Early Ejaculation

What is ‘Early Ejaculation’?

Early Ejaculation is sometimes called Premature Ejaculation (PE) in the classical medical tradition. Early Ejaculation in this context occurs when a person with a penis ejaculates in a timescale that does not allow them to perform the type of sex they are interested in, and such occurrence causes them distress.

What must be established first

There are many reasons why ejaculation may be earlier than wanted and it’s important to rule out any medical reasons before further psychosexual investigations take place. So if you have not spoken to your GP about the problem yet, you will be encouraged to do so. Your doctor will be skilled and experienced in the medical aspects and should put you at ease to talk about it. Once your GP has ruled out any underlying medical issues we can get to work.

Understanding the Context

When does the problem occur and how long has it been happening? Are other related problems happening? Do you use porn and what is your masturbation style? Do you smoke, drink, use recreational drugs or have lifestyle behaviours that can impact the timing of your ejaculation? Has anything affected you in the past? How do you feel about your partner(s) if relevant? If you masturbate in partner or solo sex, is your time to ejaculation satisfactory? If you are fearful of an unreliable erection this can sometimes create a sense of ‘hurry up before I lose it’.

Understanding your perspective

We need to know what aspect of the problem is causing you the most distress. What are your underlying beliefs that inform this distress. If some ‘shoulds’ emerge there may be opportunities for challenge, re-framing and psycho-education. We are complex beings living in complex times and we can usually benefit from some self-compassion.


If appropriate there are a number of exercises that can help you gain confidence, understanding of your unique arousal style and mastery of your habitual thought processes.

Remember that sex begins as soon as the last episode finishes, not at the next moment of penetration

Check whether access to porn has distorted your assessment of what’s achievable and expected. Porn is not a depiction of reality

It can be beneficial to prioritise attention on your own sensations rather than worrying about your performance

How are your thoughts supporting you? Practice mindfulness and self affirmation. Don’t be a prisoner of past experiences. 

Practice during solo sex and get to know your feelings, thoughts and sensations. Experiment with start/stop and squeeze technique

Get to know and increase what inhibits you and reduce what excites you. Care for your body. Take exercise (eg Kegels)

Remember:  Pleasurement not measurement! 

And by the way, you don't need to wait for a crisis.

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