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The Wet Dream Forum is a Compendium of All the Ways to Come in Your Sleep

Nearly 4,000 members use the Wet Dream Forum to chronicle their nocturnal emissions, trade tips for having them, and encourage others to stop masturbating so they can experience the full glory of wet dreaming.

by Dave Simpson
Dec 3 2015, 5:35am

A man who goes by the screen name Ronald Reagan is having a spectacular 2015. He hasn't masturbated once and it shows: By the time you read this, he'll likely have shattered his all-time annual wet dream record, set last year, of 47.

Early on the morning of November 10, he dreamt about a girl who was giving him a tour of a high school band program. "She or someone else played an instrument called a "nutmeg" (like a bassoon)," he wrote in his wet dream log. "At one point she took off her shirt to show off her boobs. She was performing oral sex on somebody. At some point I came."

The incident is marked "WD #45 of 2015" in his log. It was 170th since he started keeping track in 2011.

Ronald Reagan's log is among hundreds posted to the Wet Dream Forum, a nearly 4,000-member community website where men trade tips, chronicle their wet dreams, and discuss personal anecdotes about having wet dreams. There are pockets of wet dream fanatics elsewhere—a handful of Reddit threads, for example—but the Wet Dream Forum, which has been ongoing since 2003, is the movement's mecca.

While none of the forum's members agreed to speak on the record about their experiences, the thousands of posts provide a window into the world of wet dreamers. One user, Dreamito, wrote in response to my request for comment, "WDs are the ultimate, unalienable fortress of freedom and self-affirmation, and this forum is all you will get (and it is enough)." And he's right—the Wet Dream Forum is the most exhaustive wet dream resource online.

According to Gender in Medieval Culture by Michelle M. Sauer, people in medieval times believed that wet dreams meant they had been seduced by a succubus—a demon taking the form of a woman. The Roman philosopher and poet Lucretius, just before the birth of Christ, wrote lyrically about coming in one's sleep in On the Nature of Things. "Tidings of glorious face and lovely bloom," he wrote, "which stir and goad the regions turgid now with seed abundant; so that, as it were with all the matter acted duly out, they pour the billows of a potent stream and stain their garment."

There are mentions of wet dreams in the Bible; there's a record of both Saint Augustine and Martin Luther struggling with nocturnal emission; even Gandhi wrote about coming in his sleep, which he said felt like he "was hurled by God from an imaginary paradise where I had no right to be in my uncleanliness," according to Joseph Lelyveld's Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and His Struggle With India.

From a scientific perspective, though, the phenomenon has largely gone unresearched. Freud, as obsessed as he was with both dreams and sex, barely touched the subject. It wasn't until Alfred Kindsey's 1948 book Sexual Behavior in the Human Male that wet dreams were fully addressed.

"It is more tenable to think of nervous tensions which are built up until, periodically, they precipitate an orgasm," Kinsey wrote, "but again, the physiology is not understood. We are, in consequence, almost completely in the dark as to the possibility of a biologic mechanism which could force nocturnal emissions when other sexual outlets were insufficient."

In 1988, William Masters and Virginia Johnson theorized that the wet dream occurred as a natural reflex in response to physiological tension experienced by men who became aroused but had not ejaculated. "Nocturnal ejaculation provides a physiologic 'safety-valve' for accumulated sexual tension that has not been released in another fashion," they wrote in Masters and Johnson on Sex and Human Loving.

Dr. Calvin Kai-Chung Yu, of Hong Kong Shue Yan University, is one of the only researchers who has broached the topic in recent years—and even he isn't sure why exactly people have wet dreams.

"I would not say we know for sure what cause wet dreams or nocturnal emission," he wrote in an e-mail to me, "but my findings show that the more sex [with ejaculation] you have in the daytime, the less likely you will have wet dreams. Age seems to be another factor: They decrease with age. However, this is debatable since sex libido also decreases with age."

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The overwhelming lack of research meant that wet dreamers had to figure things out for themselves. In early 2003, a handful of men who were having wet dreams posted to a forum on the now-defunct TheMensCenter.com. They were looking for advice about how to stop having them until one user, Texanguy, 49-years-old at the time, flipped the script. He explained that he actually wanted to have wet dreams and he was searching for the similarities (primarily: not masturbating) among grown men who still have them.

Within a month, the thread exploded, with a handful of men corresponding daily about their lives, abstinence, and desire to come in their sleep. The topic began to dominate the forum and, by September, they had built a new home at wetdreamforum.com.

"It's pretty incredible that we are declining sex in pursuit of wet dreams. That speaks a lot for how good wet dreams can feel, and how badly we want them." — Focus

Focus, a then 29-year-old virgin and self-identified "talented auto-fellatioist," started posting on the forum because he was interested in the collection of data. He and Texanguy are the only two original members who still regularly post today. Despite his dedication to the forum, Focus (whose avatar is now, fittingly, a GIF of his own sperm under a microscope) has not had a single wet dream over the more than 12 years he's been active on the site.

"It's pretty incredible that we are declining sex in pursuit of wet dreams," he wrote in 2003. "That speaks a lot for how good wet dreams can feel, and how badly we want them."

Why do these men want to have wet dreams so badly? Dr. Gloria Brame, a clinical sexologist and author, told me that one explanation could be male performance anxiety or a desire for sensuality.

"With men, it's not only about, I'm so horny I need to come," she said. "For some men, it's also stress-free, guilt-free, and sensual. You wake up and, though you've lost your dream, you have the reality that you came, you're wet—it's the sensuality. It feels squishy nice. We all know that male behavior solo is very different from male behavior with a woman, particularly if they feel they have to be the masculine one and act like a man, whatever that means, socially to them."

There's also the shame culture surrounding sex, which Brame said can make wet dreams more appealing.

"They have an orgasm, but they can't be blamed for it," said Brame. "It wasn't their fault. There's great wisdom from bondage: Why do people find bondage so sexy? Because when you tie them up and do sexy things to them, they can't help it. They have their orgasms but you made them have an orgasm. So in a sense, a nocturnal emission is like non-consensual consensual sex."

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A user called Ronald WDM (stands for "wet dream mentor,"), is a single, middle-aged guy from Utah, who abstained from masturbation for religious reasons but had wet dreams, which he called "guilt-free enjoyment," about every three weeks. During first months of the Wet Dream Forum, Ronald WDM was the only one who could have wet dreams and the other users, desperately trying to induce their own, hung on his every word. The content of his dreams were strikingly innocent—a female co-worker would give him a ride home and they'd hug. He'd wake up "shooting."

Ronald was highly active on the forum until 2013, when he fell in love and got married—something he'd longed for.

"I don't post here much after getting married, but I thought I'd let you all know that I had another wet dream this morning," reads one of his last posts, from 2003. "I dreamt I was holding my wife tightly, then I had several ejaculations. So I guess I can still get them, even though I regularly have sex with my wife now."

"This charged-up feeling while waiting on a wet dream is a constant companion, which makes me feel alive as a man from my head down to my smelly white socks." — Socks

Dickensen, an 18-year-old heading off to college at the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, posted regularly with updates personifying his penis, referring to it sometimes as "Him" with a capital H, the way pious people describe God. He wrote about his sexual frustration, and although he vehemently identified as straight, nearly every fantasy he described was about a man or a penis. Even in 2015, when many openly gay men use the site and are welcomed by the other users, it's still fairly common to see straight-identifying men report dozens of homoerotic dreams.

"It's not so much that they're all gay, but rather that they're all struggling with their own sexual identity," Brame explained. "I know plenty of guys who have bi-fantasies but in the cold light of day they don't want a dick staring them in the face. It's very different when you're scripting it. That's the power of fantasy."

A user called Socks, a playful 38-year-old who only briefly contributed to the forum, said he enjoyed the abstinence as much or even more than the wet dream it induced. After 21 days without masturbation (abbreviated on the forum as MB), Socks compared his penis to a garden hose surging with water while the nozzle is turned off.

"Not only does the 'plumbing' in my groin area feel backed up, it also seems as if the entire head of my penis is a lightning rod drawing stored up male energy from the electrical powerplant of my testicles to the tip of it, heh," he wrote. "This is what it's all about gentlemen. The BUZZ. Many would not understand why I choose to remain in a condition often labeled as uncomfortable and frustrating. All I know is that this charged-up feeling while waiting on a wet dream is a constant companion, which makes me feel alive as a man from my head down to my smelly white socks, hah hah. I'm going to the basement to lift weights now."

This archetype is particularly common on the modern Wet Dream Forum. Today, men describe a T-buzz (T for testosterone) that comes from having abstaining from masturbation. It makes them feel confident at work and when speaking with women. They report that their penis feels larger, more frequently filled with blood, and many describe the constant nagging arousal as more fulfilling than ejaculation.

Other men, who feel they are addicted to masturbation, treat the wet dream as an incentive to encourage prolonged abstinence. For these men, the forum is a support group. So many logs are filled with despairing men who've once again broken their fast, yelling, sometimes directly, at their penises, which they view like syringes permanently attached to their bodies.

"In a sense, we may be participating in something unique in the world," Texanguy wrote in the summer of 2003. "The internet is new enough that this may be the first time such a group has spent this much time communicating about this topic... I expect that we will all succeed in our quests for wet dreams. But whether we succeed or not, we are in a sense 'guinea pigs' in an historical event."

In 1852, Philip C. Van Buskirk, a 19-year-old sailor and drummer in the US Marines, began keeping a meticulous diary of his every ejaculation. Despite the fact that Van Buskirk left behind volumes of journals and recorded 244 wet dreams over half a decade (including an unmatched 69 in one year) he never wrote about the specifics of those dreams, according to B.R. Burg, who wrote the 1994 book An American Seafarer in the Age of Sail: The Erotic Diaries of Philip C. Van Buskirk.

Dreams in the Wet Dream Forum are, similarly, less important than the ejaculation itself. It's not uncommon for the men to describe their dreams, but they regularly go unmentioned, forgotten, or are vaguely recounted. Often, men describe dreams in which they're pissing—sometimes accompanied by a lucid thought that they're pissing the bed—but wake up realizing they've come. Others are strange and abstract: "I was a humongous fountain with a vertical tower (which was my penis). I saw the liquid coming out from the fountain, rhythmically," said Brahms, a Venezuelan living in London, who described wet dreams as the equivalent of a monogamous partner.

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Rarely do the dreamers describe sex with an otherwise unobtainable woman. I ran searches for mentions of the top Googled female celebrities during the years in which the forum has been active: No mention of Kardashians, Jenners, Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Aniston, Megan Fox, Jessica Alba, Natalie Portman, Halle Berry, or Kate Upton and dozens more. Beyoncé, the only exception, appears in only one dream.

Instead, the bulk of forum users focus on the physical act of coming. Congratulations, coupled with dancing smiley faces, come pouring in after any reported successful wet dream, and there seem to be a handful of users who are turned on by the act of wet dreamers describing the mess. More common than dream descriptions are pictures of cum-stained boxers.

When these first started appearing on the forum, users waxed poetic about them like blood-spatter analysts. Other forensic questions flood in after a successful wet dream. What position were you sleeping in? What did it smell like? Did you taste it? Was it sticky? Did it shoot out or just dribble? How much pre-cum do you produce? Did you "edge"—masturbate to the edge of ejaculation—before bed? What was your diet like the day before? What type of underwear did you have on? Are you circumcised? Polls about the sizes of one's cock pop up every few months. To my knowledge, none of these data points have led to any great revelations yet.

User Traveling Guy compiled data from users and found that dreams most commonly occur after about a month of abstinence. Many men, however, report hundreds of days of abstention without ever having a wet dream.

"Day 92... nothing," wrote Applesap, who's still never had a wet dream, in 2011. "And it makes me sad."

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In 2009, Jamie, a prolific poster since 2006 broke new ground: He captured his wet dream on video. By his account, it took hundreds of hours over dozens of nights to pull it off. In the video, he's wearing boxers, he pitches a tent, and then the boxers get increasingly wet. The forum went wild.

"You're a pioneer and a hero, at least among this forum," Focus wrote. "I know you may feel alone in this frontier, because it has never been done before, which also means you are the only person who has done it so far."

The post has garnered hundreds of replies with scrutiny rivaling the footage of the Kennedy assassination.

"The main ejaculation looks to start at 3:26, with large amounts of semen visibly flowing right through the underwear fabric," Focus wrote. "I counted an amazing 15 contractions and 15 spurts of ejaculate during the main ejaculation event, which mostly ended by 4:00. This was visibly a very large amount of semen, far more than the average man's ejaculation volume which is approximately 3 mls. I would estimate this was on the order of 8-10 mls."

"I thus still retain my prejudice: Underwear have affect on your ejaculation during a dream," Unionac wrote in one post.

"The duration of the main ejaculation, 34 seconds, was more than triple the length of the average waking orgasm, which is 10 seconds," wrote Focus.

Texanguy wrote a rousing speech, filled with his typical passion for wet dreams, explaining that it would serve as a recruiting tool for the uninitiated.

"All of this might help a guy start to see MB as inadequate and as impossible to give a truly good experience," he wrote. "If you want your body to go through the process of a WD, if you want the dream and long intense orgasms that go with it, if you want large amounts of semen to come out like that, if you want to wake up wet, happy, and excited with a smile on your face, if you want to happily think about your WD during the day, if you want to look forward to your next WD and many more after that, MB simply doesn't hack it."

Jamie was a little freaked out by everyone putting him "under a microscope" and generally unimpressed with the actual content of the footage.

"I don't even know if it was worth it after going through all that," he wrote. "I mean I kind of figured that the penis got erect and I already knew what that looked like and so add to that some wetness and that's about it. Not sure what else I was hoping for. I guess it was one of those things where you set a challenge like climbing a mountain and once you finally get there you think, Now what? and climb down again."

"Whether we succeed or not in our quests for wet dreams, we are in a sense 'guinea pigs' in an historical event." — Texanguy

When I first joined the forum, AGT, the admin, told me about an Active Members Private forum, for which a separate application had to be made. After reading literally thousands of posts in the general forum, which detailed how heavy everyone's balls felt, the slip-ups that led to masturbation, and rejoices for those who experienced their first wet dreams, I still felt as though something was lacking. Where was the concrete analyses of the cause and purpose of the wet dream? After more than a decade of data, there must be some distilled set of facts. I began to assume that those secrets were being discussed in the Active Members Private forum.

I considered creating a fake account and requesting access, but I didn't want to be skeevy, and maybe AGT could see my IP address. So I held off—until one day, apropos of nothing, AGT sent me a message: "I have added you to the AMP forum. It may help you in your quest."

The Active Members Private forum has 82 threads. In the first, AGT explains that it allows for more explicit content than the general forum: "Chaps, let's please try to keep this forum all about wet dreams as much as possible," he wrote. "I realize that some guys like showing their equipment, and would like to do so here, and I have no problem with showing, but let's not turn this part of the WDF to 'just another porno site.'"

Far and away, the most popular thread is Equipment Check v3.0, more than 100 self-portraits of cocks. The "biggest bush competition" is also popular. There are numerous posts about foreskin restoration, auto-fellatio, coregasms, and spontaneous ejaculations but very little additional knowledge about wet dreams. An exception are a handful of pretty incredible videos that capture what a penis looks like during a wet dream: It resembles one of those waving inflatable men, placed outside of car dealerships, that's been shot by poachers.

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After reading dozens of wet dream logs, I had to wonder if these men, whose fantasies were so unobtainable that they had to retreat to dreams to fulfill them, would further retreat into themselves. Was the Wet Dream Forum leading these men toward solitude, and away from healthy human interactions?

"I've met many men who were unhappy bachelors—after failed relationships, or losing a fiancée under some tragic circumstance, or it's never worked out for them and they retreat from sex in relationships," Brame said. "Because their comfort zone and what actually feels comfortable and makes them happy is being on their own. Is it wrong? Why?"

Ronald Reagan, for one, seems substantially more confident since joining the forum in 2011, when he was perennially late for work and second guessing his consumption of any remotely sexual content. Now, he's putting up numbers that are unprecedented in the modern wet dream era. He's having lucid wet dreams that involve partners—his early wet dreams, he complained, were lonely. Fans of his log come to gawk at his fecundity.

Very few men on the site have the same self-discipline. For the most part, they're single, masturbating every couple days, and starting over, frustrated.

There are a handful of cases who fall outside of the normal archetypes. There are the guys who come to the site because they can't stop having wet dreams and they're hoping to get advice. Instead, they get bombarded with questions about their diet, sleeping position, and choice of undergarments. One guy claims he is strapped into a chastity belt until he marries his fiancée. Another man, who asked that I not reveal his handle, is a "celibate, out boy-lover," and while that creeped me out, it's easy to imagine worse possible outcomes than using dreams to achieve some fulfillment of a fantasy that's completely unacceptable otherwise.

One man, Marriedbutnosex, loves his wife but—as his handle suggests—she's no longer interested in sex. It's not an overstatement, he said, to suggest that wet dreams have helped keep his marriage intact.

"After years of infrequent and disappointing sex, we mutually agreed to remove sex from our marriage," he said. "It has helped us grow closer and more intimate (kissing, hugging etc). Wet dreams provide me with a sexual outlet that is enjoyable and guilt free."

As Brame sees it, if it's inducing orgasms, it's a good thing.

"For now, all we know is that it's great to have orgasms," she told me. "If this makes you happy and you're handling your life, and you're not hurting anybody, then fuck the critics."

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