why is the ‘Big O’ eluding me?

    Dear V,

    This is kind of embarrassing, but I don’t think that I work “down there.” I’ve had a lot of boyfriends, and am pretty experienced sexually, but I’ve never had an orgasm in my entire life. Even when I try myself to make things happen, I just can’t seem to make it work. I’ve done a lot of research on the topic, and I know that a lot of women can’t have an orgasm from intercourse alone, but honestly, I have tried all sorts of methods, and absolutely nothing works for me. I’m starting to get really frustrated, and am wondering if there is anything that I can do down there that will help me.

    A touchy subject

    Dear Reader,

    As you know from your own research, this problem is not exactly rare. Unfortunately, for whatever reasons, our culture is just now getting around to figuring out why the female orgasm is so elusive and why the female sexual response is vastly more complicated than the male’s. I understand why you feel so frustrated, but I don’t think that you should let this little problem affect your self-esteem.

    First of all, it is highly unlikely that you will ever achieve an orgasm if you continue putting all of this pressure to perform on yourself. You need to relax and stop focusing on your perceived deficiencies. Contrary to popular belief, the brain is the most important sexual organ, and if you feel anxious about your abilities, then guess what, it’s probably not going to happen. Secondly, you need to clear your calendar and find some time to practice on yourself; if you don’t know what to do, then the probability of someone else figuring it out is pretty slim. On average, it takes a woman about 20 minutes to become fully aroused, so give yourself some time!

    Let’s talk anatomy: the clitoris is many a woman’s primary erogenous zone. Furthermore, it has just as many nerve endings as the penis does but packed into a much smaller area. Obviously, any area that is densely populated with so many nerve endings is going to be very sensitive to stimulation. As for the vagina, it does not have many nerve endings, and those that is does have are located around the opening. It wouldn’t really make a ton of sense to populate the birth canal with nerve endings, though the lack of nerve endings accounts for the fact that it is mucho difficult for a woman to achieve an orgasm through penetration alone.

    Though it sounds like your complaint is strictly somatic in nature because you do still have sexual desire, your physical and emotional health also impact your sexual drive.

    Because it does sound like your problem is physiological, my best advice to you, besides toning down your anxiety, is to find a doctor who specializes in female sexuality.

    Best of luck!


    Please send probing inquiries to DearV@themiamihurricane.com. All questions and comments will remain anonymous.

    This Dear V originally ran on February 21, 2006.