How can I stop masturbating so much?

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Hel
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How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Hel »

Recently I’ve been masturbating pretty much every night and every time I shower and I think it’s making me feel sick and out of sorts. (I never felt sick like this before, even when I did it multiple times a week.) I know it’s healthy to do every now and then, but I feel like I’m doing it way too much. I keep trying to stop but it doesn’t work, and I feel like it’s messing with my sleep cycle. I just don’t know what to do with this pent up sexual energy - I’m going to see my boyfriend in several weeks but still, that’s a little while away, and he’s my main sexual outlet aside from erotic fiction.

I’m also fantasizing about having sex with my boyfriend but logically I think I’m not ready for any sort of penetration, and I don’t know what to do. I want to keep fantasizing and maybe tell him about it at some point, but I feel so dirty when I think about him when I masturbate, since I’m a pretty innocent person. Like, him touching my breasts and kissing me is one thing but sex is another level of intimacy, in my opinion.

I’m just confused about my sexual desires and I also want to stop masturbating so much. How do I take it down a notch?
Heather
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Heather »

Can you say a little about what you feel like is keeping you from making the choice you want to as far as frequency goes?

In other words, knowing you want to do this less for the reasons you’ve said, what do you feel like is at the root of you choosing to masturbate when you don’t want to? If it feels compulsive - like you literally cannot stop yourself when you want to - have you ever had issues with other compulsive behaviors before?
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead
Hel
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Hel »

Thank you for the reply. It gave me a lot to think about.

I’m not really sure why it feels so compulsory. I guess I just have sex on my mind a lot all the time lately and it makes me nervous. The reason I am intimidated by these thoughts is because I am a virgin and I have a reputation for being really innocent. Not that I care a lot what others think of me, but the thought of my increase in sexual desire becoming more obvious stirs up some weird feelings.

And I really want to tell my boyfriend about it so we can be more sexual, but I don’t want to take things to fast. I’m worried if I have sex at my age I won’t be able to handle the risks. I have goals for my future and I’m scared of making mistakes. It’s kind of irrational I guess, since I also really enjoy pleasure in a sexual way.

So I guess what I’m trying to say is: I want sex/to be more sexual, but I don’t want my life to change in a negative way. Is it normal to feel this way? How can I initiate/talk about sex without changing my dynamic with my boyfriend? And when it comes to masturbating, I just feel like it’s all I can think about. Like, all of this sex stuff has only been in my main train of thoughts in the past year or so. It was never something I was ready for before.
Heather
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Heather »

This all helps fill me in more, thanks. Before I say anything else, I feel like there's one important piece of the puzzle I might be missing that'll make a difference in what I say: do you feel like if you have sexual desire, that'll mean you will lose control? That you will have to be sexual or have sex? That you HAVE to do something with that desire?

Do you also feel like if you tell your boyfriend about these feelings, you then will have to do something sexual with them, and then, if you do, will then be obligated to? Like it'll be like opening some kind of Pandora's box?
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead
Heather
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Heather »

This all helps fill me in more, thanks. Before I say anything else, I feel like there's one important piece of the puzzle I might be missing that'll make a difference in what I say: do you feel like if you have sexual desire, that'll mean you will lose control? That you will have to be sexual or have sex? That you HAVE to do something with that desire?

Do you also feel like if you tell your boyfriend about these feelings, you then will have to do something sexual with them, and then, if you do, will then be obligated to? Like it'll be like opening some kind of Pandora's box?
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead
Hel
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Hel »

Sometimes I find it really difficult to be vulnerable around people and to share my true thoughts and emotions. Like, my boyfriend and my immediate family are usually the only people who I open up to completely. Sometimes when masturbate, I find it really hard to stop and I hate losing control. I guess I am a bit nervous that would happen if I actually had intercourse.

Luckily, I have never felt obligated to have sex - only to masturbate which doesn’t make much sense. I don’t think anyone knows I even masturbate, so that makes it harder to talk about sex. My boyfriend has always asked me what’s okay, and knows that no means no. He’s really sweet and caring about me. I definitely don’t feel like if I talk to him I’ll have to have sex/be more sexual. I do however think I’ll want it more. No one (that I know) has ever told me sex is bad or anything like that. But I never used to want it and now I do, and I’m just trying to battle my inner prejudices, if that makes sense.
Sam W
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Sam W »

That does make sense, thank you for sharing it!It can certainly be jarring to go from feeling like you're not interested in sex to frequently feeling desire for it. Can you say a little more about why it feels like if you talk with your boyfriend about this, you'll want sex more? Does it feel like talking about it is sort of putting it out there as a real possibility? Or maybe that talking about it will make you think about it more, which will then make you want it more?

When you say you feel obligated to masturbate, is it that you feel like if you don't, the desire you're feeling won't go away and you might do something else because of it? Or is it something simpler, like "I'm feeling sexual desire, so I am supposed to masturbate?"
Hel
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Hel »

I think that talking about sex with him would definitely make sex seem so much more real, and also I wonder if I’ll want it more - and what he’ll want.

As far as masturbating goes, I think that it is the more simple thought, meaning if I feel sexual I feel obligated to release that energy by masturbating.

All these thoughts are so new to me. Like, Ive masturbated for years but only recently started thinking about actually having sex. And now that I have a boyfriend who I’m comfortable with (and who I’m pretty sure is interested in sex too, thought I’m not certain), sex seems like a real possibility. I’m just having a hard time knowing if I’m ready or not. I don’t want to make the mistake of losing my virginity and not being able to handle being a sexually active teen.
Sam W
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Sam W »

I wonder, do you think it would help to check in with your boyfriend about where you each are with your wants and boundaries around sex right now? It sounds a little bit like some of your anxiety around this is coming from the unknowns, and checking in with each other might help with that. Too, talking about sex won't automatically make you want it more. Even if it did, wanting isn't the same thing as doing; you're still the boss of your own decisions, so you get to decide whether sex stays in the "thing I want but am not ready for" category.

In terms of readiness, would it help to have some resources about determining if you're ready for sex or not?

Those feelings you're describing around masturbation are something we've seen users express before. The good news is that arousal isn't something you automatically have to act on. In fact, there are going to be lots of points in your life (heck, you're probably already experiencing them to some degree) where you feel arousal and can't masturbate because you're in class, or at dinner, or super-engrossed in the book you're reading, etc. What do you think would happen in, when you notice that arousal, you do a quick check in with yourself to see if masturbating sounds fun, or if you'd rather focus your energy on something else?
Hel
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Hel »

I definitely want to bring up sex and what I’m ready/not ready to do with my boyfriend. I’m waiting until we see each other in person though - I’m counting on in a few weeks - since I’m more comfortable in person. I just feel like the conversation would be more private that way.

In terms of resources, could you include ones on talking about sex with a partner and also determining if I’m ready? Those would both be really, really helpful, thank you!

Also, doing a check-in with myself sounds like something I could incorporate whenever I feel arousal. Thank you for the suggestion.
Sam W
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Sam W »

You're welcome, I hope the checking in with yourself helps!

And sure! Here are some resources, both on communication and readiness, to get you started:
Be a Blabbermouth! The Whats, Whys and Hows of Talking About Sex With a Partner
Ready or Not? The Scarleteen Sex Readiness Checklist
Risky Business: Learning to Consider Risk and Make Sound Sexual Choices
Hel
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Hel »

Thank you for the advice and the resources!
Sam W
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Re: How can I stop masturbating so much?

Unread post by Sam W »

You're welcome :)
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