Some of you may have already read this because it originally ran as one of my weekly columns on the Mail Online a few years ago. I thought it was worth repeating here because it was such a popular piece and penis size is still something I’m most asked for reassurance on by men.
Seriously: women spend their lives asking “Do I look fat?”, men spend it asking “Do I look too small?”
Most men are super sensitive about their penis size because most men are secretly convinced they’re inadequate.
This is because they compare their penises to men in porn who are chosen specifically for their big willies (and for being able to sustain an erection and ejaculate on cue).
The other times they see other penises is when they’re at the urinal, trying not to look down at other men.
Most penises look big from this angle.
He’s also not stupid: he’s heard all the jokes about small and big penises and he knows if his is either under size or over size, all your friends will know about it.
Given his vulnerability and the dire complications if you get it wrong, how do you answer if your man asks you if you honestly think it’s too small or too skinny?
Here’s everything you need to know…
He already knows how big he is
The first thing you need to know is this: he already knows the answer to the ‘How big am I?’ question.
Most men have done their own research and measured themselves.
(Is there a man alive who hasn’t measured his penis? I doubt it!)
So if he’s much bigger, smaller, thicker or skinnier than the norm, assume he knows exactly where he stands on the scale.
If he really is undersize, saying “That’s enormous!” when faced with something that’s more straw than sausage is silly and demeaning.
He’ll just think you’re being sarcastic and will feel even worse.
What he’s looking for is reassurance that you’re OK with it, not affirmation of his worst fears.
Brutal honesty doesn’t work
I do not believe total honesty is in the best interest of any relationship.
I view people who pride themselves on ‘telling it like it is’ suspiciously – very often, it’s an excuse to be tactless and spiteful.
If you’re in a relationship with someone, you should be their personal cheer squad.
This means bigging him up – literally – on all counts.
Reverse the situation: if you ask him if he thinks you’re fat, what would you like him to say back?
“Now you mention it, you have put on weight. Especially on your stomach and thighs.”
Or “Of course you don’t look fat. You always look amazing!”
Similarly, no sane person is ever going to answer ‘Are my boobs big enough?” with “Truthfully? No. My ideal size is 36DD but your 32 B cup is OK. I guess.”
The correct answer is ‘Is my penis too small?’ is never ‘Yes.”
Agree and not only will his penis never come out to play with you again, it quite possibly might never ever raise its head again.
It’s polite and kind to fib – but it needs to be believable.
Saying his penis is as thick as your arm when it’s more like a pencil is ridiculous.
Far better to say, “Do you know what? I really like your penis. It feels fantastic inside me and penises that are too big hurt.”
Get the wording completely right
If you asked him if you were pretty, how would you feel if he said “You’re pretty enough for me”.
Saying “It’s big enough for me” when he asks how you feel about his penis may get a similar reaction. Better to go with what I said earlier (see above).
It’s imperative to get the answer word perfect – and delivery is also important.
Look him straight in the eye if he asks the question and speak with confidence and feeling.
Practice in front of the mirror (though for God’s sake, don’t get caught rehearsing!)
Do you look and sound sincere and reassuring?
If he’s way, way undersize or really thin
If it’s that obvious and he comes right out and asks if he’s too small or too thin, it’s pointless pretending you don’t know what he’s on about.
If you haven’t had much experience sexually, you could try saying “I really wouldn’t know. I haven’t got much to compare it to.”
Or try to fob it off with a vague “I honestly don’t know if it’s big or small and don’t really care – all I know is it feels good.”
If not, be logical.
Tell him you’re really not concerned with his size: how he treats you as a lover is far more important.
Make it clear his penis is attached to him: he’s a package not just a penis!
If he genuinely believes you don’t think it’s a big deal, you can both get on with having some seriously good sex.
(Far worse than any sized penis is a man who can’t get past his size. Some men find they can increase the size of their penis by using a penis pump (they work to oxygenate the chambers and lead to healthier erections) but there’s really little he can do to change reality.)
You could also trot out the “Its not the size of the boat, it’s the motion of the ocean”/”It’s not what you’ve got, it’s how you use it” line.
Add “And you’re a brilliant lover” on the end and you might never have to have that conversation again.
If he’s just shy of average
There is absolutely NOTHING to be gained by admitting he’s slightly under average.
(And seriously, who cares?)
This one’s easy to handle: if he’s slightly under average in length, you talk about how the girth of the penis is far more important.
You won’t be lying: thicker penises have more contact with the vaginal wall where the nerve endings are.
If he’s long enough but skinnier than usual, talk about how most of the nerves are in the first inch or so of the vagina so length really makes no difference.
That’s also true.
I hasten to add, these are great reassurances for later – and only if he asks for it.
For the first few times, your only job is to make sure he knows you love his favourite part as much as he does.
Great ways to show it?
Be as fascinated by his penis as he is, giving it lots of attention.
Grab him by the penis and lead him into the bedroom: it’s sexy and he thinks it must be big if she (or he, if you’re gay) can do that.
Put a pillow beneath your bottom to make things tighter during intercourse and let him know you find it hard to penetrate purely through penetration (only 20-25 per cent of women can manage it).
Tell him what he does with his tongue is way more important to you – and he’s the best at oral sex you’ve ever had.
He’s too big?
This is a totally different ball game (sorry, couldn’t resist).
Telling a man his penis is way bigger than usual is going to inflate his ego (and his member!) rather than deflate it.
Telling him it’s so big you don’t want sex with him is quite another thing.
“I’m starting to feel like a freak,” one man tweeted to me, desperate for advice on what to do.
“One girl literally went white when she saw it. She looked both repulsed and terrified.”
If he’s a man with a bigger than usual penis, he needs to be extremely skilled in foreplay to make penetration comfortable (and in extreme cases) possible.
In this scenario, the reassurance switches: he’ll end up trying to convince you that size doesn’t matter rather than the other way around!
You’ll find tips on navigating a big one here http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-4685708/Tracey-Cox-navigate-penis-size.html
And you might well need them if he’s anything like this guy!
“I had the unusual situation of sleeping with a man who was really undersized and then one who was huge,” one woman I interviewed for one of my books told me.
“The small guy was by far the better lover. He clearly knew he wasn’t big and his foreplay skills were the best I’ve ever had.
“He didn’t harp on about being small either or ask for reassurance. Just gone on with making me orgasm.
“The huge guy was cocky – literally and figuratively.
“He took it out and then waited for me to comment on how big it was.
“He actually said ‘You can touch it if you like’ as though he was doing me a favour.
“Foreplay consisted of me doing things to him, while he admired his penis, and him doing nothing to me.
“Needless to say, it was the worse, most painful and uncomfortable sex I’ve ever had.”
HOW TO MASK YOUR DISAPPOINTMENT IF HE’S NOT WHAT YOU’D IMAGINED
The first time you see his penis is when he’s going to be on full alert for your reaction.
So it’s always a good idea to feel him through his jeans before he gets anywhere near taking them off, to get an idea of what you’re dealing with.
If you can’t feel much happening, don’t panic!
It could be he’s nervous and having a few erection wobbles or needs more direct stimulation to become erect.
So he may well magically morph into Jack and His Beanstalk before your very eyes.
Prepared yourself for either eventuality.
You think he’s going to be too small, too skinny or have an unusual shape?
Think about how you’d react if he was average size and continue as you would normally.
If the shape really is unusual, you’re OK to say something like ‘That’s an unusual shape” just tack on “I bet it feels great”.
If you can’t quite believe how small it is, don’t panic by patting around his groin like ‘I must be in the wrong place. It must be here somewhere!”
Don’t feel it and then look down unless it’s to admire
If he’s undersize, this is his worst nightmare.
Better to keep hold of it and keep kissing than stop everything to gawp.
You might as well come out and say ‘What? That’s it? I need to look at this. It can’t possibly be that small!’
Don’t avoid touching him if he’s really small or not erect
Our first reaction when faced with something we’re not expecting is to remove our hands.
Again, not a great message (“I can’t bear to touch you!”) and you never know what might happen if you continue to stimulate him.
“When he took his boxers off I honestly didn’t know what to say I do. It was so small, I ended up picking it up between my thumb and forefinger rather than using my whole hand,” one 24-year-old woman told me.
“It actually got a lot bigger when I paid it attention and we went out for a few years.
“He told me the reactions he’d got from women over the years were horrendous and really hurtful.
“Some women laughed in his face. Others ignored it once they saw how small he was and came up with an excuse never to see him again.
“But once I was over the shock, we were fine!”
Say something nice
Imagine how you’d feel if you undressed for him and he looked you up and down and then said nothing at all.
It’s rude not to comment.
If you honestly are rattled, just grab him and give him a huge kiss and moan.
This shifts the focus from size to you letting him know he turns you on regardless.
Or say something generic like ‘You’re so sexy, you know that?” while taking a firm, confident grip.
SIX OF THE BEST PENIS COMPLIMENTS YOU CAN GIVE
“Not yet. I need to be fully aroused to be able to cope with….that.”
“I hope you’ve got some lube.”
“Wow! Now that’s hard!”
“You’ve got a great body (look down) in fact, all of you is fantastic.”
“Your penis really turns me on.”
“I’m really glad you’re not any bigger. That would have hurt.”
THE SIX WORST THINGS TO SAY
“Awww! That’s cute!”
“What’s going on? Don’t you find me attractive?”
“Are you in yet?”
“Why is it that weird shape?”
“Why is it that weird colour?”
“I hope you’re good at giving oral sex.”
THE JURY’S STILL OUT ON…
“It’s the perfect size for me” and “It fits like a glove”
Some men think this is the perfect tactful answer, others said it’s such an obvious lie designed to protect his feelings.
“I’ve seen smaller”
Basically you’ve just admitted he is on the small side.
“It’s not the biggest I’ve ever seen but you are fantastic in bed and I love having sex with you.”
If he’s really small and there’s absolutely no argument that he is, this is absolutely the right thing to say.
But if he’s only slightly below average, he’ll hear ‘It’s not the biggest one…’ and will be deaf to what follows.