Wet dreams

Catches a lot of guys
Image by Nicki Varkevisser CC BY 2.0 Cropped

Nocturnal Emissions

What is happening?

Today

Wet dreams happen to a lot of teenage guys. Some guys respond with annoyance, shame, or fear about what is happening. Other guys enjoy the good feelings.

There is lots of discussion on the www about reasons and causes of wet dreams - a lot of the information is conflicting and speculation. Further down this page you will find the results of a scientific study performed by those who work medically in this area. (Endocrinology is the study of medicine that relates to the endocrine system, which is the system that controls hormones).

Sexual awakening

My very first sexual experience was a wet-dream. I was 11 years old and I awakened to find something wet in my pajamas. I was sure I was sick, maybe even had cancer.

12 year old boy

Onset: Some readers reported a nocturnal emission as being their awakening to sexuality, first occurring between ages 10 and 14. A few men reported a much later onset of nocturnal emissions, in their late teens or 20s. (3)

About 50% of boys will experience wet dreams. You can't do anything about stopping them. Masturbation reduces or stops the wet dreams for most boys but there is no guarantee about stopping the dreams. Wet dreams seem to produce less guilt than masturbation but can produce more worries about the nature of the dream and the mess left behind.

Definitions

Nocturnal emission
A discharge of semen while the boy is asleep.
Ejaculation
literally means 'the body's act of throwing/shooting out a little something' and refers to semen coming out of the erect penis. (slang - cum, shoot your wad, spooging, blow your load, blast, bust, splooge)
Semen
the fluid in which sperm live. (slang - cum, jizz, spooge)
Orgasm
Intense feelings and muscle contractions associated with ejaculation.

The worries

  • Boys worry about the stains on their sleeping clothes and sheets from the semen
  • They worry about what the meaning is behind the dream
  • They worry there is something wrong with them (maybe cancer)
  • Worried he is becoming a sex maniac because he never had sex related dreams like this before (like the rapist he saw on T.V.)
  • Worried he is becoming gay. (There were only boys in his dream when it happened)
  • Will the other person know I ejaculated while dreaming about them?
  • Boys worry about staying at another person's house overnight in case they have a wet dream and leave stains on the sheets
  • Worried they have heard that boys who have wet dreams are 'sick'

Why wet dreams happen

Two opinions on why wet dreams happen. Whatever the real reason, all you need to know is that they are natural.

The normal way the reproductive system gets rid of excess semen is through a nocturnal emission or 'wet dream'. During sleep the penis becomes erect and the boy ejaculates. This may rouse him for a few moments before he lapses back into a deep sleep. Nocturnal emissions are usually accompanied by sexy dreams which may not be recalled. By age 15 about 50% of boys have experienced them. ..... Most boys will worry about the semen staining the bedclothes.

In a 1998 study by Finkelstein et al, the number of boys reporting nocturnal emissions drastically increased as their testosterone doses were increased, from 17% of subjects with no treatment to 90% of subjects at a high dose.

Wet dream study

Some guys had to be given controlled doses of hormones to bring on puberty - due to a defect in the normal body system that would normally control puberty. This provided a unique opportunity to see the effect on the body of known doses of testosterone.

The data showed significant effects of the administration of testosterone to boys causing increases in nocturnal emission and touching behaviors at the mid and high doses.

Nocturnal emission occurred at the low testosterone dose in 6 subjects, at the middle dose in 15 subjects, and at the high dose in 23 boys.

Boys had significantly higher frequencies of touching others and being touched by others during administration of the middle dose of testosterone (50 mg).

The relation of the reported responses and behaviors we observed to the dose of administered hormones suggests that a threshold may exist below which a response or behavior will not appear. Once that dose has been reached, further increases in the dose will not affect further increases in the response or behavior

The hormone (testosterone) released in your system with puberty causes wet dreams. Nothing you did brought on the wet dreams.

The dream

Just to talk about ordinary dreams for a moment. Dreams can be weird. Recently I dreamed I murdered someone. I didn't know the person, but the dream was still vivid the next day and years later. I've never entertained the idea of murdering any one and I don't consider myself a murderer because of the dream, no matter how clear it was to me after that night.

The same principle applies to the subject of a wet dream. It really doesn't mean anything. The person you dream of in the wet dream won't know about your experiences by some mental or psychic means - so relax.

Almost all who described their dreams reported them as extremely vivid, making it difficult to separate dream from reality. The content of the dream can seem strange to the dreamer, involving family members, close friends, animals, people of the same sex, or being sexual in public. Many respondents reported waking just after ejaculation to find their shorts and sheets wet with semen. Others reported waking just before ejaculation. Still others reported not waking from the dream at all, discovering it only in the morning.

The most peculiar images can come to mind in a wet dream, and can even induce a lot of guilt. Dreams about sex with close relatives are not uncommon: sons, for example, may dream of sex with their dads, and feel very guilty about it. But all this represents is the confusion of sex and love in a young mind, a distinction which hopefully will become clearer as the young man grows up and learns about clear boundaries around appropriate sexual behavior from adults who can set a good example. And many men report dreaming about sex with their mothers at some time in their lives. Again, don't worry, but accept this as part of the mystery of being human. (But don't act on it, either!). A point which it is important to keep in mind, I think, is that a fantasy life is just that. It doesn't have to be acted on, and it can be kept private.

A few weeks ago, I had my first "wet dream." And, it makes no sense to me. In the dream, I was in a plane, and I was a skydiver. I went to the door that we'd jump out of (I was in that weird state where you're dreaming, but you're also aware of what's going on around you), and I saw the scenery. Beautiful blue sky, big snow-capped mountains, clouds...it was amazingly beautiful. In the dream, I jumped out of the plane, and, at that moment, I became aware that I had ejaculated into my boxers. What sense does this make? I don't get it. The only "wet dream" I've ever had, and it's about SKYDIVING?!

age 12 Canada [1]

Wet dreams can involve any situation at all including other males. Having a wet dream involving other males does not indicate a boy is gay. Many people who answered the survey above indicated they had such dreams occasionally but were actually now happily married heterosexual (straight) men with no desire for a gay relationship in real life.

I have read that young teenage boys who don't have a satisfactory loving relationship with an adult male can be more prone to having erotic (sexual) dreams involving other males. This is because of the strong need that every teenage boy has to be affirmed by adult males. Many boys secretly long for a man to hold them and to be there for them. The boy is searching for the response 'You're O.K. as a male'. The newly emerging sexual nature attaches itself to this strong emotional need for adult male approval producing sexual dreams involving other males. We end up with a confused boy.

A wet dream does not define a boy's sexual nature.

Cleaning semen stains

Do you have any suggestions about getting rid of semen stains? I used to wear white briefs and boxers and when I had wet dreams the result was permanent yellow stains on the underwear, which is kind of embarrassing when my mom sees my laundry, or in gym class.

Age 14, Canada [1]

As with any sort of stain caused by a bodily fluid, it's best to clean the stain as soon as possible, preferably while it is still wet. However, if you can't get to the stain until first thing in the morning, you should still have a chance at salvaging your undies. Try mixing one-half teaspoon of dish-washing soap or fine-fabric detergent into one cup (8 oz.) of warm water. Apply a small amount, blotting until the stain is removed. Since your stain is dry this might take a while, but it should at least get most of the yellow tinge off of your boxers. Rinse your underwear with cold water once you are satisfied with how they look. If the stain persists, try mixing one part white vinegar and two parts water, applying a small amount and blotting, but do this only once. Finally, put your underwear through a cycle in the washer and dryer. Of course, you can avoid this hassle just by masturbating with some tissues or a towel nearby. That way you can mop up your semen right away, without having to get up from your bed, preserving your underwear in the process. [1]

Another option is to use colored or patterned underwear (briefs or boxers) that will not show the yellow tinge associated with semen stains.

Welcome to a man's world

Your body now produces sperm and semen and it will be released either through a wet dream or a deliberate act (masturbation or sex with another person). The periodic release of semen can't be stopped!

You have had a wet dream? Congratulations - physically, you are no longer a boy. There is no turning back. Relax and enjoy this new side of your life being a man!

I have a wet-dream about twice a month. I always dream about a friend or someone I really like! I love the experience, but when I am around the person I dream about, I feel very uncomfortable.

Age 16, California [1]

Stories

My first wet-dream happened when I was 13. All I remember is thinking, "Oh man! I'm too old to wet my bed, so what the hell is this?" I soon figured out what it was. I have had a strange experience though: I once woke up during a wet-dream, just as I was about to ejaculate. It was fantastic but strange because of the amount of semen I ejaculated. The whole experience was over in about 12 whopping spurts!

age 15, Canada [1]

I'm 16, heterosexual, I don't masturbate, and I have wet dreams every 1-3 months. One night, I watched a movie with my girlfriend, and we "snuggled" closer that we had ever snuggled before. We got a lot closer to each other. It was exciting. Then, that night, I had a wet dream, but the dream was of me having sex with a guy friend that I had known for over ten years! Why would I have a dream of a guy when I just hung out with a girl? I was confused, but then I remembered reading on your site that that type of thing was not uncommon. What a relief!

age 16, USA [1]

I've had about 6 wet-dreams. Each starts with me rolling around on the ground with another person. My penis gets hard (both in the dream and in real life), and then the girl in my dream grabs it. Usually I feel like I'm about to ejaculate and pull away from her but end up ejaculating anyway. When I wake up, I find I have ejaculated. I know some people who remember nothing about wet-dreams, but I do.

age 16, Ontario [1]

I've had about 10 wet-dreams. Sometimes I was dreaming about masturbating; others, I was dreaming about having sex with a girl. I've even had dreams where I'm having sex with a guy. I always wake up right after I climax and realize what has happened. I hate having wet-dreams because it makes such a mess. I used to think the only time I had them was when I had gone a long time without masturbating. But recently, I had a wet-dream the night after I had masturbated 3 times.

age 17, Florida [1]

When I had my first nocturnal emission, I was having this really horny dream. As far as I remember, I was having sex with this girl in the dream and when it came to the point that I was to have an orgasm, it felt so real. When I woke up the next morning, my boxers were all wet with semen. Man -- it feels better than masturbating, but it's kinda messy.

age 15, New York [1]

I remember having just one wet-dream. I didn't even know what it was. I got up that morning all sticky, so I went to the washer before my mother got up. That was the first time I started washing my own underwear.

age 29, North Carolina [1]

I was raised in a very religious home, and this was reflected in my wet-dreams. In the dream, there was always a wedding before it turned sexual. I could never see the bride's face. Two dreams were very disturbing: One involved sex with my sister on the bathroom floor. Another was with my pastor and his son -- both were exposing their erections and I ejaculated just by looking at them.

age 35, California [1]

I'm a huge fan of nocturnal emissions. My first ejaculation and orgasm actually occurred during sleep. I had many wet-dreams before I actually began to masturbate at age 13. I've heard many guys in the chat rooms say they've never had one; perhaps they began to masturbate way too early. They don't know what they've missed. Wet-dreams are really cool -- the orgasms are great, and you usually have them during a really hot dream. The point when you are having an orgasm in the dream coincides with the actual orgasm. I haven't had one in a while, though; I usually have them when I can't masturbate for a while.

age 16, Puerto Rico [1]

I've had only one. I was in high school and I remember it distinctly. I awoke as I was ejaculating and had dreamed I was having sex with one of my father's unattractive male employees. I lay there wondering how anything could feel so good with someone I found so physically repugnant.

age 69, Texas [1]

I was 36 before I ever had one and I haven't had one since. It was about the longest I had ever gone without masturbating. On a week-long office retreat, the women stayed in one room and the guys all in a bunkhouse room. My first wet-dream happened in a bunkhouse with a dozen guys!

age 41, Texas [1]

My first wet-dream was when I was 15 and had stopped masturbating for a few weeks. I had an erotic dream about my sister. I woke up right after I ejaculated to find myself lying in a wet spot. The last wet-dream was about two years ago. I dreamed about a male friend of mine. This time I woke up before I ejaculated and caught it with my hand. It seems that the more regularly I masturbate, the fewer wet-dreams I have.

age 22, Canada [1]

At age 24 I still have nocturnal emissions about once every 6 months. I am heterosexual, but I usually dream about being with men. I wake up right when I am ejaculating. The dreams are all very steamy, and I wouldn't trade them for anything because I have no desire to be with another guy in real life. But hey, in your dreams anything goes!

age 24, New Jersey [1]

sometimes when i wake up from sleeping in my bed i wake up and my boxers are down and it felt like i was doing the bed. and there was cum every were.

age 14, Madrid, Spain [1]

I've had a few wet-dreams before, but they really weren't that enjoyable. Only one of them had to do with sex; the others were just weird (like walking around in Wal-Mart and all of a sudden ejaculating all over the floor). I also don't like them because afterwards you have to get out of bed, change underwear, and wipe the semen out of your pubic hair.

age 17, Texas [1]

I have had wet-dreams since age 11. I still have them, no matter how much I masturbate. I usually dream about both sexes in different situations. They are a nice, semi-lucid, hands-free way to relieve sexual frustration, even if they are not really planned. I like them and think they're fun.

age 20, Canada [1]

If I don't have sex or masturbate for 3 or 4 days I usually have a wet-dream -- even at my age. My wet-dreams are usually sexual, and it's a different situation each time. Sometimes the dreams are somewhat kinky or perverted, which I do not find objectionable. In others, I dream about people I know but would not normally find attractive or want to have sex with. age 36, California (3)

age 36, California [1]

More information

Web MD website
Wet Dream FAQ
WikipediA
Nocturnal emission

References

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  1. Adult site (used with permission). Email for address.