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beloved_sexology_myths of the big O

Dispelling the myths about the big O. | Lee Anne Coetzer

We live in a time of high-stress, instant gratification and sensationalism. If you pay close attention we are bombarded with extreme perceptions and the constant drive for perfection, which by the way, should have been achieved last week. The pressure is real, and most of the time, we vulva owners put all these life stressors on our orgasms. We do this by believing all the fake sensationalism surrounding sex and comparing our own experiences with it. We get indoctrinated by so many social beliefs about intercourse, courtship, sexuality, etc. that we don’t even realise it. I would like to shed some light on some of these myths we have absorbed, especially those surrounding vulva owners’ orgasms.

First, let’s get the vulva out of the way. The vulva is the anatomical name for the external female genitalia that surround the opening to the vagina. The vagina is the canal where penetrative intercourse, menstruation and childbirth occur. Secondly, the most important organ for pleasurable intercourse, or intimacy, for vulva owners is the brain. Yes, our thoughts and how we perceive our bodies, get in the way of having orgasms. Lastly, practice makes more orgasms, and what I mean by this is, masturbation is key to knowing what you like and teaching your body how to let go. Be patient and consistent when practising – get out of your head and feel the sensations.

Myth One : All vulvae look the same

Just as our faces differ from each other, so does our genitalia. They may have similar structures or anatomical features, such as the clitoris, labia and vagina, but they all look different. They come in different colours, shapes and sizes. Each one is unique and beautiful. What does affect our pleasure is how we feel about our genitalia. Shame, embarrassment or negative body image, can cause the body to go into protection mode, which can lead to mental spacing out and/or physical tension, which can make reaching orgasm difficult and, in some cases, can make intercourse painful.

Myth Two : Vulva owners only orgasm through penetrative sex

Studies have shown that only 18% of vulva owners have orgasms through only vaginal stimulation. This is also referred to as G-spot orgasms. Most orgasms are from the vulva and clitoral stimulation, which we call clitoral orgasms. You also get blended orgasms, which means we give attention to both the clitoris and the G-spot. There are other forms of orgasms such as nipple orgasms. Nipple stimulation and clitoral stimulation are both linked to the same part of the brain.

Myth three : All vulva owners have multiple orgasms

There are cases where individuals can’t reach orgasm at all. Anorgasmia is a real diagnosis. How we experience our climax/orgasms differs from person to person, the same way our genitalia differ. Some may feel something similar to holding in their urine for too long, others may feel a release of tension. It may be short or it could be long. When we refer to multiple, we are talking about the refractory period – the time it takes you to have another orgasm. Some may have a shorter refractory period than others, which will result in more than one orgasm. Others may have one orgasm or almost orgasm. There is nothing wrong with you in any of these cases. We are just all different. I will say, having a partner that you feel safe and comfortable with and who knows all your erogenous zones, does help with climaxing.

Myth four – Sex without orgasms equals failure

Look, experiencing an orgasm is an incredible sensation (well, it is for me) but it is not the singular goal of sexual activity. Being intimate with your partner can still be pleasurable, but it can also increase the bonding and intimacy between you. I always suggest that couples use this time to be playful and explore each other’s bodies – if you focus on the pleasure (journey) you might get to the climax without putting pressure on yourself to climax. It does not mean you don’t love/care for your partner or that your partner is bad at sex.

Myth five – Masturbation and sex toys will desensitise you from “real” orgasms

This is not true. Masturbation and vibrators (sex toys) won’t desensitise you. You could get used to that and prefer that over sex with a partner, but the solution would be to include what excites you when you are with your partner. Vibrators do tend to bring on an orgasm faster, this is due to them reaching the overall genital region and internal structures deeper than manual or partner stimulation.  You may also prefer masturbation because the pressure from your partner waiting for you to climax won’t be there. Masturbation is also key to finding out what arouses you more – what works and what doesn’t.

These are just some myths about orgasms. If there is one thing that I want you to take from this piece, it would be that you are beautifully unique and divinely made. There is nothing wrong with you and getting good at anything in life takes practice. So be present, take deep breaths and enjoy the pleasure.

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