Originally published in everydayhealth.com, by Madeline Vann, MPH, and medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MPH
Ever wonder if his “big O” was all a big show? Turns out, plenty of guys say they have faked an orgasm at least once. Here’s why.
If you think women are the only ones who bluff in the bedroom, think again: One in four men say they have faked an orgasm at some point in their sex lives.
Studies back up the idea that women report faking orgasms more than men do, but it’s clear that these Oscar-worthy acting performances are not limited to the female gender. What’s the deal? For both men and women, faking orgasms seems to be tied to relationship troubleshooting — namely how one is perceived during and after sex.
Men who have faked it report using a combination of moaning, vocalizations, and changes in physical movements. And there could be a number of reasons behind the act.
Why Men Fake Orgasms
If a man’s climax is all a sham, this could be why:
- To make haste with a delayed orgasm. On average, data show that men tend to take about seven minutes from penetration to climax. If a man believes he’s taking too long, he may decide it’s best to fake the orgasm and get the sexual act over with.
- To conceal premature ejaculation. Some men pretend to have an orgasm as a front for premature ejaculation, says urologist Craig Niederberger, MD, FACS, head of the department of urology at the University of Illinois in Chicago.
- To preserve his pride. For men who lose an erection during sex or sense they won’t be able to have an orgasm, it might be easier to fake the orgasm than to talk about why it didn’t occur.
- To please his partner. A man faking an orgasm might be worried that his partner is uncomfortable due to the length of intercourse. He might also be concerned that his partner will feel hurt if they stop sex before the orgasm.
- To abide by the “rules.” Some couples have a certain idea about how sexual intercourse will play out. Researchers theorize that some men can’t think of another way for sex to end other than an earth-shattering orgasm, so they end up faking it if it doesn’t happen naturally.
- To get things over with. Occasionally, men have sex with their partner for the partner’s sake — but since they aren’t really into it, they end up faking an orgasm to resolve the situation.
No More Need for Make-Believe: How to Solve the Problem
Faking an orgasm every once in a while might not be a big deal, but if it’s happening on a regular basis, it may be time to get some help. Here are some ideas:
- Talk to your doctor. There are a number of medical conditions that can cause delayed orgasm, premature ejaculation, or difficulty maintaining an erection. But according to Dr. Niederberger, delayed orgasm is something of a subjective measure. “Is it 10 minutes? Or 20 minutes? It’s really up to the man and, of course, his partner,” he says. Bottom line: If it is taking you longer to reach orgasm than you or your partner would like, it’s okay to ask for help.
- Talk to a therapist. Occasionally, faking orgasms is rooted in emotional issues. You might need a couples therapist or sex therapist to help you understand why you are having difficulty experiencing an authentic orgasm with your partner.
- Masturbate. Self-stimulation is recommended to help you discover what stimulates you. Next, share this information with your partner.
- Cut back on alcohol or illicit drugs. Men are more likely to fake an orgasm when under the influence, likely due to the fact that substance abuse affects sexual performance.
- There’s no need to feign it. Instead, get to the root of the problem — it will lead to a more satisfying sex life for both you and your partner.