Illustration by Dave van Patten

Why Do Guys Always Announce When They’re Going to Cum?

It turns out there are many reasons, and they’re all essential and good

Even though there are some obvious signs during intercourse that a dude is about to blow his load — increased thrust speed, labored breathing, that thing where they put the entire weight of their body on your body — it seems like men everywhere usually announce the event verbally, too. “I’m gonna cum!” all members of the male species utter just before ejaculating.

But what purpose does this curious habit serve? Is it necessary? Does it benefit the greater good? Do women do it, too?

We aren’t the first people to wonder why this is a thing and why it’s such a pervasive thing. Urban Dictionary defines the phrase “I’m gonna cum!” as one “used during the act of sex or masturbation, usually exclusively used by men.” On Girls Ask Guys, a woman wonders why all the men she’s slept with and why all the male porn stars she’s watched announce they’re going to ejaculate. A bodybuilding forum polled its members about when is the best time to announce you’re about to cum, and 47 percent said, “When I can feel it building up.” On Datehookup.com, a woman asked:

I have noticed that the man I am seeing just about every time says ‘I’m gonna cum’ a few moments before he actually does. Not complaining, I like it, it turns me on even more. Do guys say this to turn the woman on more or is just more of an involuntary proclamation?

Here at the MEL offices, we decided to do a three-way cum chat between a straight man (John), a gay man (C. Brian) and a straight woman (Tracy) to get to the bottom of this cum-nomenon (sorry).

Tracy Moore: So why do all guys say “I’m gonna cum” right before they cum?

C. Brian Smith: Speaking for myself, in the moment, it’s almost reflexive, similar to how one might verbalize hunger pains or fatigue.

John McDermott: That’s kind of a leading question, and presupposes that yes, men do always yell that right before they bust a nut. But do they? Having never been cummed on or in, I can’t speak to its prevalence, but yes, I have said it before. (I’m not sure how often, though.)

C. Brian Smith: Having been both cummed on and in, I can, and I appreciate the heads-up.

Tracy: I would say in my personal experience and anecdotally from others, they all do. A few exceptions here and there, sure, but overwhelmingly men are a cum-announcing species. It’s like — stand back — man about to cum.

John: That should be put on a construction warning sign.

C. Brian: I think there are several things at play here: One is giving the partner an opportunity to object, i.e., “No, don’t yet.” (Incidentally, that’s never happened; the response has always been in the affirmative.)

Tracy: Guy: “I’m gonna cum!” Other person: “GRRREAT!”

C. Brian: There’s also the matter of, “Watch out below!” Close eyes/mouth, or open them, depending on your preference.

Tracy: That’s the courtesy announcement. I will be now squirting a substance into/near/around/on you.

C. Brian: Finally, you can’t discount narcissism. “How could someone not be interested in what’s about to happen?”

Tracy: It is, after all, the whole end game, right?

John: Women have definitely told friends of mine to stop after hearing this information, presumably because they wanted the sexual experience to last longer. And by friends I mean myself.

Men, though, definitely do it as a courtesy — an opportunity to let the woman tell them where she’d like the cum dispensed. Which I think is only polite.

C. Brian: Who says chivalry is chauvinistic?

Tracy: I get the courtesy announcement if it’s also to ask where to put it.

C. Brian: Yeah, that’s hot I think. Like, “Do it here, XYZ!”

John: I usually hear it as “DON’T do it here!”

Tracy: “Not on my cashmere sweater!” “I just got a blowout!” “This couch isn’t Scotchgard-ed!”

C. Brian: With women, isn’t there an added element of, “Make sure you pull out”?

Tracy: But that’s a whole other thing, the “Can I cum inside you?” question.

John: Well, if the guy announces and the woman says nothing, is that a tacit approval to cum inside her? Like, “Go ahead, I’m on birth control.” I think a lot of guys take it as that.

Tracy: I can’t imagine a woman wouldn’t respond to that question immediately.

John: But when a man announces, it’s sometimes hard to put the brakes on that train.

Tracy: But you’d pull out rather than risk it if she had a speech impediment.

C. Brian: Gay sex almost always includes a condom, in my experience, so that’s kind of a moot point for me. That said, I’ve definitely worded it as, “You’re going to make me cum.” In which case, I view it as a compliment.

Tracy: I think the women who announce it do so in order to ensure that their partner won’t stop what they’re doing and mess up them actually cumming. Or to turn you on. Possibly a signal for you to finish up as well, like that study that women make more noise — “copulatory vocalizations” — when they’re ready for you to finish so you’ll hurry up.

John: I can confirm that it’s hot and reassuring to hear a woman say she’s going to cum.

C. Brian: Ditto for gays.

John: A lot of straight dudes can’t jerk off to porn without the noise.

Tracy: If she doesn’t tell you she’s about to climax, so many guys are like… “Well… did you?”

John: That’s always a fun question. And then you go through some intense calculus as to whether she’s lying to you or you’re just paranoid and insecure.

Tracy: So we agree this is a very useful behavior in men and women, gay and straight. Cumming must be announced, and should be announced.

C. Brian: Declared, even.

Tracy: For the good of society. It’s the ultimate decency. The better angels of our nature.

C. Brian: Now, one distinction here is in the case of premature ejaculators. I was with a guy once who told me he came “10 minutes ago” but didn’t want to disappoint me. It felt a little like I wasn’t invited to the party.

Tracy: I feel like when this happens, you can feel their dick isn’t as hard but they’re still going and you don’t want to just stop and be like, “Hey, why we bullshitting?” Like they think maybe she won’t notice. She noticed.

John: Guys do that. They hope they can wait out their refractory period, and their boner will come back strong in no time and they can hump their way through it.

Tracy: So why does every time a guy says he’s going to cum does he sound surprised? Does it really sneak up on you every time? It’s like urgent surprise.

C. Brian: That’s what I’m saying about the reflexive nature. It’s almost like it startles you, like a sloppy sneeze.

John: Well, when you’re jerking off, it’s easier to know when because you’re in control. It is more of a surprise during sex with another person.

Tracy: The “I’m gonna cum!” voice is also identical in every man. I bet you could record every man saying it, and it’d be indistinguishable. Here’s where we need a supercut of men saying, “I’m gonna cum!” Too bad it doesn’t exist.

C. Brian: I feel like saying “I’m gonna cum” also shows vulnerability.

Tracy: Submission almost.

C. Brian: Right.

Tracy: I do note that when guys don’t say it, I end up wondering when it’s ever going to happen.

C. Brian: Here’s a question: Is it always, “I’m gonna cum”? Or is it ever said in other ways? It’s an interesting devotion to vernacular.

Tracy: It’s always, “I’m gonna cum.”

C. Brian: Not even “I’m going to cum.” Too clunky.

Tracy: It’s never, “I’m gonna bust a nut!” Or: “I’m about to splooge!”

“I’m about to launch this hyperwad into space!” has also never come out.

John: “My ejaculation is imminent.”

Tracy: “Bingo!”

C. Brian: “You ready for this?”

John: “Showtime!”

C. Brian:Hey now!”

Tracy: There’s no better phrase than “I’m gonna cum.” Only thing shorter would just be “cumming.” Which would be weirdly efficient.

C. Brian: Robotic, even.

Tracy: I think we’ve agreed that in this case, the status quo is actually correct, good and efficient. We have evolved to precisely the point we should have.

C. Brian: Four syllables.

Tracy: What unites us all is, “I’m gonna cum.”

John: I see no need to change it. Now, what about the sounds a man makes immediately after? URGHDFDFHIRRHGGH.