Orgasms, The Gender Gap & Why You Should Care
“Good sex is like good bridge. If you don’t have a good partner, you better have a good hand” – Mae West
It’s important to start this blog by stating at LPDS we are a wellness institution. We want to embrace all things wellness related which includes physical and emotional health because with so many Instagram hulks telling us how much protein to chug and what weight to lift and how to develop fool proof dietary self-control (spoiler alert: it doesn’t exist), we are being denied the MOST IMPORTANT HEALTH AND WELLBEING ISSUE OF ALL, and that is: how well we are in our bodies which includes our physical health and our minds.
Because of this we’re addressing issues that make us all embarrassed because we want to help you live your best and most well life.
When we found out how great orgasms were for both our physical and emotional health, we screamed for joy! But then we learned some shocking truths and these made us sad. So because we wish we knew this when we were 20, we thought we’d creep into your love lives and do a little sexucation. Unfortunately, we can’t give you orgasms. There’s too many of you! But we can write an insightful article on it and hope you feel a little bit more confident and empowered by the end of it.
So sit down, let’s have…
… The Talk.
Orgasms are great for many reasons. Evidence from studies points to benefits such as; better sleep, a greater sense of wellbeing, better skin, youthful looks, lower stress levels, reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and a strengthened immune system. Orgasms have also been linked to heightened creativity and better pain management. Even better, more orgasms = more orgasms! Yay! The more orgasms you have, the easier sex and orgasms become.
So LPDS, what’s the bad news?
Woooah Sharon, relax. We’re getting there.
A 2017 study of over 50,000 sexually active Americans found that 95% of straight men “always or nearly always” have an orgasm when they have sex. The same is true for 89% of gay men, 88% of bisexual men and 86% of lesbian women.
And here’s the gap.
It’s a big gap. Keep scrolling…
In contrast, only 66% of bisexual women “always or nearly always” reach orgasm and just 65% of straight women.
Feelings of shame around sex and sexuality make the issue worse. With mainstream media and straight porn focusing on male pleasure, women (who are slightly more sexually complex) are getting the raw end of the deal. Few movies show acts of sex where women’s pleasure is considered and surprisingly few straight porno’s do a good job of it too, unless you consider the short acts of clitoral stimulation shown before switching to the focus on men. Watching these, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the way to take a woman to pleasure-town was through (often violent or rough) penetration alone when in reality only 18% of women are able to reach orgasm in this way. The result being in a world where access to such material is easier than ever, men just haven’t been given the tools to do it right.
Female pleasure has always taken a back seat. It is only recently that the full structure of the clitoris was discovered and studied. Despite some medical textbooks from the previous decade alluding to the full clitoris (an organ much bigger and further reaching than you’d imagine), it was not examined and fully named until 1998! We have been to the moon, we have seen the far corners of our planet and the galaxy, but medical science has only just managed to peek inside our pants. Thanks, mankind.
Perhaps the world would be slightly better off if sex education broached issues such as pleasure and if we were able to discuss masturbation with those just discovering their sexuality as a means to discover what we like so that we can develop better and more equal sexual relationships when we’re ready (or as a way to spend some quality down time). Instead, sex as pleasure is barely covered and something we keep on the hush. It’s no wonder that a huge amount of women report feelings of shame after sex, or when talking about sex.
We’re also not that great at discussing appetites for sex. Whether you like sex once a month or twice a day it is totally okay. Like appetites for anything we all have different needs. If you and your partner(s) are happy with the amount of sex you’re having, then great! The message we want to get across is that you should be enjoying GOOD sex when you want sex.
We think it’s time women felt like they could speak up! We need to feel comfortable telling our partners what feels good, what we are not so keen on and what we love. If you’re afraid to do this, then rewarding your partner (and we’re not speaking about throwing them a gravybone when they’re doing a good job here) is helpful. Making the right noises and movements to let them know.
Accepting our own bodies, realising that the media we’re exposed to shows bodies that are unattainable and that we’re all ageing, we’re all a little imperfect and we all have our body issues is key to developing a level of self-acceptance which means we can go forth and have more orgasms.
If you’re struggling to discover what you like then please don’t feel alone. If you worry about shame and have persistent negative feelings towards sex or feel like you lack confidence, then try speaking to a therapist. You may need some help reframing or have other stressful life events causing residual anxiety and sadness. There’s also some great resources out there which are both entertaining and a breath of fresh air;
· The Hotbed Collective Podcast – three women with one mission to make the world a better place, one orgasm at a time
· More Orgasms Please – the book by The Hotbed Collective which has recently been released on Penguin Books
· Becoming Clitorate – Another great book by Laurie Mintz
Ultimately, in a climate that has focused on closing the pay gap and equalising opportunities between the sexes, it’s definitely time women got their say in the bedroom too. Go out, go out and enjoy your vagina!
Does anyone else feel a little awkward now? We can pretend this chat didn’t happen. Like, honestly, let’s keep it just between us.