Stop Faking Your Orgasms

"58.8% of women have faked an orgasm at some point in time."

Why Women Fake It?

According to Karla Ivankovich, PhD, a clinical counselor and couples therapist, many women start faking orgasms because they think, 'It’s okay that sex isn’t perfect now because it’s early and it could totally get better.'

Women are perfectly content with the emotional connection with their partner, and they’re less focused on the sexual connection at that time. What matters most in a relationship is also unique to each person; some value sex more than others; some value emotional connection. But most soon discover that the issues of bad sex and faux enjoyment are complicated.

While orgasms mark the peak of physical pleasure, there are also emotional components tied to it like intimacy, self-esteem, and ego- especially in men. Women have been taught that a male partner takes it as a direct insult to his manhood if he can’t get her to climax. These gendered expectations are part of the reason why orgasms are more frequent among lesbian women than straight and bi women. As “people-pleasers,” women are conditioned to make the best of situations, says Sunny Rodgers, a clinical sexologist and certified sex coach. The faking charade is generally not ill-intentioned. “They don’t want their partners to feel like they can’t provide them with an orgasm,” she says. “A couple of moans later, and they feel they’ve helped create a bond with their partners and assure them of their prowess.”

The Fauxgasm Cycle

Feigning pleasure is most problematic in that exact scenario — when it’s a habitual action. At best, your partner thinks they are more sexually skilled than they actually are, but there are even more downsides. An orgasm is an indicator to your partner that what they are doing feels good and that they should keep on doing it. So, if you’re faking your experience of pleasure, you are reinforcing their behavior in a way that does not actually satisfy you. 

Women are putting their partners egos ahead of their own sexual pleasure therefore making it a normalized part of female sexual experiences. Chances are, especially if you’re with a male partner, he’s not even going to notice that your dramatics are just that. Rodgers says most men still assume the female orgasm works just like theirs. “Men have a very hard time faking an orgasm, and their bodies react differently to vaginal intercourse, allowing them to climax the vast majority of the time. Women, however, are not always guaranteed an orgasm without additional clitoral stimulation.” According to recent studies, fewer than 25 percent of women are able to climax from penetration alone.

Faking orgasms deprives you from receiving pleasure and your partner from knowing how to turn you on and touch you just right. If you fake your enjoyment you are not being authentic during a sexual encounter. Neither of you benefit from this behavior.

How to Tell Them

The experts actually recommend you don’t start with the most direct approach. If you just lay it out there and state that you haven’t been orgasming, your partner will likely take it as a betrayal — feeling misled is an even harder pill to swallow than the ego bruise. Masturbation is sexual exploration- experimenting with different types of stimulation — without a focus on reaching orgasm — will not only make you a better coach, it’ll likely rev your sex drive altogether, as a result improving your sexual experience within your relationship. 

Next, suggest a new approach to sex with your partner, expanding your repertoire and slowing things down. Instead of wondering why it’s suddenly taking you so much longer to come, your partner may be intrigued by the idea of exploring together. Say you’ve read that you need more clitoral stimulation to have even stronger orgasms, and it might take a while to really get there, clinical sexologists suggest the 20:20 approach, which is 20 minutes of foreplay, slowly removing clothes and warming up, along with 20 minutes of direct clitoral stimulation to reach climax.

Use some gentle, in-bed guidance while you experiment together. Focus on your experience of sexual sensations. Pay more attention to what you like, and what isn’t working so well, and then use positive reinforcement accordingly. If your partner does something that actually feels good, tell them directly. With words! “Like, ‘It feels great when you touch me like that,’ coupled with nonverbal indicators like moaning or heavy breathing,” If they start doing something you don’t like, guide them back to the sexual activity that was working for you.

Rather than using the phrase “faking it,” you might choose to say that you feel like you’re not reaching your full sexual potential.