Mind the Orgasm Gap: Why Do Women Have Fewer Orgasms than Men?

Most of us have had “bad sex”. That’s code for sex where your clitoris is treated like the ex at a wedding – ignored, frustrated and wondering why it’s there.

It’s a widespread problem, according to research published by Public Health England last week. The study found 42% of millennial women aged 25-34 experience a “lack of sexual enjoyment”.

From experience, I have found this particularly affects heterosexual couples as sex typically finishes when the man does.

The Problem: A Man’s Orgasm is More Important

If you want proof that there is an orgasm gap, consider the way heterosexual sex finishes.

Luckily, I’ve had good sex with partners who made me come within minutes. Unfortunately, however, my orgasm does not matter since there is a myth that women can have multiple consecutive orgasms as they wait for their partner to finish.

As a result, there have been times where I have been the first to finish but I’ve continued to have sex. My brain was detached from what was happening and I lied back and thought of England (or, more specifically, about work/my life goals/what I’ll cook for dinner).

Maybe there are some superwomen who can orgasm and then get back into the sexual mindset and do it again. But after I’ve finished I just want to cuddle and go to sleep. That, however, never feels like an option.

If you finish before a male partner, it feels incredibly selfish to say ‘OK, goodnight’ and go to sleep.

Yet most men have no qualms with finishing first and then rolling over and falling asleep.

In some ways, I get it. After you orgasm, you’re tired and just want to go to sleep. I’m not saying that men owe us an orgasm or that it’s their duty to make sure we finish, too.

But it blows my mind that so many women will put up with either “bad sex” or will continue to have sex post-orgasm because they don’t want to seem selfish in the bedroom. Men, on the other hand, often come and then go to sleep. In my experience, even if they’re lying next to you, that still feels like they have ejaculated and evacuated.

An Experiment: Falling Asleep Post-Orgasm

After a few years of being “sexually active” (to quote the GP who judges me for not getting enough chlamydia tests), I decided I’d had enough.

No more having sex or giving a blowjob when I wasn’t in the mood. No more crying myself to sleep because I felt used by a partner. I decided to try to have sex like a man.

After I ‘finished’ I’d say, “Thanks for that. I’m pretty tired and I’m going to go to bed now. Night!”

Most men were surprisingly understanding and would say “okay, that’s fine”. Then again, some of them called me Miss Blue Balls – either to my face or to our mutual friends.

Some would moan and say “go on, pleaseeee” and ask for “just one more” handjob/blowjob. But I stayed firm – especially when they tried to sway me to doing sexual things (coercion is not okay).

In the morning, there would sometimes be a Round Two, where the man would finish and I wouldn’t (although the odd gem would make sure I finished too. Not all heroes wear capes). But I was okay with not finishing in the morning, since I’d had a lovely orgasm the night before. It’s all about balance.

The Solution: Keep the Balance

During my Miss Blue Balls phase, my friends said I was going to extremes. And they were right. It’s not a nice feeling to use someone for their body and then go to sleep, since you do feel selfish. But it obviously doesn’t compare to the hollow feeling when someone uses you for your body and then goes to sleep.

It’s rare that you will simultaneously orgasm with someone during sex. One of you will probably finish first. In an ideal world, we would all bounce back post-orgasm and be ready for a Round Two so the other person could finish, too. But that’s not how our bodies work.

Therefore, my solution would be to make sure there’s a balance. If you and your partner have sex quite often and he often finishes first and rolls over and goes to sleep, something is wrong. It shows a disregard for your feelings.

It should be roughly equal – sometimes he focuses more on you and you finish first, sometimes it’s the other way around.

There will be times when you’re seconds away from finishing and then he orgasms and wants to go to sleep. And, yes, ideally he would want to ‘finish you off’. But most of the time we are all too tired post-orgasm to do anything. In that situation, it would be a romantic gesture for him to at least kiss you and ‘be there’ while you finished yourself off.

Whatever you do between the sheets, it’s important that you follow these three rules:

  1. Don’t do sexual things just to please someone else.
  2. Go to sleep if you’re tired – you don’t owe someone your body/time.
  3. Have an open conversation and make sure you’re both on the same page.

Most importantly, remember life is too short for “bad sex”.

Posted in Sex

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