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Thursday, July 24, 2014

SMART Youth Answers: Does Size Really Matter?

“Does penis size really matter when it comes to sex?”

Seems like an age-old question that is on most people’s minds (admit it, we know you've asked this question at least once in your life) and never has a definitive answer! The prevailing philosophy is that larger penises are more pleasurable…which is a lame and vague answer. We all feel differently about this question depending on our likes and dislikes. Even the research has different outcomes! There are many sides to this debate and we’re here to explain them!

Size may matter, but not the ways you think!
Some studies show that length may not be the factor in penis size, but girth (width) instead. In the case for women studied, size mattered for those who have orgasms primarily through vaginal penetration because there are pressure-sensitive nerves that can detect stretch, which may be more pleasurable. Men also feel the same sensations through anal sex, so men who prefer that feeling of “fullness” may want a partner with more girth.

Goldilocks Zone
In general, men and women don’t think size matters, as long as it is not on the extreme ends of the size spectrum. You may think this applies to just people who have smaller than average sizes, but this also applies to those with much larger than average penises. The average erect penis is about five to six inches long and has an average circumference of 4.8 inches. Also, the most pleasurable and sensitive parts of the vagina or the anus is the first two or three inches. This means that unless the erect penis is smaller than three inches, size shouldn't affect this level of pleasure. This also means that a larger penis won’t necessarily make things more pleasurable. When a penis is large (by either length or girth), it can lead to discomfort/ pain during vaginal or anal sex.

He Says, She Says
What’s big for someone may be small for someone else. We all have individual preferences and there isn't one way to have sex, so size may matter to one person…but it may not matter for another. Some people may like longer penises because of the sensation of it touching the cervix; some may want a shorter penis because directly stimulates the prostate; some may like penises with more girth because they like the stretching sensation; and some may like penises with less girth because it’s easier to penetrate. Remember that individual people have different sexual body parts, preferences, and needs; so assuming that everyone prefers a bigger penis is assuming that everyone has the same kind of sex.

It really is about the “Motion of the Ocean!”
You know the saying: It’s not about the size of the boat, it’s about the motion of the ocean; that is to say it’s not about what you have, it’s about what you do with it. Remember that sex is not always about penetration! Not only do we have other ways to pleasure our partners (such as using our hands, mouth, or sex toys), but sex is also about the intimate connection we make with people. As much as it is about your genitals, it’s also about how you feel and approach sex. With that being said, if you’re feeling less than confident about your genitals or your skills, it will show when you have sex!

It may just all be in our heads!
All in all, size only matters if you make it matter. Studies show that heterosexual men tend to be more concerned about their penis size than heterosexual women are. More times than not, what men consider to be small is actually considered average. In addition, penis size becomes a bigger factor for homosexual men. Research shows that size has a stronger link to dominance and power, so those that self-report being smaller in size are more likely to be “bottoms”and those who reported being average or bigger are more likely to be “tops”. In general, men are often obsessed with their size because they equate penis size with self-esteem and worth…something that is very damaging. Each of our bodies is unique and we should strive to be comfortable with the skin we’re in.

There’s more to your identity and sex life than penetration and penis size, and just because someone considers you “too small” or “too large” doesn’t mean you and your partner cannot have great sex! 

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