Better Sex for Young Men with Erectile Dysfunction in Five Easy Steps.
Many young men experience some degree of erectile difficulty these days. It is a source of great uneasiness for them, since it makes dating a daunting experience. For them dating is not fun. It is overshadowed by a sense of dread and over-focus on their penis’ performance. Of course, this worry only makes things worse.
How did it get to this?
From talking to over a hundred young men between 19 and 34 I have come to understand that for many healthy young men this problem stems from having conditioned their bodies into a very specific sexual pattern during masturbation that cannot be transferred to a partnered situation.
Almost everyone learns about their body and their body’s response to sexual stimulation from masturbation. For most men, intentional ejaculation becomes possible between age 13 and 14. However, partnered sexual experiences typically are not pursued until age 16 or later. During the intervening years, masturbation tends to be the only sexual experience to be had, and with the Internet offering a plethora of pornographic videos, many young men get very used to watching something while masturbating.
Previous generations of men also tended to learn about their sexual response from masturbation, however in most instances they had to rely on their own fantasy material, or a static image in a magazine to stimulate mental arousal. For them, focus on sensation and their body’s reaction to stimulation was an important part of the experience of masturbation, helping them to accelerate arousal and come to climax. This internal feedback loop, fueled by a sensuous focus on their own bodies, made it relatively easy to include partners into sexual play. Their bodies were conditioned to maintain close awareness of their own pleasurable sensations and increase their arousal that way, additionally fuelled by the sensory input from being with a partner, their naked presence, their touch, their interest and arousal.
It appears that always masturbating to Internet porn conditions the body to predominantly rely on visual input for sexual arousal. With the high octane nature of Internet porn, a sensuous self-focus is not really needed to obtain high levels of arousal and climax in masturbation. So hundreds of repetitions of masturbating without fully including a focus on one’s own sensations and arousal conditions the body to a very rigid, narrow pattern of sexual functioning. The experience itself can be excellent, however, the pattern is not transferrable to a partnered experience.
So what to do it you find yourself in this situation?
How can you undo the conditioning that occurred in the past?
A big part of the problem lies in a lack of sensory focus and integration. The following steps are designed to help you learn to function sexually in a more aware, whole-body focused way. The goal is for you to expand your ability to perceive and enjoy all sexual sensory input. Following these steps will help you have better erections and more confidence in partnered sexual situations.
Please be aware they cannot take the place of sitting down with a sex therapist to work on your specific situation.
Five Easy Steps:
1. Minimize your use of Internet porn.
Can you masturbate to climax without watching Internet porn? If yes, then you are already ahead of the program.
If not, try to use the Internet only in the very beginning of masturbation, just in order to get aroused. The turn off your computer and focus on what touching yourself feels like. You can use visual memory or fantasy to supplement your arousal- but try to focus as much as you can on what your touch feels like.
If you find you lose your arousal after you turn off the screen and cannot regain it, allow yourself to keep watching, but try to tune in to your sensations as much as you can. Aim to shift the main focus to your sensations, away from the visuals. As you come close to climax, look away from the screen to make it easier to focus on your sensation. Your goal is to gradually reduce your dependence on visual stimuli for sexual arousal and expand the focus on tactile stimulation to obtain and maintain arousal and get to climax.
2. Be mindful of your position.
Can you masturbate lying down?
Lots of young men tell me that they prefer masturbating sitting down. It is what they are used to – anything else feels awkward.
This is another example of conditioning that interferes with the enjoyment of partnered sexual activity. After all, you will likely not spend a lot of partnered sexual activity sitting on a chair. Make sure your body starts to associate sexual arousal with lying down, since that is what you want to do with a partner.
3. Expand your self-stimulation technique.
Can you enjoy stimulation to your entire penis?
Many men develop self-stimulation preferences that focus on one particular area of the penis (most often the frenulum) or prefer a specific grip, or movement, or rub against an object like a pillow. These preferences are difficult to integrate in partnered sexual situations unless you masturbate together. Try to include your entire penis in the stimulation, which produces a sensation that is closer to something you might experience with a partner. Once you can do that reliably, mix things up by using your non-dominant hand and/or lubricant – anything that mimics stimulation you might receive from a partner more closely.
4. Get to know your sexual body and become a more confident sexual partner.
Part of honing in on your sensations is to be aware of your entire body. To pay attention to all the different parts of you that experience sexual arousal. Focusing on you breathing helps with that. Slow, diaphragmatic breathing through your nose tends to slow down arousal and focus your mind on your body. Fast, shallow open mouth breathing typically speeds up arousal and focuses you on where you feel things most acutely. Experiment with your breathing to gain additional understanding of your body in a state of sexual arousal.
Pelvic floor tension is another variable you should learn to play with. For many men, tensing up their pelvic floor amplifies sensory input, i.e. makes sensations feel more powerful; relaxing these muscles can help calm down arousal. You can identify your pelvic floor muscles by paying attention to which muscles you use to stop the flow when you urinate.
5. Be present when with your partner.
What do you focus on when you are with a sexual partner?
Most young men seem to be anxiously focused on their sexual partner. Not in a way that would turn them on, but trying to make sure the partner has a good time. This often stems from awareness that they may have difficulty functioning during the sexual encounter. To make up for that they focus on what they perceive to be their partner’s sexual needs. This kind of anxious pre-occupation with your partner often adds to the development of performance difficulty. It makes it impossible to be focused on being turned on yourself, pursue what you want to experience and how hot this is for you.
Use what you learned in step 1 through 4 and be present with you partner. Look at them from the perspective of your desire. Move the action in the direction that is most exciting and interesting to you without ignoring their needs for good tactile stimulation and attention. Focus on all the arousing sensory input. Be present. Don’t be shy to ask for specific stimulation or ask to do things to your partner that you find stimulating to you.
The hottest sex partner is someone who enjoys himself.