Interpreting experiences of female orgasm

When a man is stimulated sexually by a partner he finds it difficult to avoid becoming aroused. Similarly, if a woman’s response to penile thrusting (or any other physical stimulation technique) was automatic then women would presumably be unable to avoid becoming aroused whatever their conscious desires.

So in the movie ‘Swordfish’ (2001) Hugh Jackman hacks into the US Department of Defence, while threatened at gun point and seriously distracted by a hooker sucking him off. This scene simply would not work if the roles were reversed – quite apart from the fact that few top hackers are women!

“I only ever orgasm with a partner through oral sex and only if he’s really good at it. Lots of my girlfriends claim they come during intercourse but to be honest, I don’t believe them. I’m sexually educated and have a high, healthy libido and if I don’t have vaginal orgasms, I can’t see why they would.” (p102 Hot Sex 1998)

If only we could all apply such good common sense! We have very few channels for sharing our sexual experiences. Sometimes we assume that others must experience real life quite differently to ourselves even though there is no logical reason why they should. Just remember that bluffers, fakers and sex surveys do not provide reliable sex information.

“Read all the sex surveys you want but you still won’t really know what other people do in bed because what people say and what people do are two totally different things.” (p275 Hot Sex 1998)

The sexual fantasy view of female sexuality

When I have tried to talk to others about sex (not as a teenager but as a mature woman), I have been shocked by how defensive people can be. I am very happy for women who say they have orgasmic sex from day one.

But this is not the case for all women. Don’t get me wrong – I would love to believe that couples can enjoy the mutual and easy sexual pleasure portrayed in porn movies and erotic novels. It’s just that, for me, reality never matched up and I think it is more useful to work with reality rather than hanker after some impossible-to-achieve fantasy.

Sexual ego is harmful if it prevents us from keeping an open mind and being willing to learn from our real life sexual experiences. As soon as I experienced a lack of arousal during sex with a partner, I suspected that descriptions of women’s ability to orgasm easily during sex must be fictitious. So why have women not stood up and said:

“But that’s ridiculous. My body and brain just do not react like that!”

One obvious reason is personal embarrassment. Another is that, although as heterosexual women our physical responses must be similar, our interpretation of those experiences can be quite different depending on our attitude and expectations.

Finally we are, often subconsciously, guilty of becoming defensive of our sexual fantasies and sexual egos. We cannot accept the facts even when they are laid out before us. The concept of ‘that’s just the way it is – take it or leave it’ does not appeal.

“Many males are disappointed after marriage to find that their wives are not responding regularly and are not as interested in having as frequent sexual contact as they, the males, would like to have; and a great many of the married females may be disappointed and seriously disturbed when they find that they are not responding in their coitus, and not enjoying sexual relations as they had anticipated they would.

…in view of the diverse pre-marital backgrounds of the spouses in the average marriage, it is not surprising that they sometimes find it difficult to adjust sexually. It is MORE surprising that so many married couples are EVER able to work out a satisfactory sexual arrangement.” (p520 Sexual behavior in the human female 1953)

Unfortunately, sex advice for women is often misleading because, for the most part, sex experts deal with sexual dysfunction and young people’s ignorance of the basic sexual facts. In fact, there is no intentional campaign to disseminate misinformation but simply a lack of understanding in an intensely personal area of our lives.

Excerpt from Jane’s book Ways Women Orgasm (2011)

8 COMMENTS

  1. I have been asking women about orgasm with a lover for around 20 years now. Most refuse to comment. Personally I don’t believe such orgasms exist. They appear to be just male fantasies. Even if I ask so-called experts, women cannot explain them in a logical way. It’s my research – asking women about orgasm. Men talk about female orgasm openly & easily – but it’s all fantasy.

  2. I think you should go to PubMed to look at the actual research.

    You are correct in the fact that more men think their partner has had an orgasm through intercourse than their female partners report, which means either the man fantasizes his partner is having an orgasm or the partner is faking an orgasm.

    About 20% of women report they experience orgasm with intercourse some or all of the time.

    The clitoris is now known to have extensions that go deep into the body and rest near the vagina, so it seems that in some small number of women, the vibration of these extensions may be contributing to orgasm during intercourse. The penis also pulls on the labia while thrusting, which can cause thenprepuce to rub over the clitoris, producing orgasm.

    I disagree that female orgasm with intercourse doesn’t exist, having experienced it myself, however, it is a much rarer phenomenon than realized.

  3. Intercourse only lasts as long as a man has an erection. No one can orgasm from stimulation that they cannot control. We need stimulation to continue until we orgasm. It is then preferable that stimulation ceases.

    There are very few women who claim to orgasm with a lover. This is political – based on emotional beliefs – rather than scientific. Defensiveness & silence are the products of enormous pressure from men for women to say they orgasm with a lover. Women do not masturbate by stimulating the vagina – an unbroken hymen was evidence of this in the past.

    The corpora cavernosa (within the shaft of the penis) are within the internal clitoral organ. We orgasm by massaging the blood flow in the erectile organ. Intercourse is just the penis prodding a cavity.

    Women cannot have evolved a capacity to orgasm that does not exist in the male. The phallus is common to men & women as is the physiology of orgasm. These are the facts.

    There are no research findings to support the current emotional beliefs. This is just sexual ignorance – men want to reassure themselves that women want intercourse. No wonder sexual assault thrives. It’s a sexual come-on (invitation) then women complain.

    Kinsey found that women’s orgasm claims made no difference to their enthusiasm for sex. Pretty clear evidence that women mistake sensual & emotional sensations for orgasm. Can you name any female erotic turn-ons with a lover???

  4. Clearly you have given this a lot of thought. I wish I had time to engage further. I think you might enjoy reading “Becoming Cliterate” by Dr. Laurie Mintz, it is written about orgasm from a feminist perspective. Thank you for the work you are doing.

  5. Over 20 years I have found that the vast majority of women refuse to comment on sex or orgasm.

    Only a handful of women claim to orgasm with a lover, typically sex therapists trained in male emotional beliefs. These women are always intent on establishing that they conform to male standards of sexual ‘normality’.

    There have been no women who are interested in discussing eroticism or turn-ons. This is the political nature of sexology, which is basically male propaganda telling women that they should want intercourse as much as men do.

    Men want to be reassured of a sexual outlet – this is men’s emotional insecurity. Sex is much much more important to men & most of my fans are men. Thank God men want to discuss the topic!