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Cory Silverberg

Regarding Orgasms

By November 9, 2006

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A common customer dynamic in sex stores Iíve worked at is the two friends shopping together who come into the store because one of them isn't having orgasms. Most of the time the other friend has lots of orgasms (and usually owns many sex toys) and is supportive but confused. Often the orgasmic friend will question the non orgasmic friend in front of you, playing out an old conversation in order to get a reality check, or just break the tension. Usually the questions run along the lines of ďhow can you not have orgasms?Ē and ďwhat do you mean you donít know if youíre having an orgasm?Ē

These questions donít seem so outlandish to those of us who either arenít having orgasms or who work with people who arenít having orgasms. If you spend a good part of your day talking about sex you already know how many people donít have orgasms. You also begin to realize that defining precisely what an orgasm is, is harder than it seems. The sexological research literature offers more questions than answers when it comes to defining orgasm; and just try doing a Google search on orgasm. In popular culture the people defining orgasm are the ones with books, DVDs, and sex toys to sell.

So if youíre someone who isnít having orgasms, or your not sure if what youíre having is orgasms, and you find yourself standing beside your best friend at a sex stores, and the clerk isnít interested in hearing you and your friend argue and/or they donít have a clue what to suggest, well, where do you start?

Thereís no easy answer, and the one piece of advice I give people is that if someone is offering an easy answer, you might want to be a bit suspicious of it. Despite attempts by so-called hard and soft science to describe a singular sexual response, the fact is that when it comes to the way we experience sexual response we are all a little bit different, and no one can give you an exact map to help you find sexual bliss.

But I have found people over the years who have erected helpful signposts, who have described different types of orgasms and offer concrete help on having orgasms in the first place. While ultimately we have to find our own answers, having some support, and maybe a compass that someone else has already calibrated, can definitely help with the map making process.

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