Decades ago, I was interviewed on the topic of women faking orgasms. I estimated that 50 percent sometimes did.
So I was tickled to find an August 2014 survey done by the Kinsey Institute, a highly reputable source of sexual information, that found 56 percent of the respondents had faked orgasm.
There are so many reasons why women do this. Some make me unhappy as a psychologist and sex therapist, and some of them make a bit of sense. But my take home message is this: Women, if you are having sex in a long term relationship, there are long-term advantages to not faking.
Some of the most common reasons I have heard for faking orgasms include:
1. “I was with a new partner and I just couldn’t get there. I wanted him to stop.”
2. “I kept asking and asking for what I wanted and it did no good, so I just gave up and faked, just to not make a fuss.”
3. “Intercourse was starting to hurt, so I just faked an orgasm so he would stop.”
4. “Nothing works to give me an orgasm. I fake so my partner will finish.”
Let’s start with the last item first. Women, if you don’t know your own recipe for orgasm, the first order of business is to discover what it is.
In this modern age of young women dressing scantily — think Miley Cyrus — it’s not at all unusual to find young and old women who have no idea where their clitoris (the site of female pleasure) is. If you don’t, you need to find out.
Number three on the list also concerns me. If you’re feeling pain during sex, it’s fine to ask your partner to stop. If you don’t have the heart to tell him why, and you have to fake orgasm once to get him to stop, fine.
But if you’re having pain often during sex, you have to find out what’s going on. Don’t routinely fake orgasms in order to stop painful sex. Figure out why the sex is painful! Are you having intercourse before you are lubricated? You can always use extra lubrication.
You can also read a book called “When Sex Hurts: A Woman’s Guide to Banishing Sexual Pain” to get more help in figuring out what you should do next.
But if you aren’t aroused before you have intercourse with a man routinely, get curious about whether you are getting the kinds of touching you will need to actually enjoy intercourse.
If you are a straight woman having sex with a man, in the beginning of a relationship there is a very good chance that he will not know how to give you pleasure. Men’s sexual templates are very different from women’s. Men and women like different kinds of touch, in different intensities, and in a different order.
There is a huge variation in what women enjoy sexually. But there is a much larger variation between what the average woman wants and needs sexually and what the average man thinks of as pleasurable sex.
I want to encourage you to gather up your courage and learn your recipe for orgasm, by yourself, and then communicate to your partner.
If you fake orgasm with a man, you’re not teaching him what you want. And what’s the point of that?
Posts by Dr. Aline Zoldbrod
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