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Women Aren’t Really Worried About Penis Size

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Women Aren’t Really Worried About Penis Size

Dear Duana,

I’ve been in and out of relationships all my life, and I’m worried my penis size might be why things haven’t worked out.  I know that good sex keeps a relationship together; there are other forms of intimacy, but nothing can take away the sensation a woman has with an endowed male. There is no need for a woman to look any further when her partner is good in the sack! I am not crossing my fingers for any positive remarks. At this point, I’m tired of worrying, and just want to know what’s normal and how much size matters, even if the news is bad.

John Thomas (JT)

Dear JT,

Sounds like you’re expecting an answer that hits below the belt—and you’ve got company:  46% of self-defined “average-size” men are dissatisfied with their penis size.  Fortunately, from every angle, your penile pessimism is larger than it needs to be.

 

The Ball Curve: 

First, let’s define what Normal is—a Ball Curve, if you will—remembering that most men can get and keep a lover.  Actual measurements show that:

—68% of men possess peni between 4.6 and 6.0 inches, erect, with a normal girth of 4.8 inches;

—13.5% of men’s penises are between 3.8 and 4.5 inches, and 13.5% are between 6.1 and 6.8 inches;

—and a very few (2.5% at each end of the distribution) are over 6.9 inches or under 3.7 inches long.

Recent research by Janet Lever and others shows that women’s perceptions of their partner’s size may be more generous than the real-life Ball Curve!  To wit:

—67% of women say their man’s penis is of average size;

—27% say their man’s penis is large;

—and only 6% say it’s small.

And just for fun:  Wanna know what body aspect penis size is most closely, but still weakly, related to?  Height.  (And men who think they’re fat believe their penis is small, probably just because they can’t see all of it.)  So Big Feet = Big Shoes, and Big Hands = Big Gloves…but not necessarily big anything else.

Of course, we’d expect the smaller guys to want a larger penis—and 91% who self-define as small do.  Surprisingly, though, 46% of those who think they’re average and 14% of “large” men want one that’s bigger still!

So: Size matters to men.  Many guys buy into the sales pitches promising Sex God status to the hugely endowed, apparently believing the porn industry’s unfavorable comparisons with mere mortals, and the seemingly resultant ecstasy the porn stars inspire in their onscreen lovers.  Sadly, 15% of self-judged “small” men even admit hiding their genitals during sex.  All of which implies that other men agree with you:  Women must think Size Matters, too—right?

 

What Women Want:

Amazingly, science didn’t ask any women until the last few years.  The answer?  Yes, There Are A Few Women Who Really Do Care—But Not Most.

First, as Cindy Meston and David Buss point out in Why Women Have Sex , among women who have sex for the adventure of it, the top reason given is curiosity about whether different sizes make for different sexual satisfaction.  Interestingly, though, some women are disappointed by the Big ‘Uns: “It was probably one of the least satisfying sexual encounters I’ve had because it’s hard to hit the right spots when it’s stuck in one place.”  And a statistical few women require pressure against the cervix in order to have an orgasm—meaning they really do require some length, because during arousal, the vagina expands so the cervix takes 5-to-6 inches to reach.

But the vast majority of women are satisfied with their partner’s penis size.  In fact, 84% of USA women are “very satisfied” with their partner’s size (14% want larger and 2% want smaller)—and a third are satisfied even when they define their partner as “small”!

Upshot?  As Lever writes, “If the vast majority of women are satisfied with their partner’s penis size, then many men may be worrying needlessly about the size of their penis.”

 

What To Do: 

It’s true: Women, like men, say they have sex primarily for physical pleasure, and we’ll often cheat on or leave a lame lay.  But as the saying goes, for most women, what matters most isn’t the size of the ship—but the motion in the ocean.   Which means that the royal road to being a Fabulous Lover is this: Figure Out What A Specific Woman Wants—and Give That To Her. 

How?  First, acknowledge these scientifically-validated truths:

—Every woman is different in what she enjoys in terms of pressure, speed, amount, and even location of touching; and

—Women, unlike men, must learn to have an orgasm.

Then, apply those truths.  Understand that in order to bring a woman to climax, you’ll need to really, really listen to her and her body language to help her have an orgasm with you—no matter how large or small your size, and no matter how experienced you are with other women.  And understand that the motion in the ocean, for most of us, is best felt at the outer 2.5 inches of the vagina—so even the smallest men fill that bill, and if your woman, like most, finds the initial penetration the most satisfying part of intercourse, you can tease her with repeated entry.  Consider, too, that only about 20 to 30% of women ever have an orgasm during intercourse—but your tongue, fingers and toys work, right?  Also, keep in mind that a huge part of sexual pleasure for many women is whether the emotional vibe is right; a technically great lover who is emotionally absent can be an empty experience.  When we’re in long-term relationship mode, we women want your heart and soul, too.

So—in short 😉 I would advise you to understand that no man has universally got the endowment that women are universally looking for—but most men have plenty for most women.  And I will lay money on it that you’re among them.  Go forth with confidence and remember that your best sex organs—the ones women really want—are between your ears and within your heart.  Figure out what an individual woman wants, rather than what we all want—and then give it to her with love and enthusiasm.  You will be irresistible, and rightly so.

Cheers,

Duana

The author wishes to thank the following scientists for their outstanding research into what men and/or women think of penis size:

Janet LeverDavid A. Frederick and Letitia Anne Peplau’s article

Cindy Meston’s and David Buss’ book Why Women Have Sex

A. B. Francken and others’ article

Roberto Ponchietti and others’ article

 

All material copyrighted by Duana C. Welch, Ph.D., 2011

 

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Duana C. Welch, Ph.D., is the author of Love Factually: 10 Proven Steps from I Wish to I Do, coming in January, 2015. She also contributes at Psychology Today and teaches psychology at Austin-area universities. Get a free chapter of Love Factually!

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