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What irony that Orgasm Day comes but once a year

By Elizabeth Donaldson | 2014-08-08 09:42:26.0

Today IS Global Orgasm Day, which is great because now, finally, after years and years of research and false information, we know how often we are supposed to orgasm - once a year.

That's right, none of that three times a week bollocks - an orgasm is officially an annual event. Of course, we can still have sex; we just don't have to orgasm. I'll admit it does seem a little infrequent but at least the pressure is off because orgasms can tire even the most robust among us.

I know a woman who will be extremely pleased. She's a friend (and no, it's not me) who made a terrible, life-changing mistake one night. She and her partner had been at it for some time when she realised she was missing a rather vital episode of Game of Thrones. Her partner was not really in a position to change tack.

He was hammering away at it, determined to ride her over the horizon to a new place of coital bliss. He had really pulled out all the stops from focused foreplay to cunnilingus; he had not taken a single short cut.

An effort like that is never disregarded, not even by the most mean-spirited woman. So, motivated by kindness and good manners, she faked an orgasm.

This in itself is not a terrible, life-changing mistake.

Lord no, faking orgasm is a useful, even crucial, element in a woman's sexual repertoire. No, the mistake was to throw in a spectacular leg spasm for good measure. After all, her partner had gone to so much effort; she felt a little something extra was required. And so their carnal coupling came to a flamboyant end. He was pleased with himself and she got to watch her show.

But that's not where it ended. You see, she had set a new standard for orgasm that she has to replicate every time they have sex. Even her most genuinely victorious orgasms are now met with disappointment by her partner if she doesn't do "the leg thing". Her sex life has turned into carefully orchestrated cabaret. To make matters worse, she's now married to the man and (if all goes well) is now condemned to a life of faked leg spasms.

I could write a litany of orgasm horror stories that include novice mistakes, like shouting the wrong name, to advanced cock-ups, like losing a sex toy in a moment of passion. Then there's the couple who got stuck together for days (it doesn't just happen to dogs) and every kind of disaster with those silver balls from Fifty Shades of Grey. But enough. I don't want to put you off for the next Global Orgasm Day.

10 facts about orgasms you probably never knew

1. On each and every day in 2013, the men and women of earth had over 2.5 billion orgasms. This happens in every corner and culture around the globe. That’s over 100 million orgasms per hour, every hour. 1.5 million per minute.

2 . An estimated 10-15 percent of women are anorgasmic, meaning they're physically unable to cross the finish line

3. Doggie-style is one of the best O-inducing positions for women. Why? It stimulates the G-spot (an ultra-sensitive spot on the inside of your vaginal wall) and your clitoris

4. Orgasms can relieve pain. Got a headache? Maybe you should have sex after all. Lisa Stern, RN, MSN, a nurse practitioner who works with Planned Parenthood in Los Angeles says, “The mechanism is largely due to the body’s release of a chemical called oxytocin during orgasm,” she says. “Oxytocin facilitates bonding, relaxation and other positive emotional states.” While the pain relief from orgasm is short-lived— usually only about eight to 10 minutes — she points to past research indicating that even thinking about sex can help alleviate pain.

5. Condom use doesn’t affect orgasm quality. “Women are equally likely to experience orgasm with or without a condom, dispelling myths that condoms don't make for good sex,” says Debby Herbenick, PhD, a research scientist at Indiana University. “In fact, condoms may help a couple spend more time having sex, as a man doesn't have to ‘pull out’ quickly if he's worried about ejaculating too soon.”

6. Orgasm gets better with age. According to Dr. Herbenick,  a sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, “Orgasm becomes easier with age. According to research, while 61 percent of women aged 18 to 24 experienced orgasm the last time they had sex, 65 percent of women in their 30s did and about 70 percent of women in their 40s and 50s did.”

7. In men, their body releases a hormone called prolactin - after an orgasm. It essentially shuts off their sex drive for up to an hour.

8. Men also fake orgasms. When University of Kansas researchers surveyed college students, they found that 28 percent of guys had faked an orgasm with their partner. About one-third of those men said they’d been too drunk to orgasm, and almost half said their main reason for faking was because they wanted to go to sleep.

9. The size of a man's belly may determine his big O. According to a Scottish study, the average amount of ejaculate released during orgasm is 3.4 milliliters (mL), which is less than a teaspoon. But if a man's mass index is greater than 30, he is more likely to only produce 2 mL or less of semen during an ejaculation.

10. Men can still make women pregnant even if they don't cross the finish line inside. During foreplay and sex, most men can release a pre-ejaculate, which is a fluid that helps lubricate intercourse and clears out your urethra to allow the semen to travel through unhindered. An analysis of this fluid that was published in the journal Human Fertility found that 41 percent of guys produced pre-ejaculate that contained sperm—up to 40 million of the little swimmers.

- additional: womenshealthmag; womansday; menshealth

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