Dear Em & Lo: Does a “Wet Spot” in His Boxers Mean He Cheated?

Dear Em & Lo,

Last night my boyfriend went out with a bunch of his friends, including his ex. Their friend group is known to engage in apparently meaningless sexual activities with one another other on nights out. At around 2 in the morning he came to my apartment completely wasted, with a rather large semen stain on his boxers. Does this necessarily mean he had been doing something or had been given a hand job, or can these just appear?

— C.S.I. Date Night

Dear C.S.I. Date Night,

Um. Wow. That phrase “If it walks like a duck” comes to mind. Sure, a semen stain in a vacuum could have an innocent explanation — maybe your boyfriend fell asleep in the cab ride home and had a wet dream? Maybe he got really turned on during a round of beer pong? But this semen stain isn’t exactly in a vacuum, is it? There’s the ex, there’s the casual sex friend group, there’s the two in the morning — and most importantly, there’s the wasted boyfriend hanging out with an ex and a casual sex friend group at two in the morning.

But still, we’d hate to leap to conclusions. After all, sometimes a semen stain is just a semen stain. And some guys probably do explode at the brush of an elbow or an accidental glimpse of cleavage on public transportation. But here’s something we do know: It’s perfectly within your rights as this dude’s girlfriend to say, “Hey Monica Lewinksy, what’s up with the semen stain?” Whether or not you believe his answer is entirely up to you.

Crime scene investigators,

Em & Lo



  1. Define “rather large”… and yes I’m serious.

    When a man gets erect there is seminal fluid for lubrication (I’ll assume we all know this). It’s more than a few drops, but much less than a full load; and you can get that just getting “excited” (think strip clubs) without being full blown cheating.

    Of course if you truly mean “rather large” then something got him not just a bit excited; but off… that’s a different discussion.

    Before giving advice I’d think you’d need to know the extent of the staining here. Given the story something got him hot & bothered; but I’m not positive from the description more occurred.

  2. Re: asking about it

    Ever see that Kids in the Hall sketch?

    GF: Have you ever cheated on me?
    MarkMcKinney: No, baby, of course not.
    GF: But you’d admit it if you did, right?
    MarkMcKinney: Gosh no!

  3. Agree that the line of questioning can come to no good. It should be obvious whether it’s semen or urine. If it’s definitely semen, at least he didn’t ejaculate inside anyone or anything… In which case, can the LW cope if the worst case was a bit of dry humping between old friends?

    Maybe next time she should try to get invited along when the ex is there and judge the situation for herself.

  4. What Johnny said. Are you absolutely sure it was semen? Because when I read the beginning of this, my first thought was that Mr. Wasted got urine on his boxers while taking a drunken leak.

  5. By the way, no, in most grown men sperm stains can’t just appear out of nowhere. The last time I had an accident of that nature I was about 14, and I was asleep.

    If your BF were the type to blow it spontaneously, you’d know that about him by now.

  6. Are you sure it was a semen stain? Did you inspect it that closely, or did you just feel a wet spot? If it was just a wet spot, it could have been pee. Sometimes you’re in a hurry, you give 3 shakes instead of the usual 5, and next thing you know you’ve got an uncomfortably cold wet spot.

  7. In my five decades on this planet I have NEVER seen a guy who was out creeping in this type of situation admit it when questioned by the GF. Asking is useless, he will just lie and otherwise obfuscate. Either she’s okay with his behavior or she’s not.

    Even if nothing sexual happened, his behavior is not that of someone who wants to be in a committed, monogamous relationship.

  8. Come up with one good thing that can occur from this type of questioning. No hurry; I’m patient.

  9. “It’s perfectly within your rights as this dude’s girlfriend to say, ‘Hey Monica Lewinksy, what’s up with the semen stain?'”

    Seriously great way to set the tone. It’s got a healthy enough dose of “anyone in their right mind would be suspicious,” with enough ironic/sardonic humor to take the sting out of it. It lets him know he’d better take the question seriously, but that despite your better judgement you’re still going to give him a little benefit of the doubt.

    I agree that chances are very low that a semen stain could be completely random. There is a chance he was so loaded he started rubbing one out, solo, on the way home. Same if he felt himself getting wound up in the party and excused himself to ease the tension, also solo. Which in most relationships isn’t cheating at all. Otherwise? It’ll have to be a very good story or even I wouldn’t believe it. 🙂


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