Size queens the world over are feeling the shaft of reality this week, as sexuality researchers at Indiana University released a chilling report that claims the average erect penis size (of a small control group, thank god) is actually much smaller than previously inflated national averages—5.57 inches, to be exact.
Researchers say they believe this to be the most accurate collection of data because they have also unearthed another shocking truth about the flaws of previous studies suggesting the average penis size is much larger: Men often lie about their penis size.
Dr. Debby Herbenick, co-Director of the Center for Sexual Health Promotion at Indiana University, says that men are often required to report their own measurements in most studies related to penis size because getting a boner in front of a room full of doctors measuring your penis is easier said than done. Though she didn’t personally measure all 1,661 men included in her study (sucks to be her), she came up with a crafty way to avoid the tragic over-reporting:
“Unlike most previous studies of self-reported penis size, they had good reason to report accurate data to us because we were using their size data to match them to a condom that was sized to fit their erect penis. If they reported a bigger-than-reality size to us, they would get a baggier condom. If they reported a smaller-than-reality size to us, the condom would be too tight.”
It makes sense that those involved reported their penis size correctly in order to essentially win a free custom-fit condom, because the only thing worse than a baggy condom is a baggy condom you got for free that could have been a beautiful, custom-made condom if only you were honest. Sheesh.
Don’t worry, though! There’s still hope if you’re feeling blue about living in the land of five-inchers. Dr. Herbenick also found that men were more likely to have a larger erection when receiving oral sex than they would via self-stimulation. That means no matter what your penis size, the man on the other end of it is enjoying it at its best.