An article in the Guardian called “Orgasm addicts, sex doesn’t have to be red hot” is a mainstream and non-threatening incursion into the world of orgasm control and denial. The point of the piece, written by author Isabel Losada, is that orgasm doesn’t need to be the ultimate focus of sex and, DUH, totally agree with that. But the headline is perplexing.
“Orgasm addicts,” I think, perpetuates the myth that sex addiction is a thing. We’re genetically programmed to be orgasm “addicts” and the issue isn’t having a lot of sex or orgasms, it’s doing anything compulsively and to excess. I’ve only come three times this year and think that sounds like kind of a lot but still consider myself “addicted” to orgasms. Why use such a loaded, negatively connoted word? Drug addicts, alcohol addicts, nicotine addicts, orgasm addicts. I dunno. Bugs me.
Also, the “sex doesn’t need to be red hot” part. As if the only way it’s red hot is when it’s accompanied by orgasm? And the expectation should be orgasmless sex isn’t red hot? Some of the absolute hottest sex I’ve ever had didn’t involve orgasm. At this point, most of the hottest sex didn’t involve orgasm. At least, not mine.
But the authors of articles don’t always write the headlines. Maybe she didn’t. Maybe it was a clueless editor. Who knows.
Anyway, the notion that a sex can be about exploration of all the sensations that get pushed out of the way for the big, glitzy orgasm at the end is one I fully endorse. That’s, like, my life. Encouraging women and their partners to focus on exploring a slower, more gentle sensation as a means of becoming an expert in her sex is another concept I can advocate with ease.
The author suggests that taking orgasm off the menu is a way to limit pressure on the act of having sex and, by making it less stressful for women, will lead to more sex. Sure, but by slowing down and learning her body I don’t know why orgasm wouldn’t become more likely. The goal of sex is to feel good and connect to our partners. If we feel good by coming, then that’s the goal. If we feel good (after a fashion) by not coming, then that’s OK too. But everyone who enjoys them deserves to come. It’s incumbent upon the partner to learn how to make her happy. And it’s incumbent upon her to let that happen. To not get hung up on societal programming of expectations of her role. I think, ultimately, that’s what the article is about.
But the article isn’t entirely focused on women.
Another of the exercises my partner and I really enjoyed was when he chose (not prompted by me) to take a 30-day challenge where the man agrees not to ejaculate during that time. This is a fascinating one. For me, it was wonderful. He was forced to slow right down and be totally focused on sensation. From my perspective, it stopped feeling as if he was driving and began to feel as if he was surfing. This was another powerful way for us to increase our connection. The man becomes more aware of the woman’s arousal level as he isn’t being carried away by his own – which is often stronger and easier for him to access.
A couple of times in the piece, the author says BDSM practices are “weird” and not necessary to have great sex with a monogamous partner over a long period, so emphasizing “he chose (not prompted by me)” to abstain from ejaculation isn’t surprising. Like, why even mention it at all? Just say it happened. Is the idea that it was her idea so scary?
Other than that, yeah, that’s how it works! I like the surfing vs. driving analogy, but surfing is a little too passive perhaps. Still too focused on what he’s doing for himself. It’s more like playing an instrument, to me. Trying to make music of her pleasure. But I’m a sub and everything I do is or want is colored by that. I wonder if his experiment in orgasm control was only for the month? Did he ever try it again? If it was so good for her, did she dare to suggest they do it again? Maybe a month on, a month off, etc? She doesn’t say. Wouldn’t want people to think she’s into “weird” stuff, I guess.
It’s not a perfect piece, to be sure, but the bones are there and it’s refreshing see the concept of disconnecting sexual pleasure from orgasm getting a mainstream treatment. Wish Belle was home so we could learn more about her clitoris as she sits on my face…