Thursday, July 3, 2014

Addressing the 2-Minute Man Theory

There have been a whole host of blogs that have been re-posting an excerpt from Harry Fisch’s new book, The New Naked: The Ultimate Sex Education for Grown-Ups.  Fisch published an excerpt on Nerve talking about the frequency and quality of sex in long term relationships, which you can read here: How Often do Most Couples Have Sex?
What has gotten everyone so titillated?  Oh wait, it’s the following passages:
“An astonishing 45 percent of men finish the sex act too quickly, which is to say, within Kinsey’s conflicted two minutes. That’s pretty speedy. Way too speedy for the average woman to be able to have an orgasm through vaginal penetration alone. At least five minutes, and more like seven, is usually what’s needed for a woman to be able to achieve orgasm (Personally, that statement alone demonstrates how little this dude knows bout sex.  A woman climaxes in 5-7 minutes?).
And even though the average length of the average inter-vaginal sex session is about 7.3 minutes, that’s still not particularly long, especially for women who usually take much longer than men to become aroused enough to have an orgasm (But you just said it takes 5-7 minutes for a woman to orgasm). 
So if your man is done within two minutes of things getting hot and heavy—or still not done 40 minutes later—you may want to gently broach the idea of getting a medical checkup to make sure everything’s functioning correctly. And don’t worry: As I discuss in The New Naked, if 7.3 minutes doesn’t seem like enough time for you to get the satisfaction you need, you and your partner can learn to express what you do need or want, so you both can be happy in bed and out.”  (Nerve, Fisch)
Now, as a barrel-chested, bearded, beer-swilling, manly-man, passages like that get my beard in a knot.  That’s like a shot across the bow of every man in the world.  “You only last 7.3 minutes and half of you can’t even make 2 minutes in bed!”
What?  The honor of my cock-swinging abilities has just been challenged!  Prepare to be boarded!  I’ll make you walk the cock… er, plank!
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(Famous photo of Blacky-Brown Beard the lumberjack-pirate, arguably the manliest man in history and my ancestor)
Not only that, I think Fisch’s numbers are wrong.  And did you notice him pimping his book at the end?  Something strange is going on here.
Let’s use me as an example, on average I last at least 15-20 minutes (I’m being very conservative here, ask Ann).  Those are the lowest numbers for me because it typically takes a woman about 15-20 minutes to reach orgasm (that comes from the books I’ve read and personal experience, not Fisch’s 5-7 minute BS).  At the very least, I make sure she has hers before I have mine.  That way we’re even, right?  Most of the time I don’t orgasm that quickly and she gets a couple of hers first, but we’re going to go with the lower numbers here and say I average 20 minutes.  I’m not superman, I don’t claim super human powers, and I don’t think I’m necessarily anything special in the bedroom.
On to the math.
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Here’s how I came up with the numbers for the rest of the post:  2 minutes (for the 45%) + 12.6 minutes (for the 55%) = 14.6.  Divide that by two to get the average of 7.3.  That’s the average of the 45% added to the average of the 55%, divided by the two samples, and you get the 7.3 minutes.  I could have broken this down further to get more specific, but we don’t really need to.  Basically we’re looking at half the men finishing in 2 minutes and half the men finishing in 12 minutes to get that overall average of 7 (Yes, I’m rounding a bit for simplicity).
The study keeps mentioning that 7.3 minute average but that’s misleading. If 45% are finishing in two minutes that means the remaining 55% are averaging around 12 minutes.  Now, 12 minutes might not sound like a lot (and I’m sure the ladies are already thinking that) but combined with a few minutes of foreplay and you’re hitting pretty close to the magic time required for a woman to orgasm, around 15 minutes.  Or, you’re well over the 5-7 minutes for female orgasm according to Fisch’s study.
Now, if that is true, 45% of men are premature ejaculators and the other 55% are consistently hitting the mark.
The reason this is so misleading is because he’s saying “don’t worry if your guy only hits 7.3, we can fix that.”  But that’s not really true, half the guys are way, way short of the mark, and the other half of the guys are well over the mark.  So, who is shooting around a 7.3?  A few outliers basically.
Then, how do guys like me affect the numbers?  I’m nothing special and I’m easily hitting 15-20 minutes, well over the average of the numbers listed here.  According to this dude Fisch, I’m a fucking super-star in the bedroom, I’m in the top percentages of male performers.  Where’s my mother-fucking porn contract?
No, I don’t think I’m in any way special for lasting 20 minutes (rounded down, don’t forget).  To reference the Myth-busters I call that implausible.  I may be on the high side of average (depending on the study) but I’m no Ron Jeremy or Peter North (especially if we’re considering penis size).  And if I’m nothing special, why am I in the top tiers according to this guy’s study?
I know there are guys out there that have problems with premature ejaculation, or just don’t care and cum quickly, but I can’t believe the statistics are as bad as Fisch is claiming.  Especially when you start throwing in some guys with better performance.
If you break down the numbers, four guys finishing in 2 minutes (45%), five guys finishing in 12 (average for 55%), and one guy finishing in 20 minutes, the overall average shifts up to 8.4 minutes.  A full minute higher overall if one in ten guys goes 20 minutes.  The only way to balance that out is for the 20-minute man to be far less common than one in ten, or to significantly lower the average of the 55% to compensate for the increase.  Say, four men in under two minutes, five men at nine minutes (down from 12) and one guy at 20 minutes.  That might be slightly closer to expected numbers, but then what about the guys in the article listed at 40 minutes?  Or an hour?  How exceedingly rare do those encounters have to be to maintain a 7.3 minute average?
Ladies, is it really that bad?  One in every twenty encounters goes 20 minutes?  Half of the time the guy is done in under 2?  Maybe one in 60 guys goes an hour?
If sex was really that god-awful for women, the human race would have died out ages ago.
The only conclusion I can come up with is that his numbers are wrong, the sampling wasn’t wide enough, or at minimum the statistics are tweaked to be misleading.
I’m pretty sure what they did was they went to clinics that do guidance and study sex, and used the participant pool to gather their data.  I remember reading that  Kinsey got a lot of his numbers this way, which were used as the basis for Fisch’s study.  Who goes to sex clinics?  People that have issues with sex.
Why would the study want to use data from people that have sexual issues?  Why would they want a misleading study to publish?  Why would they emphasize the negative implications of the data?  Why would they tailor the data to make for titillating gossip?
To drive up sales of his book.
That’s right.  He’s selling a book about how to make sex in your relationships better.  What better way to drive up sales than claiming most (if not all) men are failing to satisfying their women?  Whether or not the claims are true they have certainly caught the eyes of more than a few bloggers and trollers who re-posted his story, which I’m sure significantly bumps up publicity and his book sales.
Yes, I’m sure that’s exactly what’s going on here, these statistics were hand picked and edited to drive up interest and sales.  So much for the myth.

Feel free to leave your snarky comments about my sexual performance, poke fun at my math, and/or your own sexual statistics interpretations/stories below.

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