WANT TO KNOW – All About Orgasms

What is an Orgasm?

An orgasm is the release of sexual muscle tension (myotonia) that has build up during sexual arousal. Most people find orgasms really pleasurable and they are often seen as the “climax” of sex. Unfortunately, however, sometimes achieving orgasm can be a tricky thing. Additionally, if people get fixated on having an orgasm, they might not be able to enjoy other aspects of their sexual experience.

Orgasm Difficulties

Both guys and girls can find it tough to have an orgasm. The Association of Reproductive Health Professionals reports that approximately four to five percent of men experience delayed or inhibited orgasm and that between 24 percent and 37 percent of women suffer from anorgasmia, or the failure to orgasm.

For guys, one of the biggest challenges to having an orgasm can be overcoming erection difficulties. Some of the most common causes for teens are alcohol and drug use, nervousness, problems using condoms, and medications like antidepressants.

Another problem for guys is early ejaculation (often called premature ejaculation). Like erectile dysfunction, this can happen to any guy, at any time, though it tends to occur less frequently with age and experience. The same things that can cause difficulties in obtaining an erection or reaching an orgasm (eg: over-excitement, fear and anxiety about sex, alcohol and drug use, and depression), can also cause a man to ejaculate before he wants to.

Open communication with a partner about likes and dislikes, paying attention to sensation, and delaying the time it takes to get to the point of ejaculation can help a guy postpone his climax. Some guys also find that using a condom helps.

Girls, can have orgasm issues for a lot of the same reasons that guys do: fear, anxiety, having sex when you aren’t emotionally ready, depression, nervousness and substance use.

One difference, however, is the issue of clitoral stimulation. Back in the day, famed psychoanalyst, Sigmund Freud, claimed that vaginal orgasms were ‘mature’ and that clitoral orgasms ‘immature.’ Though we have dismissed many of Freud’s theories, plenty of people (even some lesbians and bisexual women) still believe that there is something wrong if a woman does not climax vaginally. Far from being a problem, this is perfectly normal, since for most women, it is clitoral, not vaginal stimulation that is most likely to lead to an orgasm.

For transgender teens, the situation might be a little different. Some trans teens are perfectly comfortable having their genitals touched, either through masturbating, or by a partner. Due to issues related to gender identity and transitioning, others just aren’t. This can affect a person’s ability to orgasm.

What to Do?

If you are having difficulties having an orgasm there are a few things you can do. The first is to identify the problem, through trial and error if necessary. If you are in a relationship, it will be extremely helpful to talk to your partner. As difficult as this may seem, talking about sex can make a world of difference in your sex life. You can even start the conversation by saying, “This is really hard for me to talk about but I want to tell you that…”

Whether or not you are in a relationship, you may want to practice on your own. Doing so will take the pressure off when you are with a partner, it will teach you what you find most pleasurable, and it will help you to show a partner what you like sexually, either now or in the future.

Don’t Forget to Enjoy the Ride

We live in a highly goal-oriented society. This can impact everything from our drive to get into the “right” college, to our hobbies, and yes, even our sex lives. We learn that sex is supposed to result in an orgasm (preferably at the same time as a partner), using a limited number of techniques, and in a finite amount of time. However, having an orgasm isn’t always as easy as inserting part A into slot B and waiting for results. The more GLBT teens understand about this aspect of human sexuality, the more enjoyable their sexual experiences will be.

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