Orgasms—keep them coming, right? Sometimes easier said than done, for both men and women. In this , researchers make a case that in female mammals that ovulate only once a month—instead of releasing an egg just after intercourse, when sperm is present to fertilize it—orgasm isn’t necessary to conception. To further their argument, the researchers suggested that, in humans, female orgasm is just “noise,” and so the clitoris is situated outside the vagina, rather than within it, as with mammals that have ovulation timed around intercourse.

All very interesting, but not terribly reassuring to women that thinking woman glassesstruggle to have sexual pleasure. It’s hard to just relax about something that in today’s culture seems so important. So important that women have been coming into my office reporting that they have been rejected because they didn’t have an orgasm (or two orgasms, or more) during intercourse.

How to explain to a woman that a man who does this is (a) callous, (b) doesn’t understand much about women’s anatomy, and (c) ascribes to a porn model of sexuality, where women moan and writhe at the touch of a man’s—any man’s—hands, penis, tongue, what have you.

The article reports, as I do to my clients, that 35% of women state that they did not experience orgasm during their last sexual encounter. That’s one-third of women! Message: If it didn’t happen, please don’t pressure yourself into thinking there is something wrong with you! There isn’t.

And yes, there are things that a woman can do to facilitate orgasm, and things her partner can do as well (try the coital alignment technique, for example), but no woman should feel shame or be shamed for not having an orgasm. Ever.

One thing I thought of, too: The researchers don’t talk about the fact that sex therapists are seeing a rise in men complaining of delayed ejaculation. What does this mean? How do social changes affect orgasm? It isn’t all about mechanics, and as men evolve into being more tuned into their own feelings, it turns out that sometimes this means that they can’t have an orgasm, either.

Conclusion: There is some mystery with human female orgasm, but there is no right or wrong way to have sex, except to enjoy it—whether you have an orgasm, or not.

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