Why Can't I Reach Orgasm?

Why Can't I Reach Orgasm?
Laura Reguera

Written and verified by the psychologist Laura Reguera.

Last update: 21 December, 2022

It is a widespread belief in today’s culture that women find it difficult to reach orgasm. In fact, we always hear that it’s normal for women to fake it during sex. So what is the truth? Do all women have these problems?

The fact is, the list of myths about women and sex is a long one. Just  belonging to the female gender doesn’t mean you’ll have trouble reaching orgasm. But, just as with men, women may experience problems with this aspect of sex. Read on to learn more!

“Writing is like making love. Don’t worry about the orgasm, worry about the process.”

-Isabel Allende-

The female orgasm

To begin, we need to understand what an orgasm is. It is the phase of human sexual response that happens after desire and arousal. Once it is achieved, we feel resolution and sexual satisfaction. It is the sensation and the state of pleasure achieved through sex. In addition, it involves contractions in the genital areas of men and women.

Now let’s look at the myths surrounding this phenomenon. In the first place, it is a widespread belief that it’s normal to reach orgasm through intercourse. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Penetration is not a necessary condition to reach this feeling of pleasure. Nor is it the most common among women. In fact, most women orgasm through clitoral stimulation.

“Eroticism is one of the basic means of self-knowledge, as indispensable as poetry.”

-Anais Nin-

Female orgasm.

Specifically, this type of stimulation has something to do with the process, either directly or indirectly, even if orgasm is reached vaginally. Is clitoral orgasm not as good as vaginal orgasm? Not at all.

One type of orgasm is no better than the other. It’s just like how orgasms can be explosive and precise or diffuse and prolonged. Again, one is not better than the other, just different.

What problems might a woman have in achieving orgasm?

One problem in this phase of the human sexual response is the inhibited orgasm. What does this consist of? It is a persistent difficulty or inability to reach orgasm after adequate stimulation and a normal arousal phase. If there is desire and stimulation is adequate, why do you not get that intense pleasure?

Psychological aspects play a fundamental role in these difficulties. First of all, trying to hold onto too much self-control is going to be a big hindrance here. One key aspect to enjoying sex is letting go of control.

Self-control is also closely related to worrying, especially in new relationships. What will he think of me if I do this? Does he want me to do this or something else? Am I doing it wrong? Am I being too crazy? These kinds of questions don’t relax you; they open the door to anxiety. That’s why it’s so helpful to talk about sex, and to do it openly and honestly.

A billboard "STAY HUMAN"

In addition, our self-esteem affects how satisfying we feel sex is. If we improve our self-esteem, we will be more sure of ourselves and happier with our body image. We will be able to relax and enjoy it. In fact, low self-esteem not only causes problems with sex but also major emotional discomfort. That’s why it’s so important.

Finally, one more difficulty is having a negative attitude towards sex. If this type of relationship is seen as dirty or immoral, it will be very hard — if not impossible — to orgasm. A ray of hope for this aspect is that our society’s ideas about sex are changing.

“Sex is part of nature. I go along with nature.”

-Marilyn Monroe-

The reality is that sex is a very important part of our lives, just like social relationships and work. Having an unsatisfactory sex life doesn’t feel good, so it’s important to work through your problems and especially your self-esteem. Don’t be afraid to see a psychologist if you need to!

Images courtesy of Toa Heftiba and Seth Doyle

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.