Uncomfortable Asks is my infrequent advice column, where I directly address letters or messages sent to me(with permission and in a more elaborate and thoughtful fashion than I might be able in just a regular reply). Ask your own Asks here.
I am an uncle to a 16 (soon to be 17) year old boy. He is my sister’s son and she has expressed frustration to me in the past with his clear and constant masturbation habits. It’s the usual routine: kleenex and lotion disappear into his room never to be seen again, until my sister goes in to clean things up from time to time. She finds it “gross” and says it makes her sad her little boy is doing this. I think it’s a great sign that he’s normal and healthy and have told her as much. I want to do what I can to make sure he hears an adult say that (obviously without embarrassing him or making him feel uncomfortable).
I’d like to get him a fleshlight as a cool-uncle gift that gives him a sign that what he’s doing is natural and ok. And to show him there’s a better way to do it than lotion and tissues. But I’m obviously worried this is not an acceptable gift for a minor and than my sister will lose her cool if she discovers it.
Is it ok to buy a teenager a fleshlight?– Cool Uncle
Please don’t refer to yourself as a “cool uncle.” That never comes across like you want it to. You can just be a regular uncle and we’ll all assume you’re cool because you’re trying to make this horny little dude’s life better.
This is a fukkin tricky situation you’ve laid out. If you were the kid’s parent, my answer would be an emphatic and unequivocal “YES BUY IT RIGHT NOW.”
My philosophy has long been that Fleshlight should send every American youth one of their products the very day they turn 18, just like Gillette does with razors. I think it would solve a whole host of issues and problems, and create a lifelong customer loyalty, the likes of which no sex toy brand has ever seen before. You win that 18 year old penis over, and that penis’s owner is gonna be buying Fleshlight brand products for the rest of their ejaculating life.
But he’s not your kid. And that could cause a lot of problems for everyone involved.
Your sister is clearly misguided, in the same way that lots of moms (and women, generally) can tend to be misguided about male masturbation. I hate making broad generalizations like that, but the reality is that this is an example of the insidious spillover effects of toxic masculinity. Women are often conditioned to view male masturbation as prevalent (everybody’s doing it) but still sort of deviant or unmasculine. This can be a particular issue in partnered relationships with men, where solo masturbatory experience is considered some kind of affront to the desirability of the partner, especially if masturbation is or becomes the preferred sexual engagement.
The truth is (and I’m already anxious about how ‘mens rights’-y this is going to sound) there is a biological imperative driven by internal chemistry that is pushing average penis-havers to spread DNA constantly and indiscriminately. Especially as teenagers. It isn’t deviant or unmasculine—it’s literally the MOST natural response to biology. While masturbation and solo play are normal, natural, and healthy for people of all genders and experiences, the endless pounding compulsion to offload sperm often means that young men are more likely to engage in masturbation more frequently and with less regard for the perceived moral or social repercussions.
But that doesn’t mean those repercussions aren’t real. If you think your sister is likely to shame your nephew for having/using a Fleshlight, I’d say your duty to him is to stay out of it. Rather than accidentally creating a potentially negative situation for him, where he could be likely to internalize his mother’s response to his penis and his masturbation for the rest of his life, you should stay all the way out of it.
That said, if you still think it’s the right choice for him, or if he has expressed interest or mentioned it to you directly, I’m on board with the idea. Objectively, it’s ok to buy a teenager a Fleshlight (or to allow a teenager to buy their own fleshlight). Tools for sexual exploration and pleasure are very different than exposing a minor to pornography or other potentially problematic media. Unlike most adult entertainment, there is no age restriction to who can buy a Fleshlight in real life or online.
RELATED: [How to buy a sex toy under the age of 18]
Plus you already know this kid is bating his boner constantly anyway. Pretending he’s just moisturizing his hands and sneezing a lot while he’s alone in his room isn’t helping anybody improve or grow. Getting him something better to unload into is better for him, better for the environment, and will likely help him to slowly start to see masturbation as something normal or even joyful (instead of a weird secret he thinks he’s getting away with).
You’re the best gage of your relationship with your nephew. But one thing you should strongly consider is that you’re offering him something to use on his own, and not connecting it to you in any way. If it doesn’t feel natural, casual, and easy to give, reconsider. Real life isn’t like Handjobs Magazine and this should not be a “bonding” experience for the two of you, nor should there be ANY follow-up about it in the future. You have to let him unpack and explore on his own and feel comfortable that you’re not entitled to know anything more about it. He should not be thinking of you every time he drags that thing out and fills it up.
I strongly suggest making a gift out of the Fleshlight Turbo (the best FL that’s come down the line so far) since it doesn’t have an anatomical opening (most Fleshlights feature weird molded buttholes, mouths, and vulvae, despite their sensation to the penis itself being almost identical) and won’t imply anything about his sexual preferences or curiosities. Toss in some water-based lube as well. Teenage boys are gonna use whatever they’ve got on hand, and oil/petroleum based products will destroy most sex toys quicker than you think.
Whatever you decide is right for this situation, offering a counterpoint to your sister’s uptightness is the best gift you can give your nephew. Masturbation is an ultra normal part of having a penis, but despite the hypersexual nature of the internet and the world around him, he might not hear anybody he trusts saying that. Modelling healthy speech and attitudes about jacking off as a natural part of manhood gives him the freedom to decide to quietly adopt those attitudes instead of inheriting his mother’s.
It’s very cool that you want to steer him in the right direction, Uncle. But be respectful of the delicate nature of the situation and avoid creating more problems than you solve.
Legally, anybody can buy or own a Fleshlight. Unlike most adult entertainment media and products, there is no age requirement to purchasing most sex tools or toys.
While it’s worth considering your relationship to the teenager before you toss them a new jack toy for their birthday, the odds are pretty good that if it’s a young cis male, he’d benefit from Fleshlight and a gallon jug of water-based lube. But don’t make it weird.
One teenager who doesn’t need to buy a fleshlight, or even receive any additional masturbation encouragement, is Rushlight Dante from the header image. You know I never like to use photos of folks without properly crediting and linking to the places you can pay them. This guy’s whole schtick is fucking fantastic, and I love watching him pound his big uncut penis into his fleshlight or fist.
He’s well over 18 but looks wicked young and really capitalizes on that with his “virgin” “young” and “teen boy” talk in his promotion. I’m trying to learn to mimic his faces of frustrated amazement over his big wang and all his wangfeels 🙂
I’m never mad to come across somebody running a wildly successful penis-based business. You can follow Dante on Twitter and Instagram, or watch him really let loose on OnlyFans or buy single vids on ManyFans. Dude deserves your money for being this horny on the internet <3