Chapter 10 - Venereal Diseases
Introduction to Venereal Diseases

10.5 SelfPollution/Masturbation

Self Pollution. Masturbation.

THERE, is probably no vice to which so many boys and young men, and even girls and young women, are addicted, and from which so many constitutions break down, as self pollution. Small boys and girls learn the vile practice of the larger ones at school, and generally continue it up to maturity, without the least suspicion that they are inflicting upon themselves either a moral or a physical injury.
This comes of the false modesty and bastard morality which withholds from the young all knowledge of the proper functions of their sexual organs, and of the inconceivable mischief resulting from their abuse. A gentleman of distinction lately said to me: 46 1 instruct my boys as faithfully on this subject as upon any other moral or physical question, and I tell my wife it is her duty to do the same with the girls." This is wise. Yet, how few parents ever speak to their boys or girls on the subject, to give them the least reason to suppose there is any better rule for their conduct than their own desires I

Symptoms. These are very numerous. The principal are, headache, wakefulness, restless nights, indolence, indisposition to study, melancholy, despondency, forgetfulness, weakness in the back and private organs, a lack of confidence in one's own abilities, cowardice, inability to look another full in the face, and, among females, hysterics, whites, and a desire for seclusion from society and solitude.
I have already spoken of the receptacles of semen, lying on each side of the prostate gland. From the fore part of these receptacles, the semen passes through two ducts, about a finger's breadth length, into the urethra or water pipe, just in front of the prostate. From excessive self pollution, these ducts become very irritable, and also debilitated and relaxed, so much so that they will not retain the semen; and during lascivious dreams, it flows off. These seminal losses are called "nocturnal emissions." So constant is the drain they keep up upon many young men who have abused themselves excessively, that the whole man, mentally, morally, and physically becomes a wreck. There are few objects more pitiable to behold than a young man in this condition, his nervous system feeble, tremulous, and broken; his memory weakened and fading out; his eye unsteady and incapable of looking a friend in the face; his loins and back weakened, giving him the feeble gait of old age; his once erect form cowed and bent; his high sense of manliness all oozed out of him; his mind taking up and dropping the simplest threads of thought, losing its way in the plainest paths of reflection, and often starting back affrighted at the glimpse of chaotic insanity opening before him, turning here and there for relief, but finding little hope of recovery, except in marriage, and yet knowing himself unfitted to be the husband of an intelligent woman!

Treatment. Every kind of treatment, no matter how judicious or well applied, will be unsuccessful, unless the vice which has produced the disease be absolutely and entirely abandoned. This is the first thing to be secured. It may be extremely difficult for the patient to do this, with his mental and moral nature all broken and in ruins, with no heart to feel, nor will to execute; and yet it must be done, or a cure cannot be effected.
To bring this about, everything must be done by the physician to strengthen the moral nature of the patient, and to raise his self respect and hope. The most careful directions must be given for restraining the imagination. The patient must be directed and encouraged to drive out from the mind, instantly, and upon all occasions, every lascivious thought; to cultivate the society of the most intellectual and virtuous females; to make himself busy with useful and, if possible, agreeable employment; to avoid solitude; and to sleep with some friend. He should sleep on a mattress, and never on feathers; always on the side, never on the back.

Where there is considerable debility, tonics will be required, as the mineral acids (60), (62), (78), and bitters (77), (67), (66), (59), and strychnine (83), (95), (85), and iron (80), (93), (72 ' ), (73), (71). In addition to some of the above preparations, the syrup of the hypophosphites should be taken for some time.
The food should be nutritious and easy of digestion, and the cold alkaline sponge bath should be taken once a day, with brisk rubbing; and the private parts should be washed daily with cold water, especially just before retiring.

In conclusion, I say emphatically to parents, do not let your sons and daughters remain ignorant on this subject. It is plainly your duty to enlighten and to warn them. It is a matter in which young persons are generally disposed to do right, if rightly instructed. Avail yourself of your right to give counsel, and, ff need be, to use authority.
Says Ware: , The deleterious, the sometimes appalling consequences of this vice, upon the health, the constitution, the mind itself, are some of the common matters of medical observation. The victims of it should know what these consequences are; for, to be acquainted with the tremendous evils it entails, may assist them in the work of resistance.
To you, parents, on whose shoulders is carried the weighty responsibility of rearing your children in a pure atmosphere, let me say that to shut your eyes against the probabilities of youth is an error and a sin. Let the mother learn to know the restlessness and activity of youth; let the father recall his early ambitions, his longing for excitement, and his reaching out after life and activity in various ways. Do not repress these natural instincts, but learn to guide them into proper channels. Keep at home the attractions of public places; have music and games, mirth and gayety; invent amusement and mirth, and banish dullness and apathy. Do not argue that your boy is better than other boys and your daughter superior to your neighbor's frivolous girls. The boys and girls guilty of this vice are somebody's children, and these somebody's children are nine to one your children. See that your children lead an active, physical life, that outdoor games and gymnasium exercises enter largely into their lives; keep them busy, give them something to do to occupy their attention beside their studies; let them study with a will when they study, and play equally hard when they play. Do not be afraid to talk on these matters with your children, and explain in a rational way what passion is., and how it is to be governed and how used.
If you have that unfortunate amount of prudery and false shame so common to man people, and feel you cannot talk with our children about such matters, send them to your family physician and let him have a plain honest talk with the children. , Well stated information never yet contributed to human inflammation.' Read them Storer, Ware and Wilder on I What Young People should Know,' and make them realize that a healthy knowledge is the best preventive against an unhealthy ignorance.' Do not wait tin the young have already grown up in the vice, your admonitions may then be too late, nor fancy your children have not been * thrown in with influences which corrupt, and that by broaching the subject to them you are informing them of a subject they may never otherwise have heard of. Remember the statement: 'whether or not we ought to hide this subject from the young, if we could, the truth is, we cannot ff we would."'
To you, young men, in particular, let me warn you against a seeming propriety on your part to keep your silence. If yon are given to the habit, however slightly, go to your father, your mother, your family doctor. Confession will strengthen your will and purpose to ?overcome the temptation. Do not lie to the family physician in his inquiries: he is your friend and wishes yon only success; he is acquainted with these ailments and knows your temptations; he appreciates and respects your noble desire to rid yourself of the evil.
Do not, above all else, read the numerous pamphlets on Sexual Debility, Lost Manhood, etc., or be duped into answering advertisements in the public prints offering to send you literature on the subject. No man can afford to send you free publications and postage stamps unless he sees as an outcome a fee at the end of the book in the shape of medicines and other promised help. Steer religiously clear of these smoothly written books and these specialists in the art of restoring lost manhood. Your experience with them will be much like the countryman with bunco steerers.
Make every honest endeavor to conquer an unruly passion while it is young, and the more readily conquerable, but never despair of being helped by suitable aid, however long the passion may have been victorious over you. Do not ascribe your weakness in fighting temptation to the Almighty,, the sins of your parents, or the example of your elders or associates, but go at the demon with a will and the fight is yours. Having conquered the enemy, the results of the pa.3ti can be overcome by a pure life and the dictates of your physician; nay, I may even add, Nature restores herself if only she can be assisted. In fact there is no specific for the troubles that arise front this vice. The only cure is to absolutely stop the habit and immediately thrust out all lascivious thoughts as soon as they enter the mind. Build up the strength and in time nature and marriage will do the rest.


Chordee. Painful erections of penis.

Cause, inflammation, usually gonorrhea.

Treatment. Aconite, 1 drop every hour; camphor in full doses; hot Sitz bath; suppositories of opium and belladonna. Usually disappears as causative disease clears up.

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