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Culture

Straight women have less orgasms because their partners are clueless, science says

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Women orgasm less frequently than men - that's a given - but they also orgasm less frequently than lesbians. So what is behind this orgasm gap?

Anna Freeman

05 Julio 2018 12:16

Female orgasms aren’t that hard to find, according to a new study. Lesbians have them all the time. Apparently, straight women are left high and dry - quite literally - far more than the average gay woman.

And who is to blame for this climax shortage? Clueless male partners who won't give their partners as much oral sex, this report suggests. The female orgasm has been represented time and time again in dominant culture as ‘elusive’. Mythological. The holy grail. But actually, perhaps men in straight sexual relationships just aren’t pushing the right buttons, and women are too coy or kind to tell men it’s just not doing it for them.

A new study published last week in the Archives of Sexual Behavior went a step further than what most literature about the female orgasm usually offers us. A team of researchers from Chapman University and the Kinsey Institute undertook a more nuanced and conclusive investigation into orgasm frequency by asking how often gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals climax, in relation to that of straight men and women.

Over 52,000 people participated in a survey shared by NBCNews.com. The number included 26,032 men and 24,102 women who identified as straight, 452 gay men, 340 lesbians, and 550 men and 1,112 women who identified as bisexual. Broadly reports that the researchers gathered information about personal characteristics, such as race and ethnicity, education, and number of children (if any at all), and most importantly inquired about sexual behaviours.

Study subjects were asked about how much they give and receive oral sex; whether they speak openly about sexual needs and desires with their partner; and if they had engaged in a number of specific sexual activities, including massage, taking sex-enhancing drugs, spanking, wearing special lingerie and clothing, recording sex acts, and having a threesome.

Some questions were even more intimate and personal than that. Researchers also wanted to know about the last time participants did the deed, so to speak. They asked if either partner had set the sexual mood in any way; and what activities took place (from kissing to anal); and how long it lasted.

‘A major goal of the study,’ wrote the authors, ‘Was to create a profile of the attitudes and behaviors of people who orgasm frequently versus rarely.’

And, yes, there is an ‘orgasm gap’ between men and women. Men come more than women. Sad? Yes. Surprising? Probably not to most straight women. What was perhaps more interesting, however, was the difference between heterosexual and lesbian women experiencing orgasms during sex.

80 percent of lesbians said they usually or always came when they got steamy, compared with 65 percent of straight women. Which, quite frankly, after speaking to countless friends and women throughout my 27 years on this planet, seems like a gross overestimation of how much straight women orgasm. But who am I to argue with science?

The results suggest ‘that part of the orgasm gap between heterosexual men and heterosexual women could be closed,’ says David Frederick, lead author on the research and a health psychology professor at Chapman University. ‘There are thousands of magazine articles and self-help sex books that give advice on what makes women orgasm.

‘One goal of this study was to look at which specific acts were most strongly linked to orgasm frequency in women. Not all women necessarily want more frequent orgasms, but for those who do, understanding the gender differences can point to ways to close that gap.’

The behaviours that ‘most strongly differentiated women who orgasmed frequently from women who did not were: asking for what they wanted in bed, praising their partner for something they did in bed, calling or emailing to tease about doing something sexual, wearing sexy lingerie, trying new sexual positions, anal stimulation, and talking about or acting out sexual fantasies, engaging in sexy talk, and expressions of love during sex.’

Yet, the top-scoring orgasm-maker was how often women received oral sex. ‘Women who orgasmed more frequently reported receiving more oral sex, having sex for longer durations, and being more satisfied with their relationships,’ the study said. ‘Of particular importance for women was incorporating oral sex along with other activities during a sexual encounter.’

But shockingly, Frederick says, ‘Oral sex is only somewhat common. Fewer than half of couples usually to always incorporate oral sex when they are sexually intimate.’ So, to the men out there: you need to go down on your women more.

Via Broadly.

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