Some heavy issues being discussed here.
My story and self-view was heavily influenced by being incredibly late to mature (I did not hit puberty until 10th grade). During 7th and 8th grade, I was self-concsious but not hugely so as the only time I saw other naked men was during PE (physical education) time at the gym and there were a fair number of guys who also hadn’t hit puberty and met the twig and berry description.
Then in 9th grade I was sent to boarding school and lived in a dorm with open showers, no escape, and still sporting a hairless nub of a penis whereas almost everyone else by now had at least hit the early stages of puberty. I was also small physically (5 foot, 95 lbs) and the combination of the two led to a lot of derision and “pin dick” commentary from certain others in the dorm to the point where I tried to squeeze my less frequent-than-better-hygiene-would-dictate showers in an odd times, like during the middle of the day, when less people would be around. As for lining up for the morning shower rush — forget about it. As for confiding with anyone — friends, family, professional — about this issue, you had to be joking!
The funny thing is I’ve grown to 6’2 200 lbs (some of that weight-lifting enhanced). Post puberty and more recently PE have enhanced that nub to 7” bp X 5.125” g plus given it a more hirsute appearance. Those all around dimensions put me at above average by varying degrees, and I certainly feel a lot better about myself now. I suspect I can now easily peer over the balding heads of many of my boarding school tormentors and if we were to ever have occasion to share an open shower I suspect I would measure up quite well there too.
But still even with 20 years of passage since that time and a better view of myself those memories of shame and fear have never fully faded away. That’s what has me interested in PE and what keeps me sticking at it even though I have been a slow gainer.
There are many others on the Board with maybe different stories but similar feelings. Those are united factors. So keep the faith PE brothers, bainsh those negative thoughts and experiences to the basement of your mind but keep enough of a memory so that your PE commitment stays strong.