Are You Normal?
Is your penis big enough? Are your erections hard enough? Do you want sex often enough? In my over thirty years as a practicing urologist and urologic surgeon, I have found that when it comes to the penis, most men—and many women—don’t really know what’s normal.
The following information is presented by my book, Penis Power: The Ultimate Guide to Male Sexual Health, now available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble as well as independent booksellers.
When it Comes to the Penis, What’s Normal?
There is enormous variety among men with respect to sex drive, capacity, preferences, and standards of satisfaction. Yet men worry that every little sexual idiosyncrasy they have is a sign of abnormality.
Most men measure themselves against standards built on fantasy, not reality. They interpret commonplace, sometimes embarrassing experiences as signs of personal failure. If sex doesn’t go as desired, they panic. This experience can result in self-doubt. Self-doubt creates fear, anxiety, and inhibition. These feelings are bigger obstacles to sexual happiness than having a construction crew in your bedroom.
In my medical practice, insecurity and uncertainty about sexual performance are the top problems for my patients. Most of them are totally uninformed about the nature of their penises and their bodies in general. I wrote my book, Penis Power, in order to dispel the myths and misconceptions men and women have about male sexuality and how the penis works.
Do you worry about whether or not you are normal? Here are a few of the most common questions I am asked by my patients, followed by what I tell them.
1) “Is my penis a normal size? Is my penis big enough?”
I have seen more penises than can fill the Rose Bowl. The truth is, most men are about the same size. Penises, when flaccid, can be as short as one-and-a-half inches or as long as nine inches, but those that fall at these extremes are few. The erect penis averages about six inches in length. If one man’s penis is five inches long when soft and another’s is three inches long, that two-inch size difference is likely to shrink to near zero when they become erect.
2) “I’m not horny all the time. Sometimes I don’t want sex. Is there something wrong with me?”
Every man is, at times, not interested in sex. Many men believe that a “real man” is ready to get it on any time, any place. The reality is that levels of desire can vary widely among men. If you aren’t that interested in sexual encounters, consider the reasons. You may be avoiding intimate relationships; you may have an aversion to sex. If you feel intimidated by sex because of bad experiences in the past, follow the advice I’ve outlined in my book. Think positively. Move forward. Do not dwell on past experiences that were less than satisfactory.
3) “My erections aren’t as easy to achieve as they used to be. I can’t always get or stay hard. What’s wrong?”
Every many I have ever known has, at one time or another, lost an erection or ejaculated sooner than he would have liked. In some cases, an organic disorder may impede your ability to achieve an erection adequate for penetration (the classic definition of impotence). A number of physiological conditions can cause impotence including arteriosclerosis, diabetes, hormonal disorders, injuries, multiple sclerosis, reactions to medication, substance abuse, and other physical effects of aging.
Oftentimes, the cause of impotence is not medical, but circumstantial. These circumstances most often include a marriage or relationship in jeopardy, aggravation over a business predicament, or just plain mental and physical fatigue.
4) “I ejaculate too quickly. Should I be worried?”
Premature ejaculation affects about 30 percent of men at some time in their lives. Early ejaculation in men who are in their 30s or older may be a symptom of erectile dysfunction or fatigue. In older men, premature ejaculation can be a function of poor cardiovascular conditioning, depression, or neurologic symptoms. In younger men, it can be a symptom of anxiety. Premature ejaculation can also often be related to sexual inactivity for long periods of time or psychological factors.
Many of my patients think that everyone else is having better, longer, and more sex than they are, when in reality this belief is generally untrue. The key factor for most of my patients is mutual sexual satisfaction, unrelated to the clock at the bedside.
If you do want to last longer and delay ejaculation, the good news is, early ejaculation is correctable and treatable in all age brackets. Fortunately, a number of treatments for premature ejaculation are readily available. In addition, many men (and women) don’t realize that the ability to delay ejaculation can be learned. I detail some of these techniques in my book.
5) “My orgasms are not as explosive as they used to be, and I don’t release as much semen. Sometimes, I don’t ejaculate at all. Is this a cause for worry?”
This is a very common question. Invariably, the men who ask it are in their forties or older. As men age, their bodies produce less seminal fluid, so the volume of their ejaculate decreases. This is normal and natural, and every man should expect changes as he ages. I assure you, the feeling of pleasure and satisfaction you get from an orgasm has nothing to do with the volume you ejaculate. If your orgasms feel less intense, this diminished intensity may be caused by your state of mind and your feelings about your relationship.