'Sementics' and the Age-Old Ejaculate Argument

by Jim Gladstone

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Tuesday September 7, 2021
Originally published on August 28, 2021

'Sementics' and the Age-Old Ejaculate Argument
  (Source:Icon Male)

"Here's a fun fact," says 35-year-old Nick Fitt, "I'm one of those people who don't like cum on me. Especially my face. It's just horrible to me. I don't know why."

Fitt is hardly alone. While such disgust is rarely discussed, semen is a surprisingly polarizing topic among gay men. So perhaps such a frank acknowledgment from Fitt — the star of dozens of gay porn videos from Icon Male Studios and winner of the gay entertainment industry's 2020 Grabby Award for Best Versatile Performer — will help encourage more open communication.

According to Guy Baldwin, a Los Angeles psychotherapist who has been practicing for over 40 years and has a predominantly queer clientele, "Not all of my clients bring the subject up, but among the ones who do, there's a really wide range of feelings. Some guys are extremely averse, particularly if it gets near their mouth. On the other hand, there are guys who really relish cum."

Fantasy vs. Reality

Fantasy vs. Reality
Nick Fitt  (Source: Icon Male)

Baldwin explains that like penis size, when it comes to ejaculatory volume, many people have convinced themselves that the more the manlier.

"As a man ages, the quantity of his ejaculate diminishes," says Baldwin. "That's actually a source of depression for some men." Although "manliness" is very much a psychological and social construct, preconceptions can undeniably impact the types of sex we want to have.

Making matters even more complex, explains Fitt (who is also a production manager at Icon and its affiliate production companies, both gay and straight), is the fact that data analytics reveal that while attitudes toward cum vary when it comes to actually having sex, in the context of viewing porn virtually all men like to see semen."

"Seeing a big load is hot. The further it shoots, the hotter it is," he says. "Even when someone
takes a load up the ass in a video, lots of guys want to see it pushed out in a creampie. The fantasy in your head can be different than what you want to do in real life. I like watching it, too. I just don't like getting it all over me."

Given performers' varying attitudes, Fitt says that in choosing participants for videos, "I try to typecast. If you don't like getting cum on you, I don't want to put you in a facial scene. In Icon videos, we want things to look natural. Homemade amateur videos are one of the things guys like to watch these days because the sex feels real. We want our videos to seem that real, but with studio lighting and technical skills."

In keeping with the effort to balance fantasy with realism, Fitt explains that Icon never uses artificial stunt cum, like the emulsifier methylcellulose, which other production companies sometimes use to boost apparent semen volumes.

Fitt selects guys who will genuinely enjoy what they're doing with each other in a scene, but as both an accommodating lover and professional sex worker, he says he's occasionally been willing to "take one for the team."

Once, when filming with ex-boyfriend Clark Davis as his scene partner, the director asked if Fitt would be on the receiving end of a facial. "That wasn't anything we ever did at home," Fitt recalls, "But I did it as kind of a treat for Clark. He's like nine inches and always shoots a huge load, and it got all over my face and hair. They didn't cut immediately after he came, and I was lying on the floor, dry heaving and thinking, 'When are we gonna be done?

Feel Your Feelings

Feel Your Feelings
Deangelo Jackson  (Source: Noir Male)

Baldwin points out that semen can have a range of meanings for different people — even opposite meanings.

"Some men want their partners to see them cum because it makes the partner feel like they've been successful. Let's them see that they've pleased him sexually." On the other hand, Baldwin continues, "Many guys who are sexually dominant view their cum as a way of marking the other person, being in control of him."

Sometimes consciously and sometimes subconsciously, many gay men enjoy rubbing cum into their skin, swallowing it, or receiving it anally as a way of incorporating or ingesting their partner. "If you swallow someone's cum," says Baldwin, "that person literally becomes a part of you for a while."

This isn't to say that not wanting cum in your mouth indicates any lack of affection. "Some people just don't like the way it tastes," Baldwin says. Or assume they don't.

[READ MORE: Can the gay adult film industry solve its race problem?]

The taste of semen can vary wildly from salty to sweet to bitter to metallic, even across ejaculations from a single man. In addition, it can be affected by factors including diet, alcohol intake and tobacco use. Nonetheless, initial impressions can have an impact for a lifetime. "If your first experience was a negative one," says Baldwin, "it may still effect what you think later in adulthood."

Baldwin also notes that if a bed partner rushes off for a cum rag after taking your load on his face or torso, it's unfair to assume that he's in some way psychologically repulsed. "Cum has a pH," Baldwin says. "Depending on your semen and your partner's physical constitution, it can produce an irritating burning sensation on the skin."

Maybe you have a physical or psychological intolerance toward cum. Or perhaps you are altogether turned on by it. In any case, your preferences are worth discussing with sex partners to avoid misunderstandings and have more mutually satisfying experiences.

Good communication is paramount because there's no normal to judge things against here. You can't assume your partner's views on the subject are aligned with your own. Logic has little to do with whether one loves loads or spurns sperm.

"As in much of human sexuality," says Baldwin. "There doesn't have to be a rationale."

Jim Gladstone is a San Francisco-based writer and creative strategist.