Now and then, I get a question that goes something like this:
My husband always climaxes during sex, but I often don’t. I leave feeling unsatisfied and even frustrated that I didn’t get to have my orgasm, when he always gets to have his. He wishes I could get there too, but doesn’t really put in the effort to get me there.
Sometimes there’s a caveat, like: I take a long time to reach orgasm, so I know it’s hard for him to keep going.
Regardless, this inquiry comes up often enough that I can say without doubt: Some husbands don’t prioritize their wife’s orgasm nearly enough.
Why doesn’t he prioritize her orgasm?
Sure, a husband could be a selfish lover who goes after his own satisfaction without taking full consideration of his wife’s sexual desires. But oftentimes, it’s something else.
Plenty of men don’t really understand how a woman’s arousal and orgasm work.
They haven’t been taught what it’s like for a woman. And without more to go on, they figure your orgasm should work like theirs. Meaning you get aroused, you have sex, you climax, and that’s that. It’s a fairly straightforward.
If your husband was exposed to pornography, or simply paid attention to movie and TV sex scenes, he may have also swallowed the ideas that a woman can be ready for intercourse quickly, that penetration will bring her to climax, and that if she isn’t orgasming, it’s a problem with her. Erroneous information, of course, but if this is what you’ve seen/heard all your life, it’s confusing when your wife doesn’t behave like that in bed.
If your husband doesn’t seem to understand how your arousal and climax work, ask if he’d be willing to listen to a podcast with you. It’s less than 26 minutes long, and if you use a podcast app and change the settings, you can listen to it even faster. (I often put mine on 1.2x speed.) Meaning it’s not much to ask! But it might help for your husband to hear four seasoned wives talking about how women’s sexual response works.
You can also get my book, Pillow Talk: 40 Conversations About Sex for Married Couples, which has several chapters in which you can explain what things are like for you and listen to what it’s like for him. By learning more about each other, without criticism or judgment, you can develop a healthier view of what you should be pursuing together for your sexual intimacy. Which involves climax.
But there could be another good reason.
Women aren’t the only ones taught that sex is for him.
One of the biggest myths perpetuated both in secular and religious culture is that sex is primary for the husband. (Listen to Lies Woman Believe episode.) Except that’s not at all what God said. The passage often used to urge wives to have more sex with their husband, 1 Corinthians 7:3-5, doesn’t say, “Wives, give it up for your husband, whether you wanna or not.”
Although the passage talks about an obligation to have sex in marriage, that’s not the point! Paul’s main point is that there must be mutuality in the marriage bed! And if anything, the verse begins with her “marital rights,” not his: “The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband.”
Yet men have heard this passage and others used—as well as common advice given here, there, and everywhere—to say that the husband’s part is needing sex and the wife’s part is owing her husband sex. It’s total malarkey, but if this is the bad teaching your husband received, he may have come into marriage not expecting you to enjoy it as much as he does or believing your climax doesn’t matter as much as his.
Stinks, I know. But when we realize that our husbands also received wrong messages, we can see that it’s not malice that keeps him from aiming for your orgasm. He simply needs to learn the truth about what God desires for both of you in your marriage—a sizzling, satisfying sex life.
But how can you actually address the issue with him?
In addition to the ideas above, I suggest having a conversation away from the bedroom. Tell him what you desire and why. Explain to him how your body works. And ask how he would feel if he was super turned on but didn’t get his climax. I suspect he wouldn’t like that, and neither do you.
Now, not every wife feels the need to climax every time. But if climax isn’t a regular part of your lovemaking, you need to work toward that goal. God created women’s bodies to experience orgasm through the wonderful organ called the clitoris. Yep, that clitoris has one job and one job only—to make sex feel good. And when it gets to the peak of pleasure, you experience muscle spasms that should at least provide a sense of relief if not real excitement.
As to how to prioritize your orgasm, here are a few ideas:
1. Go for your orgasm before intercourse.
It’s a phrase you often hear: she goes first. And it’s not a bad idea. Especially since the average time he can last in intercourse is far less than the average time it takes for a woman to reach the level of arousal she needs to climax. Moreover, a lot of women don’t, or even can’t, climax during intercourse!
Read up on what really helps a woman climax here:
2. Try various positions to see if any/some of them result in climax for you.
They may not (see above), but it could be worth a shot.
For some wives, it’s better to be on top, so she can have more control with the thrusting and tilt her hips in a way that provides pressure against her clitoris. For other wives, a rear-entry position could result in the husband getting deeper and better friction. And for others, face-to-face is the key, but maybe angling your hips upward or putting your feet on his stomach or your knees over his shoulders (assuming that works with your size/height). A sex pillow might help you achieve better angling too.
I also have a chapter about positions in my Hot, Holy, and Humorous book that can walk you through ways to shift your bodies around and find something that might work for both of you.
3. He stimulates your clitoris during intercourse.
You might combine intercourse and clitoral stimulation to achieve nice results. Get into a position in which he can reach your clitoral hood (that’s the knobby part of your clitoris that sticks out and swells when aroused). Make sure you have adequate lubrication, and add some personal lubricant if needed.
Give him tips on the level of pressure and amount of movement you desire. You may not know yourself until you try it out, but once he hits a good place, let him know. And since one thing doesn’t work for the whole time with most wives, let your husband know when you need him to slow down, increase speed, press harder, etc.
If you’re looking for which positions will work best, check out this page from Christian Friendly Sex Positions and choose “clitoral stimulation” in the search parameters:
4. Stimulate your own clitoris during intercourse.
It can be challenging for your husband to focus on his thrusting and your clitoral stimulation at the same time, so an alternative is for him to focus on the intercourse while you use your own fingers to bring yourself to climax.
Most husbands would be fine with this—and may find that enthusiasm arousing—but make sure your particular husband understands why you want to do this and that it isn’t taking away from the wonderful experience of having him inside you. If anything, having your husband inside when it happens can make a clitoral orgasm better.
5. Get your orgasm after intercourse.
Let him know the intercourse was great, but you’re not really done and would like to finish with an orgasm yourself. Suggest what you’d like for him to do to help you. Do you want him to manually stimulate you to climax? Do you want him to simply caress, kiss, fondle, etc. while you bring yourself to climax?
Your orgasm is still a mutual experience this way, with both of you focused on connection and pleasure.
Yes, I’m sure some husbands are exhausted post-intercourse and aren’t sure they have it in them to keep going. But if you can prevail a few times, I suspect he’ll see the benefit and realize it’s not much more to ask.
What if after all this, he still doesn’t prioritize your orgasm?
If you did all of this, and he still ignored your climax? Then I’d suspect the problem runs deeper than the bedroom, and I’d ask for marriage counseling.
But hopefully, one or more of the suggestions above will get the point across and help you both prioritize your pleasure—as God intended sex to be in your marriage.