A vibrant sex life is important for penis health; frequent use helps keep erections strong as men age. But common misconceptions and unrealistic expectations associated with sex can leave men (along with their female partners) feeling anxious, confused and inadequate. Nothing puts a damper on the mood like mental and emotional stress. Men can, therefore, promote sexual well-being and the health of their relationships by getting the facts straight on common sex myths. Below, six such myths are discussed.
1) Women like bigger penises.
While a 2013 study by the Australian National University suggested that women preferred slightly larger-than-average flaccid members, several nuances of the study should be taken into account. First, women were turned off by significantly larger-than-average rods; second, their size preference tended to correspond with the man’s overall height – most women only preferred larger members on taller men, indicating that proportion more than length was valuable to them aesthetically.
It should also be noted that flaccid penis length is not a good indicator of the size of the member when erect. Some women may prefer the look of a longer flaccid penis, but this doesn’t necessarily mean they want larger-than-normal erect members inside them. Average erection length ranges from 5.5 to 6.3 inches; most men are within or very close to this range, and those who fall below it can still provide plenty of pleasure.
2) Most men have had dozens of sexual partners.
Men in this culture are encouraged to treat sexual activity as a sign of masculinity, and this often leads to comparing oneself with other men in terms of partner count. For one, it’s likely that most men haven’t had anywhere close to dozens of partners. A 2005 study of men ages 30-44 yielded an average of 6-8 partners. Secondly, sex isn’t a sign of masculinity; it’s an experience between two (and sometimes more) human beings. Comparisons result from a societal pressure that makes sex into a competition and a source of stress rather than the enjoyable, intimate experience it can be. As with most things, quality beats quantity here.
3) Everyone’s having anal.
No, they’re not. According to research from 2005, less than half of respondents (40% of men and 35% of women) report having heterosexual anal intercourse. It’s not something everyone wants, and it shouldn’t be expected.
4) Men should last at least an hour.
This is perhaps one of the most over-stated sex myths out there, and it leads to both men and women expecting constant marathon sessions that aren’t very realistic. Most men cum after three to seven minutes of continual thrusting. Granted, sex can be extended by techniques such as pausing, switching positions, changing to oral for a while – but the idea that a man should be able to pump continuously for an hour (or even half an hour, let alone 15 minutes) is a misconception that can leave men feeling self-conscious.
5) A man should be able to make a woman orgasm vaginally.
Some men may put pressure on themselves to bring their female partners to orgasm with their penises alone, but this isn’t likely to happen for most women. In her book, The Case of the Female Orgasm, Elizabeth Lloyd analyzed 33 studies and concluded that about 25% of women achieve orgasm through vaginal sex. This percentage has no correlation with the man’s penis size, the duration of the activity or the woman’s feelings toward her partner.
That is to say, a man is not inadequate if his partner doesn’t reach climax by the sheer power of his penis. Clitoral stimulation is required by most women. If a man wants to get his partner there, then, some extra hand and mouth play is his best bet. He can also massage her clit with his penis if he (and, of course, she) really wants the member involved.
The only thing worse for a man’s sex life than unrealistic expectations and anxiety is, perhaps, a poor penis care regimen. Men with dry, cracked penile skin have a legitimate concern, since skin abrasions make men more susceptible to a variety of infections and odors that no partner would want to be close to. Men whose sensitive skin needs a bit of extra help can seek assistance from a penis health crème (health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil). A cream with Shea butter and vitamin E will smooth the skin out; also look for vitamin A on the ingredient list, which helps the body fight off bacteria that can cause both infections and odors.