It’s a handy topic in deed. Something that has been going on for about a quadrillion years, and for just as long, some people have condemned it, and others benefit from it. What is it? Masturbation. According to statistics, 78% of people masturbate. On average, more men masturbate than women. Are you surprised? Teens and college students do it the most, at 2 to 3 times a week. The rate of masturbation declines as we get older.

There is a myth that says that people masturbate when they are not in a relationship. This myth is just that. There are studies that show that masturbation may increase when in a sexual relationship, especially for women. Masturbation has many benefits. Masturbation may even lower a man’s chance of getting prostate cancer. A study by G.G. Giles and colleagues found that men who ejaculated five times or more a week, especially while under thirty, were found to be less likely to develop the disease, perhaps by preventing the buildup of carcinogenic substances in the prostate gland. That’s right, beat your way to a Cancer free prostate. Go ahead, you will not get harry palms.

Other benefits of charming the snake include lower stress and lower blood pressure. People who drive the stick get to know their sexual selves better. Some people do it as a part of meditation, some use masturbation to help premature ejaculation. It’s fun and safe for couples an solo alike.

The Stigma

If masturbation is so good, then why are some people against it. First, in general, we live in a sex negative society full of stigmas that go back centuries. In the Judeo-Christian tradition, bopping the baloney has generally been condemned as sinful, mostly due to the mandate to be fruitful and multiply. During the Victorian age, masturbation was thought to lead to impaired morals, depression, social failure, blindness, insanity, early death, and other zingers.

Since masturbation was thought to be so horrible, many so called cures were developed to stop its practice. Men of the time were encouraged to wear straightjacket pajamas, a suit of armor to cover the penis and testicals, and other devices. Some were encouraged to where spermatorrhea rings. these rings fit along the base of the penis with spikes on its inner lining to prevent erection. Some people had their foreskin stapled shut. Ouch! That hurts!

In the nineteenth century, John Kellogg invented cornflakes as one part of a diet that he felt would lessen the sex drive and diminish the practice of masturbation, which he called a “crime”. In the early twentieth century, President William Taft thought that playing baseball would serve as a distraction from masturbation. Former U.S. Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders stated that since masturbation was safe and healthy, it should be mentioned in school health curricula. People misinterpreted her statements to say that she thought students should be taught how to masturbate. Due to public outcry, President Bill Clinton fired her in 1994.

It is still common for young boys to tease other boys about jerking off, but those that are teasing, are also doing it as well. Myths about masturbation still circulate to this day, and as with other stigmas, probably always will. There are still some who feel shame about masturbation, even those that do it.

Cultural Support

Despite all the crazy stigmas and shame, people continue to keep that one hand clap going. Most doctors consider masturbation to be physically and mentally healthy. There are lots of ways to give yourself pleasure. Regardless on how you do it, it is fun, healthy, and a normal part of many people’s lives.

There are depictions of male masturbation in prehistoric rock paintings around the world. Many early people seem to have connected human sexuality with abundance in nature. A clay figurine of the 4th millennium BC from a temple site on the island of Malta depicts a woman masturbating, However, in the ancient world depictions of male masturbation are far more common.

There are plenty of songs that talk about masturbation. Number one pop hits like “My Ding-a-Ling” by Chuck Berry and “You’re making me high” by Toni Braxton. Top ten hits like “I touch Myself” by The Divinyls and “She Bop” by Cyndi Lauper and more.

I personally know men that say that they do not masturbate. Not due to shame, but because it does not do much for them. This is fine, as we all get pleasure from different sex acts, and if zapping the zebra does not do it for you, then fine. I also know men who do it every now and then, and others who do it every day. The same for the women I know. Just like sex itself, people very on how much self pleasure they need. Masturbation is only an issue if it becomes a distraction from other areas of your life, but that goes for anything. Masturbation is a pleasure, so like eating, sex, drinking and other pleasures, there are people who use it to unhealthy levels. Addictions are never about the thing you are addicted to, it is about underlying issues.

Break the shame

We must break the shame of sex and masturbation. We must break the shame of human pleasure. The sooner we learn to enjoy ourselves and our sexuality, the better we will all be. Do you have shame about masturbation? If so, where did you get it from? Are you open to change? What benefits do you get from masturbating? Let me know in the comments. Repressing our sexuality never works. It will just come out in other ways. Even some Christian sects are starting to change their views on the topic.

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