“Tips for Achieving Orgasm for First-Timers: Help!”
Only 65% of heterosexual women usually or always orgasm, compared with 95% of men (Picture: Getty Images)
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We know that men are far more likely to orgasm during a sexual encounter than women.
Also known as the orgasm gap, insights from the International Academy of Sex Research found that 95% of heterosexual men usually or always orgasm during sex, compared to only 65% of heterosexual women.
Some women have never experienced the big O in their lives, while others, like Rachel Bilson, reach 40 before they have an orgasm during sex.
Of course, sex isn’t a goal-based activity – getting there doesn’t have to be the point.
But if you would like to climax – and you’re not – there could be a multitude of reasons why it may not be happening for you: maybe your partner isn’t pleasuring you in the right way, maybe you struggle to let go during sex, or perhaps you’re not comfortable with person you’re having intercourse with. Drugs, alcohol and certain medications can also have an effect too.
If you’ve never climaxed, even by yourself, self-pleasure is the best place to start – but some people find it difficult to orgasm even when you’re the one trying to make it happen.
For Cate McKenzie, an accredited sex and relationships therapist, this reasons for this are likely to be rooted in shame.
‘Many people are judging their orgasms,’ she tells Metro.co.uk.
While this may sound odd to some, this shame often stems from religious or extremely conservative upbringings, where sexuality can be seen as a bad thing.
Another reason could be that you don’t understand what your preferences are.
‘Some women have got used to not having pleasure,’ says Cate. ‘So they need a whole education on what pleasure is for them, and what might they like, and need to learn about their own orgasmic pleasure and what that is.’
You need to learn what makes you feel good, and what turns you on (Picture: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Then there’s the technical stuff.
‘Orgasming is a little bit like driving a car,’ says Cate. ‘You ideally want to be relaxed enough and revved enough.
‘You want your gears in the right place; you want enough adrenaline and you want your parasympathetic side of your body to be relaxed’.
And, obviously, you need to be sufficiently turned on.
You can’t just whack out your vibrator and expect to see God if you’re not even really in the mood, it truly isn’t by force.
Essentially, there’s a goldilocks zone, and achieving that might take some effort and time: as Cate notes, many women need at least 30 minutes of foreplay before they’re sufficiently aroused.
‘Going back to the car metaphor, you wouldn’t just start off in gear six,’ says Cate. ‘You need to start in gear one and build up.’
So, what can you do?
Learn about your pleasure and learn to take your time
If you feel like a bit of a stranger to your own body and your sexuality, Cate recommends keeping a pleasure diary.
‘Find out what makes you feel really good in life,’ she says. ‘That could be wearing certain clothing, being touched a certain way, getting a massage.’
It’s all about trial and error – over time, you’ll learn to understand what your body wants.
Then, Cate suggests creating time in your day or week for a pleasure practice, lasting between 30 minutes and an hour.
This could involve having a shower or bath, lighting a candle, playing music, wearing lingerie, touching yourself, looking at your genitals, anything.
Just make sure you give yourself enough time in a comfortable environment to get properly aroused, and try your best to relax.
Delve into your subconscious
If your inability to orgasm comes from a source of shame, it may be a good idea to talk this through with somebody.
Often, Cate explains, the negative beliefs and emotions we associate with a specific memory often get ‘locked in,’ with the memory causing us to relive them over time.
You need to think about where this shame might stem from and, from there, begin to work through it.
‘Have a very kind person be with you and help you reset that memory,’ says Cate.
‘It could be a therapist or a really good friend, someone that you can really talk through that memory with and begin to repair it, so you can release all the burdens that you took on yourself, thoughts like: “I’m bad, I shouldn’t be sexual, or I did a bad thing,” which isn’t the case.’
Treat yourself with compassion
Finally, not being able to orgasm can be a source of shame and confusion, so it’s vital to show yourself some kindness when you’re trying to learn about your mind, body and sexuality.
‘Good sex comes with safety, it doesn’t come with pressure,’ says Cate.
‘It comes because of slowing down and being present.’
Do you have a story to share?
Get in touch by emailing MetroLifestyleTeam@Metro.co.uk.
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