Why does my erect penis point in a different direction when I’m standing versus laying down?

Last updated on August 20, 2020


I came across your web site after much research trying to find an answer to my question. I understand that your web site is primarily directed at teenage males, but I hope you can help me nevertheless given that I’ve struggled to find any other web site remotely helpful. I’m a 24-year-old male and still a virgin. When I gain an erection whilst standing up, my penis points outward and upwards as per normal. However, when I lay flat on my back it points in a direction parallel to my stomach. There is no elevation despite being erect. Is that uncommon? Because I’m still a virgin, I’m unsure of what is considered normal and what isn’t. I can’t seem to find any information about this elsewhere while I’m rather embarrassed to consult anyone about it. And if I were to I wouldn’t know whether to see my general practitioner or a urologist or anyone else? I hope you can advise me as I’ve been very concerned about this for a long period of time. I don’t want to get to the stage where I fall in love and am about to lose my virginity but cannot perform properly because of this.


I must admit that I really don’t like the phrase “lose my virginity.” So many use it to mean the first time they commit fornication. I would hope that you and others who have remained chaste do so until after their wedding. And then you will not have lost anything and gain far more than you might expect. But that is just a side issue.

The angle of your erections is caused by a ligament called the fundiform. One end is attached to interior abdominal muscles well below your belly button. The ligament goes down in front of your pelvic bone in the center and then splits in two to go around the base of the penis where it rejoins underneath the penis. The fundiform ligament is not attached to the penis. It forms a sling that cradles the base of your penis.

The fundiform ligament tends to be tight or short when you are young and so erections are at an upward angle because the ligament is holding the base of the penis at an upward angle. But as time goes on, it becomes stretched and the angle becomes lower. The penis then either points outward or downwards. Some men start out with longer fundiform ligaments and so they never have upward pointing erections.

Notice that the ligament is only attached above the penis. This means it keeps the erect penis from going down past its limits, but the erect penis is free to move upwards. Therefore when you are standing your penis is stands a bit outward from your body as the penis lays in its cradle, but when you are lying down it just falls against your body.

Because of the design, there is enough freedom of movement to allow a man’s penis to line up at the correct angle to match his wife’s vagina. If anything, a man with a tight fundiform has a bit more awkwardness until the ligament gets stretched enough, which doesn’t take very long.

In regards to the web site, while the primary intended audience is teenage boys, I’m am willing to answer questions from young men as well.