Can’t Get An Erection The First Time With A New Partner?


I know, it’ an odd metaphor. But finding an image for this topic isn’t so easy!

Something very strange has been happening to me recently, and I’m not impressed. After years of battling premature ejaculation I’ve suddenly been hit by another sexual curve-ball.

Every time I’m with a new partner I can’t get an erection the first time we try to have sex. But that’s not all.

The problem only resolves when we sleep next to each other, wake up the next morning and try again. And from that moment on, everything goes back to normal.

How weird is that?

The first time it happened I didn’t put much thought into it, especially because alcohol had been involved. I just put it down to the beers and didn’t worry too much about it. But then it happened with a second, third and fourth woman. And every time the exact same thing happened.

What happens

Everything seems to be going fine at first. I’m with someone I’ve been dating for a while (sometimes). Things get steamy. We go back to one of our places and I’m happy as can be.

I don’t feel stressed or anxious on the surface, but I can’t get a full erection. Partial yes, sometimes even 75%. But not enough to have sex.

The annoying thing is that I’ve had to develop a coping mechanism for this weird phenomenon. I’ve accepted, for better or for worse, that it’s probably going to be an issue. And so I’ve decided the best thing to do is to talk about it openly in advance.

Obviously by ‘in advance’ I don’t mean over cocktails. But at least before we’ve spent several hours trying increasingly more frustrating ways to make it happen.

I realized it was important to take responsibility for it for one very important reason. If I don’t, then she might. And that’s really unfair and unpleasant for her.

I spoke to the last two partners about it, who both admitted in virtually the same words that they would assume they just don’t turn me on. And even when I told them it always happens, I could tell they were still doubtful.

You can’t exactly start telling them about all the times it’s happened. No woman wants to hear about the last 3 women you were with at the moment the two of you are supposed to be celebrating something magical.

But you still somehow need to convince her it’s just a ‘thing’ that happens, and it will pass. It’s a tricky one.

What caused it?

I did have a laugh to myself at first, thinking that in my efforts to avoid premature ejaculation through relaxation, I’d mastered it so well that my body enters a zen-like state in preparation for sex.

But I think the real explanation lies in anxiety, and probably in relation to my body. I haven’t spoken about it on this website until now, but I had testicular cancer several years ago (I’m fine now I’m happy to report) and it’s ever since then that this new problem has existed.

The treatment I had left me slightly scarred, and needless to say, a bit wonky downstairs. Whilst women tell me that all guys are wonky and scars are sexy, I think deep down I’m still anxious about their reaction.

Add to that the fact that I’ve had to deal with premature ejaculation for years, I think it’s natural to have developed an anxiety problem. Even though I don’t feel anxious on the surface, I do know I’m a born worrier, and that I’ve just learned to mask my anxiety with a well-trained sense of confidence.

I’m not the world’s greatest expert on erectile dysfunction, but I don’t think you need to be to come to the conclusion I have done. What happens next is still undecided.

First attempts at dealing with it

I think I’ll need to do some personal work on that anxiety – if I can get to the root of it on my own. I’d like to think I can, having managed to do so well in my battle with premature ejaculation.

If you’re reading this and have similar issues, then my advice to you is this: talk about it openly and with confidence. Take responsibility for it and don’t let her think it’s her fault. Otherwise you might not have the good fortune to wake up with her smiling and willing to try again.

After that, you’re in the same boat as me I’m afraid. A bit of internal self-work may be needed, either alone or with some professional help. Anxiety may or may not be the root cause, and it may be a while before I’m completely sure. I’ll come back and update this article if I ever do find out for certain.

1 year later: I think I’ve found a solution

Since I first wrote this article a long time ago, I’ve spent a lot of time reading the many comments from other guys with similar problems, thinking about their stories and theories and trying to come up with a solution.

And finally, a year later, I’ve had some success. I managed to get an erection the first night with the last 2 women I slept with, and also pretty much when I wanted to.

The secret – at least for me – has been to boost my testosterone levels so much that it balances out the anxiety, nerves or whatever else is going on psychologically.

Basically, I started doing some research into erectile dysfunction and discovered a common suggestion is that it’s sometimes due to low testosterone levels. So I duly decided to do everything within my power to boost it.

Here’s what I did:

  • Stopped smoking.
  • Started doing lots of work on my legs in the gym, particularly dead-lifts and similar exercises for the thighs, which apparently help with testosterone production.
  • Stopped drinking protein shakes (apparently they can lower testosterone!)
  • Worked hard to improve my sleep pattern and get a regular 8 hours.
  • Started on a testosterone boosting diet.
  • Started taking L-Arginine supplements.

Within 2 weeks I noticed that even during masturbation I was getting harder erections, particularly on the days I really focused on my legs in the gym.

Other than the gym work, I’m fairly sure I also noticed an effect from the L-Arginine supplements. I’d read that researchers have found that L-Arginine can be effective in treating erectile dysfunction because it boosts blood circulation to the penis.

2016 update: trying Viagra

Since the last update, I’ve once again had the same problem. I think this time it was because I totally fell for someone, so I really wanted to things to go well, resulting in the old anxiety resurfacing.

So I decided to give Viagra a go, since I was in a country where you can get it in the pharmacy without a prescription. And it was remarkably effective.

I won’t be using it on an ongoing basis, as I’d like to try to manage the problem naturally and it gave me headaches. However, it was interesting to try out and was a good confidence boost.

If it’s something you’re also considering, you might find my Viagra review helpful.

2017 update

Since the last time I wrote, I haven’t tried Viagra again. However, I’ve been doing a lot of research into the issue of Erectile Dysfunction, and am planning on writing more about it in the future.

Interestingly, I experimented this year with not watching any porn at all for one month. And I’m pretty sure it’s had a positive effect on how easily I get turned on in the presence of women. So it might be worth a try if you have a similar issue.

I’ve also put a lot of thought into the irritating problem of having trouble with keeping an erection when using condoms. I’ve experienced this many times, and several guys have also said the same in the comments.

So if this affects you, you might like to check out my latest article with tips for staying hard when wearing a condom.

Your views

If you or your partner experience this issue, what do you find helps or makes it worse? Feel free to share your story below and any ideas you have for coping with it.

234 CommentsLeave a comment

  • So I turn 19 in a month.I got with this girl and we started doing a few things. Not full intercourse but foreplay. I can get her off easy. But when it comes to me I only get half erections. I’ve been reading a bit about it and I think it might be due to my anxiety and her being the first girl I’ve been with sexually. She is very understanding about the situation but I feel very emasculated about it and she keeps bringing up that its her fault. We have tried twice, both times I’ve only gotten half-way. When we are kissing or doing small things even cuddling lol, but when she goes down there is just never gets any better than half no matter what she is doing. Please help me, I am worried I might have to go to the doctor.

    • Hi Zach
      I completely understand your worry – it’s really unfair when you get together with someone like this and it just doesn’t seem to happen for you! I think it’s possible that stress is a factor, as you identified. But it’s impossible to say for sure at this point. Do you find you get erections ok when you’re on your own? Or do you struggle then also? If you’re fine when masturbating, then it’s possibly a psychological factor. In which case I highly recommend trying the ideas in the article, and also reading through the comments here as many guys have left some excellent advice which can help a lot. I also recommend taking a break from masturbation and porn for a week or two, and see if that helps you get going when you’re with her.
      The main thing is to try to relax, and create a spacd where you both feel comfortable. If it doesn’t happen immediately, it’s ok. Just enjoy each other in other ways until you do relax with her. I know you’ve tried twice, but maybe it will take a bit longer. So maybe get together, put some candles out, some soft music, get some massage oil and massage each other and just enjoy the time without any pressure. Even if it takes hours to relax, that’s cool.
      If you do continue to have the problem, or the answer to the masturbation question was otherwise, then speaking to a doctor might help. Don’t be embarrassed by it – they will be very used to this kind of issue, believe me!

  • hey guys!
    ok..i’ll start saying that i’m 26 and i’m having these kind of problems since years..but with the last partners i didn’t have any problems since the first night or even for a one night stand so i thought my problem was gone.
    So i recently broke up with my ex, which has been a very intens relationship, we had plans for the future etc..we broke up last may but was on and off until 2 weeks ago when i decided to end the thing becasue it was too much of a headache for me.
    So after a few years i was free and my plan was just to go out and sleep with as many girls as possible.
    Here is what happen next. The excat day after i leave her, i go out with a girl, cute but there was no connection, saw her again and just kissed.
    The day after i meet a new girl and we go out in pubs and we kiss and we have amazing time together and we decide to see eachother again the day after. We see eachother anothe couple pof times when yesterday finally she came over my place to cook and spend some nice time together.
    I didn’t think to meet such an amzing girl like her after just 2 weeks i broke up with ‘the love of my life’. Now i don’t even think about her anymore.
    But anyway we come home, we have a glass of wine, we chill with some nice music, we kiss and thing get hot and i get an erection but we didnt do anything, then we have dinner then we go on the couch and there is when i started getting very stressed and anxious. We were hagging and sometimes i was feeling my penis getting a little hard but only for a minute or so and the rest of the times it was like my penis shrinked and was too scared to get things hot because i knew if we would have started i wouldn’t have been able to get hard so i deicided to talk to her and tell her that i was nervous and a bit messed up in my head because of my last relationship. She completely understood and she didn’t put me any pressure..she is really hot, attractive and amazing..and feel sorry also because i knew she wanted to have sex. After a while we decide not to push things and i brought her back to her car. I’m really scared now that when we get to that point i can’t get hard, the weird thing is that when we kiss like in places where we can’t have sex like public places or cinema i get hard easly..only when we are in an intimate place i can’t.. i read other comments which it helped me to understand that maybe spending more intimate time like in bed under the sheets to talk could helpful to break this wall…becasue once i get confortable with someone i get hard in one nanosecond.
    Pls guys tell me what you think and sorry for the long post

    • Hi there
      It sounds like anxiety is definitely playing a part in your situation, as with so many other people. It probably also didn’t help being so close to breaking up. As much as we often think going out and having sex will help us move on, or just be purely fun, our mind and heart still need some time to mend properly.
      Having said that, if you like this girl that much, and the chemistry is there – at least in public! – then I’m sure in time you’ll be able to get past the nerves. As you said, it’s good to find a way to just be together sexually, without the pressure of sex. You can do lots of enjoyable things to each other, and make her happy in other ways. The erection will come when its ready.

  • Hi guys i am 21 years old my first time with a girl was when i was 19 years old but i couldnt achieve an erection after really heavy drinking,i was afraid after that and lived the life of a monk without going for girls for 2 long years of loneliness.two months ago i felt ready and i met a childhood friend,we liked each other and we took it further to have sex after 2 weeks of dating,i remember i was feeling anxious and when the time came i couldnt achieve a 100% erection and when i did i lost it the moment i was preparing to put the condom on.we had some dates as normal even though on the inside i was dying everyday,my mind was a wreck of after a week the second try came i wasnt feeling as anxious as the first time but my erection was even worse,after that she dumped after 2 months i still dont know if it was anxiety or inability of erection with real girls because of porn or am i gay.i never had confidence and i am kind of scared the same thing will happen if i go after other woman,your opinions would be much appreciated.

    • Hi Paul
      Sorry to hear you had that experience. It’s a shame she didn’t stick around to give you a chance, because in time you probably would have found a way to overcome the problem. As you’ll have seen in the comments here, this is a problem a huge number of guys face. And while nerves seems to be a common reason, there are other causes of erection loss too. The good news though is that usually it can be fixed – either by getting over the nerves you initially have, or through various other techniques for coping with erectile dysfunction if it’s a more on-going problem. My advice would be not to give up on your sex life, but read all the comments here to get an idea for dealing with the nerves next time, and also research other tips for getting health erections.

  • Hi guys.
    I’m 26 years old and my first time with a girl was about half year ago. it was one night stand and i couldn’t get erection until she gave me a blowjob which made it work very fast, then i put the condom and the erection went down to like 70% and i penetrated her and finished after 30 seconds of “trying not to lose the erection so i better do it fast”. since then i had 2 more one night stands. on the last one i sat on her butt and gave her a back massage and i got an erection from it, and i noticed that simple little things like kissing or licking her on the neck/mouth will make me go hard. but it’s going hard and few seconds after it goes back down so i can’t put the condom and penetrate.
    It makes me feel so sad and frustrated…and it makes me think if i’m gay… how the hell can i know it?! i’m masturbating on hot girls only videos and i can’t even think about watching gay porn.

    • Hi David
      It sounds like stress could be playing a role in your case, as it does with so many guys. If you don’t think you’re gay, and you get turned on and attracted to women, then you probably aren’t. I think the trick, as with so many of us here, is to try to get past the whole one night stand thing, and not put pressure on yourself to perform the night you meet a girl. Have a read through the comments here as there are lots of good ideas, tips and advice that can help.

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