Hi, I was wondering if anyone ever feels lonely or pathetic after masturbating. I masturbate when I feel aroused, because it gives me sexual relief, but sometimes negative feelings arise from it. The negative feelings stem from the fact that I want to have an intimate relationship with someone, not just sexually but emotionally too, but I have never had that and sometimes I think that I never will. When I masturbate I usually think of a guy I like, and I wish that I was actually having sex with him, but in reality I am not, so that causes me to think, "Well I am pathetic because I don't have a boyfriend to have sex with, so I have to masturbate." I don't always think that way, but at times I do and obviously it bothers me. Does anyone share a similar experience? If so, what do you do to combat those thoughts?
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Hello jen . I think that those kind of feelings are not uncommon and I have sometimes felt similarly in the past. It might be helpful to remind yourself that many people who are in happy relationships do masturbate, it is not limited to single people. Also remember that knowing how and what gives you sexual pleasure through masturbation is likely to make your future sex with partners more pleasurable as you already know what you enjoy- that is far from pathetic, in my opinion. For me, I try to frame it positively as a way that I take care of myself and my desires, just like exercising or eating fruit. I enjoy feeling aroused and having pleasure as I also remember a time when I was so depressed I didn't have that anymore.
I think it is very natural to want an intimate relationship and to fantasize about people when masturbating. But what makes you think you will never have a relationship? How is your self-esteem in general?
Hi Eryn, thanks for your response. Sometimes I feel that I will never have a relationship probably because I do experience low self-esteem. I don't always have a negative perception of myself, but that negative voice in my head is definitely there. Currently, I am seeing a therapist to help me work with my issues, and it has helped, because I can now see the aspects of my personality that I enjoy and I think other people do/would like too. I think that the culture in which we live also affects of self perception, because I am eighteen years old and I have never had a boyfriend, and by that age many people have already had some type of relationship experiences. When I think about that it makes me think that I am destined to be alone forever, because it is difficult for me to convey my feelings of attraction to another person. However, I do know that many people my age, and older, are in the same situation, but knowing that does not always help me. I just long for an romantic and emotional connection with someone, so its absence leaves me with a feeling of emptiness, and that feeling is often present after masturbation.
I'm glad to hear you can see the aspects of yourself that you like and that other people would appreciate too . You're right that by the age of 18, many people have had some relationship experience. But many also have their first experiences later in life and it doesn't mean there's anything wrong with them, it's just everyone's different life experience. I don't know if it helps to hear that at all, but you're not alone in these lonely feelings and I have no doubt that you'll find a partner soon who will appreciate all the awesome parts of you. In the meantime, some people find it helpful to concentrate on things like friends & family, hobbies, volunteering/work and studies- which can all be good ways to improve self-confidence and meet potential partners too. Have you talked with your therapist about ways to make conveying your feelings of attraction to someone easier?
Yeah I do have hobbies that keep me occupied most of the time, but I think it would be helpful if I had more friends. I am currently in my first year at university, and I don't actually have people with whom I hang out, other than my roommates, but I don't enjoy their company. Anyway, that is another problem I'm working on, and the main topic of discussion with my therapist. I haven't talked to her about ways to express my feelings to people to whom I am attracted because I think that's something you mention to a therapist. It seems like I would be asking for dating advice. Generally I have a problem talking to guys I find attractive, because I become nervous, and my mind goes blank. I think it's just something I have to practice, and overcome my fear of rejection, looking weird, or acting creepy.
I remember finding it pretty hard to meet people in my first year at university too. Mostly I tried to make new contacts through the hostel, common classes and groups/clubs. Do any of your hobbies offer clubs on campus? I think that therapists at college are very used to dealing with interpersonal and relationship issues, and I have certainly discussed those sorts of things before with one. I hope the practicing goes well for you , those fears are common ones and who knows, the guy might be feeling exactly the same way about approaching you!
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