All About The Penis, Men & Male Sexuality

Freudian phases of development

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Phase 1: Oral, Anal and Asexual

The first stage of sexuality, lasting up to about eighteen months, is the oral phase. Pleasures tend to result from such things as sucking and gaining nourishment. As it grows the baby will put things in its mouth partly to touch and get to know them and partly because there is pleasure in mouth stimulation. Following on is the anal phase.

At this time, from say one year to three years, the anus and rectum seem to dominate the sexual scene. Erection may accompany defecation. The profound effects of "potty training" to which society attaches such importance are felt at this stage.

Next comes the phallic stage lasting until perhaps six years. There is frequent and prolonged masturbation. Although the child is not aware of the significance of sexuality, its impulses are so strong that it will fondle its genitalia in public or, for example, rub itself against another person, commonly the mother.

While these actions are innocent from the child's viewpoint they are embarrassing to the conditioned (and often confused ) minds of the adults. Admonishment may result, which in its turn confuses the infant.

The old vicious circle starts its next round. Between about five years and twelve years there is a so-called latent phase sexually. Little of a sexual nature seems to interest or concern the child. Nothing much in the way of experiment takes place until with the first onset of earliest puberty there is a re-birth of interest. The opposite sex becomes a subject of mixed fear and fascination. Masturbation in earnest begins. The final, genital phase of developing sexuality has arrived.

Phase 2: Discovering Life's Most Fascinating Toy

To define sex accurately in a way that will satisfy everyone is not easy. A good working definition is that sex is the sum of the peculiarities of structure and function that distinguish a male from a female. Whatever are the origins and biological facts one of the most obvious of the "peculiarities" is that he has a penis, and she doesn't.

Seeing a young sister who has no penis has affected many a little boy with an anxious fear that he might lose his. At around five or six perhaps, when the lad is at the height of his Oedipus confusion, seeing his father's comparatively large and threatening penis can start the development of a feeling of jealousy and competition with father and indeed bigger brothers and men in general.

There is also a security phenomenon, perhaps related originally to the idea that "plenty" (of food, clothing, shelter, etc.) equates with safety or power.

Big is beautiful, and biggest is best, is only another sign of the inclination of mankind to acquire property. Furthermore the penis is nice. It swells, does interesting things, is a secret, feels nice, impresses girls (and boys) and so on.

Small wonder that in the developing mind of the child the penis, for a whole series of reasons, starts to become very important. Little if anything happens to reduce its importance. The reverse is more often the case. The penis continues as a source of awe, excitement, comfort and, as it grows, pride. Long before the far higher significance of style and technique become apparent it is size that matters.

The worst thing that could happen would be to have no penis at all (hence castration fears). The next worst thing is to have a poor miserable pathetic little winkle; the best thing is to have a massive creature capable of swift arousal to a long thick vibrant shaft supporting a glistening red head. The scene is set and the play begins, which, throughout a man's life, will have deep significance.

However big, the man wishes his penis were bigger; however long, longer would be better; however sturdy, wider would be an improvement. It follows from this reasoning that in this way he can be as good as his father and other men. It follows too that women will be impressed, dominated, thrilled and kept faithful by the huge pleasure-giver punisher that lurks beneath the trouser zip.

Penis Size and Sexual Power

The arguments of women who say that it is performance, not size, that matters most are lost on the wind. Nothing will ever convince the average man that bigger is not better.

Even for those women who so fervently declare the unimportance of size, much of their comment is based on lack of experience. Few will have ever been penetrated by a really small penis; almost as few have experience of a penis more than six inches. While it may be true that there is scant difference between a seven inch penis and a seven and a half inch penis or even between a five inch one and a seven inch one, in some way "normal" size does matter to women. But most of all though, penis size matters to men.

It is one of our sources of great pride. Much of his ego is in, or is at least supported by, his penis. As long as men think, wish and hope that the size of their penises really counts, then it does. That is the be-all and end-all of the argument. Their minds are made up. It is useless confusing them with facts. The whole thing speaks for itself. Men have decided, believed and been conditioned into a way of thinking that accepts penis size as of supreme relevance. So there all fruitful discussion and argument might as well end. If men think it counts . . . it does.

The Lunatic Fringe

Delving deeper into the motivation of the penis size cult is interesting but not particularly helpful. Adult sexual behavior is governed by four overlapping groups of influences. These are neurological (the essential nerve control of sexual function, libido, etc), endocrinological (the working of the sex hormone and other chemical-producing glands), psychological, and sociological (the effect of currently accepted ideals, principles, taboos, etc.). It is in the psychological bracket that the question of penis-size arises.

(It is here too that the misguided ideas and confessions of earlier generations have their lingering effect. On the tenth of August, 1898 in San Francisco, USA, was issued Patent No 587994. It was for a male chastity belt. Men could wear these or lock their sons into one. Even the most partial erection meant that a series of pins stuck powerfully into the shaft of the penis. The aim of the device was to "stop nocturnal emission, control waking thoughts, and prevent self-abuse." Great thinking, you might comment. But it is as well to be vigilant. Such bizarre mental processes are not all that far below the surface of a lot of the minds you will pass on the way to the office.)

Other pages on the penis in the human psyche

The penis and the phallus
Beauty of the penis
Penis, phallus and the male ego
A cultural history of the penis
Evolution and the penis
How important is size?

Other sections on the site

The penis, masculinity and sex
A Cultural History Of The Penis
Penile & Other Problems