Problems having an orgasm


Problems having an orgasm


your avatar   Wanderer, 44-year-old man

I'm a 44-year-old male who has been married for 24 years. Over the past couple of years my relationship with my wife has been degrading and we are kind of living in a "comfort zone," without any passion in our lives. Two months ago I began having an affair with a co-worker. She is about 10 years younger than I am, divorced, and sex is a very important part of her life. I really enjoy spending time with her and doing a wide variety of things, including just sitting around and talking. To me she is the most beautiful woman in the world. When we are apart, I can only think about her.

We've had sex about 5 or 6 times now, but I was only able to achieve an orgasm one time and that was with oral sex. When we are having sex it is very exciting and feels really good. She is incredible. Before we started having sex we had talked a lot about past experiences etc. She is much more sexually experienced than I, and her last partner was much younger than her. I am able to bring myself to orgasm when masturbating although over the past year or so it seems to be taking longer for that as well.

Why can't I achieve an orgasm with this woman? I want it badly, and she takes it as a personal reflection on her sexuality that I have not been able to do so. We've discussed this somewhat and the best I can come up with is that I feel overwhelmed with trying to compete with her past lovers. Is there something that I can do to get over this and achieve an orgasm with her?


    Robert W. Birch, Ph.D., ACS Certified Sexologist

There are those who would say that the reason you are not ejaculating with your younger friend is because you feel guilty cheating on your wife. My perspective on such matters is less moralistic and a bit more practical.

Usually between 45 and 55 men begin to perceive changes in their sexual response. Erections take longer to achieve and are more dependent on direct stimulation, erections are beginning to become unreliable and might not become quite as firm, it takes longer to ejaculate, and it takes longer to come back for an encore... now possibly a matter of days. First off, then, I would point to your age... but you are not an old man and this should not be a big factor here.

There certainly might be some "performance anxiety," but that either will cause a man to fail to get an erection (or lose one he had) or to ejaculate rapidly. Worrying about competition should not cause result in a failure to ejaculate if you are fully aroused and getting sufficient stimulation. There is the question then of stimulation, and I have two thoughts on this. If you have relied on self-pleasuring for a lot of years, you might have conditioned yourself to the tighter masturbatory stimulation. The softer stimulation of vaginal intercourse might not seem tight enough.

There is also the issue of genital fit. Some folks just fit better together than others. A penis a bit small or a vagina a bit large... each has a match, but if this modest penis and this generous vagina get together, ejaculation might be difficult.

Some suggestions you might want to consider:

  • Refrain from masturbation.
  • Use rich fantasy to stay focused.
  • Use a position that gives a tighter sensation such as rear entry (doggy style), or stay high on her body when you are in the superior position.

Robert W. Birch, Ph.D., Sexologist & Adult Sexuality Educator

Robert W. Birch, Ph.D., is a retired sex therapist, now identifying himself as a sexologist and adult sexuality educator. He now devotes his time to writing educational and self-help books for adults.For more information visit:

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