A Global Better Sex Survey of over 12,000 sexually active adults in 27 countries reveals that more than half the female respondents found sex ‘DISSATISFYING”
HONEY, LET’S TALK SEX
In today’s world, where everything is in the public domain, why is sex a silent sufferer? Or is it? “Yes, some women talk about it, but most don’t. Some talk to their married sisters or friends, and in pre-marital counselling, sex is discussed openly. But talking is not enough, you need to talk to the right person. The best bet is the family doctor who would give you all the information objectively,” says Dr Patri.
“I lost my virginity when I was 19. Believe me, for the first two or three years, sex was really bad. I didn’t know what an orgasm was and for the man it was a mechanical act, no foreplay, nothing beautiful,” says Aastha, 28, a public relations pro. She learnt her lessons the hard way. Sex is no longer a quickie; she knows and talks about her pleasure and never, ever feels guilty. She now has a mantra: Never have sex too young, because you don’t know much about it and may feel dissatisfied even before you understand what pleasure really is. Also, know your man. Good sex begins with knowing the man—not just in mind, but in body too.
Agrees fashion designer Rina Dhaka, “I really believe what is good for the goose is good for the gander. Of course, you need to know the man to have good sex. For me, there is no other way.” But how do you know? Well, the answer is talk. TALK. Talk to your partner about what gives you more pleasure. Silence or inhibition will only beget dissatisfaction.
Says Dr John Gray, author of Mars And Venus In The Bedroom, “A man usually needs about two or three minutes of stimulation to have an orgasm, but a woman needs 10 times that.” Think 3 minutes, think 30 minutes and look at the chasm. So ladies, if you do not talk in three minutes the man will ‘finish’ the act, roll over and snore, while you keep waiting for that big O. The Durex Sexual Wellbeing Global Survey (DSWGS) found that twice as many men as women regularly have orgasms.
“The reasons are innumerable,” says Srividya Rajaram, clinical psychologist. “It could be frigidity in one or excessive libido in another. In some cases, the man is not interested in sex any longer. In others, the woman is very vocal about her sexual needs and the ‘demands’ are not acceptable by men. It could be kinky sex that men want and women abhor. Men often prefer oral sex to intercourse, which leaves women dissatisfied.”
Look at the young urban couple. They work 14 hours daily, commute another two hours, spend weekends finding ways to go up the ladder… In all this, the first casualty is sex. The frequency has dipped drastically. For ages, researchers have debated whether dissatisfaction stems from low frequency or vice versa. The GBSS reported that about 30 per cent of men and 25 per cent of women were having less than the right amount of sex, according to their own definitions. According to the DSWGS, the global frequency of sex is 127 times a year on average—roughly once in three days. Hungarians and Bulgarians are the most sexually active, doing it 152 and 151 times a year, respectively. Pity the Singaporeans. They are the only ones in the world who do not even hit the magic 100 mark.
“Yes, the frequency is dipping drastically. We blame it on stress and the rat race, but I believe the clock moves the other way. Stress comes from sexual dissatisfaction, not the other way round,” says Dr Khanna.
THE BIG O & THE BIG DIFFERENCE
A man usually needs about two or three minutes of stimulation to have an orgasm; a woman generally needs 10 times more. For a man, an orgasm is instinctive. For a woman, it happens only after direct stimulation of the clitoris. A man’s climax usually lasts 10–13 seconds. For a woman, it lasts 6–60 seconds. A man must recuperate after an orgasm but a woman can have repeated orgasms within minutes or in rapid succession. Wonder why a man rolls over and sleeps after? During sex, his body releases oxytocin, a hormone that induces drowsiness. A woman is more relaxed after sex, which is why she wants to talk or cuddle.
LESS SEX = MORE DIVORCE
Sexual frustration isn’t just about a passionate night gone awry. It may have larger ramifications like divorce. Says lawyer Vinay Singh, “Of all the divorce cases that I handle, nearly 20 per cent stem from sexual incompatibility. It isn’t the only reason for separation, but it’s a major one. Sexual incompatibility leads to other things—adultery, refusal to have sex—all very strong grounds for divorce.”
LISTEN TO YOUR BODY
Gynaecologist Dr Rosy Dhall has a completely biological take on the dissatisfaction syndrome. “Let’s not forget that, biologically, men have a longer sexual life than women. A woman hits menopause around age 50, the man’s andropause does not kick in before 70. That is a major factor in differing libido levels. Vaginal dryness, sagging breasts—all these come as part of the menopausal package. The man has no such baggage.” So at 50, a woman would be dissatisfied. Dr Dhall denies it vehemently. “All this talk of dissatisfaction is more in the head. Every problem has an answer. Vaginal dryness? Use lubricants. Sagging breasts? Head to the plastic surgeon.”