Note: This is a 3 part email sequence, all the 3 parts have been compiled in this blog post. Each email is separately labeled.
What's up brother,
This month's sequence we are tackling a rather touchy subject (pun intended): Masturbation.
When I started helping men quit porn in 2018, it felt like lugging a ten tonne boulder up Mt Everest.
Anyone non-religious gave me the old "Oh that's cool. All the best with that."
Aka: Dude. You're going to fail.
Even my Christian friends were surprised.
"Do people really care about porn that much? And even if they do - you really think you can help them?"
But something really cool has happened the last few years...
Highly educated men like Dr. Andrew Huberman and Jordan Peterson have been speaking against the harmful effects of porn.
Fitness influencers and gurus list "quit porn" among their usual list of healthy behaviors (sleep well, don't eat junk food, exercise 3x/week, etc).
People have awakened.
We still have a LONG way to go, but Everest feels a lot more climbable now than it did back in the early days.
Masturbation, on the other hand (you're going to notice a lot of hand references in this sequence by the way), has never been more polarizing.
For centuries, Christians have more or less lumped masturbation into the category of sexual sin/immorality.
But there has always been a contingent that has advocated for masturbation as a healthy practice. How could it be sinful if it doesn't hurt anyone?
More recently, research is now revealing some remarkably positive impacts of masturbation on the mind and body.
So the body of Christians advocating for masturbation has never been larger. And for good reason. There is some compelling information out there.
But you and I both know, research is not the be all end all.
Our goal in this day and age is to be research BASED, not research bound. Huge difference.
In other words – just because a study said so isn't enough. It's certainly worth consideration, but we have to look at things more comprehensively.
Research in this area will continue to evolve and develop. And to be honest, it's likely that there will always be studies showing why masturbation is healthy and studies showing why masturbation is bad for you (more on that in tomorrow's email).
A more reliable resource would be the Bible.
But unfortunately, the Bible has no direct statements about masturbation. So we have to look at this conceptually instead.
Sexual intimacy is a gift from God, right?
And we know that Biblical sexual intimacy has 2 key elements:
1) A covenant relationship (marriage)
2) Exclusivity between husband and Wife
Any sexual experiences that violate either are deemed sexual sin biblically.
As an example: If you are a married man and you sleep with a woman other than your wife, that interaction violates element #1 (there's no covenant in the interaction) AND #2 (the interaction is between husband and another woman).
Seems basic, but stick with me.
If you are a single man, never been married, and you sleep with a woman. This interaction violates elements #1 and #2 for more or less the same reasons.
Ditto if you watch pornography.
Watching pornography is a sexual experience outside of covenant and not exclusively between husband and wife, even if the husband and wife were watching together (terrible idea by the way).
So the question becomes...
Does masturbation violate either of these elements?
Let's take a look...
1) Covenant Relationship – well, masturbation does not involve anyone else. So there is no covenant.
It's not breaking an existing covenant per se, but the execution of masturbation does not require a covenant.
2) Exclusivity between husband and wife – herein lies the major issue with masturbation.
It is SOLO intimacy (which is an oxymoron by the way). It's me, myself and I. And the nature of biblical sexuality is to be between 2 consenting parties, not just yourself.
This doesn't even consider some of the accessory behaviors that often come with masturbation that are often problematic.
Things like fantasy, self-indulgence, and other rituals.
So is masturbation a sin?
I think so.
"Yea but I only fantasize about my wife when I do it. That's ok right?"
No, it's not. Objectifying your wife is not the same as having a sexual experience with her.
"I'm single. I have needs. What else is a guy supposed to do?"
Learn to manage his needs better.
"Technically, it doesn't affect anyone else, what's the big deal?"
That's a poor reason to justify a behavior. Healthy sex is selfless in nature. If it's health, then it SHOULD affect other people. That's the whole point.
Tomorrow, I'm going to show you EVIDENCE why masturbation can really mess up a guy's brain, body and even his ability to procreate (insane).
In the meantime, here's a podcast where I go into more depth on the subject.
Well my friend,
We are hitting on a heavy one this month – masturbation.
Yesterday, we explored why masturbation is wrong from a biblical standpoint.
Today I want to stack up some more evidence to show you why your life is INFINITELY better without masturbation.
When I first started talking about masturbation, I felt a bit conflicted.
Since the Bible doesn't outright forbid it, I wasn't sure where I landed with everything.
So I used to say, "I can't say masturbation is wrong, but I can say that it is NOT best practice."
In hindsight, I deserve to be glove slapped for that.
As we began to help more men, and saw more of them quit masturbation, we noticed something.
A bunch of them were experiencing strange physiological improvements.
Things that quitting porn alone couldn't cause.
One client of ours joined the program in a time where he and his wife had finally agreed to start trying for kids. Let's call him Russ.
Russ's porn problem was the only thing that was holding his wife back from fully committing to starting a family. So he got on board, began the program, and was off to the races.
His wife felt good about the situation so they began trying.
And they tried some more.
And nothing was happening.
Something was wrong. So they ran tests and found out that Russ was the problem and it didn't look fixable.
To cope with some of the frustrations, he fell off the wagon and got back into porn.
The marriage was struggling.
He was at a loss for motivation in life.
And that pesky porn habit was still kicking around, despite a decent effort to quit.
If you've seen anyone go through infertility before – it is really difficult. Unfortunately, their experience was no exception.
Several tries at IVF and similar interventions proved unsuccessful.
But as Russ went through all of the interventions, God began to do a work on his heart.
He kept nudging Russ to quit porn. And God kept reminding him that it would be worth it.
So he got back on the wagon. Re-entered DeepClean, did a healing week with a sought-after counselor, and literally transformed before our very eyes.
The guy was on fire for Jesus and totally set free of porn. We still talk about it to this day – the transformation was so radical.
With all of the momentum going, Russ and his wife agreed to give IVF one last try. They went into the docs to run some preliminary tests before beginning the treatment and found out something absolutely shocking...
They were pregnant! Naturally.
When I heard this, I thought to myself, "Wow that's the power of quitting porn."
But I discovered a study recently showing that I was wrong.
In 2021, researchers explored the link between infertility and young men.
I'll save you the boring research-y details, but they made a discovery.
Men who viewed porn were more likely to experience infertility. Specifically, their overall semen quality was poorer and their sperm count was MUCH lower.
They went a step further.
(This is where it get interesting).
The researchers assessed the commonalities that these men had in their experiences with pornography, and observed 3 things present in the infertile men:
1) They viewed pornography more than 2x/week
2) They were exposed to pornography at a young age
This makes sense. Watching porn regularly and from a young age, is bound to impact hormones, physiology, etc.
But it's the 3rd commonality that really struck me.
3) They coupled porn consumption and masturbation regularly.
Did you catch that?!
In other words – if men only watched pornography, the impact was insignificant.
But when men view porn and masturbate, it actually affects their sperm count AND their semen quality. Thus rendering the man less fertile.
I don't know about you but when I was addicted, masturbation fit porn like a hand in glove. I rarely did one without the other.
Yesterday's Question: Is masturbation a sin?
Yesterday's Answer: Yes.
Today's Question: Is masturbation healthy?
Today's Answer: No.
Yesterday we talked about the Biblical elements of sexual intimacy:
1) Covenant Context
2) Exclusivity between husband and wife
Well, I lied.
Ok I didn't lie, but I withheld information.
There's actually a third element to biblical sexual intimacy...
If masturbation and porn in combination can stop your boys from swimming, then I don't know what else there is to say.
My wife and I decided to start trying for kids in January 2023 and got pregnant in January 2023.
My boys could give Micahel Phelps a run for his money.
But I shudder to think what might have happened if I was still watching copious amounts of porn like when I was addicted.
Whether infertility is the issue, or maybe it's just a lack of intimacy, I guarantee you both will improve if you quit masturbating.
The question is – how?
Tomorrow I'm going to show you how your experience with masturbation actually give clues into how you can quit forever, get your boys swimming at a Michael Phelps level, and hopefully kick up the heat in the bedroom too.
In the meantime, if you know it's time to quit porn and quit masturbation, and you're ready to have God turn your life around the same way He turned things around for Russ, then I want you to book a time in my calendar and let's talk about how to get you free once and for all.
Ok bro this sequence has been one for the ages.
We are talking about the ever-controversial subject of mass-tur-bay-shun.
First we looked at why it violates many of the Bible's principles around sexual intimacy.
Then we looked at how it impairs the body's physiology to the point of infertility.
And now we are going to look at how your previous experiences of masturbation can help you quit porn, masturbating, and any other sexual sin you may have in your life.
Here's the thing...
You masturbate for a reason.
No body does it out of some rote routine (not at first at least).
When you were young, it probably started with curiosity.
For me personally, I had no clue what masturbation was until I heard my friends talking about it.
They made all of these graphic gestures and I got the gist of it.
So I went home and tried it. It took forever, I figured I was doing it wrong or something.
But once I finally climaxed, I was hooked. The feeling was euphoric, more than porn even.
But just like porn, masturbation eventually was no longer about the pleasure. It was about the RELIEF.
Relief from stress, anxiety, conflict, turmoil, angst, etc.
I used to get excited to watch porn because it meant I could masturbate.
There were some days during my addiction where I only had a small window of time to get my fix. In those instances, I would watch a tiny amount of porn so that I had enough time left to 'seal the deal'.
Some days, I would even go without porn, but I almost never went without masturbating.
In my recovery process, one of my big discoveries was that I am a bit of a control freak (that may or may not be slightly understated).
Control is a big issue for me, and it comes from my childhood. My parents abided by some pretty strict and rigid rules. That sometimes left me with a lack of feeling in control, and as a result, control became my 'drug'.
The porn I watched always had the man in a domineering situation, because I liked the idea of the guy being in control. Something about that was comforting to me.
Masturbation was the same. Except when I masturbated, I was the one in control (rather than the actors on the screen).
I could finally take matters into my own hands (last hand joke – I promise).
Where am I going with all of this?
Like I said before...
You masturbate for a reason.
So rather than the old "quit jerking your chain, it's bad for you" talk...
Let's have a real conversation.
WHY do you masturbate in the first place?
Are there particular times of the day/week/month?
Are you usually in a certain state or experiencing a specific emotion when it happens?
Could you just watch porn and not masturbate? Why or why not?
These questions lead you to clues about what masturbation is really providing you.
In my case, they all pointed to my need for control (and the lack of it that I was experiencing).
And once I made that discovery, something incredible happened.
I regained actual control.
When I would feel tempted, I would ask myself, "What in my life feels out of control?"
Then I would ask, "What can I control in this situation?"
Those 2 little questions alone literally catapulted me to 7.5 years of freedom. Sometimes I still ask them if I am really stressed out.
Your issue may be totally different, but the point is...
You masturbate for a reason.
The better you understand that reason, the clearer your solution will be.
So where does that leave you?
I am looking for 5 Christian men who want to quit porn AND masturbation in the next 120 days. If you want to be one of them, NOW is your chance.
Here is the link to my calendar. Book a time and let's take some real action towards your freedom.
These calls are designed for us to better understand your situation, see if DeepClean is a good fit, and then decide next steps from there.
Not everyone on the call does our program, but everyone that books a call tell us they find them super insightful.
This email has been sent to just over 10,000 men who are serious about freedom so these 5 spots are going to fill up quick. Click here to book your time before it's too late.
PS. If there aren't any spots left, here's my extended calendar link. Just don't tell anyone I gave it to you ;)
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