Man” *thinking to himself* “We’ve been at this for a long time. She seems to be enjoying it. Maybe this is going to be the night!”
Woman *thinking to herself* “This is ridiculous. I can’t keep stringing him along forever.”
Man: *thinking to himself* “I knew it! This is it!”
Man: “That’s it, my love. Let it out!”
Woman: “Sorry, dear. Not happening. Again.”
Man and Woman: *sigh*
This word can only be defined in one way – the epitome of a satisfying sexual encounter.
The unfortunate reality, however, is that many women struggle to achieve orgasm regularly. Her failure to orgasm often leaves both the man and the woman feeling cheated, frustrated and dissatisfied. A man feels less like a man if he isn’t able to please his wife. A woman feels like she isn’t ‘normal’ because she can’t seem to climax through penetration alone.
Her inability to orgasm shouldn’t hinder their relationship or cause contention in their marriage. But is happens. Give it enough time, and this situation may lead to a type of performance anxiety for both the husband and wife.
A husband may begin to over-perform, continually looking for a way to evoke rapturous shouts of ecstasy. Temptation to bring out the ‘big guns’ – touching, massaging, even kissing or licking every piece of her flesh in sight – reveals his desire to please his wife, but his overzealous desire often turns a time of close intimacy into a moment of disaster. His heart is in the right place, but his moves turn to a missed opportunity. Connection turns to contention. After enough of these experiences, a man who feels he is unable to please his wife may begin to doubt himself, or even worse, spite his wife. “Her inability to climax must be a sign that she isn’t as ‘into me’ as I believed,” he thinks to himself. Over-performance turns to under-performance. Why bother, right?
Meanwhile, a wife may believe her inability to ‘perform’ proves there is something wrong with her. After not experiencing sexual release, she may begin to avoid sex altogether. While she considers taking opportunities to be a willing and even enthusiastic participant, her husband’s continual breathing down her neck about why she hasn’t “had one yet” turns her off. No matter how many times she tells her husband that orgasm isn’t necessary for her to enjoy their lovemaking, he cannot be dissuaded from his quest. Feelings of inadequacy, hurt and resentment invade what should be a wonderfully bonding experience.
When a husband and a wife are dealing with unmet expectations regarding orgasm regularity, tension builds, sexual satisfaction wanes and intimacy erodes. It affects not only their sex lives, but every other aspect of their marriage as well. But orgasmic conflict does not need to hinder the sexual experience. Positive changes can occur when a couple broadens their definitions of a satisfying sexual encounter.
It’s essential for a couple with these struggles to understand that great sex is not simply an orgasmic experience, it’s an emotional and spiritual experience as well. Sex is designed to bond, connect and cement a couple together. Don’t get us wrong, orgasm is great. But, bodies, souls and minds becoming one flesh in a moment of affection, closeness and partnership is better. Learning to truly understand sex, building marital friendship and working towards common goals will benefit the entire marriage and enhance the sexual relationship.
Once a couple with these struggles begins to understand sex, their expectations will change. Contention will return to connection. Their desire to better ‘know’ one another is what begins to drive them. His desire is for her, not for her orgasm. Her desire is for him, not his ability to please her. So, lest you think that orgasm can never be a goal, here are a few things to keep in mind.
Don’t pressure her! Understand that the more pressure she feels to ‘perform’ the less likely she is to enjoy the moment and feel freedom to try other pleasures. Understand that there are many women do not orgasm through intercourse alone. They need direct clitoral stimulation. Try different positions, use your fingers and take your time to figure out what feels most pleasurable to her. Help her to understand you are willing to do what it takes to help her climax, but also understand that there may be times when she just doesn’t want to. She’s perfectly content availing herself to you, still giving you opportunities to know her in the most intimate ways. Though it may be difficult for you to fully comprehend at first, her satisfaction can be complete without orgasm.
There is nothing wrong with you! You are not alone if you don’t easily achieve orgasm every time. Many women don’t. Feeling isolated and abnormal will only increase your anxiety rather than help you understand what is really going on. Take some time to familiarize yourself with female anatomy and the physical realities of your body. Intercourse often does not provide the clitoral stimulation necessary for orgasm. That simple fact may open your eyes (and your husband’s) to a completely different understanding of how your love life could be better.
Take opportunities to communicate with your husband that when you feel pressured to orgasm, you lose the sense of intimacy (or as others call it, “into me see”). Let him know if you want to keep trying but also help him to know that there are times when you are ‘all in’ for his pleasure alone. Learn what arouses, excites and send you over the edge, but reassure your man that if you choose not to orgasm it has nothing to do with his ability or prowess.
Remember that sex isn’t about your spouse being ‘into you’. It’s about both of you being ‘into us’. It’s about connection. As such, your time together will create a deep bond. A bond of love. Friendship. Dependency. Intimacy. It’s a bond that should not be broken. Could not be broken. Will not be broken.
This is part 3 in a series on Unmet Expectations. Other posts may be found here: