Tangential Thoughts on Wet Dreaming

The nocturnal emission is a token of inner pubescent commotion, a demonstration of how male hormones are so unfettered and capricious during teendom, they’ll sporadically just shoot right out of you in your sleep. I don’t remember my first wet dream (and I bet that I’ve forced myself to forget it), the particular carnal scenario I found myself in that produced the “mushroom cellar” smell — as Vonnegut once put it — rising from my undies in the morning. I’ve been having these special dreams on-and-off for the past handful of years, and while I’m still visited by them, the frequency has definitely lessened.

There was a salvo of nights in the winter of my freshman year when I was having wet dreams constantly, to a degree worth being a little concerned about. So that January, my mom and dad took me to New York to meet with a Chinese medicine specialist, and I told him about my nightly trend. He asked if I was vegetarian, and at the time I actually happened to be: from August to December, I’d been refraining from meat. Turns out, the master told me, these constant wet dreams were a byproduct of protein imbalance — so I got back on eating meat and, sure enough, the wet dreaming subsided.

I didn’t consider this a “health issue,” rather the wet dreaming served as a bodily indicator that I lacked in something; evidence, to me, that it’s not solely an emblem of libido. A little while afterwards, I told my vegetarian friend about all this happening, and I can’t remember the specifics of how he reacted, but we don’t talk to each other anymore.

Majority of the time, though, my wet dreams are a result of unrequieted horiness, like if I’ve been refraining from masturbation for some time and I get boners during the day — randomly and/or by way of happy thoughts — but never fulfill them with a good yanking. Unconsciously I reconcile my boner-fest in, most often, either of two dream plots: a) I’m going around a room fucking everyone, or b) as I’m undressing and right on the brink of having sex, I splarge.

Time gets warped in dreamland, meaning when I wake up after what feels like half-an-hour or 45 minutes (in terms of dream-time), the splarge residue might still be fresh; but when I awake after it feels like merely a minute or two has passed, the residue is mostly faded and sweaty. Regardless, messy underwear is motivation to get me out of bed right away; I don’t take my sweet time waking up and becoming one with the day while feeling sticky.

I always feel guilty after watching porn — and I force myself to forget this inevitable guilt each time I’m raging with horniness, while pulling up a private window to type in PornHub or XVideo. Wet dreams, on the other hand, feel like a pardon because even though I still have these vivid images of naked bodies in my head (and even though I sometimes dream that I am watching porn), I’m not consciously viewing these images. Wet dreams aren’t intentional though they’re the result of unrequited intentions, while masturbating to porn is.

In hindsight, I’d rather not have to deal with either — the post-viewing guilt I get from porn, or tending to the aftermath of a wet dream. Whether it’s via masturbation or these nocturnal emissions, however, every so often it feels relieving to — as The Band once put it (though not quite in the same context) — “take a load off.”

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