Dating, Relationships, & Sex, Race & Politics, Theory & Essay

Ask A Very Smart Brotha: How Do Men Know Where They Measure Up?

Hi Damon,

It’s pretty easy it is for women to compare themselves to other women physically. Like “I have a bigger butt than her, she has bigger boobs than me etc.” But, it’s obviously more difficult for men. Do men want to know how they um, measure up? If so how they go about finding out?

Curious About Comparing

Dear Curious,

There are two possible answers to this question.

1. “No, we don’t care about that shit. What I look like giving a damn about what some other dude is working with. That’s kinda gay. Not that there’s anything wrong with being kinda gay, but still kinda gay nonetheless. “

This is a lie.

2. “Yes, we do care.”

This is the truth.

Now, before I answer the second part of your question, I’m going to tell you a story a friend shared with me a few years ago. He happened to come across some porn when he was in his early teens, and this made him extremely self-conscious. Apparently, this was the only time he’d ever seen another penis besides his own before, and he didn’t realize that the foot-long men in adult videos are, um, outliers. Basically, he assumed that the average man had a “porn sized” penis. It wasn’t until he actually started having sex—and came across some research on private part size—that he realized he had nothing to be self-conscious about.

This story is an example of the awkward thought process regarding men, penis size, and how we measure up to other men. No one is actually supposed to admit to caring about it—and, unless you watch porn, you’re probably never going to see another erect penis beside your own—but men do care about it. Possessing the ability to please women sexually is a big deal to most men, and many of us feel that the bigger you are, the more enjoyment women will have while sleeping with you.

There are numerous socialization-related reasons why males grow up feeling this way—Adult Videos, knowing that bigger/taller men are more attractive to women, Missy Elliot and Trina songs, etc—and it’s not until men get a little older that we start to realize that while size matters, it’s not everything. Sure, there are a small percentage of women who need enormous penises to satisfy them. But, for most, while a workable size still is necessary, things like rhythm and stamina and the ability to stay completely erect matter just as much.

Anyway, as far as how to find out how we “measure up,” there are a few ways to do this. Since, as you mentioned in your question, men can’t just look at another man the same way a woman can see another woman’s breasts or butt, none of these methods are full-proof. But, they’re all we have.

You can read more at Madame Noire

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Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a contributing editor for He resides in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes.

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