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Find it easier to orgasm when you’re alone? That totally checks out. You’ve had years of practice and are likely tuned into the perfect speeds, pressures, and spots to turn you on. Although adding another person into the mix can up the sweaty fun, it definitely doesn’t guarantee a happy ending. In fact, as the cultural conversation around pleasure heats up, it’s becoming more and more clear that many women are dissatisfied with their sex lives. So what’s really going on here?
Professor, sex therapist and author of Becoming Cliterate, Dr. Laurie Mintz, points to society’s fascination with goal-oriented intercourse and wants us all to stop obsessing over orgasms. “Setting up an orgasm as though it’s an aim to achieve makes having an orgasm less likely,” she says. By putting all our energy into reaching the finish line, we end up bypassing some of the most spine-tingling moments of sex and essentially try too hard to come. According to Dr Mintz, no two women achieve pleasure in exactly the same way anyway, so it’s confusing why almost everyone follows the ‘foreplay, penetration, orgasm’ model that often doesn’t work. Over 80% of women can’t climax through penetration, which means many of us are rushing through the best parts(kissing/touching/biting) in an attempt to experience a G-spot sensation that probably isn’t even possible.
By putting all our energy into reaching the finish line, we end up bypassing some of the most spine-tingling moments of sex and essentially try too hard to come.
"Whether you reach G-spot orgasm is due to your biological makeup, not something you are doing right or wrong,” says Dr Mintz about the frustrating truth that no bendy vibrator is ever going to disprove. “Perhaps knowing how I approach my G-spot will help you. Because of what I do for a living, people often ask me if I’ve found mine. I tell them I haven’t even looked. I know about a very reliable, easily accessible “spot” (aka, my clitoris) that gets me there every time. So, I figure why go looking for one that’s hard to find – and that I might not even find if I look? To me it’s like searching for buried treasure when my ATM card is handy and my bank account is full.”
Now we know that most women can’t derive pleasure from that mystical spot (apart from the lucky 18%), she’s got us questioning why so many of us prioritize penetration over our own pleasure? “One common, and sometimes subconscious thought people have is that their partner’s pleasure is more important than their own. It’s important to let go of this thought and instead, embrace the idea that you are equally entitled to pleasure as your partner.”
To do this, Dr Mintz encourages couples to try an alternating style of intimacy, which is much more likely to end in a female orgasm. "When we stop thinking of a vaginal orgasm as the end-goal of sex, we are more likely to take a turn-taking approach to sex (e.g. oral sex where she orgasms, followed by intercourse where he orgasms). It also takes the pressure off men to ‘give’ a woman an orgasm by thrusting hard and lasting long, so makes a more fun and orgasmic encounter for all.”
"When we stop thinking of a vaginal orgasm as the end-goal of sex, we are more likely to take a turn-taking approach to sex...
She also believes you can reach a whole new level of pleasure by simply concentrating on the sensual moments of foreplay and sex, rather than the end game. Her mindful method removes any orgasm expectations and shifts the focus back to what feels good, whether it’s nipple play, cuddling, oral etc. “When you are having a sexual encounter, focus fully on the sensations in that moment, rather than being trapped in your head thinking about whether or not you are going to orgasm/if you are taking too long/how you look etc. Such distraction is common during sex, and the antidote to this is mindfulness, which is a full present focus. Practice mindfulness in your daily life first, then bring it into the bedroom. Research shows it helps enhance desire, pleasure and orgasm.”