Well, here I am, going all Kevin Frye on you guys with a post like this one. Warning: it might be TMI for some.

Love you, Kevin.

I worked at a Christian boys camp a few summers back — quite the coming-of-age experience, to say the least. I chronicled much of that summer in the final chapters of my book, Struggle Central, including stories of homosexuality and male inferiority.

And yet I left out so much from that summer. I’m sure this blog will give me an outlet to tell more of these stories. Like today’s episode, for instance:

The one with other male counselors and their wet dreams.

During staff training at the start of the summer, I embarked on a team-building campout with some of my fellow counselors. It was a short hike to our campsite, though entirely uphill. By the time we summited, we were all sweating and panting amid the sweltering humidity of a North Carolina summer.

Before I could finish wiping my brow at the peak, half the other guys had already taken off some combination of their shirts, pants, or both. And I wondered what universe I’d unwittingly entered.

I was setting up camp alongside one guy without a shirt and another without pants, and the one without pants said, “I really hope I don’t have a wet dream tonight. I didn’t pack an extra pair of underwear.”

Said the one without a shirt: “Big mistake. You always bring extra underwear.”

The conversation continued down this path of wet dreams and why we as men experience them. The shirtless one summed it up thusly: “You only get wet dreams if you don’t masturbate regularly.”

I, of course, didn’t say a word as I played with sticks and leaves, my shirt and pants both firmly attached to my body. I’d never heard wet dreams and masturbation discussed so openly — so openly among men my age — Christian men my age — Christian men my age wearing varying levels of clothing.

Now, I’m not exactly well-versed in the anatomy of nocturnal emissions (I took physics instead of anatomy in high school), but in my own personal experience, Shirtless Guy’s statement proves accurate.

I don’t get wet dreams when I masturbate regularly; they only happen when I don’t.

Like when it happened last week.

I recently celebrated five months of sexual sobriety (but who’s counting?), including abstention from masturbation. Some days I don’t even think about it; others, it’s all I think about. In previous masturbation-free stretches, I’ve abstained for far fewer weeks before experiencing a wet dream to break the tension.

But for WHATEVER reason, this time it took my body five freaking months to finally give me a break.

It felt good. It was a relief. Five months is a long time to go without any kind of release. Before last week happened, I couldn’t tell you the last time I’d had a wet dream.

Maybe it’s silly or my obsessive searching for Jesus where He doesn’t dare exist, but I see wet dreams as an almost supernatural way to cope, as nudges for me to keep refraining and that my body — and God through my body — will provide all my needs. Sexual ones, included.

On the other hand, I can also see how wet dreams might be “distracting,” maybe even accompanied by a sexual dream or spurring sexual, lewd thoughts. This hasn’t been my experience, but I know of others who could speak more to this.

My wet dreams feel like a more natural outlet for seminal emissions than masturbation. I’ve written about masturbation before, that however I try to rationalize the act, it only ever succeeds in fueling my fantasy addiction.

So, I’m grateful for the releases as they come. Even if it takes five freaking months.

And, well, I suppose that’s all I’ve got to say about wet dreams.

What do you make of wet dreams? Do you get them with or without regular masturbation? How do you cope sexually?

(This is a touchy subject, I know. So, if this is just too much for you…uh, what’d you eat for dinner last night?)

* Photo courtesy mr-numb, Creative Commons (cropped).

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