Vulva Owner’s Pleasure

Vulva owners are conditioned from a very young age to be people pleasers and put everyone else’s needs first. One area this can show up is during partnered sex…especially with society’s focus on penis pleasure and penis-in-vagina (PIV) sex.

The orgasm gap is very real and is most prominent in heterosexual sex than any other type of partnered sex. Some of the reasons why cis het women may not reach orgasm with their cis het male partners are:

  • Time: Vulva owners need longer than men to achieve arousal
  • Penetration: Only around 20% of vulva owners can orgasm from penetration alone. One of the many reasons why porn isn’t sex education and why penis size doesn’t matter!
  • Self consciousness: Vulva owners may not feel comfortable being vocal about their sexual needs. Mainstream cis het porn, movies and TV shows portray sex as centred on male pleasure and ending with the male orgasm…a woman’s pleasure is rarely shown. Sex education isn’t focused on pleasure either and historically, women have been slut shamed for enjoying sex…hardly a foundation for women to feel comfortable speaking up about what they want!

Direct communication with your partner is the best way to improve a vulva owner’s level of pleasure…they know their own bodies best! No two people enjoy the same things, so don’t assume what you’ve done in the past will work with a new partner (something I’ve experienced many times in the past…trust me, you don’t know our bodies better than us).

Many vulva owners just go along with what their partner wants and fake enthusiasm or orgasms to make their partners feel good during sex. That’s just how we’ve been conditioned to know how sex should be. So how you communicate is important to get past this hurdle. The best way is to let them lead the discussion…so your desires don’t influence a vulva owner.

What does this look like?

  • Reframing: Instead of asking yes/no questions or stating something you like and asking if they likes it too, ask more open questions. Asking things like ‘What turns you on?’ ‘What would you like to try?’ ‘What are your fantasies?’ will get you much closer to understanding what they really enjoy
  • Feedback: Leave your ego at the door and make sure your partner feels safe to share feedback without you being offended. Your partner is likely to shut down and not share if they are fearful being honest will hurt your feelings. If they don’t enjoy something, don’t take it personally, just adjust and try different things. Reinforce all of this by telling your partner you don’t want them to fake it…let them know you are genuinely invested in their pleasure
  • Show, don’t tell: Ask them to show you how they play when alone…let them teach you how their body likes to be stimulated. Mutual masturbation is a great option here…very hot and very fun!

Beyond communication, here are some ways to help bridge the orgasm gap and give partners with vulvas more pleasure:

  • Focus: Take PIV off the menu and prioritise everything else. Clitoral stimulation is key, along with other erogenous zones like nipples, inner thighs, neck etc
  • Toys: Are your team mates, not competition…embrace them (my recommendations live here). Remember, it’s about their pleasure, not your ego…you aren’t any less of a lover for using every tool to pleasure your partner!
  • Intimacy: Start outside the bedroom with cuddling, kissing and general affection. Other things that can help get someone in the mood are a sensual bath or massage. Helping them feel relaxed generally will help them enjoy more pleasure during sex

Orgasms aren’t necessarily the end goal nor the measure of a good sexual encounter, however a vulva owner’s pleasure should be prioritised equally during sex. Remember, sex doesn’t have to end when a penis has ejaculated. There’s nothing more appealing than someone who cares about their partner’s pleasure and is willing to dedicate the time and energy to tend to their needs.

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