If you or someone you love is concerned about their erectile control and are having issues with erectile dysfunction, early or premature ejaculation, or are having trouble ejaculating, it’s never too soon to reach out to a qualified sex therapist that can help you with the issue. In fact, the sooner the better. I see way too often that penis-owners will try to apply do-it-yourself fixes to erectile issues (stop masturbating, stop porn, start masturbating, start porn, Viagara/Cialis/Levitras, going off medication, fantasizing, etc.) that just wind up furthering the problem. In fact, men who have erectile functioning concerns have some of the most dedicated attempts to solving their sexual issue on their own and would rather try everything they can find that might be a solution before reaching out to a professional for help (kind of like not asking for directions when you are clearly lost!)

If this sounds like you or someone(s) you love, then reading this blog can help point a lost ship in the ocean towards a safe harbor of erectile control and confidence. I’ll break it down in a few easy pointers that can help:

  1. Accept that there isn’t just ONE cause of your erectile concerns, even if you are convinced that it started because of X. All sexual issues are multi-causal, meaning there are many different reasons why the sexual issue is occurring. When clients come to me, I am interested in not only what you think the origin is of the issue, but also the issues that are maintaining the concern as well. There are likely a LOT of things going into this issue and part of my job is to help figure out what those things are and minimize the impact they have on your erectile control or remove them all together.
  2. Your body is not designed to be sexual if it is in a state of stress, fear, anxiety, or relationship conflict. We are mammals, and if our body is in any state of fear, we are really not designed to be sexual. So if you have underlying anxiety or anxiety related disorders (OCD, panic issues, mood issues, hoarding, body focused repetitive behavior, etc.), that is likely a big cause of the problem- where your erection is a SYMPTOM of a bigger, greater issue.
  3. Your erection might be telling you something else that is wrong. We have high expectations on an erection. It should just be ready to go, at all times, rain, snow, gloom of the night. But the erection has an opinion about things and often can be the first alarm bell that something isn’t right- physiologically, relationally, psychologically, neurologically, or other. It’s important that we listen to the erection and really make sure we are looking at anything that may be effecting it. Sex is so often a symptom to a bigger, more obvious problem and our bodies, and the erection, often speaks loudly so that we will listen to it.
  4. Partners play a huge role in the development and maintenance of erectile and ejaculation issues. If your partner gets disappointed, frustrated, sad, or questions their self-worth, attractiveness, sexual skill when your erection doesn’t do exactly what they or you expect it to do, your partner is part of the problem too. Many people just want to “send” their partner to sex therapy to “fix your issue”, but this is exactly the attitude and perspective that created and/or maintained this problem to begin with. When partners play a role in a problem, they also need to play a role in the solution and likely will be invited into sex therapy to work on how they are contributing to the issue.
  5. Certain personality characteristics are more likely to have erectile and ejaculatory issues. If you are “Type A” or a perfectionist, you might have been rewarded for these characteristics in your professional and personal life. But this type of personality or thinking is terrible for your sexual functioning and sexual satisfaction. Sex, by nature, is extremely imperfect. And your sexual self does NOT appreciate being held to any standard but acceptance and positivity. Perfectionists are chronically unhappy and need to do some therapeutic work to deconstruct their values.

If you need more information, I recommend you to a few resources:

Coping with Premature Ejaculation

Coping with Erectile Dysfunction

Hard Conversations Podcast