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Cock and Bull

May 18th, 2005

Dr Petra

Most days a press release or sample arrives promoting some new sex product. Some days they’re for something saucy and fantastic that you can’t wait to recommend. Usually they’re a bit ho-hum. Occasionally, like today, they manage to make you experience a strange emotional combination of hysterical laughter and furious anger.

May I present to you the ‘Cockrule’. A sex toy company sent out a release telling us we ought to be recommending this to men.

Here’s how it works. Men pay £15.99 for a plastic device with a chicken’s head on the top of it (Cockrule = cockerel, geddit?). This measuring device tells you your penis length and gives your dick a name that in turn reveals all about your personality.

To convince us further, the press release contained all kinds of ‘facts’. Most interestingly was that drinking, smoking and smell can affect penis length. Perhaps the sex experts behind this particular company may want to go back to sex-ed 101. Alcohol and smoking can affect erectile ability and lead to sexual dysfunction, but aren’t going to make a major difference when fiddling about with the ‘Cockrule’.

Here’s the evidence. We know men are highly anxious about their penis size. The majority of letters sent to agony aunts or presented to sex experts are about cock concerns. Men frequently ask urologists and doctors about penis anxieties, and even calls to NHS Direct from men are often about dick dissatisfaction. With sex education failing to deliver information on penis size, alongside men getting their sex teaching from porn, it’s not surprising many guys feel they’re too small. Penis enlargement adverts on the Internet; alongside spam sent to guys email accounts further convince many that they’re not big enough.

Anxieties about penis size and shape are known to affect confidence and sexual functioning. If you think you’re not big enough, it can lead to you coming too quick, or not getting hard at all. In extreme cases it can lead to men avoiding relationships and intimacy for fear of being mocked or ridiculed.

So you’d have thought a responsible sex product company would know about this evidence and create something that made men feel fantastic about their bodies. Not playing on physical insecurities to make £15.99 a pop out of anxious guys.

Once you’ve bought your ‘Cockrule’ and found out if your penis is ‘up to scratch’, you can go onto this sex toy company’s website and enter your measurements for their ‘national survey’ of penis size. Surely a reputable sex toy company would know you can’t just ask people to measure their bits and send you that information if there’s any likelihood of causing upset. Which of course is going to happen if you don’t measure up.

Here’s a tip. Spend your money on something to spoil you. A game, a DVD, a night out with your mates, or a cinema trip (including popcorn) with a friend or partner. Put it towards your holiday savings. Get your mum/granny/random stranger a bunch of flowers. Whatever you do, think twice about buying products from any sex toy company who want to use your sexual self-doubt to get you to part with your cash.

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