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Op-Ed: What’s Up With Penises??? (NSFW)

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

“Here’s the thing about male sexual performance anxiety: it can be hard sometimes.”

Thats a joke I came up with. Hah. But floppy dicks are NO joke people. Alright, they can be pretty funny. One partner of mine thought it was particularly funny when post-coitus, I would shake my hips in a circular motion to produce an effect known as “helicopter penis.” That was funny. Also that Rihanna song where she sings “Come here rude boy-boy can you get it up? / Come here rude boy-boy is you big enough” is pretty funny too, but size is another matter completely. I’m perfectly satisfied with my average wang. This article is only concerned with the “can you get it up” aspect. I’m no hero, I’m just a guy who has occasionally failed to have sex because my dick didn’t work, but I think a large percentage of men would agree that “getting it up” deserves more discussion.

We tend to visualize dicks as always being aggressive, rock hard, and in-your-face (lol). Whenever someone draws a dick, it’s usually a triumphant veiny bastard. I went to an all-boys highschool, so believe me I’ve seen my fair share of dick-drawings. So yeah, flaccid dicks are pretty funny and harmless, because who ever thinks about or looks at flaccid dicks?

oh grow up its 2014

“KRAMER! read the title of this article in my voice! aaaahhh!”

But know whats not funny at all? Crippling anxiety, self-doubt, body image issues, and soul-crushing depression that result when a guy can’t get it up in bed. And I’m not just talking about the guy, both partners share those emotions. Being unable to get hard is probably the most emasculating thing there is. I mean, its called impotence. You’re literally powerless. Most people like feeling of control of their lives (especially men… HEYOO PATRIARCHY… but thats another matter entirely). I like to choose what I wear, eat, who I spend time with, etc. But impotence is death. It is the reminder that try as you may, there will always be that in life which is out of your control. And that is truly terrifying. We fear most what we do not know or understand…. so basically limp dicks are the stuff of nightmares.

“Please God, just give me a boner this one time and I swear I’ll stop taking the Tabasco bottles from Chipotle.”

I’ve lived a pretty full life so far, and I’d be hard-pressed to think of a feeling more horrible than the overwhelming despair and grief that takes hold in the following situation: you’re finally in bed with that beautiful girl you’ve had your eye on, the clothes are off, the foreplay has gone on for long enough, and after desperately jerking your soft wiener for a while you sheepishly look into her confused, innocent eyes and say “…Sorry?” Maybe that’s just how I handle it.

For others, maybe you just shrug, maybe you blame it on the alcohol, and maybe you blame your partner if you’re a douchebag, but regardless of how the message is conveyed it comes out the same: I cannot perform my manly duty, we can’t have sex. It’s almost like an extremely sad bonding experience. Guys blame themselves, thinking there is something fundamentally wrong with them. Girls blame themselves, thinking they aren’t sexy or did something wrong. So much shame, suffering, and unease that could be avoided if everyone just admitted one fact: dicks don’t have on/off switches.

My anaconda don’t want none unless it’s my own hand, hun.

Which begs the question: why can I always get hard when I’m masturbating? Do dicks exist in some intangible realm, where they become possessed by a Boner Spirit only when the planetary alignment is right? Better yet, does my cock operate on the quantum level, where its nature is contingent upon the viewer? Well… kinda. From my own experience, I’ve only gone limp when expected to perform. Whenever in a happy relationship with a lady, my dick forgets its shyness and will come out to play basically upon command. But I don’t want to live my life in fear of casual hookups. I don’t want my boners to be banished to the comfort zone, I want my erections to break free (literally and metaphorically) and seek out uncharted territory. Isn’t that what college is about? Or maybe my shy-boner is like a moral check, keeping me tethered to some sense of fidelity. That being said, I appreciate relationships for much more than the stress-free sex, but is it too much to ask if I wanna experience a one night stand at least once?

I wish I could include statistics on the number of times that guys dicks don’t work, or even just go around and survey the campus, but because of the way masculinity is handled in our culture it’s a topic rarely discussed. I consider myself a very open person. I have to get things off my chest otherwise they sit inside my brain and slowly rot me away from the inside, which is why I’m writing this article. Anyway, only after taking the leap of faith and opening up to friends about my dick-related anxieties did I discover that it’s extremely common. In fact, only one friend claimed to have never experienced erection issues, and a week after our conversation he reported back that it happened for the first time. It’s like we transmitted shy-boner to him via thought…which just goes to show, it’s all in your head.

The worse case of shy-boner I’ve heard belongs to a good friend of mine, who to this day remains a virgin because of his shy-boner. He confided in me that multiple encounters with women have all ended with the same limp reality. And you know what? He’s a perfectly well-adjusted person otherwise, and told me his life is “a delicious sundae, but sex would just be the cherry on top.” Sex is fun, and his story made me very grateful for all the sex I’ve had in my life, but there’s so much more to do out there in the world, and life is too short. So ladies: you’re all beautiful, sorry our dicks don’t work sometimes,. And men: if your boner is reliable, then congrats. If it isn’t… then its not the end of the world. No use crying over soft cocks.

For my brothers out there in the struggle, here are some resources: