Orgasm occurrence plays an important role in general sexual satisfaction for women. Until now, only few studies have focused on examining a broad spectrum of sexuality- and relationship-specific factors associated with orgasm in heterosexual women currently in a long-term relationship or on differences between the overall experience of orgasm and multiple orgasms.
The present study aims to understand how various sexuality- and relationship-associated factors are related to experiencing partnered orgasm among heterosexual women having stable relationships in Germany. Moreover, the study aims to differentiate between the overall experience of orgasm and the experience of multiple orgasms and shed light on their impact on general sexual satisfaction.
Within the nationwide representative survey GeSiD (German Health and Sexuality Survey), n = 1,641 sexually active women aged between 18 and 75 years in heterosexual relationships reported their experience of orgasm during the latest sexual encounter. Data on the type of sexual practices, frequency of sexual activity and of masturbation, relationship satisfaction, feelings of love, closeness, and general sexual satisfaction were analyzed.
The overall experience of orgasm, the experience of multiple orgasms, and associations between experiencing orgasm and sexual satisfaction.
Frequency of sexual activity, relationship satisfaction, feelings of love and closeness were moderately to strongly positively correlated with each other and each showed positive associations with the likelihood of orgasm. Greater number of sexual practices and frequency of sexual activity were associated with an increased likelihood of experiencing multiple orgasms, which in turn was correlated with higher sexual satisfaction.
In clinical and therapeutic work with women who have difficulty achieving orgasm, central issues should be the perceived relationship quality as well as regular sexual activity with the partner.
Strengths & Limitations
The present population-representative study is the first in Germany to identify significant factors associated with the experience of orgasm among heterosexual women in relationships. Further studies ought to include the frequency of orgasms in partnered sex over a longer period of time as well as the experience of orgasm during masturbation.
The experience of orgasm for women is related to a variety of complex interpersonal mechanisms and to be associated with sexual satisfaction.
Cerwenka S, Dekker A, Pietras L, et al. Single and Multiple Orgasm Experience Among Women in Heterosexual Partnerships. Results of the German Health and Sexuality Survey (GeSiD). J Sex Med 2021;XX:XXX–XXX.