With all the fiction surrounding women’s sexuality, it is important to appreciate that female sexuality has not evolved solely for the purpose of gratifying male ego. Women can’t respond in certain ways simply because men would like them to (unless they fake of course). Female sexuality has evolved so as to maximise the chances of successful reproduction. Part of this success can be attributed to women’s ability to consciously behave in a way that pleases men. Specifically, women can provide erotic turn-ons that assist with male orgasm, which is the goal of reproduction and intercourse.
Men are naturally more proactive as lovers than women are. Men stimulate a partner because they are aroused by touching, kissing and penetrating a lover’s body. Their sex drive focuses them on penetration and the act of thrusting until ejaculation. Women do not have the benefit of erotic arousal. So a woman is not focused on achieving her own orgasm with a lover. She can only make conscious effort to assist with male orgasm (if she wants to). A woman learns that she can excite a man by moving her hips or faking her arousal. This increased male arousal means that a man achieves his sexual release more quickly. This reduces the effort that a woman needs to make.
A woman may be reassured if she can convince herself that she experiences orgasms that reflect male fantasies. But it is vital that other women know that there are no facts or logic to support these fictional responses some women think they have. There’s nothing wrong with a woman faking orgasm if her partner expects her to. What a woman decides to tell her lover is up to her.
A dog runs after a ball not because dogs have evolved an interest in chasing balls but because the ball emulates the behaviour of the small mammals that dogs used to hunt for food. When we throw a ball for a dog, it acts as a stimulus that causes the dog to chase after it and perhaps retrieve it. In the wild, the ball is a rabbit and the dog catches the rabbit to eat it. There is a parallel in sex because sexuality encompasses more than reproduction.
Sex play involves a woman throwing the equivalent of a ball for the man. Except, she is the ball! A man wants to emulate the conquest of catching a woman and forcing himself on her. The moans and facial expressions of the porn actresses are based on the resistance scenario. Yet men hope that their wives and girlfriends will provide the same turn-ons naturally. They don’t appreciate that the whole thing has to be an act from the female perspective.
When she is a virgin, a woman accepts the stimulation a man offers. A virgin lies inert during intercourse anticipating that something will happen as if by magic. When nothing happens, she can choose between remaining immobile or simulating some kind of enthusiasm. Both social and sexual interaction rely on the active interest of the participants. If a woman lies inert, a man loses confidence in his performance. He interprets her behaviour negatively, even though logically no one can ignore their natural responses.
When a man is a virgin and has intercourse with a sexually experienced woman, she can guide him. But she does not have her own sexual needs. Women have no natural response to consensual intercourse, which provides little sensation. But men seem to need a response from a partner. So an experienced woman moves her hips and makes some noise to help with male arousal. She does this because she loves a man or because she wants to help him achieve his sexual release. She responds because she thinks she should or because she is being paid to act out the part of the proactive lover.
Sex is trivial when a woman is in love but it becomes more onerous over time. Young women are more enthusiastic about sex because of the novelty, romance and ego. There is the hope that orgasm will eventually happen. Men know that platonic love ties women into their relationships. Men often stop providing romantic lead-ins to sex once they have secured a partner.
A man likes to think he has pleased a woman by providing stimulation. Unfortunately, given the sexual inertness of the female body and her lack of arousal, there is little a man can do that provides more than vague sensual pleasure. A woman feels no erotic arousal with a lover, so she can only respond to a partner’s initiative. She does this either mechanically (in the case of the prostitute or disenchanted lover) or more ideally because she enjoys demonstrating her love for a partner. A woman has the emotional reward of giving pleasure. For this emotional reward to be effective, she needs to feel that a man cares about her. A woman’s enthusiasm dwindles over time because of the effort involved. But she provides sex to keep the peace. She doesn’t feel loved, merely used. She stops including affectionate foreplay. Sex becomes a means of satisfying a man’s basic sexual needs.
Men tend to look for signs that a female partner is amenable because they get used to the fact that often she is not. A proactive woman may offer when she is in the mood or just to get sex over with. Other women accept a man when he pushes hard enough. Over the longer term a woman equates intercourse to other chores like ironing or washing up. But while ironing, she can watch television. While washing up, she can chat. With sex, there is nothing to do but lie there trying not look too bored so that her partner doesn’t take offense. Women offer sex because they know that it is expected. This expectation comes from society (women are expected to offer a partner regular sex), from knowing that men may take their sexual needs (and their income) elsewhere and from women’s instincts to care for those they love.
I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t be satisfied if we only had sex when I feel like it. I have had to learn it’s not all about me. Sometimes I wish it was, but it’s not. (Valerie Harris)