Jul 8, 2020
Today is Part 1 of a conversation I have been avoiding having with you guys in a solo show. I’ve been afraid of getting it wrong, and afraid of someone taking a sound bite out of context. But I don’t want fear to keep me from this dialogue. There’s also a reason I talk about masturbation in a workshop setting, in my online courses and with one on one coaching clients. It’s a nuanced conversation with a lot of grey areas which are harder to teach to the masses. However, I don’t think this information needs to solely go to people who have the budget for it. So today, I am diving right into Part I of a two part series on masturbation.
Here’s what I won’t do:
Tell you what to do.
Give you a script to regurgitate to yourself and others to justify any of your actions.
Shame or judge you for your past or your current decisions.
Try to fix you or convince you of anything.
What I hope to do:
Point you to Jesus, to Scripture, and to nuance.
Normalize a healthy conversation around sex, sexuality, desire, and yes— masturbation
o The word alone can feel shame inducing, right? How many times do you say ‘masturbation’ out loud on a regular basis?
o God is not ashamed of our sexual desire and sexuality—he created it (Genesis 1: 26-31).
Give you tools to equip you to navigate your faith, values, and a dialogue around masturbation.
Don’t take my word for it—I’m not God. This is where I am at after close to 7 years of researching, praying, doubting, trial and error, and tough conversations.
God created you with a mind—use it!
Finally, it’s ok if we don’t see eye to eye—we can still love, respect, and honor one another even if we come to different conclusions.
My Personal Story:
Before we move forward with vision and walk out today with clarity, we have to be willing to look backwards: how, why, and through what means did we get here?
· Home: ‘It’s okay to masturbate.’
· School: Silence.
· Friends: Silence, masked conversations, and shame.
· Culture: ‘Do what feels good.’
· Church: All wrong, all the time, shut down your desire until marriage—only guys struggle with sexual desire.
4 Questions to Ask Yourself
· What do you currently believe about masturbation and why?
· What were you taught about masturbation at home, school, from friends, culture, and church?
· Where and how were those beliefs formed?
· Are those sexual scripts/beliefs rooted in fear or freedom?
· Identify the shame agenda + the Jesus agenda.
The Big ‘O’: The Power of the Orgasm
· When we orgasm, dopamine and oxytocin are released in a surge in our bodies.
o Dopamine is a neurotransmitter released from the reward center part of our brain associated with pleasure.
o Oxytocin is a feel-good hormone. One of its sole purposes is to create deep bonds between people. This is like “soul ties.”
The Harem Within: C.S. Lewis
“For me the real evil of masturbation would be that it takes an appetite which, in lawful use, leads the individual out of himself…and turns it back: sends the man back into the prison of himself, there to keep a harem of imaginary brides. And this harem, once admitted, works against his ever getting out and really uniting with a real woman. For the harem is always accessible, always subservient, calls for no sacrifices or adjustments, and can be endowed with erotic and psychological attractions which no real woman can rival. Among those shadowy brides he is always adored, always the perfect lover: no demand is made on his unselfishness, no mortification ever imposed on his vanity. In the end, they become merely the medium through which he increasingly adores himself . . . .After all, almost the main work of life is to come out of our selves, out of the little, dark prison we are all born in. Masturbation is to be avoided as all things are to be avoided which retard this process. The danger is that of coming to love the prison”
1. My pleasure is #1 priority
· Ephesians 5: Respect our husbands and husbands to serve their wives like Christ served the church.
· Our sexual experiences with our spouses should be outward focused, let’s serve each other—not ‘I’m feeling turned on, get me off, and then roll over.’
2. Ends on self
· Sexuality = desire for ‘o’ others.
· Gets us outside of our heads and into relationship and community with others.
3. No iron sharpens iron here folks
· Conflict resolution.
· Mirrors of each other.
· Constant growth.
· “Brides always adored” or “yes men.”
4. FANTASY LAND: Loving the prison more than real life
· I don’t want to get so good at getting myself off that I don’t need another person.
· 91% of millennials masturbate (19 and 36 for SKYN's 2018 Millennial Sex Survey, and found that 91 percent of respondents masturbated. https://www.bustle.com/p/how-millennials-are-masturbating-in-2018-9121392)
· 2015—Pornhub site: 60% of its users were millennials.
· Compartmentalized and scratching just of an itch that we don’t need to/want to take the risk of being in a relationship and dating.
· Avoiding: heartbreak, awkwardness, conflict, rejection.
· Is this why so many of us in the church are single? We’re getting just enough of our “itches” scratched that the risk of truly putting ourselves out there to be in a relationship is not worth it?
Don’t worry, I won’t leave you hanging. Process what we’ve just gone through today and get ready for Part 2 coming next Wednesday. In the meantime, journal through the questions I ask above under “4 Questions to Ask Yourself.” Make sure you’re subscribed to the podcast so the next episode will download straight to your devices!!
· Your Mind Matters by John Stott
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 C.S. Lewis. Personal Letter From Lewis to Keith Masson found in The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis, Volume 3: Narnia, Cambridge, and Joy 1950-1963. (New York: Harper Collins, 2007).