We need to chill with our shaming of men based on dick size. Actually, we need to stop altogether. And I write that knowing full well I’ve been guilty of doing it for most of my life. Just the other day I was in the car picking up my friends, and some dude in a giant truck started tailing me and honking at me to go faster. I became very irritated and joked, “Okay bro, we get it, you have a small dick. Calm down.” I’ve made quips of a similar nature multiple times throughout my life, but in that moment, the presence of my closest guy friend made me consider the impact of my words.
How would I feel if all my male friends were shaming other women for what their vulvas looked like right in front of me?
Bam. I was struck smack dab in the face with my own hypocrisy. I am a feminist, someone whose base purpose is to advocate for gender equality, and here I was actively perpetuating gender-based discrimination. Not only was I shaming someone for a physical trait, but I was also maintaining a gender stereotype that is false and undeniably harmful to all genders. I was disgusted with myself. So I decided to write this article not only to selfishly atone for my past crimes in this matter, but to share my research and very strong opinions about why we need to stop shaming men based on dick size. Let’s get into it.
1. Bigger does not mean better.
This notion needs to be laid to rest. As a proud, self-proclaimed slut who has ridden countless dicks of all shapes and sizes, I feel like I am warranted in refuting the claim that “bigger is better.” Bigger can be better for certain people. Bigger can be better in certain situations. But never, and I mean never, can bigger always be better. It is not a self-evident truth. It is not an all-around given. It is circumstantial at best.
I am ashamed to say that I used to firmly believe that bigger is always better. But that was because I had never slept with someone who had a truly large penis. I will admit I have slept with many men who have above-average dick size. (Studies have found a rough average to be around three inches when flaccid and five inches when erect.) I prefer above-average dick size to average/below-average dick size, but that’s a personal preference—it is certainly not true for everyone. And it’s not even true for me every single time, as I’ve come to learn.
It wasn’t until I had sex with men who have large penises (eight inches or more) that I realized firsthand how bigger is certainly not better. It fucking hurt. A lot. The only position I could bare without my cervix feeling like it was going to implode was cowgirl, because I could control how deep it went. Any other position was miserable for me. This might be attributed to any number of person-specific reasons (anatomical for one), because there are many women who like really large penises. These women refer to themselves as size queens, and Big Dick Energy is the only energy they’re into, because it’s the only way they feel pleasure from penetrative sex. And there’s nothing wrong with that. We are all different in what we like and what is sexually pleasurable to us. There’s nothing wrong with only wanting huge penis, and there’s nothing wrong with wanting very small penis; the only thing that is wrong is judging or shaming a person based on their preferences or their sex organs.
And one more little note to add: I have found more often than not that men who are on the larger side believe themselves to be as sexually equipped as they need to be, so they invest zero effort in learning how to use their supersized schlong. Imagine trying to have sex with a dude who has a nine-inch peen, but can’t figure out how to find your vageen or even thrust for that matter. It’s a mess, and not in the good way. May no man ever believe himself to be adequate just because he has a big dick. New motto for 2019.
2. Body shaming is body shaming.
No matter how you slice it, we are body-shaming men for something that they have absolutely zero control over. It’s no secret that our society is pretty fucked up when it comes to our obsession with physicality and the pressure we put on ourselves and others to live up to unattainable traits. A 2015 study by Common Sense Media found that “more than half of girls (55–59%) and approximately a third of boys (33–35%) age 6 to 8 indicate their ideal bodies are thinner than their current body.” The same study found that “by the time they’re 7 years old, one in four children has engaged in some kind of dieting behavior.” Pretty horrifying to think about.
Even though body positivity has become much more prominent in mainstream culture, we still have millions of miles to go. Not just for women, but for men too. Of the 30 million people who have an eating disorder, 10 million identify as men.
Clearly, body shaming and diet culture do not discriminate based on gender. Talking about body shaming against specific genders, on the other hand, does discriminate. The body-positive movement is almost exclusively centered on women, not only because women experience much higher rates of body shaming, but because concern with body image is associated more with women. As a result, men get very little airtime in the body-positive movement. One study even found that “men tend to be quieter about their body negativity, seeking treatment less frequently or holding off on treatment longer than women due to shame.”
Just imagine the impact that dick-shaming has on men, especially when everyone—including hardcore intersectional, body-positive feminists like myself—take part in doing so frequently and without a second thought. And unlike some other physical traits which render people feeling insecure, dick size is not something that can be altered by a change in lifestyle, no matter how severe. So not only are men less likely to speak out about negative body image, but this type of shaming is also very much part of the cultural norm, and there’s nothing they can do to change it. That’s some serious inner turmoil and emotional trauma that no person deserves. Remember ladies, when they go low, we go high. Michelle Obama probably wasn’t thinking about dick-shaming when she wrote that speech, but I bet she would be proud that we are applying her wise words to all situations.
3. We are perpetuating the belief that masculinity can be quantified.
Ah masculinity, if only society didn’t have a stick stuck up its ass about what you are supposed to be. If society didn’t punish men who don’t live up to specific standards of masculinity, whether by their choice or not, toxic masculinity would not be a thing.
There’s nothing wrong with having masculine traits or even living up to masculine standards, because masculine traits aren’t bad in nature. It’s when we quantify and categorize masculinity that things start to go downhill. Once masculine traits are determined, the definition of one’s masculinity becomes contingent not only on whether one has those traits, but how rigidly one lives up to those traits. Hence why men forgo all emotion, eat enough steak to send them to the grave way ahead of schedule, feel the need to get into fist fights anytime someone breathes on them, become obsessed with any and all things related to money, and fail to respect women (physically, socially, and emotionally) because women, by definition of the gender binary, are the antithesis to masculinity.
By judging and shaming men for their dick size, we are actively contributing to the existence and maintenance of toxic masculinity. For the sake of all genders, therefore, we need to do better. A good start is to acknowledge the problem and become accountable for the language you use and the language that others use.