Okay – but only if I can skip the “O”.

November 26, 2011

in Sexuality, Understanding Her

Woman with sign "Sex? Sure. Orgasm? Maybe, maybe not. © Roger Jegg | Dreamstime.com

On Monday, I tweeted the following: “Husbands: some women would have more sex if they felt free to not climax some of the times. Ask her. #SexTip” I received 5 retweets – 4 of them from women.

As a man, you are no doubt scratching your head over this. Why would anyone want to have sex and NOT orgasm? Why would anyone be more likely to have sex if they could choose to not orgasm? There are a several factors:

  • Women tend to get far more emotional and relational pleasures out of sex than men do. This means sex without orgasm can still be very enjoyable for a woman.
  • Women can become aroused enough to lubricate and have sex comfortably without being so aroused that they feel a need to climax for release. This means sex without climax does not always leave them congested and uncomfortable (as is almost always the case for men).
  • Women don’t orgasm as easily as men. Most men orgasm with ease, and quickly when they are ready for it. Very few women can orgasm without plenty of time and effort. Sometimes it’s just not worth the effort, or she does not have the energy needed to do it.
  • For many women orgasm is not a sure thing, or not always a sure thing. Sometimes she might know she can, but sometimes it may be she will try and not be able, or find it more difficult than she feels she is willing to work for it.

If you can accept those things, even though you can’t understand them, it starts to make sense why a woman might choose to have sex with no intention of having an orgasm, or say yes to sex when she is not sure if will orgasm.

On the other side of it, many women run into problems from their husbands if they have sex and don’t orgasm:

  • He feels hurt or cheated if she does not climax.
  • He feels like less of a man if she does not climax.
  • He thinks she has been masturbating if she does not climax.
  • He won’t take no for an answer, and just keeps going till she climaxes. While this may seem like a good thing, it’s not. She is being forced to do something she does not want, and any physical pleasure is negated by emotional frustration.

If you look at these things, it’s easy to see why a woman would find saying no to sex safer or better than saying yes when she is unsure she wants or will be able to have an orgasm. If there is a good chance she won’t want to climax, won’t be able to climax, or it will take more than she wants, and he is likely to get hurt or upset, then saying no to sex is less of a fight/problem than saying yes. Ironically, given that women can sometimes feel like having sex and still not be sure they can climax, this could mean sometimes saying no when she would really rather say yes.

The bottom line is that it is far easier for a woman to say yes to sex when she feels free to say no to orgasm. It is also easier for a woman to make an effort to have an orgasm when she knows hubby won’t be hurt or upset if it does not happen. It is nice if she can go into sex without deciding if she is going to orgasm; maybe she thinks she will want to, but then does not, and other times she does not expect to want orgasm, but then does. Being free to climax or not makes it easier for her to be sexual, and to enjoy sex with or without orgasm. Finally, feeling she must orgasm every time creates a physiological pressure that can make it more difficult to climax. Some women find that they orgasm more often when they feel free to not orgasm if they choose not to.

The qualifications:

  • Not all women feel this way, although most will at some point.
  • For some this is a season of life thing.
  • Some women will think this whole idea is crazy.
  • A woman can get so aroused she needs release, and can suffer discomfort if that happens and she does not climax.
  • If she does want to orgasm, it’s you duty to be there for her!

If you have never had this discussion with your bride, I suggest you do. Ask her if she ever feels like sex but not orgasm, and go from there. And please, get your pride out of it!

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15 comments
Kimerk
Kimerk

I think you address a common issue, but reading through the comments, I'm a bit saddened by the women/men who feel so discouraged over the inability of themselves or their wives to reach orgasm.  I have been married for 22 years, and for me, orgasm is something that has rarely been consistently achieved.  But I love having sex!  I never say no if possible, and really miss the connection if it isn't very consistent.  But the times when I stressed about it, or my husband was focused on it, they wouldn't happen at all.  I just wanted to relax and enjoy the time together, please him, and not worry about whether it would happen for me.  I still feel that way.  I've had 7 children, and through that, hormones vary a lot, whether you are breastfeeding, pregnant, etc.  Body image, and feeling "sexy" feeling loved, play a big part as well.  Husbands, if you want your wives to enjoy sex, "O" or not, just make her feel sexy, and loved. (take your time, say nice things) Wives, just do your best to please your men.  That is the way sex is best, IMO.  The early years of our marriage were the touchiest when it came to sex.  Men aren't sure what to do, women are afraid to ask.  It just gets better with time, but it (like much in marriage) is a roller coaster.  If it was over the top great every time, it wouldn't so special when you *really connect physically and emotionally.  I am in my 40's now, and honestly, I feel sexier and orgasm much easier now than I ever did in my 20s.

TheGenerousHusband
TheGenerousHusband moderator

@Kimerk We often hear that women enjoy sex better after 40, and orgasm more often. There are probably many factors: hormones, less tired as kids are older, more sure of herself, better self-image, and so on. Regardless of the why, it is very common. I think some men mess this up by being too focused on her orgasm earlier in marriage.

That is not to say a man should not care about her orgasm - he very much should. But when he cares more than she does, he is just putting pressure on her, and that makes things worse, not better.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

@Linda - My suggestion would be to work for a change going forward. Let him know you would like to orgasm more often in general, and then let him know on those occasions when you want to orgasm or think you might. Help him learn ways to pleasure you other than intercourse should he climax before you.

Linda
Linda

Sometimes I'm not in the "mood" for sex when my husband is but I go ahead anyway. I enjoy sex whether or not I'm highly aroused. I can still enjoy sex without orgasm. However, because of this attitude I have found myself getting "short changed" in the orgasm department. They are few and relatively far between. Most of the time when I do orgasm it takes a concentrated effort on his part or mine. It often feels like an awful lot of work. It never used to feel like so much work, it just happened as a result of sex not a super concentrated effort. It hasn't always been this way for me. I am perfectly capable of easy orgasm. In a previous marriage I seriously orgasmed 99.9% of the time always during intercourse woman on top. I say this not to compare but to empasize that I am capable. In this current relationship I have been able to experience orgasm in a variety of ways and positions which is great! My most fulfilling is missionary. My husband used to have PE (in his previous marriage) But has been seemingly "cured" during ours. He has never had a problem in the last 2 years we have been together. I worry about bringing up my dissapointment about lack or orgasm in fear that it will first make him sad for causing me the disapointment and second make him feel pressured. I have always felt and told him that it is OK for him to not be able to "hold back" when he gets "over the edge" (which by the way isn't necessary all that fast) I think this understanding is what has made the PE disappear. However I am starting to feel that because of my understanding I am now the one left frustrated and incomplete. Kind of like a free ticket to enjoy himself without consideration for my needs. Sadly it actually has made me avoid sex, knowing that there isn't really that much in it for me. I don't ever turn him down, but I don't make myself all that available or initiate either. Any ideas as to how to approach this subject so we can both be happy?

Abel
Abel

Wow, this was the best article, I've read about this subject, I love my wife of 12 yrs. with all my heart, being with her is always awesome but I've had these questions regarding her achieving an orgasm, she would get upset with me when I would bring it up. I just want to know that when we are together that I am contributing something positive and meaningful to her life the way she does for me when we are together. This article has confirmed a lot about her and the way she approaches sex with me. again thank you for this article.

Brandi
Brandi

I can only climax by clitoral stimulation with a "toy". It's not the same sensation when my husband tries "manually", and I don't like it. I don't want my husband to feel "replaced" by a device. How do you think I should bring it up to talk about it? I only asked if it was ok in the heat of passion, so I want to ask him when we aren't in the middle of intimacy.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

@Kari - A lot of women don't climax during intercourse, and some find it very difficult to climax at all. If you want that to change, it can, but it will take some time and effort. If you husband is willing to work with you that will help a lot. The process is to learn what gets to to climax. Starting solo is the surest way. Once you have it figured out, then you do the same while he watches and learns. Then he tries to do what you have taught him. You may need to start and let him finish, or start and end with him doing some in the middle. In addition to him learning how to give you pleasure, you are learning how to receive pleasure from him. We know a woman well into her 40s who has her first orgasm by herself, then showed her husband, and then started wanting sex left and right because suddenly she was really enjoying it. It's never too late!

Kari
Kari

Well this post makes me feel crazy since I've only ever had one orgasm from sex, and that was shortly after getting married 5 1/2 years ago, and it was pretty hard to get. I thought that was common, but this post isn't making me feel normal anymore! ha...

Sheila Gregoire
Sheila Gregoire

As a woman, I think this article is right on! This is what we teach at marriage conferences, too. Sometimes women just want to give you guys a gift. Take the gift!!! At the same time, I understand UK Fred's point. I think there's a difference between a woman who CAN orgasm through intercourse, and usually does, but doesn't want to feel pressured to all the time; and a woman who is just not interested in making sex fun, and would rather just "lie there and get it over with". Those two things are different, and require different responses. With the latter, I'd work on building the friendship so that she feels comfortable with you. Laugh together at least once a day. Then spend some time just touching, because maybe she doesn't know how great her body can feel. And go to bed early, not late when she's really tired! Sheila from To Love, Honor and Vacuum!

UK Fred
UK Fred

This is all very well until there is the situation where the wife says that she never needs to have an orgasm to enjoy sex, or that she finds orgasm too much work to be worth the effort. Over time this becomes disheartening for a man, especially if he has reviously had a sexual partner who almost always had an orgasm and almost always wanted to have one.

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