erection, fantasizing, homiesexual, massage, masturbation, muscular atrophy, nakedness, nudity, parents, pornography, roommates, touch

Frank Answers Briefly More About Male Body Issues

This post continues the brief answers about male body and sexual issues begun in Frank Answers Briefly About Male Body Issues. That archived post was getting too long so I moved the questions and answers given in early 2021 to this new post. More questions are invited as we continue through 2021. Questions posted on the blog platform come to me anonymously. Comments on the answers are welcome.

Warning: full nudity images

Content

Boys Will Be Naked – October 4, 2021

Men Touching Other Men – August 21, 2021

Muscular Atrophy During COVID-19 – July 31, 2021

Boys and Nudity – July 2, 2021

The Father-Son Talk – June 8, 2021

Man Masturbates With Wife’s Approval – May 21, 2021

Erection on the Massage Table – May 6, 2021

Excursus on the “Happy Ending”

Nude Roommate Masturbates to Porn – April 24, 2021

Crucifixion Erection – March 29, 2021

Excursus on St. Augustine and Erections

Homiesexual Boys on Tik Tok – March 19, 2021

Sexual Fantasizing – February 14, 2021 (with gifs)

Self-Care and Self-Touch – January 13, 2021 (with gifs)

I wonder if Frank would know…

Boys Will Be Naked

October 4, 2021

I was interested in the issue the Naked Grandpa had with the grandsons, one who enjoyed being naked and the other who didn’t. I have a thirteen year old boy who enjoys being naked around the house, but he has a younger sister. Now that he’s reaching puberty my wife and I are wondering what to do about that. Should we rein him in as far as being naked in the presence of the rest of the family is concerned?

Dear worried dad,

That’s an interesting question. But it can only be answered within the family dynamics. How comfortable are you and your wife with nudity? Let me tell you some stories about teenage boys being naked around the house.

Several years ago I met a college student from Finland who said that in his family home in Finland the family was often naked with each other in the sauna and sometimes around the house. He also had a younger sister, and he would often come to the breakfast table naked after taking his morning shower, and his parents and sister accepted this.

I also heard of a family situation in which the older sister was accepting of her younger brother’s propensity for being naked around the house, even past puberty. Apparently she gave him flattering comments about his emerging “manhood,” which built up his adolescent confidence about his body.

It’s possible that your children spent time together naked when they were younger. My second son often took baths with his sister who was four years younger, and they enjoyed the experience. He also took off running naked through the house, although his older brother was more reserved. That stopped around the time he was reaching puberty.

It’s possible that your son may conclude as he shows more signs of his “manhood” that he should be more modest in front of the family. On the other hand, there is really no reason why he needs to be “reined in,” as you say. And certainly he should not be embarrassed about his naked body. It would be a good thing for him to remain comfortable in his skin and learn, especially in his teen years, that nudity and sex are not to be equated.

However, as he becomes more physically mature and continues to be comfortable being naked around the house, you and your wife will have to reach some understanding with him about some situations. Here are some examples.

A boy’s hand will naturally go to his penis and he will start fondling it. But this could also arouse him. Should he be instructed that masturbation has to be confined to the privacy of his room?

When company comes to the house or his sister’s friends are on the premises does he have to wear clothes or stay in his room?

Also, as his sister gets older, her sensitivities will need to be taken into consideration. Will she remain comfortable with her brother’s nakedness?

Sometimes he might get an erection. This is an involuntary muscular response. It might have to be explained to his sister.

When he has friends over, will they be comfortable with his nakedness? That’s between your son and his friends. Maybe they will join him in being naked. Is it okay with you to have naked teenage boys hanging around the house?

There will probably be times, as he gets older, when his nakedness will have to be confined to the privacy of his own room. But he may figure that out on his own.

Pastor Frank

Men Touching Other Men

August 21, 2021

Men are getting into trouble for touching women inappropriately. The latest man in the news about this was Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York, who was accused of touching 11 women inappropriately and was forced to resign. He’s a single (divorced) man and comes out of an Italian culture that does a lot of touching and kissing, but he should have known that it’s risky to touch or kiss a woman if you’re a man, unless you and she have developed a real relationship. We all need touch and we’ve been deprived of it during the pandemic. If it’s risky to touch a woman, can a man touch another man without that being construed as a gay come-on? What do you think about men touching other men?

You are correct that we all need to be touched and to touch. Studies have shown how essential it is for the development of children to experience touch and it’s no less important for adults. We have all experienced the deprivation of touch during the last year and a half.  The problem is that, as we look to regain the pleasure of human touch, we cannot touch one another in inappropriate ways. This especially applies to men (or women) in positions of power touching women (and also men) in ways that are unwanted and unappreciated. Most of the reported cases of sexual harassment, however, come from women at the hands of men in positions of power over them.

In many societies the need for touch among people who are not in a relationship is met by women hugging and kissing women and men hugging and kissing men. Yes, men can kiss men; it need not be a gay thing. It’s also no sin if it is. The ancient Christians kissed one another in worship, even men kissing men. It’s common in many cultures (e.g. France, Russia) for men to kiss men. In many traditional societies homosexual practices between young men were tolerated because this allowed for the release of male sexual energy while preserving the virginity of young girls for marriage. It was also expected that men would marry when they were mature enough to accept the responsibilities of household and parenthood.

However, that is not our society, and your question about whether you can touch a man without this “being construed as a gay come-on” is a realistic reminder that many men are touchy about being touched by a man. This is not just homophobia; it’s also a learned (and taught) behavior.

The problem in our society is that men already learn as boys that touching another boy is inappropriate. I remember in fourth grade that a new boy came into my class from England.  I was interested in where he was from and befriended him.  But our teacher saw me walking down the corridor with my arm around his shoulders and instructed me that “we don’t do that.”  I said, “But I like him.” The teacher told me I should like him without touching him. God forbid that you should kiss another boy.

In eighth grade a new boy named Freddie, whom I befriended, began walking alongside me on our way to school, sometimes with his arm around me. The fall weather was still warm and he began reaching into my shirt to touch my bare skin.  He would meet up with me after school and walk as far as his house. He would invite me to stop in but I always had to get home to practice the piano and watch my siblings until my parents came home from work. One day I accepted his invitation and he was delighted to show me his room. (His parents were separated and he lived with his mother and was an only child.) He told me he liked to feel my skin and asked if he could feel my chest again. I decided there was no harm in it and I was actually a bit flattered. So I let him open my shirt and feel my chest with his arm around my shoulder. He said, “You’re a nice friend,” and that was that. He just had a need to touch me. Friendship and touching go together.

This boy may have been touch-deprived and was grateful that I allowed him to touch my skin. Truth be told, I was also touch-deprived. I had been a war baby (WW II) and my father was off in the Army when I was born. My mother was not one for hugging and kissing. I was more likely to receive her hand in punishment than in caressing when I was growing up. There was little hugging and kissing in my family. I don’t think this was unusual for families in the 1950s.

But boys, like animal cubs, are all over one another in playful hugs and tussles. They want to show both fondness and strength. by touching one another and being body-on-body. I was actually happy when a friend hugged or touched me, even if it was wrestling with my friend Gary, which we did on the gym mat in his basement, in a pup tent on a camping trip, or in the pool during free time in high school freshman swimming class (wrestling nude in that case).

Touching someone may be off-limits to American school children, but in southeast Asia I saw boys and men walking down the street hand-in-hand or with arms around each other. In Singapore a Methodist high school was at the bottom of the hill from Trinity Theological College where I was living and teaching in the summer of 2013. I usually walked down the hill to the mall for breakfast as the youth were arriving for school on buses. I observed that most of the boys were holding hands with or hugging another boy (but not with a girl like American teenagers might do).

Even more shocking to this American was to see in a Korean spa not only fathers and sons and brothers but also friends scrubbing each other’s backs. (Mothers and daughters and and sisters and female friends presumably did the same in the women’s pool areas.) I was told by one of my Korean graduate students that congregational groups sometimes have a day at the spa and members sit on the stools in the pool area (in which clothing is prohibited) scrubbing one another’s backs.

Body scrubbing in a Korean spa

The world needs more connection and more compassion. We need more safety from unwanted touch, but we also need to develop a more a refined ability to communicate on all levels about all things. And men could get all of this if they connected with and touched more men.

Have you ever felt energy surge through your body from the touch of another man or the warmth radiating from another man’s caring hands? Perhaps he was placing a hand on your shoulder in affirmation of a job well done, or slapping your back as a gesture of encouragement. Maybe he was a personal fitness trainer helping you with physical adjustments in the gym. Or a male massage therapist pressing strong hands down on tense muscles. The touch of a man is different from the touch of a woman. This is very real phenomenon and your whole being changes biochemically in that moment.

I think many men sense that they could use touch from another man. Many of us didn’t get get hugged by our fathers. This need is being met by the establishment of men’s cuddle clubs where gay, bi, and straight men get together just to cuddle one another. We could begin meeting that need by breaking out of our own cultural inhibitions and touching another man in friendship, camaraderie, compassion, or giving comfort as needed. An arm around a shoulder, a big bear hug, or even a kiss appropriate to the moment and context could be welcomed.

So what do I think about men touching other men? It is a way of reaching out for communion or fellowship through communicative touch. Whether in a handshake, a touch on the shoulder, an embrace, or a kiss, we touch and are touched. These ordinary gestures extend communion or fellowship. Ultimately, communion is what God desires of us and for us.

For more on this topic see “Frank Answers About Connections and Touch.”

Pastor Frank

Jack Laugher and Chris Mears of Great Britain celebrate at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Photograph: Al Bello/Getty Images

Muscular Atrophy During COVID-19

July 31, 2021

I had this chat with a professor friend in his mid-40s who is unhappy about his body image after the pandemic lockdown.

Me: Hi! How are you?

Him: I’m very angry.

Me: What about?

Him: I don’t like my appearance.

Me: What’s wrong with it? You’re physically a very impressive person.

Him: I’m losing muscle mass. And I’ve lost weight during the pandemic. So I look flabby.

Me: You’re lucky not to have gained weight. My guess is that a lot of men have gained weight during the pandemic because of inactivity, overeating, and lack of exercise. I, too, lost weight (low carb diet), and muscle mass (even though I’ve done some exercise). But it goes with age. My arms and legs look skinnier, but my belly remains the same, just more accentuated because the rest of me is thinner.

Him: Maybe muscular atrophy is happening to all of us because of inactivity during the pandemic. I think many men will not be happy about their bodies as we come out of the pandemic.

Frank answers: Indeed, I think the pandemic has had a deleterious physical and mental effect on most of us, men and women. I’m not a physician or a physical trainer or a nutritionist. But from general information that most of us are aware of, we can put two and two together and see how our bodies and minds have been affected by the mitigation conditions we’ve lived with since February or March 2020.

We’ve been forced into inactivity for months, especially when working via Zoom. Teachers, for example, have not gone to the school campus to teach students in the classroom. We’ve been on Zoom for hours on end. Teaching, counseling, conferences, committee meetings, etc., have all been on Zoom. The energy we used to expend just being up and out and about every day gets stored up unless we make time to go out for a walk and to exercise in some regular way. If we are inactive, we loose muscle mass. I know, because as a senior citizen I see muscular atrophy happening in my own body. The toll that aging takes on the body extends all the way down to the cellular level, and those cells don’t regenerate easily.

This is weight-lifting nurse, Mike Schultz, age 43, before he contracted COVID-19, and after six weeks in the hospital. Mr. Schultz posted this before-and-after photo to show the effects of inactivity on muscles.

We haven’t gone out to eat with spouses, friends, or colleagues where we can enjoy human company as well as good dining, because restaurants have been closed. Company is good for us mentally, and at least going to the restaurant burns up some of the calories we take in, like walking after eating. During the pandemic we ordered out, drove to get it, and ate at home and did more cooking at home. And perhaps we ate more than we needed to. And with lack of adequate exercise, in men the unburned calories go to our bellies.

We’ve had a lot of anxieties, whether we’ve realized it or not. We worried about how our families and friends were coping with COVID. We were anxious to keep ourselves from being infected by the virus. When we are anxious we often eat snacks and binge on comfort food, which puts on weight. Our sleep is fitful. Perhaps we are sleeping for fewer hours at night. That bowl of ice cream before going to bed doesn’t help.

Getting a good night’s sleep is really important for good health. Good sleep improves concentration and productivity because we aren’t tired during the day. Sleeping naked keeps the body temperature down and being cool gives us better sleep—and also burns off calories because metabolism occurs during sleep. Good sleep helps us both to lose weight and gives us more desire to exercise. And if we exercise, we burn off some of that fat and feel better about ourselves because we feel more energetic. Even seniors can counter the aging effect by exercising.

For more on sleeping naked see “Frank Answers Briefly About Male Body Issues.”

Fortunately, society has opened up as vaccinations have increased and this summer we have been able to begin returning to gyms, yoga studios, restaurants, and outdoor events, as well as activities we could do last summer, like riding our bike, walking, running, and swimming (all good exercises to keep us trim). However, health experts tell us to take it easy. Nothing is going to “return to normal” after the COVID pandemic

First of all, the new variants of the coronavirus, like Delta, keep us on our guard. CDC gives conflicting information from day to day: masks on, masks off, vaccines provide immunity, but there are breakthrough cases (fortunately, not severe for the vaccinated). Remember that this coronavirus is “new” (novel). Even the experts are learning new facts from the statistics they study. We can’t become overconfident that we’re done with the pandemic.

Secondly, we’re not at the point where we can resume an exercise program that we were doing before we ceased doing it. As health expert John Dale of Johns Hopkins University warns:

“The more you compete or perform an activity, the more your body becomes accustomed to it. When you stop doing that activity, your body doesn’t stay at that level because you’re not using it the same way. Jumping right back into an activity you haven’t done in a while and expecting to pick up where you left off may lead to unwanted aches and pains.”

I notice, for example, that even though I did yoga on Zoom consistently over the last seventeen months, I got sloppy in my alignments and wasn’t always mindful during my practice. In the studio once again, teachers have an opportunity to help with alignments. In a way, we have to begin again.

Weight lifters especially need to work up to what they were lifting before COVID-19 mitigations closed the gym. They can’t just pick up where they left off. Those who have actually experienced COVID-19 in their body will especially have a long way to go to regain muscles and body strength.

We need to recognize that human beings are vulnerable to disease and to fluctuations in our bodies due to social conditions and aging. We will never have perfect bodies according to our image of what that would be. But the more we get our bodies in better shape through proper diet, good sleep, and measured exercise, the better we will feel overall about ourselves, including our mental perception of ourselves.

Pastor Frank

Boys and Nudity

July 2, 2021

Hello Pastor Frank. I’ve followed your blog for several years, especially your posts on swimming naked. I’m retired from a health profession (pharmacy) living in rural Oregon. Like you, I experienced swimming nude as a youth and I enjoy sleeping naked, walking around the house naked doing morning chores, and being outdoors naked in the nice weather. My wife accepts this, although she doesn’t join me in everything. In the summer we’re happy to entertain our daughter’s two boys. One is now a young teen and the other is a pre-teen. Since we’re all boys except for my wife I continue my practice of sometimes being nude even with the grandsons here. They’d be welcome to join me, if they want to. The younger boy sometimes does, but not the older one. There’s a quiet lake nearby and there are seldom people around on weekdays so I take the boys swimming and rowing, for which I’m nude if no one is around. My youngest grandson will join me in this state, but not the older one. I doubt that my son-in-law practices much nudity at their home. I would enjoy it if my older grandson would give it a try, but I don’t want to make an issue of it. I’d be interested in your thoughts about the situation and why the two boys have different attitudes toward nudity.

Dear naked grandpa,

It’s hard to make any specific comments without knowing your family, but I have a couple of hunches. The younger boy has not yet entered adolescence when youth are obsessively insecure about their bodies. Perhaps he ran around the house naked as a child not so long ago and enjoyed the experience and is still closer to that experience than the older boy, if he engaged in this behavior as a child. Being older, he probably has that oldest child’s sense of responsibility, and is also looking forward to being even older than he is now. He has no adult male model who exemplifies social nudity at home. And probably no peers who are comfortable with nudity either, since boys no longer shower and swim totally naked in gym classes. For that matter, your son-in-law probably had no experience of that either.

At your house, you are a model, but his grandmother is also around and as a teenage boy who is (I assume) past puberty, he doesn’t want to be naked in front of a female. But this shouldn’t be an issue at the lake if no one else is there. If you and his brother are naked in that venue, it’s clear that your grandson is quite determined not to be.

Since your younger grandson is happily nude with you (and enjoying your approval), you probably have a better chance of influencing him to have a more positive attitude toward the naked body than his older brother. But even he will need more experiences of social nudity than just being with you. If his father would join you, for example, in swimming naked in the lake, that would boost your influence. You probably need to have a talk with your son-in-law about this anyway since he is the boys’ father. You should make sure that he’s comfortable with what you are modeling for his sons.

Remember that boys growing up in the 1950s and 1960s had experiences of required nude swimming in the schools and YMCA that most of us just took in stride. The practice was waning in the 1970s and was practically gone by the 1980s. By the 1990s it was considered “gay” to swim naked. So there is that stigma to deal with also, that may linger on even today. (Ironically, in the 1950s boys who were shy about undressing in front of other boys were called “queer.”) The generations that came after ours have no social or cultural frame of reference for the practice of swimming naked at school, or skinny dipping in creeks or lakes.

The chances are that it’s a lost cause for your older grandson at this point. There’s just not enough modeling. As you have probably observed, the only guys walking around nude in the gym locker rooms are older men. Most of the younger men shower in their bathing suits and change in and out of their clothes with a towel wrapped around their waist. I suspect that many boys in high school don’t bother showering after gym class. The only places where nude swimming could be practiced are in secluded spots like your lake or “clothing optional” beaches (which are actually increasing in tropical tourist destinations).

Imagine two naked grandsons running to join naked grandpa in the lake.

In any case, a non-judgmental conversation with your older grandson about the issue of nudity might reveal some deeper issues. One wonders if he experienced something negative toward his body or has a self-generated negative body image. A chat would at least give you an opportunity to present your views about the health benefits of nudity on the basis of your own background.

As I’m sure you know, there are actual health benefits to having nude time. Obviously, walking around nude or swimming nude improves one’s self-esteem. If we feel good about ourselves, we have fewer body image issues. Being unclothed allows the skin to breathe and gives us healthier skin. For men, airing out the genitals is a good thing. Our genitalia, unlike a woman’s, is on the exterior of the body. Tight underwear restricts blood flow to the nether region and allows bacteria to build up. Most of all, when we are nude with others it creates bonding. Our clothing is a boundary between us and others. Without the clothing we relate more freely to others, whether our wives, sons, or grandsons.

father and son

I think that if your grandson could try nudity once, he might experience it as liberating. You could also discuss with him the fact that he will at some point in his life be naked with other people, such as in a college dormitory or military barracks and eventually with a life partner. He might actually be more willing to discuss issues about sex and sexuality with you than with his father. Many youth have found it easier to discuss things with indulgent grandparents than with their overly-cautious parents.

The point should also be made that nudity doesn’t always imply sex, which he must surely see from your example of just being comfortable in your body. The naked body is how God made us. Being clothed was God’s concession to our fallen condition. There’s nothing sinful about nudity in itself, and nothing shameful about the body God created. We should enjoy our bodily selves.

Good luck on this and best wishes. If I were visiting you, I’d join you for a naked dip in your lake on a warm summer day.

Pastor Frank

The Father-Son Talk

June 8, 2021

Question:

Dear Pastor Frank: My wife walked into my thirteen-year old son’s bedroom and interrupted him masturbating with his computer screen open in front of him. She quickly retreated as he closed the screen. She assumes he was looking at porn. She informed me of this encounter and suggested that perhaps it is time for me to have “The Talk” with my son. I see from your blog that you are open about discussing masturbation and pornography. Do you have any suggestions for how I might approach my son about these issues?

Dear Dad,

My father never had “the talk” with me and perhaps your father didn’t have “the talk” with you either. But it’s time to break the tradition of silence around sexual issues such as masturbation, and pornography also.

If you have “the talk” with your son it will not be easy for either of you. He will suspect that his mother saw what he was doing and told you about it. But this could be the ice breaker to begin the conversation.

You should ask to see him in his room, since it’s his private space within the household. Sit down on his bed and just tell him that his mother is sorry that she interrupted him and that his parents weren’t aware that he had discovered masturbation. “My God, you’ve reached puberty and we should have paid more attention to the changes taking place in your body.” But admit that he’s of an age when all boys discover this pleasurable exertion with their penis, and the family members will have to adjust by knocking before coming into his room to respect his privacy.

If you had a personal experience of being discovered while “jerking off” (use the colloquial term also), tell him about it. This let’s him know that you also masturbated when you were a kid and can identify with his embarrassment. You might ask him if he has any questions about what he has been experiencing physically. Point out that sometimes when we’re just getting started with masturbation the mystery of sex can be scary as well as pleasurable because at first we don’t know what’s happening down there. If he has questions, answer them as honestly as you can, even about your own experiences. If he doesn’t have questions, tell him that if questions come to him, he should be free to ask them. It’s not necessary at this point to give a sex education talk. Too much information can be overwhelming. He’s already overwhelmed that you’re openly talking with him about his secret sex.

Cover a few practical issues, like the cum squirts all over the place (which he may have already experienced) and he should try to keep it contained. He could get naked and put a towel under himself instead of getting the sticky semen (use the word) all over his bedding and clothing. He should keep a Kleenex box under his bed so he can wipe off his hands and other body parts and squeeze the residue out of his penis. Then remind him to collect the Kleenex tissues and put them in the garbage, not the toilet. Point out that he could also go in the shower and experience what it’s like to masturbate standing up with the water running.

As for the chat about porn, your wife assumed that’s what your son was watching. I wouldn’t accuse him of that or ask him point blank if he was watching porn. But you might tell him that you’d also like to have a discussion with him about the use of pornography. Admit to him that you didn’t have the internet to supply you with porn when you were his age (if you didn’t), but that boys were not lacking it in girly magazines that they used for the same purpose as those who look at internet porn: to masturbate. That may whet his appetite to hear more from you about your experiences when you were a boy. (You might want to look at Frank Answers About Chastity and Pornography.)

Your son has to realize that what he’s watching may not be real (unless its in chat rooms, which he shouldn’t be entering). It’s entertainment, and our own sexual practices may not be that acrobatic, just like we probably wouldn’t be able to do the things done in action films. Point out that there are good reasons why age limits are placed on entering porn sites. Young teens may not be mature enough for pornographic sex, just as they aren’t mature enough for actual sex. There’s some kinky and nasty stuff on the internet that we shouldn’t get into. The internet can be a dangerous place. There are bound to be pop up ads, and it would not be safe for your son to clink on those ads.

Point out that we often fantasize when we are masturbating. Fantasizing is a creative mental activity. We do it all the time, and not just about sex. We don’t need stimulating images in order to fantasize. We should also just enjoy our bodies and the pleasures we experience when we touch ourselves all over. Encourage him to explore his body and experiment with different ways of reaching orgasm (use the word). (See the question I answered about fantasizing down below.)

If you are a religious family, I would tell your son that we should be thankful for the gift of our body and its sexuality. We should honor the bodies God has created. If he’s interested in looking at beautiful bodies, introduce him to great works of nude art. (I’m serious!) There’s nothing shameful about the nude body and your son should not be ashamed of his body. But we need to be respectful of our bodies and the bodies of other people.

These are my thoughts about how to proceed. The main thing is that you want to be able to keep open channels of communication with your son as he grows into the complexities of the later teenage years. Maybe a good discussion about sex will open the possibilities for good conversation about other topics. I hope it works for you and your son.

Pastor Frank

Shot of a happy father spending time with his son

Man Masturbates With Wife’s Approval

May 21, 2021

During the pandemic, sex has slowed down with me and my wife. She hit menopause mid-pandemic, and sex really slowed down. I masturbate regularly, and she is fine with it. I also have masturbated occasionally with another male friend, just for fun. My spouse is fine with it, just thinks we are silly. But I wonder if that is a sin. And the guilt takes over. I have enough guilt masturbating solo, but now with a friend? It gets bad. Even though my wife just laughs it off. What do you think of it all?

Frank answers: I don’t think masturbation in and of itself is a sin. There’s nothing about it in the Bible. Masturbation has sometimes been called Onanism, with reference to Onan spilling his seed in Genesis 38. But the sin of Onan had nothing to do with masturbation. His sexual act was coitus interruptus so that he wouldn’t have to fulfill the Levirate law and provide offspring for his deceased brother by impregnating his sister-in-law. For this, purposely not doing his duty toward his dead brother, he was stoned to death.

The sin involved with most sexual acts has to do with relationships, not with sexual practices and techniques. Many men think they have to cease masturbating when they’re married. But your wife seems to be okay with you masturbating while she is “indisposed.” She even laughs off your scruples. She doesn’t want you feeling guilty about masturbating when she can’t have sex. It’s not adultery to masturbate, like consorting with prostitutes or having a mistress on the side (although some wives have tolerated their husband’s sexual dalliances).

Masturbating when married actually happens a lot. For example, during pregnancies and after child birth, as well as during menopause, men might practice solo sex simply because they need a sexual release that their wife can’t provide. The wife might be willing to help the husband “get off” when she isn’t up for sex by masturbating him. Marital sex would resume when she is ready. And on occasions when the husband isn’t ready, he might help his wife achieve orgasm by masturbating her.

Masturbating with a buddy would stretch the marital relationship for a lot of couples. Adolescent boys often masturbate together, and even in groups, when they are exploring sexuality. Buddies have been known to do this even in adulthood, although usually before marriage. In recent years, however, men’s circle jerks have increased among both gay and straight men. (For the record, it doesn’t turn me on.)

You say your wife just thinks it’s “silly,” which suggests she doesn’t take your buddy-buddy masturbation seriously. It’s probably not easy for you to explain your desire to do this. You need to come to terms with your own reason for doing this. What need is being met by masturbating with a buddy? Masturbation is a release of sexual tension, and perhaps doing it with someone else heightens the intensity of the ejaculation (and maybe also overcome inhibitions).

two men enjoying an intimate relationship

You don’t say whether your male friend is gay or straight. It shouldn’t matter as long as it doesn’t lead to an entangling relationship such as a bromance, which is a close relationship between two men that goes beyond ordinary friendship because of its strong bonds of emotional intimacy. But if the male friendship doesn’t lead you away from your wife, there’s nothing wrong with intimate male friendship. Women often have their own intimate female friendships. Men also need buddies with whom to share intimate details of their lives. Some buddy relationships from youth last into adulthood and even when one or both buddies are married.

The important thing is to be open with your wife about your friendships and activities. You seem to have her permission for you to have a jerk-off buddy, just as you have her permission to masturbate alone to satisfy your sexual needs.

That’s nice for you. But I would also recommend being intimate with your wife in ways that are acceptable to her, including kissing, hugging, cuddling in bed at night, being naked with her if she is comfortable with that. You should show her that you are still committed to her as your wife and help her to feel better about herself. Hopefully her menopause will end along with the pandemic.

Pastor Frank

No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage. Mandatory Credit: Photo by MGM/Pathe/REX/Shutterstock (5885075aj) Brad Pitt, Geena Davis Thelma and Louise – 1991 Director: Ridley Scott MGM/Pathe USA Scene Still Thelma & Louise. Well, this is the demonstration of affection I wanted to illustrate in my last point. If you want tender love, turn to Brad Pitt.

Erection on Massage Table

May 6, 2021

Question: As a young gay guy I really enjoy your blog and appreciate your openness on many issues about the body and sexuality. When I read your blog post about massage I thought I’d like to get one when that’s possible (obviously not during the coronavirus pandemic). But I have a question. What happens if you get an erection during the massage? Is that normal? Sometimes I can’t control myself, and I worry I may enjoy it too much, if you know what I mean…

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Frank answers: Dear young guy in need of a massage,

You should get a massage when that becomes possible again. Actually, in some places it is possible now. Responsible massage therapists will wear masks and require their clients to do so also. They will wash sheets used on the massage table with disinfectant and wipe down surfaces like door handles. I’ve had a couple of massages so far this year from a massage therapist I have gone to for many years and whom I know to be professional and responsible.

Massage is good therapy for your body if you’ve been tense. This pandemic has created anxieties we may not be consciously aware of but are held in the body. You’re concerned about getting an erection. Well, erections are known to happen because the massage is helping your blood circulation (which also flows to your penis) and when you’re lying face down and the massage therapist is rubbing and pressing on your back, your penis is rubbing against the massage table, which will also stimulate it. That doesn’t mean an automatic erection. But it could happen, especially when you turn over on your back and the release on pressure on your penis (by laying on top of it), which causes blood to suddenly flow into it.

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Quite frankly, massage is sensuous. You have a lot of erogenous zones throughout your body from head to foot, not just your penis, and the massage therapist is likely to press on several of them (they can be different in different bodies). If you get an erection, don’t worry about it. Professional massage therapists have seen them before and are they are used to dealing with them (mostly by ignoring them).

Anyway, why should a guy be worried about getting an erection. It’s a sign that things are healthy down there. You’re in the privacy of the massage studio, not out in public, and there is therapist-patient confidentiality. There are a lot of men with erectile dysfunction who have difficulty getting an erection. You should be grateful that erections come easily to you. If by “enjoying it too much” you mean having a spontaneous ejaculation, your massage therapist has probably seen that too and if it happens it will add to the release of all the tension in your body. If you happen to ejaculate, he will just get a hot wet towel and wipe you off. On the other hand, if none of this happens (which is just as likely), you can still enjoy the massage.

Speaking man to man, as one who has had a lot of experience with massage — experiencing different modalities in different countries — , I recommend that you find a male massage therapist. I’d even recommend a gay massage therapist whether you’re gay or straight. Gay men know and love the male body. They know what they like for themselves and they will show that to their clients. I’ve experienced a couple of good female massage therapists. But male massage therapists have added strength. You don’t want just a rub down for relaxation. You want someone who does deep tissue and trigger point release to really relax those tense muscles, loosen the connective tissue, and expel the toxins. I’ve seen my massage therapist for years. He gives really intense therapeutic massages and tells me I’ll feel relaxed by tomorrow as his work settles into my body. It’s true.

You also want someone who will allow you to be nude on the massage table so that no muscles are missed (including the gluteus maximus) and long strokes can be given without being impeded by draping. A warm blanket can be provided as covering later on when you’re body is cooling down toward the end of the massage. Massage is about healing the whole body. In a sensual massage the massage therapist might also join the client in being nude, if you’re okay with that. The important thing to remember is that nothing is going to happen in any massage that you don’t want to happen.

Excursus: About That “Happy Ending”

When I talk about massage with men, the question of the “happy ending” usually comes up. You’ve probably heard about the “happy ending” in which the massage therapist brings you to ejaculation/orgasm at the end of the massage.

Technically, in the U.S. the “happy ending” is illegal and most massage therapists will not offer it. But many private male massage therapists who advertise a sensuous or erotic massage on masseurfinder will provide it as an organic part of the massage. it is illegal only if your pay extra for the sex. Sex for pay is prostitution. The massage therapist will not offer you a happy ending. That would be solicitation for sex. So don’t ask for a happy ending. But you can indicate your interest by the way you respond to his touch. The therapist will understand. If the “happy ending” is simply part of the massage, it is not illegal; it would be construed as consensual sex. But you may show your appreciation by adding to your tip.

However, I want to argue that a genital massage is actually therapeutic. The penis is a muscle that needs work just like the rest of the body to help with blood circulation and loosening connective tissue. This genital massage, which includes the surrounding area and scrotum, is actually offered in men’s spas in Singapore and Malaysia under the category of men’s health. It called urut batin and it loosens the tissues of the genitals and stimulates the nerve endings of the penis. It can produce ejaculation.

urut batin – manhood therapy in southeast Asia

Prostate massage is also healthy for men, especially older men. At one time, years ago, you could routinely receive a prostate massage from your family medical practitioner. Maybe if that continued to be done today more instances of prostate cancer would be detected early. Access to the prostrate is through the anus, and some massage therapists know how to give it. But it does involve fingers going into the anus, which many men experience as pleasurable, even if a bit painful at first (like any rectal exam). It can produce an erection and ejaculation. You could, quite bluntly, ask a massage therapist if he knows how to give a prostate massage. If you’re going to have a “happy ending,” it should have therapeutic value.

prostate massage

Anything that happens between the massage therapist and client is by mutual consent and develops over a period of time with repeated visits. I enjoy a hug before or after a massage. This is also a healing touch. I told my male massage therapist that the Austrian woman massage therapist I had before him used to give me a hug. He said, “That can be arranged.”

How to find a massage therapist

You can check out day spas or massage studios in your area online to see if they have a male massage therapist. Some private massage therapists, like mine, have their own studio and web site. Or you can go on masseurfinder and look for private massage therapists in your area. The site includes what they write about themselves and what kind of reviews they have received from clients. The site sub-divides listings into therapeutic, sensual, and erotic massages. My advice to a young guy who hasn’t received a professional massage before is to begin with therapeutic or sensual massage. You want a massage that is more about addressing the issues of the whole body than just a sexual experience.

If you find a massage therapist who seems like a good fit for you, stay with him. He will get to know your body and you will get to know his routine so that you can relax when you go to see him, knowing what to expect. I hope you do have a professional massage experience and find a massage therapist who is right for you. A good massage therapist should be added to your health and wellness team.

Pastor Frank

One of the most relaxing endings of a massage I ever experienced was in Singapore when the young massage therapist simply laid his body on top of mine for several minutes. From the Philippine film. Masahista (Masseur).

Nude Roommate Masturbates to Porn

April 25, 2021

Question: I am 18 and just moved into the dormitory. My roommate is open about nudity and he seldom wears anything when in the room. One morning I woke up and he was jerking off on porn, sitting on his bunk. I felt a bit embarrassed but on the other hand I felt aroused. What should I do?

Frank answers: Dear college freshman,

If you’ve not lived in a dorm before, you’ll find that it is a unique experience. At age 18 you are undoubtedly away from home for the first time and now you need to develop a relationship with a guy you didn’t know previously and in a tight living space. You say you were embarrassed by the fact that he masturbated while watching porn while you are present in the next bunk. You also may not be used to someone who enjoys nudity.

First, let’s deal with the fact that your roommate is uninhibited about being nude. The degree to which domestic nudity is accepted differs from one family to another. You are under no obligation to join him in his preference to be unclothed. But I think it’s not possible to be living in close quarters with someone and not see each other naked at some point. I mean, you change clothes and take a shower every day and your roommate is likely to be in the room. Even in the 1960s when I lived in dorms, some roommates were more modest than others; some seemed to have no modesty at all and would just walk around naked. You will have to figure out to what degree you want to be nude in the room and the two of you will have to accept each other’s preferences.

Second, there is the issue of masturbation. All men do it, and young men do it a lot. I presume you do also. But you’ve probably not seen someone else do it. Again, in close quarters it’s hard to be coy about this. Even if he were jerking off under the covers you would still know what he’s doing. What do you do when you want to jerk off if you don’t want to be seen by your roommate?

There’s a lot of tension to being away from home in college during a pandemic. Masturbation is a form of safe sex that is also tension-relieving and helps one to sleep better at night. One could even regard it as therapeutic in our present pandemic situation. It’s been recommended by health authorities like Mayo Clinic and the New York City Health Department.

You could have a discussion with with roommate about this. For example, you could work out an arrangement where one leaves the room when the other has an urge to relieve himself. You could also just ignore him when he is doing it, perhaps by rolling over in your bed so you are not facing him, or burying yourself in a book (as if you would be able to concentrate with your roommate jerking off!). A degree of tolerance would be the best recommendation for getting along.

Most young people also watch porn. That should be considered private viewing unless you want to share something on the screen with each other. You are under no obligation to participate in this pass time with him. Guys have probably always jerked off to porn. Back in my college dorm days we had Playboy and other girlie magazines. I think focusing on the screen results in poor orgasms because your energy follows your attention. But that’s another matter that I’ve addressed elsewhere.

You said that your roommate’s behavior embarrassed you, but you were also aroused. What aroused you? The sight of him masturbating or the porn he was watching or your roommate’s nude body? All three together could be a powerful arousal combination. Maybe you wanted to join him in masturbating at that moment and that’s what has created your conflicting feelings.

Waking up in the morning you’re likely to have a morning erection, which most boys and young men feel an urge to touch. If you wake up and your roommate is jerking off, what would you think about joining him in that activity? My guess is that he wouldn’t object. A lot of boys and young men have had the experience of masturbating together. It’s not necessarily a gay thing, if that would concern you. It’s a guy thing. If you just give into your arousal and join him in jerking off, it might be an icebreaker that would open conversation about some of these issues.

Best of luck in navigating these issues with your roommate and getting to know him better. I hope you have a successful term in college. If you have further questions, please ask.

Pastor Frank

Crucifixion Erection

March 29, 2021

Question: I’m 16 and sometimes when I go to Mass and look at the large crucifix I get an erection. Today at Mass, being Palm Sunday, we heard the whole passion story and thinking about Jesus on the cross really made me horny. At home I sometimes think about Jesus on the cross and I lay spread eagle on my bed as if I were being crucified. As I lay there stretched out thinking about Jesus on the cross I get an erection and, I confess, sometimes I masturbate. Is it sinful to do this when thinking about Jesus? I wonder if Jesus got an erection when he was being crucified… or ever. What do you think you?

Frank answers: Dear sixteen-year old Catholic boy,

I think it is commendable that you go to Mass and focus on the crucified Christ who was hung on that tree as a sacrifice of atonement to reconcile us to God. In your own way you want to identify with Jesus in his suffering. Christians have done this down through the ages by penitential acts and participating in passion plays. They’re doing this to identify with Christ in his suffering as an act of devotion. You’re also meditating on the suffering of Christ in an embodied way, but as a horny teenager.

I think it’s not unusual that a sixteen-year old gets erections and has erotic thoughts. Maybe it happens a dozen or more times a day for you, even in math class. Looking at the figure of a nude adult male body fastened to and exposed on a cross for all the world to see may also produce erotic thoughts. And as a devout Catholic you are encouraged to gaze at that figure. That’s why the crucifix is centrally located above the altar. As you act out that scene you become sexually aroused and seek relief.

Crucifixion of Christ by Dutch painter Anton van Dyke

Since you are a Catholic boy I should point out that masturbation is still considered a venial sin in Catholic teaching. It is in the category of “objectively disordered sex.” That means that self-pleasure is not what ejaculation is intended for, even in marriage. In Catholic teaching sex is only to be used for procreation. But the Church recognizes the force of biology, habit, and our subjective thoughts in its pastoral counsel. You should really have a discussion with your priest about this. In the Catholic catalogue of sexual sins, masturbation is at the bottom. Scripture says nothing about it and theologians through the centuries gave little thought to it. There’s been more concern about sexual practices between two people than solitary sex except in celibate religious communities.

It’s not unheard of for Catholic boys to act out the crucifixion. In the Catholic world some men actually get to act out the crucifixion in passion plays or the way of the cross (Via crucis) during Holy Week and on Good Friday. In 2013 in Chicago’s Hispanic Pilsen community, eighteen-year old Alejandro Aviles got to play the role of Jesus in its annual Via Crucis. Alejandro, perhaps the youngest member of that community to portray Jesus, was hoisted onto the cross semi-naked. With the cold late March wind blowing on his naked body it’s amazing that he didn’t get an erection. But I’m sure he was controlling himself by being totally focused on his role as Jesus.

Via Crucis in Chicago Pilsen community, Alejandro Aviles as Jesus

It’s not sinful to wonder just how human Jesus was. If he was human enough to go through suffering and to die, we are not out of line to ask exactly what he suffered. Romans crucified their victims completely naked, and part of the humiliation of this public torture and execution was that the victim couldn’t control his bodily functions. That included urinating, defecating, getting an erection, and maybe even ejaculating. Artists usually haven’t portrayed Christ totally naked, especially in art that will be displayed in churches, although Michelangelo carved a naked Christ on a crucifix when he was nineteen and sculpted a naked Christ rising from the grave. But he didn’t give Christ an erection. There was a traditional view that just as Christ directed his own crucifixion so he also contained his biological functions. It was the same in ancient Greek sculptures of athletes. They were in control of their bodies. That’s why they were all sculpted with little penises.

We have great difficulty acknowledging Christ’s true manhood. Even the Italian gay artist Vittorio Carvelli didn’t give Jesus an erection in his painting of the crucifixion scene, though the two criminals crucified with Jesus were given erections. Getting an erection was a natural response to having their butts resting on an uncomfortable pole to keep their bodies from slipping down the cross. It was uncomfortable and probably required a lot of wiggling around. The eroticism of the situation cannot be denied. But artists have presented Jesus in control of his body.

“Crucifixion” by Vittorio Carvelli

I think as you grow older you will also be able to control your erections and hopefully you will also move in your thoughts from the physicality of Christ’s crucifixion to its spiritual depths, although we should never forget that what Christ did “for us and for our salvation,” as we say in the Creed, he did in his body, as St. Athanasius taught in his little book On the Incarnation.

There’s nothing wrong with you embodying your meditation on the crucifixion of Christ. It can be a powerful experience to be actually naked before God—vulnerable and open to whatever arises. God’s blessing on your devotion to the crucified Christ.

Boy praying by Australian artist David Michael O’Hanlon

Excursus on St. Augustine and Erections

I can’t resist adding this story from The Confessions of Saint Augustine. This North African church father who later became the bishop of Hippo and one of the greatest theologians in the history of the Church, went to the public baths with his father when he was sixteen. These facilities, built throughout the vast Roman Empire, combined a gymnasium for exercise, pools of various temperature for bathing, and massages with perfumed oil, and the day was spent being nude. You removed your clothes upon entering and put on clean clothes when you departed. Augustine wrote in this autobiographical work (actually addressed to God):

“The brambles of lust grew high above my head and there was no one to root them out, certainly not my father. One day at the public baths he saw the signs of active virility coming to life in me and this was enough to make him relish the thought of having grandchildren. He was happy to tell my mother about it…” (Book II, 3).

Young Augustine admits that his hormones were raging (“the brambles of lust grew high above my head’) and that his father associated what Augustine called “signs of active virility coming to life in me” with procreation. Young Augustine was clearly having an erection in the public baths, perhaps at the sight of so many nude men or the sheer sensuality of the bathing experience. His father saw young Augustine’s erection and happily reported it to his mother. And the future saint wrote about it to tell God and everyone who has read his book over the last 1600 years.

In a later book called The City of God, Augustine was pondering whether Adam and Eve had sexual desire in Paradise, and if not where did this desire come from. In the process of thinking about it he observed that the penis is the one muscle in the body that we can’t control by will power. In Book XIV, chapter 16 he wrote: “Sometimes the impulse is an unwanted intruder, sometimes it abandons the eager lover, and desire cools off in the body while it is at boiling heat in the mind.” In other words, you get erections when you don’t want them and Mr. Penis doesn’t always rise to the occasion when you want it to.

Augustine of Hippo was a horny teenager and into adulthood he never stopped thinking about sex. But he turned out to be one of the great bishops and theologians in the history of the church. For better or for worse he gave the Catholic Church its theology of sex. I recommend him to you as a patron saint.

Pastor Frank

Nude Study by Vittorio Carvelli of a boy in the Roman baths

Homiesexual Boys on Tik Tok

March 19, 2021

Question: Do you watch Tik Tok videos? There are a lot of videos of shirtless Gen Z boys on Tik Tok engaging in homoerotic behavior in their dancing, kisses, and cuddles. I’m sure most of them are straight. Do you think the ease with which boyfriends interact with each other physically helps to mitigate the “toxic masculinity” you wrote about?

Note: I wrote about “toxic masculinity” in an article on “Frank Answers About Male Body Issues.”

Answer: I am a follower of Tik Tok because my daughter, who is a professional singer and musical actress, has found it to be a profitable vehicle for performance during the pandemic when theaters are closed. She has made up songs about current news events and got lots of young adults interested in current issues and even registering to vote. Newsweek found out about her and did an interview. Google Emily Senn or follow her on Tik Tok.

Because I’m a subscriber to Tik Tok, some of the kinds of videos you mention pop up when I check FB notifications. They seem to be mostly boys in their late teens, some of whom have some talent for lip syncing and swaying their hips and pelvis to hip hop songs. They also spend a lot of their video time fussing with their hair. Some of these boys are on Tik Tok Video Boy.

I looked for some examples of success stories and found Jaden Hossler. He’s a 20-year old from Tennessee who was raised in a Christian family and was in musicals in high school. He attracted a following in the millions on Tik Tok in 2019. Influencer Marketing Hub reports that “As of November 2020, Jaden Hossler has more than 8.7 million followers on TikTok, 4.4 million followers on Instagram, 1.7 million followers on Twitter, and 1.29 million subscribers on YouTube.”  He sometimes includes Bryce Hall in his videos. Bryce is a 21-year old from Maryland, who has as of February 2, 2021 a TikTok account with 18.6 million followers and a YouTube channel with 3.46 million subscribers. A number of these 20-year-old guys live in a Bel Air mansion in Los Angeles called Sway House and got busted this past summer for holding hard parties in the midst of a pandemic without observing any of the standard social distancing to mitigate infections with COVID-19. I think a lot of high school students got on Tik Tok as a way of dealing with the depression caused by social isolation during the Pandemic. Jaden speaks of teen depression. Bryce speaks of being bullied when he was younger.

Bryce and Jaden give each other a not-so-gay kiss. Both date girls.

Typical of teens is a desire to attract attention and be on the cutting edge. It’s not surprising that straight boys put on gay performances with their boyfriends. Gen Zers grew up in a time when same-sex marriage has been legal. But homosexuals still aren’t generally acceptable by everyone, sometimes including by their own families. There’s still enough stigma attached to being gay that these young men call themselves “homiesexuals” to disavow being regarded as homosexuals. There are undoubtedly also some genuine homosexual boys in Tik Tok and You Tube videos. But the issue here is straight guys acting gay for the sake of gaining a following on social media.

Gen Z has grown up in an social context in which gender fluidity is more acceptable. Boys wouldn’t kiss or hug another boy publicly in the 1980s and 1990s because they would be perceived as gay. Some boys are now more willing to be intimate with other boys and are less worried about being perceived as gay. How far their intimacy on video actually leads is another question. They don’t go the distance. On a 15-second Tik Tok video they only have to lead up to a kiss. They don’t have to get into a passionate embrace. They can touch each other’s pecs or abs to show interest in the other’s bodily development through workouts, but they don’t have to erotically rub their partner’s torso. They go far enough to tease their fans and receive a lot of “likes” or “loves.” For these boys their antics are clickbait.

Some of the denizens of Sway House

There’s no question that these boys are conveying a softer masculinity. This appeals to the girls, who click their hearts and thumbs-ups and increase the boys’ social media followings. These boys might draw a life lesson from this experience in terms of male-female relationships. Women do like more sensitive men. To the extent these “homiesexual” boys are countering the toxic masculinity that doesn’t show feelings or express vulnerability by demonstrating male intimacy, they are making a positive contribution to cultural change.

The problem is that homiesexuals make “coming out” as gay look easy, which for real gay boys it isn’t. If this trend of acting gay becomes less trendy, those who are looking for “likes” can back out of it and move in a different direction. Gay and lesbian teens have to live with who they are and navigate the social pitfalls that lie in their path. If the “homiesexual” movement helps make life easier for real homosexuals, well and good. But perhaps some of these talented boys performing on Tik Tok might use their creativity to show in their little skits the difficulties of “coming out,” portray the learning curve of a real gay-straight “bromance” (with humor, of course), or sympathize with the heart-break of some gay relationships.

Pastor Frank Senn    

Sexual Fantasizing

February 14, 2021

This question and answer was originally posted on “Frank Answers Briefly About Male Body Issues.” I moved it here to begin a new post “Frank Answers Briefly About More Male Body Issues” for 2021.

I broke up with my girl friend just as the coronavirus hit last year. Our relationship had been deteriorating for a long time and we felt it was time to end it. I felt bad about that but at first I thought I could socialize with my friends. Then as everything shut down I couldn’t get together with my friends. I live alone. I’m able to do most of my job-related work from home on the computer. I spend a lot of time watching TV, prowling the internet, text messaging friends, and playing with myself. It’s Valentine’s Day. I’m lonely, sex-starved, and I’m have a lot of sexual fantasies. I fall asleep at night fantasizing about having a woman in bed with me and what we might be doing sexually. This feels like making a confession. But you’re a pastor who has addressed a lot of interesting questions. So I thought I would write and ask you about sexual fantasizing. Good or bad?

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Dear sex-starved young man,

First of all, only you can tell whether you’re lonely and not just alone. There’s a difference. Many people are content to be alone and this pandemic hasn’t affected them as much. It seems that you are more used to a social life and miss it. Perhaps, like a lot of people, you’re feeling isolated. It’s too bad we’ve called maintaining a distance of at least 6 feet from one another “social distancing” instead of “physical distancing.” We’re physically apart while socially together. But now even being socially together is discouraged as we go into a soft lock down to try to mitigate this deadly second surge.

I assume you have family and that you’re in touch with them through social media like FaceTime and Zoom. You indicate that you text with your friends to stay in touch with them even though you can’t meet up with them now in bars and clubs. And undoubtedly you have to check in with your employer or fellow workers. Unfortunately, our human connections will have to be virtual for a while longer.

This includes our sexual relationships. You say you’re “sex-starved.” “Prowling the internet” might mean looking at pornography and maybe dating apps (although you also found my blog site!). This in turn feeds your sexual fantasies. You seem worried about having them. I ask: haven’t you always had them?

We actually live in fantasy worlds most of the time. We’re seldom in the present. We fantasize about the past, how good it was or how it might have been better. We fantasize about the future, what possibilities we look forward to when this pandemic has been overcome. You can fantasize about what sex you would enjoy and who you would enjoy having it with. We all do. It’s good to realize that fantasy isn’t reality. But fantasizing can heighten even solo sex. It puts us into the subjunctive world of “what if “ and takes us momentarily out of the indicative world of “what is.” It gives us some hot hopes to play with instead of cold reality to work through.

A lot of studies have been done on sexual fantasizing. Obviously there is a lot of interest among clinical sexologists in fantasies about deviant sex such a fetishes and sadomasochistic sex such as bondage and rape. But ordinary sexual fantasies deal with having sex with previous partners, other persons we have known in the past, acquaintances we know now (such as among your group of friends), or even celebrities we might meet and nameless people we’ve never met. Fantasies include practices we have experienced and also practices we would like to experience. Married persons even fantasize about what they’d like to do with their marital partner.

Generally, psychologists believe that fantasizing is a healthy mental activity and good for our sex life. Some people claim to watch porn to get ideas about how to spice up their sex life. The psychologist D. Stroller suggests that “sexual fantasies are a private pornography in which we rehearse over and over again needs that are nearly impossible to fulfill in actual sex” [D. Coleman & S. Bush, “The liberation of sexual fantasy,” Psychology Today (1977)]. As such, sexual fantasies are a way of combating sexual dissatisfaction. That would include your apparent dissatisfaction with solo sex (“playing with myself”), since masturbation would be one way to feed your sexual hunger. I suspect that masturbation already accompanies your viewing habits and mental imagination. I suggest that if you jerk off while watching porn, this gives you unexciting orgasms.

Let me fill you in on a little secret I learned from my physical trainer (who has a Master of Science in Applied Physiology) when I attended a couple of workshops on men’s sexual energy that he offered. The main things he taught is that your energy goes where your attention is. That includes your sexual energy. If your attention is focused on the computer screen while you masturbate, your sexual energy goes into the screen. Your fantasies are guided by what the screen images furnish. If you forget about the porn and give your attention to your body, by touching and rubbing it all over, and taking your time with ejaculation while you imagine what you would like being done to you, you will have a much more satisfying orgasm.

Here are some suggestions: hold off on masturbating for a day or two or even three. Prepare your body by awakening it physically and sensually. Physically, you can bounce up and down, swinging your arms freely, undulating your pelvis, and bouncing your penis. Vigorous movement will get your blood flowing throughout your body and into your penis.

Then lay down and continue to focus on your body by touching yourself all over (a self-massage) the way you would like to be touched by that woman in your bed: your nipples, pecs, abdomen, pelvis, balls, penis tip, buttocks, anus, thighs, etc. While touching your body try edging: slowly rub your penis with your free hand to the point of ejaculation, then back off, use both hands to rub your body, and return to rubbing your penis again, maybe backing off several times, until you’re ready to explode.

When you’re ready to ejaculate, continue to focus on your body with whatever fantasies come into to mind. We all have sexual fantasies and for the most part they contribute in a positive way to healthy sexuality. They also engage the mind in creative exercises that we can act out even when we are alone as we sexually engage our entire body in the service of our imagination. There’s no reason playing with yourself has to be boring.

Pastor Frank

Self-Touch as Self Care

January 13, 2021

This question and answer was originally posted on “Frank Answers Briefly About Male Body Issues.” I moved it here to begin a new post “Frank Answers Briefly About More Male Body Issues” for 2021.

Question: I’m a young man who lives alone. In this COVID pandemic we’ve been deprived of human touch. Christmas has come and gone and I only saw my family through Zoom. There has certainly been no sex. I long for human touch, especially the sensuous kind. Do you have any suggestions?

Frank answers: Dear man alone,

Yes. Practice self-touch. Our body needs to be touched and massaged. Deprived of the touch of others we must touch ourselves. It’s a form of self-care.

Back in 1899, the psychologist Havelock Ellis invented the term “autoeroticism.” He defined it as the whole complex of sexual emotions “generated by the absence of external stimulus, proceeding directly or indirectly from another person.” In fact, he regarded autoeroticism as the core of sexuality. Animals touch themselves, Babies touch themselves. Boys and girls touch themselves. It might lead to masturbation. With young men this is almost certainly the case. But it doesn’t have to. Self-touch can be a way of satisfying the body’s need for touch by giving oneself a massage, as far as your hands can reach. Self-touch is a way of affirming our body. Self-massage can provide the stimulation of the circulation of blood and fluids and the loosening of muscles and tissues that any massage provides.

self-massage

So this is something to experiment with. Stimulate your body in different ways. Let self-touch also stimulate your mind by allowing fantasies to serve as your “external stimulus.” This will undoubtedly lead to massaging your dick, which is where many say the man’s brain is.

We look forward to the ending of the mitigations that are in place because of the pandemic, especially social distancing. We need to be together socially in the flesh, not just virtually online. We need the human connectivity and touch that social contact provides, especially with our loved ones. In the meantime, there’s nothing shameful about touching ourselves to stimulate our sensuality and sexuality. Your body will thank you for it.

Frank

      

Thanks for visiting Frank-Answers.com. Visit Frank Answers Briefly About Male Body Issues for more questions and answers about masculinity and sex. Prowl around my blog and look at other topics that may be of interest to you. Comments are welcome on all the Frank Answers.

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3 Comments

  1. Comment by post author

    From one of my regular readers — a gay college student — via email:

    Hi Frank,

    I really enjoyed your latest post about the nude roommate and jerking off as I had experienced that before. A couple years ago I lived in the dorm with a roommate in a similar situation. He had gone to a military school where it seemed nudity was basically the norm, because he was not shy about being naked whenever he wanted. He was in incredible shape of course, so it was mesmerizing to me as I was still trying to figure out myself at the time. He also had what would be considered a big penis which, I think, was a part of why he was not shy. (Sorry if that’s TMI, but a true story…) Anyway, he had a girlfriend who went to a different school. They would talk dirty over the phone while he jerked off, and it got to the point where he would openly do it in front of me until we eventually ended up just jerking off together. He didn’t care at all. It was super care free and fun, and the whole time I was fantasizing about him. I can still picture him. Anyway, couldn’t help but relate to that one…

  2. Comment by post author

    This may have been from the young guy who asked the question about getting an erection on the massage table. If so, it’s no longer an issue for him. Via email:

    “Thanks for the info about massage and the happy ending. I got a massage in Palm Springs last month. Just googled massages for men and took a chance on one who was listed. OMG the massage was amazing! We both got naked and pleasured each other. He was older (I have an attraction to older men) but muscular and an incredible body. No sex but jerked each other off and more.

    “BTW, I like the addition of gifs on your blog.”

  3. Andrew

    Dear Pastor Frank,

    I think that your suggestions to Nudist Grandpa are all good suggestions. But I must remind you that we are living in a different time now. Today I see men in the locker room their 30s and 40s, as insecure and inhibited about their bodies as adolescent boys. It is sad that they never got over it.

    When I first saw naked men as a boy in the gang shower, it was a way of teaching by example. Not one of the men tried to hide his nakedness nor showed any embarrassment. I learned that this was the proper way to shower after swimming, and everybody did it. But today, Grandpa’s son-in-law or the parents of the friends of his grandsons could see this as sexual abuse, even though it is neither sexual nor abusive. Grandpa might find himself in legal hot water over nothing.

    Today while many teenagers take nude selfies of themselves when they get their first cell phone, they feel publicly exposed and humiliated in a locker room. At a nude beach this summer, I saw adolescent boys swimming. Some were naked, some wore trunks. Why were some comfortable being naked while others were not? I think Grandpa should let his older grandson do what he feels as comfortable for himself. He might try it, or he may never try it.

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