August 31, 2008

Masturbation In Marriage: Part II

This is part two in our series on Masturbation in Marriage. View part one here.

Doug Weiss, author of Sex, Men, and God, says that there are three types of men who masturbate, however because our experiences determine our reality, it is hard for the men in one category to even admit that the men in the other two categories exist. For example, because I don’t watch T.V. as much as I used to, I feel like no one watches T.V. that much anymore, therefore the television industry is hurting badly. This, of course, is not true at all, but because it’s true in my life, I feel it must be true in everyone’s life.

This is an important principle to understand because the truth is, not all men approach the subject of masturbation from the same perspective. And it is important to be able to know which of the three categories you fall into before we attempt to deal with and understand masturbation in your own life and marriage.

Three Types Of Masturbation

Type A - Those who don’t

Though there are jokes about the other five percent lying about it, this is just not true. Even though this is most definitely the minority in our culture (and getting smaller as sexuality becomes more open in our society), it does exist. These men are sexually normal, they have just never had the desire to satisfy themselves in this way.

Remember, just because this isn’t where you’re coming from does not mean that these type of men don’t exist.

Type B - Those who do, but who stay connected to reality

These are the men who masturbate, but who stay fully connected to real life. Doug Weiss says of the men in this category: “...he stays fully ‘connected’ to himself during the act, i.e. he does not lust or create sexual fantasies with the girls he knows. He would never use pornography during masturbation. For this boy, he’s simply engaging in a bodily function...He does not make up a fantasy world and he doesn’t use masturbation to meet the emotional needs in his life. He just stays connected, releases and moves on...Often when this man gets married, his masturbation behavior disappears or becomes very infrequent.”

Again, it may be hard for those of you who don’t approach masturbation like this to accept that this is a reality for some. You might say, “How in the world could someone masturbate and not have fantasies?!” Impossible as it might seem, these men most certainly do exist. (And it is these men who feel very torn when masturbation is condemned in a religious setting based on the grounds of lust. Because they themselves don’t lust during the act, they feel very confused.)

Type C - Those who do, but who are disconnected from reality

Dr. Doug Weiss says that these type of men “use fantasy, pornography or some form of objectifying women not only to arouse them during masturbation, but also to bring them to a point of ejaculation. When such a [man] enters this other world of fantasy, pornography and objectification, he has to spiritually and emotionally disconnect so he can fully engage in the fantasy state that he is creating.”

The Type A masturbator is dumbfounded by the existence of this group, and the Type B masturbator is confused at why it has to be such a “dirty” thing. Regardless of where you’re coming from, however, this group is a reality and is definitely the largest group of the three.

I think it goes without saying that it is Type C masturbation that can be the most threatening to a healthy marriage. We’ll talk more about why I think that is on Tuesday as we continue to tackle the subject of masturbation in the marriage relationship.

Up Next: Masturbation In Marriage – Part III

Related Reading: Masturbation In Marriage - Part I


  1. As an occasional type C, I use memories of previous experiences with my wife as "inspiration".

  2. Wow.As a wife who's husband is clearly but not self admitted (no conversation) a Type C, with whom I've tried to have conversations about why he persisted with pornography (hidden) after we were married and with a fantastic sex life and who then had a "meaningless" affair with a woman who he was quite detached from- this is interesting stuff!

  3. Yes, what about what Anonymous said? Type C, but doesn't use fantasy, per se - uses memories of the partner. That sounds more like a fourth category.

  4. As a wife of an admitted Type C, I have encouraged him repeatedly to just use memories of me instead of disconnect from reality and use (hidden) porn. I would be utterly relieved if that could actually happen. I would prefer if the masturbation stopped altogether (as I think it seriously negatively affects our sex life), however.

  5. Anonymous, I hope you have the chance to find security and joy in this situation. I don't know what I'd do if I knew my spouse was carrying a habit like that into our marriage.

    As a previous type B guy, who joined the type A camp a decade ago (yes, it was a tough fight, but I want to say it can most certainly be won, and permanently), I want to say one thing that I realised: the type B stuff isn't free of lust. Sure, there might not be any lust for a woman, but what about lust for oneself? I sorta think lust is any sort of sexual desire that's not matched up with love and put under the protection of purity.

    I think we're really objectifying our own bodies when we do it, asking something from them (and from our hearts) which they weren't meant to give to us. I've heard it described as 'self-abuse', which sounds about right.

    These may be pretty strong words; I have to mention that I still haven't completely gotten over the burden of guilt I heaped on myself when I was quitting the habit. Advice to men: let a desire for true love and a total reliance on God's mercy be your 'way out', not guilt. Guilt got the job done for me, but it left my heart in tatters.

  6. This is an interesting point of view. While I wouldn't feel comfortable physically violating myself (It felt horrible enough the 2.5 times I accidentally climaxed without getting to share the landmark experience with a spouse!), I guess I'm often a type C self-server...and I'd much rather be in type B or A for the sake of my future husband and my own sanity. I don't like the kind of person that the weirder fantasies turn me into, and then I'm stuck trying to reverse the damage by sheer force of will. I don't know what to do with my sex drive most of the time. I mean, sometimes I can just ignore it (e.g. I just spent about three hours inexplicably aroused without thinking, seeing, or doing anything sexy the whole time), but when it gets crossed with my emotions like loneliness and need of comfort, I actually *want* something and have no outlet except a fantasy world. I'm worried that my rather active internal sex life will someday mess up my relationship to my One True Love (assuming such a person exists). Sometimes I wonder if there's a safe, side-effect-free way to kill all the rogue libido...but then I might want it back after this hypothetical wedding I keep fixating on.

    On another note, I do totally relate to the part about feeling torn when "lust" is condemned. I am guilty of lust, especially toward two different people I had somehow convinced myself were God's Chosen Mate For Me (and I worry that if I ever have another such person in my life, I'll be turning my fantasies toward them again; help!), but it's not always about that. Just because I've got raging hormones to deal with doesn't mean I'm drooling over your boyfriend, my brothers in Christ at church, that rock star on the screen, or some creepy porno actor. I just want my body to shut up.

    ~Violet Black

  7. Violet:

    While I agree with your position regarding masturbation being a physical violation of yourself and something you need to avoid, I also feel you should welcome the feeling of arousal and sexiness. These feelings will make you more attractive to potential mates. Embrace them as what they are and you will have a better time avoiding temptation.

  8. This analysis is overly simplistic and therefore not helpful at all.

    I'm married. I masturbate, sometimes with the assistance of porn. It's only when my wife is unavailable for one reason or another. I'm not disconnected from reality. I'd prefer to have sex with my wife, but sometimes a release is a release. She masturbates if I'm unavailable and she's aroused--it just makes her sexier to me. Our marriage is rock solid and has been for over 30 years.

  9. At there are many stories of masturbation in marriage. These stories are in exclusive relationships. These stories seem to suggest a blessing when done in honest disclosure to support marriage love.