Orgasm is the sexual carrot. It’s the big bang in our tiny universe. Feeling desire is exquisite but pining without satisfaction for the long run is frustrating. Without it, a woman will stop becoming easily aroused. Her desire will extinguish. No big bang means sex is no big deal.
I’m not talking about the occasional night when she says, “Listen baby–I’m not in the mood myself, but I’d love to make you happy.” Overall, it’s a woman’s prerogative to decide if this time she wants a climax. It’s true that sometimes women still want the closeness that comes with intercourse. It’s also true that many women don’t match their husbands appetite for sex so she chooses a “quickie” without her own wish for release as a way to keep him satisfied between more deeply reciprocal feelings.
Here are seven reasons why don’t women come:
1) Orgasm isn’t enough. Even though my post is about how essential orgasm is to women’s libido, she wants something more than mechanical release. Just rubbing bodies together to make fire doesn’t light up her mind. Sex for women is holistic. She wants emotional and spiritual connection too and if the lovemaking pattern is simply animal, it’s unappealing–she stops trying, and her attitude devolves to “let’s get it over with.”
2) First-timer. If she can walk, by and large, you can take it to the bank that she can climax. Most women learn how to climax by themselves, some haven’t. In sex therapy, this is often resolved in two sessions or less, just by talking through the mechanics of the body.
3) Impatience. She expects one too soon. Heterosexual women compare themselves to their male partners who can often climax in about 5 minutes total. Anxiety about “receiving pleasure” or “taking too long” creeps into their head and keeps them from ascending arousal. The very fear of not getting there keeps her in the foothills and away from her peak (just as men with premature ejaculation can bring on a too soon climax by worrying.) The average women needs 20 minutes of low intensity arousal–dancing, compliments, undressing, lying naked combined with 20 minutes of contiguous clitoral stimulation.
4) Vaginal obsession. Only 15 to 20 percent of all women climax through penetration only. About 100 percent of all women can climax with clitoral stimulation. As one woman said, “My clitoris is the center of my world!”
Male patients tell me they think that the vagina is like an inside out penis believing it’s the place where a woman really like most stimulation. And women do like intercourse, but penetration alone probably isn’t the way she normally climaxes (bully for you if you can though!). Her vaginal G-spot may have extraordinary sensitivity, but no matter what the movies or pornography may show, women aren’t happy with thrusting, thrusting, thrusting.
Foreplay for a woman is the center ring–it’s where the action happens for her. It is essential even for women who can climax during intercourse. In fact, “foreplay” is really a misnomer because she doesn’t consider it a prelude to the better part…it is the best part.
5) Male misinformation. Most men desperately want their partner to have an orgasm. Some though might have the mistaken idea that women don’t feel as strongly about sexual pleasure as they do. A buddy of mine said his wife didn’t orgasm and he had heard some women just didn’t. Or a man may feel inadequate thinking his penis isn’t enough. Several male clients have said defensively, “None of my previous 30 lovers needed to be touched and they all came” (Need I quote faking it statistics in hook-ups?). A few do not know where the clitoris is. Many rely on porn as their best teaching source and tune out their lover’s pleas for more touching and gentleness. Hardly any male clients I’ve known have read up to become proficient at foreplay and depend instead on locker-room intel.
6) He pressures her. On the other hand, men can feel that her orgasm is his badge of honor. She begins to feel that he’ll be disappointed if she doesn’t come. Even though their sexual appetites are different, he holds her to an impossible standard. He wants sex frequently but demands that she “want it” as much as he does, not accepting compromises like quickies, oral sex or manual stimulation as gifts of love to meet his need.
One patient I knew accused his wife of not loving him–proof of which was her inability to “let go” with an orgasm. The weight of their mutual anxiety had him ending love-making sessions prematurely and angrily, saying, “I could tell you’re just not into it.” It became a toxic pattern and I doubted that many women could have climaxed under his angry, watchful eye.
7) Medicine and Menopause. Antidepressants especially the SSRI class (like Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa) all diminish desire and orgasmic ability in women. Even men with the benefit of overriding testosterone can struggle similarly if on these medications. Breast cancer patients are instantly thrown into menopause with chemotherapy and often not allowed estrogen to counteract dry vulvas and vaginas; even touching can be painful.
Normal aging hormonal changes can occasionally make orgasm more difficult and change mountains to molehills. If all the stimulation in the world can’t get her there; her drive to try seriously declines.
Link for more help from Laurie Watson with SexTherapy in Raleigh, Cary, Greensboro and Chapel Hill, NC. Laurie’s book Wanting Sex Again is available on Amazon!