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Young, Horny, and Impotent

Woody Allen defined the act as “sex with someone I love.” But sometimes you hurt the one you love, and in my case I proved Norman Mailer’s theory that “anybody who spends his adolescence masturbating enters his young adulthood with no sense of being a man.”

Specifically, I entered adulthood with no sense of how to have sex with an actual human female, thanks to Traumatic Masturbatory Syndrome. TMS affects between five and fifteen percent of the male population, according to the TMS-awareness website HealthyStrokes. The effects of TMS are twofold: inorgasmia, the inability to climax (unless the penis is stimulated in the traumatic fashion), and erectile dysfunction. Two-thirds of prone masturbators suffer from the latter even if they’re 70 years younger than former Senator Bob Dole.

Before we proceed, it’s important to note that TMS isn’t entirely accepted in the medical community as a physical affliction; it is a theory that Dr. Lawrence Sank of the Center for Cognitive Therapy postulated in 1998 after studying just four traumatized masturbators. (Wouldn’t “Four Traumatized Masturbators” make a great name for a band?) More research is necessary. That said, my story would indicate that Dr. Sank is right on when it comes to hard-ons. The first time I had an orgasm, I had no idea what I was doing. I was lying on the floor of the family living room, doing seventh-grade homework, and suddenly my groin started to feel good. So I pushed harder against the carpeting. And harder. And harder. And then I peed my pants, only the pee was tugged out of my urethra. At least I thought that it was urine. My boxers were soaked with a warm, sticky liquid. My heart was racing, my face was flushed and I was hyperventilating. Why is my pecker so sore after peeing? I wondered. Why did I piss myself when I didn’t need to go? I stood and limped through the living room, a stab of pain with every footstep. “Why are you wincing, honey?” my mother asked. “Do you have a headache?” Mom had guessed correctly, except that it was my southernmost head that ached. I staggered to the bathroom and removed my briefs, dismayed to find that I had ejected gooey, clear piss. I wondered if I should tell Mom to call 911. I had taken sex education the previous year, so I must have technically known what semen was—although the teacher never detailed its albino yolk-like consistency—but I didn’t put two and two together. I decided against summoning an ambulance, changed into an unsoiled pair of underwear and forgot about the incident. A few weeks later, however, I was lying face down in bed, trying to sleep before class the next day, and I felt the same pleasant pressure. By instinct I cupped my testicles with my hands, thrust downward into the mattress, and soon ejaculated for the second time. The third time, I used a towel from the linen closet to capture my sticky Semitic seed. (And thus was I united with my jizz rag; it’s a heartwarming saga.) I never had an older brother to teach me how to masturbate, and I didn’t understand the jerking motion my friends made whenever they referenced the topic. Humping the bed seemed to work fine. But when I finally scored the occasional opportunity to have sex with girls, the effects of this prone method took their toll. The majority of traumatic masturbators would rather whack off than have sex, as opposed to 80 percent of non-traumatic masturbators (which is still a startlingly low statistic—seriously, guys?), and I soon discovered why. Because of TMS my penis was moodier than a Dashboard Confessional record. The first time a girl offered to have sex with me—an act of charity that dwarfs anything that Mother Teresa ever accomplished—I couldn’t get it up. This was partly due to nervousness, but mostly due to my traumatic masturbating. “Um… just give me a minute…” I kept pleading, humping the mattress.
“Maybe you should drive me home now?” she asked forty-five minutes later, as I sobbed upon her breasts like a little girl who had lost her teddy bear. The next time a chick offered to defile me, however, I did manage to get it up—only I couldn’t get it down. After a good hour of fucking, I couldn’t finish. She was getting sore and asked if I’d take much longer; ultimately I drove her home with a raging, unsatisfied erection. (Guys assume that it would be great to last forever, but when you can’t actually enjoy the proceedings, the feat of endurance is useless.) When I arrived back at my house, my mattress finally got me off. This happened the next time I had sex, a month later. I bragged about my superhuman capacity to anyone who would listen but I privately wondered what the hell was wrong with me. Why could I orgasm so easily when I made love to my bed, but mashed these girls’ innards into the raw, stringy consistency of ground beef? However, by the time I started college, I had the opposite problem: I lasted only a few minutes, and sometimes seconds, during sex. A girl once laughed after my sub-par performance and asked the most dreaded question a man can hear: “That’s it?” The most shameful incident came in the summer of 2003, when I had the chance to have sex with a lesbian whom no guy had ever penetrated. (If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a million times: Thank Christ for booze.) We were pounding shots. She said that I was cute—which proves that I’m either such a stud that even lesbians can’t resist me, or I look like a pretty woman—and we made our way to a bedroom downstairs. She gave the best head that I’ve ever gotten in my life (she licked my balls like a clitoris, I think), and then confessed that she had always wondered what it’s like to have a man inside her instead of some chick’s fist. So I slid into her, totally getting off on the fact that I was converting a lesbian, and then I actually got off. I blamed my premature ejaculation on the alcohol, but I knew it was the same problem that had plagued me for years. I just didn’t know what the problem was. (Fun Factoid: after I had finished filling the lesbian with Man Juice, she said, “I thought it would spray more—like a geyser or something!” Fun Factoid #2: Did you know that only scientists can impregnate lesbians?) With my next girlfriend I tried those “extended pleasure” condoms with a numbing agent for guys with control issues, except that they made me so desensitized that I couldn’t summon an erection in the first place. By this point, I was terrified of sex—it always meant embarrassment and emasculation.
But salvation came in the form of a Google search for “young male impotence,” or some such thing. I discovered and realized that I had been my own worst enemy for all those years; I had conditioned my anatomy to only respond to the stimulus of pressure instead of friction. The good news was that TMS is fully reversible. I could save my privates through a journey of sacrifice. The sacrifice was this: I had to forever give up humping the mattress. At age 20 I had to teach myself how to masturbate all over again. At first it felt foreign and strange, jerking up and down whilst I lay on my back. There was nothing erotic about it; I couldn’t picture myself on top of a woman, and because of my TMS I hadn’t yet had one on top of me during sex. I started to despair; what if I couldn’t fix the problem and recondition my penis? What if I was doomed to a solitary life of self-satisfaction? But like Senator John McCain, my motto is No Surrender. After a couple unsuccessful tries at whacking it like a normal human male—and subsequent relapses into prone masturbating—I forced myself to jerk it faster, faster, faster, and finally my body responded. It was the best nut-bust of all time because it meant freedom. Free at last! Thank God Almighty, I was free from TMS at last! I continued to squeeze ‘em off using the time-honored method, and then something happened when I next had sex: I actually had sex. I lasted for a decent amount of time, I enjoyed it. And I climaxed. It was everything that I had always (wet-) dreamed. However, because I’m faithful to my current girlfriend and therefore cannot have good sex with all the girls whom I’ve disappointed—especially that horny fucking lesbian—I must always live with the shame of knowing that I underperformed for all those years. Things have straightened out, so to speak, but those females will always remember me as a boy—an invalid—instead of a man. But for all of you budding traumatic masturbators out there, you can avoid my mistakes. You are the future; TMS is scary enough to make you really piss your pants, but you can spare yourselves from years of humiliation and self-doubt if you simply take the time to learn the proper method. The choice isn’t hard, my friends, but you will be.

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