different men experiment in different ways.

When I was growing up, one of my go-to resources was a website called JackinWorld.

And recently, as an adult, I found another incredible resource on masturbation called Erotic Engineering. I recommend this website to readers who wish to improve and deepen their masturbation experience.

Masturbation Habits to Avoid
All men, whether they are intact or circumcised, should become aware of a bad masturbation habit known as "death grip."

What Is Death Grip?
The term "death grip" as it pertains to masturbation was originally coined by sex columnist Dan Savage.

Sex Columnist Dan Savage

The fact is that "death grip" is not something that has been officially recognized, but it describes a condition where men masturbate in a way that is too aggressive, so aggressive that it may be negatively affecting their sex life with their partners, if not affecting the way they enjoy masturbation.

It has spawned many an article on the internet, and even its own Wikipedia entry.

Some men develop a masturbation technique that applies extreme pressure on the penis. They grasp their penis with a tighter and tighter grip, until they get used to extreme sensations, such as the heavy pressure and rough friction that are only possible with a tight grip during masturbation, to the point where actual sex with a partner may be difficult.

 Skeptics dismiss "death grip" as a just anorgasmia, but it isn't so simple; men who report using "death grip" to masturbate report that they can still experience pleasure, but that a vagina feels "too loose" and even fellatio does not provide enough pleasure to result in orgasm.

What Causes Death Grip?
It is not known for certain what causes this phenomenon, but people attribute the condition to different causes.

Too Much Porn
It may be the case that with the free availability of pornography on the internet, men have become used to extreme, unrealistic fantasies portrayed in the artificial setting porn, to the point that normal, real-life average sex isn't so exciting. For this reason, organizations like NoFap encourage men to abstain from pornography.

Too Much Masturbation
This looks like it may be linked to pornography, but it isn't always the case; it is possible to masturbate without pornography.

When men go through puberty and become sexually active (e.g., begin to masturbate) sex is not usually readily available. A young man will have learned to masturbate, and masturbate hundreds of times to sexual fantasies he invents, before finally coming into contact with pornography and eventually sex with an actual real-life partner happens for him. He may develop an aggressive masturbatory technique in the interim that may desensitize him to the sensations of a looser vagina.

Taboo Surrounding Masturbation
For better or for worse, masturbation is still a rather taboo subject nobody wants to admit they do, let alone have an honest discussion about. Young men may not be aware that they might be masturbating in a way that could be detrimental to their future sex lives, they're too afraid to ask others about it, and others stay away from this topic of conversation.

Young men learn quickly that speed and stealth are the name of the game; masturbation is to be conducted in a quick, hushed manner, always in secret, always hurried so as to not be discovered by mom, dad or siblings. This being the case, men learn masturbation techniques for the purpose of ending the masturbation as quickly and as quiet as possible, not necessarily for the prolonged enjoyment of pleasurable sensations. Therefore they develop tight grips and aggressive friction techniques that result in the instant and intense sensations needed for quick release.

Supine vs Prone Masturbation - My Personal Story
I'm going to come out to you and say that I myself have experienced trouble with orgasm, both during masturbation and with partnered sexual intercourse. I learned that I was masturbating in a strange and detrimental way since I was about 16, and I have been researching the topic of anorgasmia, benign and detrimental masturbation technique since.

I'd like to begin my story with how I was raised; I grew up in a very conservative, very Christian household where conversations about sex, let alone masturbation, were not allowed. I grew up around a number of male cousins. As children, we would look for opportunities to show each other our penises and what we could do with them. We would find private, secluded places to urinate with each other and show each other our erections. I remember that age 3 or 4, one of my cousins could already fully retract his foreskin to reveal the purple, shiny head of his penis. I remember being transfixed by this act, and I remember feeling like something was wrong with my penis because I couldn't do that, and it hurt to try. Incidentally, my foreskin didn't become retractable until I was 8 or 9.

One day, we were at my aunt's house, in a room, showing each other our penises, when my aunt came in and saw what was happening. She immediately found a belt and started spanking all of us. She told us we were sick and dirty and that we were not to show each other our penises ever again. This alone should sum up to my readers what attitudes concerning sex and masturbation were like in my family. From then on, I learned that there was something wrong with others seeing my penis, and that it had to stay in my pants at all times save for using the bathroom or taking a bath.

I discovered self-pleasure at the age of 8 out on my school playground by complete accident. One day at school, I was playing on one of those huge wooden apparatuses often installed in a large sandbox, complete with monkey bars, bridges, slides and sloping logs.

It was something like this, but with sand.

The bell marking the end of morning recess had rung, and I needed get back down to go and line up with my class. I got onto the nearest log I could, with my penis up against it, and I slid down not even thinking about it. As I slid down, this intense wave of pressure started burning itself from my crotch, slowly engulfing my whole body. The orgasm was so intense I lost consciousness. By the time I woke back up, all the classes had already lined up and gone back into their classrooms. I was embarrassed to arrive at my classroom late; the teacher was asking where I was and she couldn't believe it when I told her that I "fell asleep" at the sandbox.

From that day on, I was on a quest to recreate those sensations again. I learned very quickly from the other teachers that there was something wrong with humping the logs at school. I had to move operations to underneath the sandbox; I learned to hump the sand. I couldn't wait until playtime. I could hide under the wooden apparatus, hump the sand and nobody would know. At home, I learned I had to hide underneath the bed and hump the carpet, because my mom told me if I kept humping the couch arms that my guts would spill out my penis.

Looking back, how I learned to masturbate resulted in a sort of excommunication from my peers. Words like "masturbation" and "jacking off" sounded alien to me. At church, I would often hear sermons about how boys and men shouldn't masturbate. I used to have this sort of pride in myself because I believed I never masturbated. Why would I believe I ever did? I never touched myself. I wasn't a nasty boy like all the others. At school, other boys would ask me "Do you jack off?" "Jack off?" I'd ask. "Yeah. You know..." and they would do the classic, familiar motion with a fist.

I didn't know what they were talking about then. I didn't do what they did. I'd say "You're gross. I don't do that." Little did I know...

It wasn't until I was approaching my late teens when I started discovering things on the internet... puberty... circumcision... masturbation... you know, the usual stuff.

I would discover that I was an outlier, and that not only was I always masturbating and just didn't know it, I didn't masturbate in the way most boys and men did. I read on a few websites that men who masturbated by humping pillows and mattresses, otherwise known as the "prone" position, often had trouble when having sexual intercourse with a partner, so I wanted to correct this.

Masturbating in the "prone" position

The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to learn to masturbate how other guys did. More and more, I saw the way I masturbated as a disadvantage. The way I masturbated, I could only masturbate if I was in a room with a rug or a carpet; cold tiled floors were a no-go. A bathroom was ideal since I could easily lock the door for privacy, but if there were no rugs, I'd be SOL.

I was a teen through the 90's, a time of desktop computer towers with large heavy screens, separate mice and keyboards hooked up to dial-up America On-Line accounts. If I wanted to masturbate to porn, I needed to bring down the computer screen to my level (down to the floor), or use printed material. That or simply imagine sexy scenes in my head. I had to sign into America On-Line and hope nobody picked up the phone. It was cumbersome to bring down the large heavy CRT monitor, mouse and keyboard every time I wanted to masturbate to porn. It had to be a day when no one was home and I was sure not to be walked on, unless I wanted to explain why the monitor, mouse and keyboard were on the floor.

So having read many websites about this topic, I wanted to start trying to masturbate in the good ol' fashioned way. I remember that taking my hand and moving my fist up and down did almost nothing for me. I tried many times, but I would always revert to humping the carpet. I would do this completely flaccid and with pants on, by the way. The way I masturbated, I had to learn to wait until my erection died down, and I could position my crotch with my flaccid penis up against the carpet to hump up and down. After many attempts to masturbate my erect member with my hand, I came to the realization that I couldn't masturbate like most guys did. It made me feel like a freak. It felt almost like when I didn't know how to ride a bike or whistle.

Then I read on a website, I can't remember which one, that it's possible to learn to masturbate sitting face up with the hand, otherwise known as the "supine position" if one abstained for a few days before trying. No touching the penis, no looking at porn, nothing. And then, after a while, sit down and learn to appreciate subtle sensations. So I decided to try doing that.

How most men masturbate: "supine" position

College was approaching, and I decided I didn't want to start life as a college student with that problem, so I made it a point to abstain for like 15 days and learn to masturbate "the right way" once and for all. During my first month as a freshman, I decided to have a masturbation session while my roommate was away. I started touching myself, and I started imagining sexy thoughts. I remember it took a while, and I remember it was the strangest sensation to approach orgasm with my hard penis in my hand. I was used to orgasming and ejaculating while humping the floor, completely soft, but this was different. I remember it taking a long time because I just wasn't used to it.

After a long, long time, and me vigorously pumping away, I finally allowed myself to cum. I had no idea how I'd handle it. Being intact, I would always cum in my foreskin. My pants were up the whole time (it's not necessary to undress when humping the floor, making it all that much more convenient), so I didn't have to deal with a mess. I'd just go to the bathroom afterwards, stand over the toilet, unzip, pull my foreskin back and let all the cum drip into the bowl. This time, I had cum all over my hands and clothes. It was the first time in my life that I ever ejaculated while having an erection. I remember it was exciting for me because up until that point, I had never witnessed my penis shoot sperm with my own eyes.

But that excitement was to be short lived, because I heard my roommate put the key in the knob to unlock it, and I had to pull my covers over me and pretend I was asleep until he left. I think he might have been able to tell that the room smelt of cum.

I experienced a mixture of feelings; excitement at finally having been able to masturbate with my hand, relief at finally achieving my goal, embarrassment at almost being "caught," grossness and helplessness at remembering I had no choice but to pull my covers over and onto my cum-covered body, and a bit of anger at my roommate for coming back earlier than expected, even though this was completely my fault and should have made sure he wasn't coming back soon. But all in all, I felt relieved that I was finally able to masturbate the way most other guys did.

That night, I had a huge load (pun absolutely intended) of laundry to do.

The story doesn't end there, though.

I had learned to masturbate with my hand, but it still took forever, as I still wasn't used to masturbating this way. So while I could cum on a dime when it came to humping the floor, it took me ages to reach orgasm using my hand. It took forever, and I was squeezing so hard my penis hurt after masturbation every time. I had weaned myself off of humping the floor, but now I had, what I now know as "death grip."

Fast-forward to when I started having sex with partners, and the problem reared its ugly head; while it felt fulfilling to have sex with my female partners, it was simply fact that I did "take forever," as it were. The best sensations, at the time, were of me humping the floor, better than even "death grip" masturbation. I had to do something.

How do experts recommend getting rid of Death Grip?
Having read different resources on this topic, I noticed that there are some suggestions by experts that keep recurring.

The first thing many experts recommend is making it a point to change ones' masturbation habits. This should be easy enough, but from the experience of someone who has struggled through this, it's easier said than done. It requires making a conscious effort and patience. Becoming frustrated with not seeing immediate results, it's always easy to revert to old habits to achieve that gratification one already knows how to get so easily, so it's important to resolve to make it a point to make a change, and to keep toward that goal.

The second thing many experts recommend is a long, sustained period of abstinence before attempting to start changing one's masturbation habits. During this abstinence period, a man shouldn't look at porn, or even touch himself in a sexual way. The idea is that a man has become accustomed to intense visual and physical stimuli (e.g. extreme sexual fantasies that only exist in porn, and the extremely high pressure of a tightly clenched fist on the penis), and so his thresholds of stimuli must be "reset."

NoFap calls this "rebooting the brain to factory settings."

Finally, experts recommend, having gone through that period of abstinence, to actually learn healthy masturbation habits. From this moment on, a man has to make it a point to masturbate and achieve orgasm only in the supine position, if he used to masturbate prone. Instead of a tight grip, a man should masturbate learning to listen to and enjoy the subtle sensations of light touch. Men are encouraged to use lubrication and a lighter grip that more closely resembles the soft tissues of the vagina. Some websites recommend using a penetrative sex toy that allows a man to mimic vaginal sex, such as a Fleshlight.

Still other experts recommend men learn to masturbate in the absence of porn. Instead, of masturbating while watching porn, they recommend watching it, but then turning it off and masturbate using only the imagination. 

"Don't touch yourself while you watch porn. Soak up the images, saver it and get crazy turned on. Then, turn off the laptop, go to another room and replay the images in your mind while you masturbate. This allows you to tune more into the sensations in your penis, without the distraction from all the input to your eyes," says certified sex coach Sarah Martin, MA.

I think this is an important point, because a dependency on pornography limits a man in the sense that, he can only ever masturbate if he has a laptop or porn mags. I myself don't think there's anything wrong with pornography, but I don't want to have to depend on it to get off.

All experts agree that teaching the body to enjoy new and less intense stimulation will take time and patience. If you feel yourself reverting to old habits, you have to learn to have the will power to stop and not allow yourself to go back. 

The Conclusion to My Story
I was eventually able to wean myself off of using the floor to masturbate, but I still had this lingering problem of not having full control of my orgasms. From time to time, I still found myself resorting to "death grip." It's embarrassing to admit, but sometimes I took forever to orgasm with my wife. Fellatio felt OK, but never satisfying enough to bring me off to orgasm. On more than one occasion we had to stop because it wasn't going anywhere. It was embarrassing to just say "Let's call it a day," and then go off and hide somewhere and finish off my hand.

It was clear; it wasn't a problem with ED or anorgasmia. I could demontrably get an erection, and I could ejaculate if I masturbated aggressively to porn, and I know for a fact if I humped the floor, I could cum in under 30 seconds.

The problem was that I had become used to masturbating only to porn, and masturbating only with heavy pressure on my poor dick.

I sought to find a way to "cure" myself of this.

I wanted so bad to gain control of my orgasm, and to be able to enjoy sex and masturbation like any other guy would.

I had heard of NoFap and No Nut November, and I already knew that at some point or another, I needed to commit myself to a "reboot" period if I was serious about relearning how to masturbate.

So last year, last November, I told myself "this is it." I decided that for at least once in my life, I was going to abstain for 30 days, and that it was going to be November of 2018.

What could it hurt?

For 30 days, I abstained from any sexual activity; no masturbation, no touching myself, nothing.

By the end, after 30 days of fighting back the urge to masturbate, I was curious about what masturbation was going to feel like. Marked on my calendar was the night of the 30th when I would break my masturbation fast. "Bate-fast" I'd like to call it.

I swear I had never felt my erection so huge in my hands, and I had never been so sensitive. I wasn't gripping, I wasn't rushing, and I felt I had full control of when I was about to orgasm.

Call it the feeling of success, call it "just relief after 30 days," but I must say that after 30 days of absolutely no sexual activity, I had the most sensational masturbation session, possibly the best ever in my whole life.

For the first time in my life I experienced something different; perhaps it was due to the fact that I had 30 days' worth of cum in me, but I noticed that after I ejaculated initially, I somehow felt as if the orgasm was ongoing. Involuntarily, my penis ejaculated a 2nd time. Like within seconds of my first ejaculation.

I was like "Woah shit!!! That's never happened before!!!"

Not only was my masturbation experience better than ever, this also translated to better sex with my wife. For the first time in my life I felt like I could go as long or as short as we wanted. I became convinced that abstaining from masturbation can actually be a good thing.

The moral of the story is that how a man learns to masturbate could influence whether or not he develops detrimental self-pleasure techniques, and ultimately, how he has sex with a partner.

I think that if men would be allowed to discuss masturbation openly with one another, the world would be a better place. If men discussed how they masturbated, and maybe even mentored each other on benign and detrimental ways of masturbating, perhaps they would learn how to avoid problems such as "death grip" and improve their solo, as well as partnered sex lives.

I admit this could sound creepy to some, but in retrospect, I really wish someone would have talked to me about masturbation. I wish somebody would have told me "You're doing it wrong. You should try masturbating how most men do it." I think it would have saved me lots of trouble.

Circumcised vs Intact
There is still one more elephant-in-the-room factor that I believe may contribute to the development of "death grip" and that is circumcision status.

It had been long known since the time of John Harvey Kellogg that circumcision made masturbation difficult. It was known for longer than that, as Rabbi Maimonides wrote in his book "A Guide for the Perplexed" that circumcision was supposed to render the male organ to make it "as quiet as possible."

Moses "Rambam" Maimonides (1135-1204)
"...with regard to circumcision, one of the reasons for it is, in my opinion, the wish to bring about a decrease in sexual intercourse and a weakening of the organ in question, so that this activity be diminished and the organ be in as quiet a state as possible"~"A Guide for the Perplexed" Part III, Chapter 49, Page 609
Circumcision may contribute to a desensitization of the penis, because it removes the most sensitive part of the penis. Sorrells et al. measured sensitivity along different points of the penis in intact and circumcised men, and found published their findings in the British Journal of Urology.

 Findings by Sorrells et al.: Circumcision removes the most sensitive part of the penis.

On their Death Grip article, Men's Health says "There may be a link to masturbation with death grip and penile nerve damage, but there currently isn't enough scientific data to support this conclusion."

This is an interesting passage, because it is simply irrefutable fact that circumcision is deliberate nerve damage; it is the cutting away of the most sensitive of nerves on the penis. In addition to removing sensitive areas on the penis, the lack of a foreskin causes the mucosal tissue of the glans and remaining inner part of the foreskin to become dried out and hardened in a process called "keratinization," which could result in further desensitizing the penis.

The glans in intact and circumcised penes

With all this nerve removal and keritinization, could it be that men are developing aggressive masturbation techniques as a result of being circumcised?
Could there a correlation?

I don't know. As I've already let readers know, I experienced this phenomenon of "death grip" and a difficult time reaching orgasm by manual masturbation and with a partner, even though I'm not circumcised, so it may be possible that both intact and circumcised men may be susceptible to this phenomenon, albeit to different degrees.

The world may never know until scientists decide to break with taboo and actually investigate this. It's nearly 2020 and people STILL have hangups about sex and masturbation.

Results on a quick Twitter Poll
It may not amount to much, if anything this could be a good start for other interested researchers to follow, but for now, I have conducted a quick Twitter poll asking for men to self-report whether or not they are struggling with "death grip" and their circumcision status, and here are the results:

Up front, it must be said that 40 respondents isn't a huge sample size, but I'm still posting these results for what it's worth.

Here are my observations:

There were slightly more circumcised respondents than intact.

On either side, there were more respondents that reported they weren't experiencing "death grip," as opposed to those who reported they were.

I want to bring attention to the difference in intact and circumcised men who reported they were experiencing "death grip"; there were far more circumcised men than intact men.

The greater number of respondents were intact men reporting they were not experiencing "death grip."

Is there a correlation between circumcision and a higher rate of men experiencing "death grip?"

Again, this isn't definitive by any means, as the sample size is rather small, but if these numbers mean anything, it seems more circumcised men may be experiencing the phenomenon of "death grip" than intact men.

This was an informal poll with a very small sample size, but I hope this might serve as a starting point for others interested in exploring this further.

That's all she wrote for today!

External Links:
Men's Health Death Grip Article

Death Grip Article on Vice 
"How to cure death grip"

Monday, March 26, 2018

Intact Males: How We Pee


It's been a while since the last post.

A year almost!

Since a post is long over due, I thought, why not do a post on peeing?

Not much thought is given to how we intact males urinate.

I think most of us just do what we do, when we do what we have to do, when we go pee without giving it too much thought.

Although I have heard that some fathers teach their male children to pee one way or another, I can tell you one thing; my father didn't teach me. As far as I can remember, all he did was either sit me down on the toilet, or pull my pants down in front of a urinal and just said "go," so I was pretty much left to figure things out on my own once I started "going" by myself..

How does an intact man urinate?
In my experience (I've never really observed another man, intact or otherwise, as he urinates; I think it's taboo in most places.), there are two ways to do it.

You can either leave your foreskin unretracted and simply pee through it, or retract your foreskin to pee.

 Peeing with the hood forward (left), peeing with the hood pulled back (right).

Peeing without retracting the foreskin
It may appear as though peeing with the foreskin pulled forward is unhygienic, but it's really not all that outlandish, considering that most of us peed this way as children, when our foreskins couldn't retract.

Actually, when women pee, the pee trickles around the area within the labia including the opening to the vagina, and although they may have to dab with toilet paper, they will have to take a shower and clean the area. This isn't outlandish either; it's called "hygiene." It's a simple fact of life that humans have to bathe.

Now, I have *heard* some people say that not pulling back your foreskin to pee is "unhygienic," because leaving pee there to foment might "cause infection," but I wonder how much of this is true; in my case, I have never had a urinary tract infection, or a bout of balanitis.

I researched the topic recently, and it was long believed that urine was sterile, but it turns out that this is not the case. Science shows that there are healthy levels of bacteria in every part of your body; an infection happens when flora in those parts of our body are disturbed. This is true for the mucosal tissues of the genitals in both men and women, as I've already talked about on a different post.

I'm going to make an educated guess and say that urine under the foreskin isn't a problem if the bacterial levels in the urine are "healthy." (Click on the link regarding bacteria in urine above.) My guess is that nature designed the penis in such a way that our foreskins can deal with urine. Additionally, it shouldn't be a problem if one bathes regularly anyway.

Retracting the foreskin to pee
This may not be possible for all of us. In most children it isn't, and they usually pee in the first way described above. To pee this way, men usually pull back their foreskins, just enough to reveal the meatus (that's what the hole at the end of the penis is called), and then just let it go.

Some men feel this might be advantageous, because urine does not wash through the preputial space. They may feel that for this reason, this way of peeing is more hygienic, and the smell of urine is less likely to occur. The problem that I see here is that, urine washing through the preputial space may actually be a *good* thing, because otherwise that area remains stagnant and may actually encourage infection. The body is well-equipped to deal with healthy levels of bacteria, after all.

Retraction may not be possible in a hand-full of men. I've read testimonies from men who are quite comfortable with the fact they can't retract, and they say urinating is no problem. They have no problems with hygiene or infection. Retracting the foreskin to pee is not an absolute requirement, but it might be preferable in some cases.

One man's philosophy on peeing
So I was doing some research on the internet for this post, and I came across an interesting post on this very topic on Quora. I don't think I could have said it better myself, so I'm just going to copy and paste the answer right here.

The question was "Should uncircumcised men roll their skin back when urinating?"

One Peter J. Mello replies:

Should it be pulled back, at least behind the meatus (pee-hole) for urination? - Probably, yeah.

Do I pull mine back to pee? - Not always.
Now before you jump to the conclusions that I'm lazy, unsanitary or suffer some major cognitive dissonance, allow me to elaborate.
It's a decision I make differently at different times, based on the following factors:
  1. Is there a foreseeable possibility that anyone besides me will be interacting with my penis before my next shower? If so, I retract. This is just common decency. Nobody goodly enough to be willingly touching your twig ’n’ berries should ever be treated to urine residue for their trouble. This increases the likelihood of repeat performances and promotes your reputation as a man of good character and hygiene.
  2. How long will it be until my next shower or other general ablutions? If it's late in the workday or I'm at the gym and know I’ll be getting squeaky clean in short order, I probably won't retract. If I just recently showered or several hours will elapse before I will again, then I skin it back. Not being well-enough endowed to perform autofellatio or become otherwise so contorted, I can't say if an odor develops from the traces of urine left under my foreskin after peeing, but I don't want to roll those dice.
Why not just retract as a general rule then, you ask? In short, because I have a long foreskin that covers the head regardless of my state of excitement, and even though it retracts easily at all times, quite honestly it’s just more comfortable to keep it covered. Sometimes those few seconds of a cool breeze wafting by a part of my anatomy that almost never encounters the outside world sans its built-in security blankey are a bit stimulating, other times it can be enough to induce a whole-body shiver and leave me feeling momentarily chilly. Either way, though minor inconveniences, I'm happy to eschew them if possible without any appreciable damage to my general hygiene.

I've also heard other uncircumcised guys say they retract because not doing so makes their urine stream unpredictable or otherwise more difficult to aim. In my experience, though, the reverse is true. My foreskin acts as a nozzle when I pee, ensuring that the flow is unified and always goes where I intend, even if I'm doing my best race horse impression. It's when I retract that sometimes extra pressure during release will throw me a curveball or *gulp* result in the demon known as splashback. Again, if I know I'll be washing down there in short order anyway, why not just let bygones be bygones and let him keep his turtleneck on and avoid any surprises.

So there's one more approach on whether or not to retract before peeing, and that's to use discretion to make a decision on a case-by-case basis.

The fellow who wrote this makes an excellent point; if you're expecting to have sexual interaction, or you just want to be "ready" for a casual encounter, you might want to pull it back to make sure things are as clean as possible down there.

Me, personally, after sex with the wife, I like to pee with the foreskin forward to wash my foreskin out. Believe it or not, I feel much "cleaner" after doing this; if I don't pee, my penis feels all sticky and I feel the need to take a shower. I don't know about other guys out there, but after sex, I just want to crash.

The gentlemen above also makes an important point; it's just more comfortable to keep it covered! Not to mention that I concur with him on stream predictability. For whatever reason, I feel I have more control over the flow of urine when I'm covered. When I pull back my foreskin, I don't always know where it's going to shoot first. When I pinch the end of my foreskin, the urine goes where I aim it. Also, it dribbles down into the toilet or urinal, instead of shooting straight out.

One time, just for a change, I was at a urinal, and I decided I was going to pull back my foreskin for peeing, and it was a huge mistake. The force of my stream hit the porcelain on the inner side of the urinal, and it bounced back all over my white Dockers. When I was done, I could see on the huge mirror in front of the sink that my pants were rather splattered. I lied and told people that it was water from the sink. Luckily the pants dried, and they were less noticeable, but still, I felt it was kinda gross to know there was dried pee on my pants. Now, I only retract unless I absolutely have to; when I'm covered, I'm always right on target.

Finishing up
So once you're urinating, what do intact men do?

I think it's generally accepted, even among circumcised males, that residual pee in or on the penis?

No bueno.

So what to do?

If you're intact, and you pee with the foreskin forward, you probably try to massage any urine left in-between your glans and foreskin out. I think that by feel you sort of just "know" how much is in there. You may want to give your foreskin one full retraction just to be sure, and then, just for good measure, give your penis a shake. Here's what it might look like:

Peeing with your foreskin retracted is no guarantee that pee won't get in between your preputial space, but I'd have to say it definitely reduces it.

After peeing this way, what I tend to do is shake my penis with the foreskin retracted. I retract fully and then give my shaft one milk forward to squeeze out any drops, then I pull my foreskin forward completely before putting my penis away. It looks something like this:

I imagine this is how circumcised guys pee, sans the foreskin part, although doing my research on google, I read that even cut guys have a hard time shaking out those last drops. Some men prefer to pee in a toilet stall, that way they can just take some squares of toilet paper and dab some of the pee off.

I've tried it, and I personally don't like it. The moist toilet paper sticks to my glans and it's such a pain to get it off.

"No matter how many times you shake and dance, the last few drops end up in your pants." ~Author unknown

Related Post:
Intact Male Hygiene: You're Doing It Wrong

External Links: 
Science News: Urine is not sterile, and neither is the rest of you

Quora: Should uncircumcised men roll back their skin back when urinating?

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Intact Male Hygiene: You're Doing It Wrong

Right, so something intact guys often get dirt for is being "dirty" and "smelly" all the time, and having to take extra steps to keep clean.

First off, this is a bit unfair, not to mention sexist.

I mean, let's just ignore the fact that there is an entire aisle of hygiene products for women.

Yes, I'm pretty sure women's genitals perpetually exude the aroma of fresh raspberries and cream, especially around that time of the month.

There is so much a woman has to do to keep clean, tidy and fresh-smelling down there, but let's give intact men all the shit for it.

What's an intact man's penis supposed to smell like?
Giving advice to one woman self-conscious about her smell, another woman gave this advice:
 "Your vagina is supposed to smell like a vagina, not a mango. If your partner complains about the natural smell or taste of your vagina, they can go fuck a mango." ~Lily R. Mason

I want to bring attention to the contrasting advice that women get vs. what men get.

While most women are told to love their bodies as they are, men get body shamed. Why is this?

Why can't intact men get similar advice as above?

A penis is supposed to smell like a penis, not some tropical fruit.

Partners that complain about the natural smell or taste of your penis should go eat a banana or something.

What's the right way for an intact man to wash?
First off, let's start with how NOT to wash.

Ever been told to retract your foreskin and use soap and water to wash under it?


It's wrong.

As it has been mentioned before on this blog, sadly, doctors in the United States are geared towards circumcision, and they gear their patients and their parents towards circumcision, so any information they give is often wrong for one or all of the following:
  • They were taught misinformation in med school regarding anatomically correct male organs and they never bothered to do any actual research on the matter (Why should they? Their patients are all going to be circumcised anyway, right?)
  • They're pulling it out of their rear end (As doctors with PhDs, they need to sound like they know what they're talking about, even when they actually don't.)
  • They are quite deliberately giving patients and their parents misinformation that will give them iatrogenically caused problems that they can use as an example of why all males need to be circumcised

Soap should never be used to clean the delicate mucosal tissue on the inside of the foreskin and on the glans because:
  • It disrupts the natural flora of the penile microbiome
  • It can dry out the mucosal tissues on the inside of the foreskin and on the glans, which are normally supposed to be moist and supple.
If you use soap to wash under the foreskin, you run the risk of giving yourself a yeast infection (AKA balanitis) and a reason for charlatan doctors to suggest circumcision.

In the industrialized world, including the US, women are told not to use soap or to douche too often for the same reason; it results in disruption of the natural flora that grow in the vagina and around the vulva, increasing the risk for a yeast infection.

So how should an intact man wash?
If he can, he should retract the foreskin of the penis, and let water from the shower head fall over it. Using his fingers he should play with the foreskin to knock loose any smegma and let the water wash it away. Once he is finished, he should pull his foreskin back up over the penis. That's it. The whole process takes two or three seconds to complete.

 When in the shower, merely pull back the foreskin as far back as it will go
and allow water to wash over it. Use your fingers to knock any smegma loose
and let the water wash it away. When you're finished, put the foreskin back
over the glans. This should take no longer than a few seconds.

Video of a Man Showing How It's Done
The following video shows a man in the shower demonstrating how intact men usually wash down there. As it is a naked man in the shower, please be advised that this video is not suitable for work.

Hygiene in Children and Early Adolescents
It has been mentioned in a previous post, but it is common for the foreskin not to be retractable in children and adolescents. Usually, baby boys are born with the foreskin fused to the glans, so not being able to retract the foreskin is normal in babies. Research conducted in Europe and Japan shows that retraction can take place anywhere between 0 and 17 years of age, the median age for retraction being 10 years of age.

Do not listen to a doctor that says a child's foreskin should be retracted and washed with soap; this advice is mistaken and the doctor is giving parents potentially harmful advice that can result in serious, permanent damage.

Forced retraction can cause bleeding, infection and other complications.
Do not attempt to forcibly retract your child's foreskin, as this can result in injury.
Do not let a doctor forcibly retract your child's foreskin.

Beware of doctors who insist that they must retract your child's foreskin. When taking your child for checkups, warn your doctor not to retract your child's foreskin. If your doctor disrespects your wishes, you may be able to take legal action. Click on this link for further information.
What respected medical organizations have to say on early, forced retraction
Medical associations advise not to forcibly retract the foreskin of an infant, as this interferes with normal penile development, and may result in scarring or injury.(1)(2).

Camille et al (2002), in their guidance for parents, state that:

"[t]he foreskin should never be forcibly retracted, as this can cause pain and bleeding and may result in scarring and trouble with natural retraction."(3)

Simpson & Barraclough (1998) state that:

"[n]o attempt should be made to retract a foreskin in a child unless significant separation of the subpreputial adhesions has occurred. Failure to observe this basic rule may result in tearing with subsequent fibrosis and consequent [iatrogenically induced] phimosis. ..."(4)

The American Academy of Pediatrics cautions parents not to retract their son's foreskin, but suggest that once he reaches puberty, he should retract and gently wash with soap and water.(5) The Royal Australasian College of Physician as well as the Canadian Paediatric Society emphasize that the infant foreskin should be left alone and requires no special care.(6)

Forcibly retracting the foreskin in babies, children and young adolescents can result in permanent injury that may require surgery. Some sneaky doctors may actually be deliberately giving this "advice"; they see a price tag at the end of your child's penis.

So how should you clean your child's penis?
First off, do not try to retract your child's foreskin, especially in a baby or a young child.

Merely wash his penis without retracting the foreskin as you would any other part of his body, like his fingers or toes. No special care is needed.

 Clean your child's penis like you would any other port of his body.
First, wipe the shaft like you would a finger, wiping between the
shaft and the scrotum. Next, clean around the scrotum, between the
folds of skin where the child's legs connect with his abdomen.
Always leave the anus and surrounding areas for the very last.

In an older child, ask if he is able to retract the foreskin, and if he can, let water fall over it washing away any buildup.

If your child can't retract, or can only partially retract
Sometimes, the foreskin becomes completely retractable all at once, sometimes it takes time, and the retraction process happens in increments. Your child may be at a stage where the foreskin is still adhered to the glans and the foreskin only retracts half-way, for example. Sometimes most of the glans is visible, but the foreskin is attached to the glans just above the corona. Your child's foreskin may be tight and not allow for retraction at all. This is normal and your child's foreskin will come loose as time passes, as the child experiments with himself in the shower, or when he's by himself exploring his body. Remember, complete retraction can happen any time between 0 and 17 years old, 10 being the median age. Please read more about the foreskin retraction process here.

Ask your child to retract as far as he can without feeling discomfort, and let water wash over the exposed part of his glans. Then ask him to pull his foreskin back forward to the default covered position, and he's done.

Never ask your child to retract his foreskin further than is comfortable for him. Some children retract earlier and quicker than others, and in some children the process is slow. But don't worry; a child's foreskin usually becomes fully retractable with time. Never forcibly retract a child's foreskin, as this can result in serious, sometimes permanent injury. Please read more about the foreskin retraction process here.

A word of caution regarding bubble baths
Some, though not all children, may be sensitive to chemicals in soaps and bubble baths. Exposing the inner mucosa of the foreskin to soap or bubble bath in these children may cause the foreskin and surrounding areas to become inflamed. For this reason, it's not a good idea to allow your baby to soak in soapy water or bubble baths.

If you notice that your child's penis may be inflamed, discontinue the use of the bubble bath solution immediately, and/or do not allow your child to sit in soapy water. It could be that chemicals are interfering with the natural flora in the microbiome of your child's penis. Sometimes trying a different, mild soap is advised

Instead, allow your child to sit in warm, non-soapy water after washing and rinsing his body thoroughly.

Keep in mind that this advice is nothing special; it is the same advice given to parents of girls, where some soap products may cause inflammation in a baby girl's vulva, and in cases where a baby girl's genital become inflamed, discontinuing the use of bubble bath solution and/or changing soaps is advised. 

Related Posts:
My Doctor Says I Should Get Circumcised

Medical References:
1. "Care of the Uncircumcised Penis". Guide for parents. American Academy of Pediatrics. September 2007.

2. "Caring for an uncircumcised penis". Information for parents. Canadian Paediatric Society. July 2012.

3. Camille CJ, Kuo RL, Wiener JS. Caring for the uncircumcised penis: What parents (and you) need to know. Contemp Pediatr 2002;11:61.

4. Simpson ET, Barraclough P. The management of the paediatric foreskin. Aust Fam Physician 1998;27(5):381-3.

5. American Academy of Pediatrics: Care of the uncircumcised penis, 2007

6. Royal Australasian College of Physicians. (2010) Circumcision of Infant Males.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Talking About It: Opening Up the Lines of Communication

In the last post, we talked about potential problems that could befall an intact male. The fact is that, even though problems are rare, they can and do occur. However intact males face an even bigger challenge; talking about it.

As it was discussed, because problems are rare, chances are you're not suffering any kind of problem, and what you are experiencing is normal. But, how are you supposed to know?

Especially if you're an American male, it doesn't help that information regarding the male reproductive organ in the USA is mostly geared towards circumcision. As the US has a for-profit medical system, doctors will most likely tell you that you have a condition called "foreskin," and it must be cured right away, and that conveniently they can be the ones to do it.

Believe it or not, even though the great majority of  men it the world are intact (something like over 70%), men in other parts of the world often stay silent about any problems they have or think they have too.


Talking about the penis in many cultures is a taboo subject!

Saying the word "penis" is a horrific thought in and of itself, let alone telling someone you think you might have a problem. We have special words like "down there," "plumbing" and "junk" to avoid having to call it what it is.

As a result, we have a situation where men are in the dark about their own bodies. They don't know what is "normal" or "abnormal." Even in countries where anatomically correct male organs are the norm, men and even their parents are simply unaware of the normal development of male organs.

So what to do?

Start Talking About It
First and foremost, we need to work on changing the society in which we live; it needs to become  normal and acceptable to talk about our bodies.

"Penis" isn't a bad word.

This applies everywhere, not just the US.

Perhaps it's because of Western Society's Judeo-Christian roots that men are ashamed to talk about their problems; if men are suffering, or think there might be something wrong with their reproductive organs, the tendency is for men to remain silent and try to pretend like everything is OK.

A man may not even be suffering a problem at all, but without any feedback from anyone, there is no way for him to be sure.

This generation needs to work on breaking this silence.

Fathers need to tell their sons it's OK for them to ask them any questions regarding their bodies.

Boys and men mustn't be ashamed to share their insecurities with someone they trust.

We must eliminate the stigma of talking about our genitals outside the context of comedy.

Particularly in the US, men need to become aware that in the medical community information regarding anatomically correct male organs is often lacking, and often misinformed if at all present.

Intact men need to educate themselves regarding their own bodies (the information is out there, you've just got to look, because American doctors will not give it to you), and pay it forward.

We need to tell other men that it is safe to talk about their problems with us.

If we have children, we need to tell them and let them know from a very young age that they can talk to us about anything, and mean it.

When fathers speak to their children about sex, they need to come straight out and say "This is how your penis works. If you can't pull your foreskin back, don't worry. This is normal for your age, and you shouldn't be worried."

Educating ourselves and helping educate others can help save us so much trouble.

If you think you have a problem, you shouldn't suffer in silence.

Information and links to medical literature will be available on this blog. We are working on bringing you a list of intact friendly doctors. We will post links to medical resources.

We have started a page on Facebook to coincide with this blog. If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the comments below, or visit our Facebook page here. Other intact and restoring men will be there for you to ask questions and/or give their feedback.

Related Posts:
Am I Circumcised or Intact?

My Doctor Says I Should Get Circumcised

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