Opinion
2 min

Is masturbating a way of avoiding relationships with men?

An excerpt from Solosexual: Portrait of a Masturbator (Part 4)

In this final excerpt, author Jason Armstrong wonders if he’s a proud solosexual, or just a gay man afraid of rejection? Credit: N Maxwell Lander

About three months ago, I thought I had Solosexual in the bag. I love masturbation, I love considering myself solosexual, I have no compunctions about the whole thing. If I am solosexual, and if a major tenet of solosexuality is about self-love, then ergo, I must be good at the whole self-love thing, right?

Wrong.

All I had to do was reread my own sex blog to see that when involved with men, my ability to lose connection with myself was as easy as tearing wet paper. During masturbation, the connection to self was immediate, total and extraordinarily gratifying. Still, I loved men, and as much as I reveled in masturbation and my solosexuality, I wondered if I would be limited to that realm of sexual outlet. I didn’t want my blessed solosexuality to be an unintended result of rejection or the fear of it but a conscious choice to embrace.

Was I a solosexual hypocrite? Did I still believe, on some level, that I would be made so-called normal by a man with whom I’d connect and have partnered, penetrative sex with? Or was solosexuality my new normal? Would my experiences with men that left me wanting drive me further into solosexuality not of my own volition, but as an excuse for not getting tangled up with another man?

Was I trying to put a round peg into a square hole and misrepresenting myself to men as a fucker rather than the bator I really am at heart? This student needed help from a teacher — and I got it from a bator.

Vignette One

I was so excited to meet him and he had seemed so excited  

to meet me during our talks online. But when he entered my

apartment, I could tell he was disappointed. Yet he stayed.

He suggested we get down to fucking, but only because he

could feel his energy waning due to the toke he had taken. I

entered him. He played the pig and licked my cock and balls

greedily. We both came. In repose, I reached out to lay a

hand on his leg, to connect. He said he had to go, “boy am

I ever sleepy.” I felt alone before he was even out the door.

Vignette Two

We met at an orgy, but before it was even over, we left to

be alone at my place. A gorgeous Latino with a heart as

big as the sky. We dated, and he was clearly falling for me:

“No more orgies, no more Manhunt. Just you and me.” I

froze. I couldn’t breathe. I became remote and because he

is a sensitive man, he felt it. He tried to stir me from sleep

one Saturday morning. “Jason, let’s grab a coffee.” Five

more minutes, I mumbled. A half an hour later, he tried

again. “Jason, it’s a beautiful day, let’s make something of

it.” I mumbled God knows what. I didn’t hear him leave,

and never spoke with him again. He must have felt so

alone before he was even out the door.

Vignette Three

We’d already had a few sexy dates, but tonight at his

place, we planned that he’d fuck me. I was inexperienced

and not prepared. When the smell hit us, shame enveloped

me, complete and absolute. I remembered that Dan Savage

had written something to the effect that if you make a

mess while being fucked, don’t expect to see the guy ever

again. The man who fucked the shit out of me tried to

play it cool, and so did I. Did you know you can act cool

while hoping for the ceiling to cave in on you? Later he

called me a cab and we waited for it in his driveway. I felt

so unsexy, so alone as the car pulled up. And moments later

I watched him not watch me as the cab carried me away.