What if I masturbate (edge) or watch porn without orgasm?

. edgingSome men attempting the rebooting process believe that as long as they avoid ejaculation, they are successfully rebooting. This twisted logic leads them to endorse an unhelpful practice common to Internet porn users, called edging. This is masturbating up to the edge of orgasm, then stopping to cool things down, then revving up again. Three common versions of edging:

  1. Watching porn without masturbating
  2. Masturbating while viewing porn, but not ejaculating
  3. Masturbating without porn and without ejaculating

Since a reboot is defined as no porn or porn substitutes 1 & 2 make no sense. For those trying to overcome problematic porn use, edging while viewing porn (or fantasizing about porn) is far worse than simply having an orgasm and getting it over with. Why is that? It all comes down to dopamine.

Addiction-related brain changes and sexual (Pavlovian) conditioning are initiated by:

  1. Dopamine levels which are higher than levels attained through natural means (drugs, for example)
  2. Moderate dopamine levels that remain elevated for long periods
  3. Combo of 1 & 2

If you are edging to porn you are combining naturally high dopamine levels of masturbation with the dopamine raising abilities of 1) exciting, novel visuals 2) searching the net for porn 3) finding surprising or shocking genres. Edging can keep dopamine levels elevated for hours, and train the brain to require constant visual stimulation, rapid-fire novelty, clicking from scene to scene, particular fetishes, and the pressure of your own hand. None of this matches real sex. (see this video – Rebooting: What Counts as a Relapse?, by Noah Church)

High dopamine tells the reward circuit that “This activity is really, really important, and you should do it again and again.” Forget the (very real) possibility of addiction-related brain changes. Chronically high dopamine is conditioning your sexual arousal to everything associated Internet porn use. You are now training for the wrong sport. It’s like spending your time hitting golf balls in order to become great basketball player.

Worse than training for the wrong sport, you may be taking yourself out of the game all together. Dopamine is odd. It really shoots up when something is better than expected, but drops when expectations are not met. Rewiring your sexuality to Internet porn means you unconsciously expect to be a voyeur controlling your dopamine with a mouse. When real sex doesn’t match porn, dopamine plummets – along with your excitement and erections. Streaming porn use appears to be causing an unprecedented rise in youthful sexual dysfunctions: Research confirms sharp rise in youthful sexual dysfunctions.

What about edging without using porn? Depends on your goals I guess. Keep in mind that YBOP is about Internet porn, not masturbation (hello nofap/reddit). Is it similar to simply staying close to the edge with a partner? Not exactly, because you are wiring your sexual response to your own hand. Having sex means you are wiring your sexual response to another person. This may be significant for visitors who are are dealing with sexual dysfunctions and need to rewire to real partners. See Studies linking porn use/addiction to sexual dysfunctions, lower arousal, and lower sexual & relationship satisfaction

It’s important to realize that sexual stimulation is by far the highest level of dopamine naturally produced. Dopamine is at its peak when on the verge of orgasming (edging). In the pre-internet days, guys would usually masturbate, orgasm and be done with it – it might take 10 minutes or so. At orgasm, prolactin rises, which drops dopamine to baseline levels and inhibits its release. That normally spells some relief.

Placing your foot on the dopamine gas, without ever hitting the brake (prolactin) results in a continuous state of cravings without satisfaction. This practice of edging calls to mind the earliest experiments on the reward circuitry of the brain in which animals would stimulate themselves over and over, braving electrical shocks and ignoring willing mates.

In the end, chronically high levels of dopamine (in conjunction with a specific stimulus) are the trigger for the brain changes that can lead to full blown addiction, as over-stimulation of the reward circuit leads to the accumulation of DeltaFosB, activation of genes, and specific brain changes. As the sustained molecular switch for addiction, DeltaFosB initiates both behavioral and chemical addictions. Yet one of its evolutionary purposes is sexual conditioning. It rewires the reward circuit to sexual cues in the environment and makes “sex” even more enticing. If your sexual environment is Internet porn, that’s what your reward circuit expects….and craves.

One guy did a long-term experiment – no masturbation without porn/edging versus no porn/no edging:

NoFap “superpowers” only work in certain conditions

2 years ago I did my first no-fap challenge, just to see if I could do it, and got an enormous burst of energy from it. For 2 years I have been trying to replicate that feeling, and never succeeded. During these 2 years, each nofap trial I did was just to try to achieve that level of energy.

My theory was that it was linked to not ejaculating, and testosterone and such. So I did nofap, but still looked at pictures of pretty girls, or porn, or edged…anything I could to boost my T-levels, without ejaculating…but without results. This time, I decided to do nofap, not for the energy, but because I was again tired of my daily PMO routine – and I would stick with it, in hard mode, even without superpowers.

The result: I am totally energized now. My conclusion: For me, the “superpowers” seem not related to not ejaculating, or ejaculating less…but to not exposing myself to Porn, endless lists of bikini-babes, edging, fantasizing, or even touching myself. No Idea how it works, but I guess it’s related to something like this: (repost from another thread) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jX2btaDOBK8

In short: if you want to feel “superpowers”: no porn, no pictures, no edging, no touching – go hard-mode for a few weeks.

Another guy reported that his varicocele pain was due to edging:

My balls were always aching due to varicoceles. It bothered me a lot. But when i started nofap, it went away within a week and there is zero painin my testicles. “Yodelout” blog was right about varicocele.
Ungratified sexual excitement is the reason of varicocele and the pain associated with it. I hope you understand how better I  feel when there is no pain in the balls. It’s huge. Though the lump of varicocele has not disappeared, the swelling is not too large like before. Whenever i edge, the pain  comes back. This is a huge evidence that the edging and varicocele are very related. Masturbating does not aggravate the pain, edging does. NoFap made life easier. 4 Month Journey, 61 day streak (exception of wet dreams)

By the way, many who end up with porn-induced sexual dysfunctions have a history of edging to porn. As one guy said,

Is edging bad?

Yes, in fact it’s worse. The reason is simple: instead of achieving orgasm and ending it, you train your brain to be bathing in chemicals for hours. It’s the worst thing you can do, bar none. The worst. If you began and realise what you are doing in time, stop or rush to the end. Whatever you do, don’t keep the pace. Most of us weren’t addicted to PMO, but rather to PEO.

If you have chronic porn-induced ED, it’s unlikely that ejaculation was the cause your ED/DE – it was probably years of porn use. Internet porn is the stimulus that alters the brain, and, in some users, causes sexual dysfunction. Remember, today’s porn isn’t just addictive because it leads to the pay-off of orgasm; it’s addictive because users can employ it to raise dopamine continuously in their brain’s primitive reward circuitry. In fact, we know of one man who developed ED by just watching Internet porn. His schedule was to watch porn every day, but to masturbate only only once every ten days.

What happens when you eliminate masturbation but fall back into a bit of porn:

Pornfree>Nofap

Hi guys, just a little update here. I’ve been over at nofap and have managed to not fap since January 3rd. For the first month of nofap I looked at no porn at all. The improvements I was were unreal. More confidence, deeper voice, bigger dick (no joke). The second month in I started looking at bikini pics and softcore playboy like pictures. This still seemed ok but I started noticing that I didn’t want to go out of the house as much, and social anxiety started to increase again, just from bikini pics, what the fuck.

I started to dive a little deeper last week and went to an old favorite porn site where I watched about 10 minutes of video. The dopamine rush was unreal. Heart pounding, shakiness, but I didn’t fap. The past week after watching that shit has been a disaster. Watching Netflix all day, not working out, blah. So anyway here I am, pornfree 5 days, nofap 90 something. No more porn for me, its not the jerking off, its the porn. Free yourself.

As one “chronic masturbator” described:

I find that the sexual gratification of masturbation aided by pornography far exceeds pleasures of copulation (or other practices) with a partner. And I have reason to believe that this conclusion is widespread among the sub-population of self-identified chronic masturbators. I am an active participant in several masturbation-focused Internet groups, and moderator of one. Masturbators frequently report a strong preference for masturbatory practices, even when continuing in an active relationship with sexual partners. Many go so far as to abandon partner sex even while the partner remains available and willing.

Far from just “rubbing off,” chronic masturbators generally engage in a practice we call “edging”: bringing ourselves to the brink of orgasm repeatedly, without ejaculation. We can sustain extremely high levels of sexual arousal literally for hours, and freely explore our most intimate and personal sexual fantasies. These gratifications might be possible with a highly compatible and supportive partner, but I think most partners either tire of the activity or diverge into their own sexual fantasies long before the chronic masturbator is fully satiated. So edging-masturbation provides arousal difficult to obtain otherwise. The potentially addictive nature of edging should be obvious. It is highly significant to hear chronic masturbators openly acknowledge their addiction and at the same time express willingness and desire to become “more addicted.”

Your addict brain wants porn, so it will rationalize all sorts of scenarios, and watching without orgasming is one of its favorites – especially in those who are already suffering from difficulty climaxing or maintaining erections (due to excessive porn use). Since ejaculation is not the addiction, or the cause of the sexual dysfunctions, rationalizing porn use is potentially harmful. (Read “What if I recondition my brain by watching porn without masturbating?” below this page.) Your post-viewing neurochemical hangover may not be as severe as when you orgasm, but watching porn weakens your self-control brain pathways and strengthens your addiction neural pathways—wiring your arousal ever more tightly to Internet porn’s supernormally novel stimulation. Advice from two guys:

I learned many things during my relapses, such as even a small, minor edge is dangerous…not on that day, but the next day the urge is slightly stronger and by the 3rd day unbearable. So for now no touching myself. I am also now more in control of my fantasies that were getting me back into edging. I now switch thoughts from those persons as soon as they come into my head.

No matter how innocent the image may be, in my book looking at vids/pics and then quickly turning them off is given a rating of ‘high risk for relapse.’ The acts of searching, looking and touching lead to strong urges for the ultimate rush which develops itself into a form of tunnel vision. This tunnel vision, in my experience, is characterized by a complete shut down of the ‘new/logical brain.’ The ‘old/primitive brain’ assumes dominance. Goals, consequences, and reasoning just aren’t there, and its extremely difficult to not give in. Do yourself a favor and get away from your computer and occupy your time with something productive. Don’t tease the lion, or it’ll get you one of these days :-).

No porn addict successfully leaves this addiction behind by mixing edging with ‘just watching.’ Here are some guys’ discoveries:

NEVER EDGE.

A good urologist I consulted years ago, told me that edging is so bad because the semen returns and might “crystallize” in our prostate and that is why the pain and the blue balls, he told me that he was not accepted in the urology association because he said that masturbation can be the cause of many problems in the prostate, the other doctors told him that if men masturbate more frequently they will have more clients. Be careful, dude!!!!!! Btwm this doctor also told me that 10 years ago 90% of his patients were over 60 and now he is helping people as young as 16, many youngers are going to consult him. He blamed masturbation, porn and hormones, he has a treatment of needles to inject vital nutrients in the nerves of the penis, it is like viagra but even better, you feel like a bull.


Important: Edging is not the right way to recover. Be careful with that! It’s not only playing with matches. Just the touching and dopamine rushes to your brain are enough to slow recovery. I didn’t quite get this at first, so now I’ve added a no edging counter – and it’s already 4 days. Generally, I feel much calmer, much quieter on the inside. My morning erections are back. I feel slight discomfort – blue-balls – but it goes away quickly. What does help when urges arise is touching myself in a different, non-erotic way, cold showers or just dripping water softly on my penis and balls, breathing, and distraction (doing something different).


http://i.imgur.com/LsVO7rB.gif “When I read about people edging on the forum”


Background – 21 years old, extremely fit, student. I went on a 16 day streak where I was edging approximately 1-3 times a day, each day. By the end of day 16, my prostate felt extremely uncomfortable and it almost hurt to sit down. I decided it was a good idea to release. To my surprise, the semen volume was EXTREMELY low, and I had a major pulsating pain in my prostate after ejaculating. This actually hurt like hell. I couple days later (today) pain is gone. I’ll start another streak, this time (and never again) edging. I’m not sure what the mechanics are behind this to cause this issue, but it’s extremely alarming and I high recommend that you DO NOT EDGE. If you’re constantly edging, you’re better off releasing.


Don’t edge. Really. Don’t do it. It’s the absolutely worst thing to do. Even if you don’t count edging as relapsing (which it absolutely is), once you start edging, it’s just a matter of hours or days in which you will relapse. Age 20 – Much more confident & better mood, Made more friends in last month than prior 2 years


“The Zeigarnik Effect is the tendency to experience intrusive thoughts about an objective that was once pursued and left incomplete (Baumeister & Bushman, 2008, pg. 122). The automatic system signals the conscious mind, which may be focused on new goals, that a previous activity was left incomplete. It seems to be human nature to finish what we start and, if it is not finished, we experience dissonance.”

Best way to avoid fapping is to avoid starting.

Close the browser. Open your eyes if you start to fantasize. Turn off the TV. Get out of bed. Zip it up.

More importantly don’t start. http://www.reddit.com/r/NoFap/comments/2u0s0l/dont_edge_the_ziegarnik_effect/


I started Nofap, and although it was difficult at first I dug my heels in and things gradually improved. I did my first 90 days. Then I decided to reset as I had initially allowed edging and I wanted to do it properly. FYI it’s much easier if you don’t edge.

https://www.yourbrainonporn.com/rebooting-accounts/rebooting-accounts-page-1/1-year-my-wife-and-i-have-a-much-more-active-and-passionate-sex-life/


230+ Days Of No Porn, 30+ Days Of No Edging (General Feelings, Tips, Advice, Opinions, etc)

I stopped watching porn on June 8, 2011 and haven’t seen a naked girl on my screen (in any form) since then. However, a crucial mistake that I was making, up until 32 days ago, was EDGING. I saw very little, to no, progress for the first 6 months or so, and never completely contributed this to edging (partly out of denial, and partly because it was second nature and something I didn’t think about very much when it was happening). So, for the past 30 days, I’ve been seeing massive progress. FINALLY! Here are my experiences up until now, as well as some tips and advice:


10 days of nofap without edging equivalent to 60 days of nofap with edging.

1st attempt 74 days with edging, 2nd attempt 39 days with edging, 3rd attempt 15 days with edging and 4th attempt 5 days with edging.

AND Now:

11 days of nofap without edging(not even looked at my penis or edged for second, had 1st night fall of my life on 4th day, i am 25 Y.O) and i am amazed how my mind and body reacting socially and my stare is lethal for women they all are getting attracted the way i look. Feeling good and confident in difficult time i am going through right now it really helps a lot , but some times you get depress due to external factors around you it gives you courage to fight back.

I believe this is ultimate freedom, if you surpass your sexual urge.

EDIT :- i quit watching porn around month back


I’m actually studying neuroscience in graduate school, and one of the first things you’ll learn about the reward system is that the dopamine actually floods the system in anticipation of the reward – not after the reward itself. So from a neurobiological perspective, edging for 15 minutes is much worse than just rubbing one out in a few minutes. If you think about it honestly, what you’re addicted to is the PM, not the O.

BUT… I think its also crucial to recognize that just because you lose focus and start edging for a minutes, you shouldn’t follow through because “well fuck it I’m already edging I might as well finish and start over”. There is a HUGE amount to be gained from standing up to and resisting the urge even in those moments.


[For a couple of weeks prior, this man was complaining that he was compulsively playing with his genitals.]

Haven’t touched my penis in a while. 5 weeks no M, 1 week no P. I feel soo mellow. In a good way. My OCD is gone. I think I had restless leg syndrome. I’ve stopped moving my legs all the time as well. I was unknowingly doing it to touch my penis. I am so chill right now. Everything is slowing down for me, and I’m more calm when I talk to people. I am sooooooooooooooooooo relaxed, and I don’t need a substance to do it. Man, I’m on top of the world. I WANNA CALL my x-girl and tell her I still love her…haha…I do. We broke up cuz of porn. My passion is gone when I’m on it, but when I’m not, I am on top of the world. I’m still fearing relapse, cuz I just do. Always will. But this rebooting experience is finally paying off.


Last night I experimented by watching porn without touching myself (I’m rebooting right now). I felt as though I was in control. I was competently doing other tasks while watching, which is impossible for me when I’m working up to orgasm. However, this morning I feel some brain fog (my indicator that my brain chemistry is not right). It’s not as bad as when I’d MO to P, but it’s there. And I expect the next few days (at least) to be hell, as I have these fresh images to deal with. I will not be doing this again. For what it’s worth.


[from Reddit/NoFap] Why you must not edge -“What you’re describing is called edging. I PROMISE YOU if you continue to edge you WILL relapse there are no ifs, ands, or buts about it.

TRUST ME this is as simple as 1+1=2. I stopped going on /b/ for that very reason. You have to cut out pornographic images in general, even perusing that busty girl’s Facebook could be dangerous. Here’s how it starts, “Man, I’m doing well at nofap. Already at 60 days?!?!? I don’t even wanna fap anymore…hmmm…wow. Stephanie is looking hot in that two piece…what can I say I just like looking at hot women. There’s nothing in nofap against looking at hot women…Let me check out /s/ just to see what’s goin’ on, it’s not like I’m gonna fap or anything. I just wanna see some tits…Wow, these girls are so hot. Let me check out /gif/ it’s not like I’m streaming porn or anything, they’re just gifs…Wow, I’m so horny right now.

I’m sure it won’t matter if I just touch myself a little bit…it’s not like I’m gonna full on fap and orgasm of anything. These girls are so fucking hot. I know a girl on xnxx that looks just like her…It won’t matter if I check her out. I’m not gonna finish, I just wanna see her and that vid is sick…OMG, I can’t fucking help myself, she’s so hot. I DON’T EVEN GIVE A FUCK ANYMORE. orgasm Wow…woooowwwww..wwwoooooowwww….90 days down the FUCKING drain…omfg.

I might as well keep going now since I already broke the streak…what the fuck ever…fuck.” And that my friend is how it goes. If you allow yourself to walk the tightrope you will definitely lose your balance. DON’T DO IT!” –Esbietoo

This slippery slope is something that all of us need to watch out for! The key problem is that people think that they can “cheat” the system simply by edging themselves but denying the orgasm. However, the dopamine rush associated with browsing porn is still going to keep the addiction going… and as the floor falls out from under you as you get closer and closer to the point of no return while edging, following through and orgasming will simply be inevitable. Hence, I insist that everyone refrain from even edging! This mission is [no porn/masturbation], not NoCum. Deal with it.


I tried an experiment a couple months ago wherein I watched a lot of porn and edged without orgasm for 21 days. When I finally released it was without porn. For the next couple weeks I had TERRIBLE withdrawal. So there’s a lesson for you.


I confirmed it. Edging is Worse than masturbating. It’s like an unfinished business. I was edging today. Before, I felt calm. After about an hour edging, I felt turmoil inside me. I feel the energy like, there’s a storm inside my body. Compared to the cool, calm ocean feeling I had before edging, it’s damn worse. Took me a couple of hours to feel relatively calm again. Learned my lesson. 🙁


So I did nofap before for 63 days but would edge and even look at porn once in awhile. I didn’t see to many results after the first week as my brain got used to not cumming and just replaced PMO with PM and I was basically back to my old self. I decided to try again without looking at any porn or edging at all. It was so much harder at first but SO much more rewarding.

The pride I felt for doing it was great and I had confidence and energy boosts and all that jazz. And then after a week something happened. I started getting attention from so many girls. Girls I am friends with say there is something difference about me, they are flirtier and two have even tried to hook up with me. I can see girls staring at me, smiling at me and checking me out.


Be careful when edging or fantasising – anything that causes you to get a pre-load ready for launch. I have seen a few posts re: NoFappers feeling pressure/pain in prostate from edging sessions. The two streaks I recently held had me experiencing sharp shooting pains after releasing giant loads.
This was most probably due to prostate shrinking back to normal size. I had to break my two week streak just now because my prostate felt highly sensitive which felt quite unnatural.

I am confident that the fantasising and edging was causing a lot of semen to build up that was ready to be ejaculated. The edging and fantasising over time was causing several loads to build up which could not naturally be dispersed through wet dreams etc.

I don’t want to scare anyone, just be aware of this. I read a post on here about how somebody had to have antibiotics due to suspected Prostatitis as a result of this. See the link http://www.reddit.com/r/NoFap/comments/2pex8m/warning_edging_may_harm_your_prostate/


No desire to fap without porn.

I just wanted to share my experience. Without pornography (22 days now) I have literally no desire to masturbate. I am often horny. When I am horny I want to watch porn. Since I am nofapping I will not watch porn, but it never occurs to me to beat off without porn. I don’t even know if I could!

Sometimes when I go to bed I will get hard from some mental fantasy, but I have no desire to masturbate. I’ll just be hard and be fantasizing. It is weird, even when I used to watch porn I didn’t want to masturbate. Masturbation was totally secondary, I just wanted to keep watching porn as long as I could. I was usually trying to avoid orgasming just because I knew once that happened the shame would set in and I would stop watching porn. This would go on for hours with me “nursing” a hardon. Trying to stimulate it just enough to stay interested but not enough to cum, so I could just keep watching all day / all night.

This is what porn addiction looks like, and it’s crazy. Not masturbating is the easy part, not giving in and watching porn is the really really hard part.


Long-term, you’re likely to find more satisfaction from an occasional ejaculation without porn or porn fantasy than you are from looking at porn, with or without climax. Paradoxically, this is because Internet porn is hyperstimulating. It is like nothing your ancestors ever confronted (unless they owned a very kinky harem).

Kinsey Institute researchers were among the first to report the phenomenon of streaming porn leading to decreased sexual responsiveness. In 2007, they noted that high exposure to pornography videos apparently resulted in lower sexual  responsivity.  They also saw an increased need for more extreme, specialized or “kinky” material to become aroused, but did not investigate further. In 2016 study asked, and discovered that half of the porn users surveyed had escalated to material they once found “uninteresting or disgusting.”

Science is beginning to elucidate the mechanics behind escalation. In 2015, a Cambridge team examining brain responses in internet porn users found that their brains habituate faster than controls, and crave more novelty. Because excessive dopamine can blunt the pleasure response in the brain, the stimulation of Internet porn can increase dissatisfaction. Even though “looking” always gives you a rush. The evolutionary explanation for this seemingly paradoxical result is explained in Has Evolution Trained Our Brains to Gorge on Food and Sex?

Orgasm itself can bring on a desire to binge too, especially if it’s really intense. In contrast, a gentle, sensual session of self-love doesn’t seem to kick off the same cycle (and is good practice for your love life 😉 ).

Be aware that, at first, you may not find a single climax without porn satisfying, or find masturbation without porn stimulating enough to climax. This is because your brain is not feeling rewards normally. More than one recovering user has commented that once he stopped viewing porn, the urge to masturbate eased a lot, because “without porn, masturbation was not that interesting.” No need to force yourself to climax. Be patient.

The good news is that a few months without any porn will make sex of any kind much more satisfying.