Hello, this is my first post here, although I’ve been lurking around for the better part of a year. In this post I’ll document how I tried to diagnose and cure my ED problem.
I’m 28 yo, virgin, first masturbated when I was 12, and had been masturbating to porn roughly once a day since I was 15.
At the beginning, I masturbated mainly because if I didn’t I would have had a boner lasting for an hour or more, even without any stimulation, and it was annoying (God knows how much I crave this ability now!). Masturbation was seemingly the only way to solve that “problem”. Now in hindsight, I know I was wrong, it was a symptom of an addiction, and my “solution” only exacerbated the addiction.
Soon after that I read somewhere masturbation was not harmful, and my long and regular once a day masturbation history started.
I had the following symptoms:
- After only a few days or even one day of NoFap, I would experience very strong, almost irresistable cravings for PMO, yet my penis remains flaccid, no erection at all.
- To get an erection, I need to be BOTH watching porn and stroking.
- I get at most 70% hardness in my erections, with soft glans.
- I can only get erections when sitting or lying down, almost nothing in standing position.
- I need continuous physical stimulation to maintain an erection, without which it disappears within seconds.
- If I lose an erection (without ejaculation), it’s hard and sometimes impossible to get another one immediately afterwards.
- After ejaculation, it often takes more than 12 hours before I can get another erection.
- I get a hard flaccid after ejaculation, which would last for roughly 30-60 minutes.
Self-Diagnosis: Theory 1
Cure: NoFap (Hard Mode).
I first read about PIED and believed that I had PIED back in 2012, but it was in April 2014 that I finally gathered enough mind power to seriously start a reboot.
Symptom 1 is what I consider a sure proof that I was addicted to PMO.
After 7 months of hard mode reboot, I felt that my PMO addiction had been largely cured, because Symptoms 1,2,6,7 were completely gone, and spontaneous erections and morning woods were back.
At this time, whenever I was sexually stimulated (say seeing a sexy girl on TV), I always got an erection, although its hardness would vary depending on the strength of the stimulation.
However, the remaining symptoms were still there, by varying degrees:
Symptom 3: NO improvement at all, still around 70% max, still soft glans.
Symptom 4: I can get an erection now when standing up, but weaker, around 60% max.
Symptom 5: Some improvements in maintaining erections, but not much. I would lose my morning woods immediately after I get up from bed.
Symptom 8: Hard flaccid still there after ejaculation, no improvement.
Self-Diagnosis: Theory 2
I was sad, after searching I was seriously suspecting that I had venous leak. The Wikipedia page on venous leak describes the following symptoms:
Most men suffering from Venogenic Erectile Dysfunction start having trouble with their erections from a young age. Common complaints include; A chronic soft erection insufficient for sexual intercourse, position-dependent erectile rigidity, difficulty achieving erections, difficulty maintaining erections without constant manual stimulation and a soft glans of the penis during erection.
Exactly what I was experiencing!
I spent a day or two reading many articles in venous leak, in the end I decided to try kegels, which some studies show would help with venous leak because strong pelvic muscles can help pressure the veins and prevent blood from getting out of the penis.
Subsequently I spent another few days reading articles on kegels, reverse kegels, dry orgasms, etc, and from the knowledge I gained from them I gradually formulated another theory on my problems.
Background: Throughout my masturbating history I have predominantly been masturbating to porn while sitting comfortably in a chair, and I typically don’t edge a lot, finishing off mostly within 5 minutes.
- The pelvic floor is under more pressure from the body when one is standing up or kneeling than sitting or lying down.
- Regular sex happens mostly in kneeling and standing positions, therefore exercising the pelvic floor muscles better.
- People who edge a lot probably also exercise their pelvic floor muscles better.
- I don’t do real sex, I don’t edge, and I only masturbate while sitting down (which is natural when masturbating to porn), which caused my pelvic floor to be seriously under-exercised, and therefore too weak.
I believe this is why I still had EQ problems after my PMO addiction was seemingly already cured.
This theory explains my symptoms 3-5, especially 4, as in standing position, the PF muscles are under extra pressure from the body, and therefore their ability to enable an erection drops further. Before this the best explanation I found for this symptom was simply that my brain was less accustomed to the standing position.
I favor this theory to venous leak because I’m (relatively) young, healthy, and never injured my penis in any way, I never tried any penis enlargement technique, and my masturbation technique is very mild. Therefore, the chance that I have venous leak should be slim (which is now verified by my recovery).
After only one week of kegels following Minuteman’s routine, I experienced a morning wood at around 90% hardness! This was the first time in many years I ever achieved an erection at more than 70% hardness.
Now after two months of kegels, symptoms 3-5 are gone. I can easily maintain a 90% erection for 30 seconds without stimulation.
What’s left now is symptom 8, which is probably caused by a tight pelvic floor.
- Masturbating to porn can cause more than one problem. Other than changing your brain, it can also foster habits which would then cause physical differences than if you do normal sex. When masturbating to porn, it’s natural that you would be sitting or lying down, and you may be getting away with a weaker erection because you don’t need to penetrate, all these can cause less exercises to your pelvic floor muscles, and which in turn gives you an even weaker erection. This is a vicious circle (for example you may give up masturbating in standing position altogether if you find you can’t do it).This is why I call it a different type of PIED.
Of course, your mileage may vary. There seems to be people with opposite masturbation habits than mine, who do a lot of kegels during masturbation, and pelvic floor weakness probably isn’t a problem to them.
- Even if your symptoms match exactly with the symptoms of the dreaded venous leak, don’t panic yet, you may still not have it. There are many other possible causes for the same symptoms, which is IMO part of why ED is so frustrating and hard to accurately diagnose.Only a small fraction of people who think they have venous leak actually have venous leak.
- My experience seems to suggest that, YBOP doesn’t greatly affect the max hardness you can achieve in your erections. This also seems to be supported by the YBOP theory itself. According to YBOP, your brain is desensitized because it’s made accustomed to higher levels of stimulation. While this makes your erections weaker under lower levels of stimulation (like real sex), you should still be able to achieve full erections if the stimulation you receive is strong enough.My own experience supports this: after NoFap, I could get an erection much more easily, but the max EQ I could get remained roughly the same.
Of course, this is only one sample. I’m very interested in hearing your experiences on this.
- I think pelvic floor strength and tightness are entirely different things. Before these kegels, I probably had a weak pelvic floor, but it was probably also tight and was therefore causing hard flaccids. This one confused me a lot and I couldn’t decide whether I should be doing kegels or reverse kegels until I came up with the above theory of my problems.The result seems to suggest that you can have a pelvic floor that’s both weak and tight. Maybe it’s even because it’s weak, that it takes more efforts to do its work, which makes it tight. I don’t know.
My current plan is to continue doing a 50:50 split of kegels and reverse kegels (as I have always been doing) for a couple more months. After that if my hard flaccid problem is still there, I will consider switching to a 40:60 or 30:70 routine.
I don’t know if this theory has been brought up before, I can’t find an article describing it, and I came up with it myself. It seems reasonable to me and fits well with my own experience, but it can certainly be wrong. I’m looking forward to your opinions on this theory.
Thanks for reading this long post.