I too resonated with this topic. Growing up in the Church which taught masturbation was wrong and sinful and you were supposed to confess this. I had lots of issues with masturbating as a kid despite doing it frequently (up to 5 times a day). But then I'd spiral into guilt and shame and try and stop, but that didn't go well, or for long. But it wasn't just the Church that was a factor. At the time it was not culturally sanctioned. At school, it was never spoken of in positive light. As boys, we'd never openly talk about masturbation. It was also used as a way to put people down a bully other boys' whether you actually did it or not. I recall one boy who has caught masturbating in the school toilet and he was crucified as a result by other boys.
As someone mentioned earlier, I learned theologically that there is nothing to support the condemnation of masturbating. It took me ages though to deal with feeling like God was punishing me if something went wrong around the time I had masturbated. I still feel it sometimes. But I'm far more able to go "oh that stupid line again" and be OK with it.
I think the culture has changed a lot too and it's far more normalised and acceptable. The boys at the school I work at are very comfortable with talking about masturbation (way more than I'd be interested to hear) and their practices - especially among the boarders. They are certainly more open and liberated than I was or my peers when I was their age. Hopefully, they will grow to have a much healthier attitude. I still have the occasional one who brings up the religious issue but I can point them in the direction that helps clear that up for most - some are too ingrained by their church teaching to accept it at present.
I went into the church as an adult when I married and let me be clear, born again baptists.
So I was sitting there with repressed memories of CSA, sexual fantasies involving things half remembered and, my bible. Nice.
It's been a long road for me and I went into the church with all my cPTSD behaviour. I was already nutty as a fruitcake.
But I reconciled myself with God. Yes, God capital G. The big old man with the white beard on the throne. It wasn't nearly as hard as I thought.
My thinking was so messed up though from CSA I couldn't do anything so it's not surprising that I'd end up having problems relating to God and the church.
What I finally realised was most of the people in the church were really messed up which is why they end up there, trying to make sense out of it all.
I'm looking to switch churches which is another long story. I don't know how much of it has to do with wanting to be anonymous. I'd like to forget what most of my behavior has been like most of my life.
I wish I lived in the Bible Belt so there were churches everywhere and so lots of choices. I'm in New England. Definitely not the Bible Belt.
Where there is grace is no place for shame. Sorting through all of this as what's right what's wrong can do a number on us. Add in the things done wrong to us from an adult and we link masterbation to being wrong.
It took me years to rid myself of shame realize im made as a sexual being but that's not all I am.
Im glad this generation is viewing this differently.
Have any of you guys heard the phrase compulsive sexual behavior also called sexual addiction? I was reading about it actually taking the test to see if it applies to me... one of the questions was have you had more than 7 orgasms in a week? I thought oh my God I've had more than that in a day! It kind of scared me.
The ugly truth?
I never did it for pleasure, I did it to be lost in thoughts, I never discovered j.o. I have always done it prone. It has nothing to do with how it feels, hell I used to rub myself horribly raw, but it didn't matter.
A week ago I realized how numb I have always been to my genitals. Growing up, when I was done, I didn't clean up, I just fell asleep in the mess, cause to me, it just didn't happen. And no one (like my mother who washed the sheets) never said a fucking word. Ever.
I started early, elementary school. They were dry of course, but vile. Masturbation was always an ugly inward thing. My fantasies were direct rip offs of the assault, violence and humilation. I spend every waking hour dreaming of making out with beautiful boys, but wen it came time to masturbate, those lovely romantic visions were trampled.
A T suggested I attempt to explore physical sensation. I can a bit, on and off. But I am really working on it now. I don't want to be numb anymore! I won't be. I am taking it back and I will find easy pleasure.
@CelloL you are not alone. I am prone too. I think most of the "Science" saying it's bad was one toxic paper without merit. As with anything there are downsides. I protect my skin now against rub burns.
I remember this woman in the 80's saying that it was being used to push away the pain like a drug and that if we wanted full healing we should hold back - well I"d tried!! I have now gone 2 years without and I can say this woman was right! (for me). I have faced more pain in the last two years and seen the reality of my past and come to acceptance of it like never before. I have patches: I even went back into self harm a month ago but that was a spike in the pain from issues with facing how absent my mother was. I also see how this compulsion was keeping trauma bound to sex with my wife. So I get how impossible the idea of quitting is and the shame and guilt but I am so glad I took on this 12 step. I get my 2 year Chip - which I will not be wearing as a medallion round my neck!
I was raised in a holiness church. Masturbation was the source of a lot of guilt. We were taught that having impure thoughts was the same as committing the act. We were also taught that “God didn’t give you that to play with.” For years I felt tremendous guilt when I would ejaculate. And I blamed my masturbation habit for anything that went wrong. I remember a cartoon of a church picnic where it was raining and the minister said “ok, who sinned?” Funny but I knew that feeling exactly. I would try to stop only to have more intense guilt when I finally succumbed. With the help of T, I was reassured that masturbation is a normal part of life, nearly everyone does it, but it shouldn’t be the controlling factor in your life. As a result of her help masturbation became an enjoyable act, just one part of who I am. The frequency diminished and the physical enjoyment increased and the guilt went away or was much decreased