Shame in Masturbating

Heath Wise, LPC

Masturbation

QUESTION


 Why is it that when I masturbate, it brings me so much shame? Is that common?

 

SEX THERAPIST’S ANSWER

That is a great question! You are definitely not alone in feeling shame when you masturbate – it is very common. I congratulate you for going beyond asking, “Is it right or wrong?” to asking, “What is causing me to feel shame?” That is the real issue.

Unfortunately, I believe there is a lot of shame around sexual issues for believers, due to misunderstanding, fear and wrong teaching. It is false shame. Sexual arousal is a good thing. Sexual desire is a good thing. Your sex drive is a good thing. Being a sexual being is a good thing. It is what you do with it – how you manage it – that is important.

A couple of observations to help you sort this out – with Christians, I see more shame around masturbation, more anger and condemnation, than I do about sex outside of marriage. Telling people to not have sex outside of marriage is clearly in Scripture, but masturbation is not. So why is that?

In addition, let’s say you believe that masturbation is wrong for you, that it is something that you do not want to do. Why the intense shame? Isn’t it more of a behavior that you want to stop, rather than an indication that you are a perverted person? But many describe the shame associated with masturbation as feeling perverted. Historically we have taught that the shame was proof that the behavior was wrong. I would ask you to think about whether that is true.

Maybe masturbation is a behavior that you do not want to do – that is for you to decide. Here are some questions to ask ourselves about shame:

1. What do you think is going on?

2. What response to God does shame cause in you?

3. Do you run to Him or hide?

4. Do you love Him more or does it cause you to be afraid of Him at some level?

5. Does it separate you from God?

We have said in the past, that “Yes, it has separated us from God, because it was sin.” But is that really the case or is it because there is something else going on? Being a sexual being is such a part of who we are, our identity. It is such a part of being made in the image of God. So we know ourselves and we know Him more intimately through our sexuality. If the enemy can cause shame and disconnect here, at that deep personhood level, then he can lay roadblocks to knowing and experiencing the love of God and the freedom and power that understanding and revelation can bring.

I believe that shame carries a spirit with it and would encourage you to not entertain it at all. So, first decide about masturbation whether it is something you are okay with or not. But whatever you decide about that, get rid of the shame next. Shame is not from the Lord.

7 Responses to “Shame in Masturbating”

  1. Thanks, so this helps me get ride of shame.I finally have the understanding on the subject, I can now formulat what I believe rather than what the church has been telling me all this years.

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