For most people, it’s fair to say that one of the goals of sexual encounters is to experience physical pleasure. Of course, there are many different reasons that people choose to have sex – to stroke your ego, to feel attractive to your partner, to feel love and/or accepted, to make up after a fight, to feel closer to your partner, to get pregnant, to feel powerful and/or important – so many different varied reasons. But some of the many reasons you choose to have sex can actually get in the way of your experience of physical pleasure. It really comes down to a matter of attention.
Compared to other mammals, humans with their obnoxiously-large cortex have the capacity to think a multitude of different thoughts, even in the midst of sexual intercourse. Your ego, which defines for you what sex should be and what it means to you at any given moment, has a way of overshadowing your body so that your attention may be taken up by your thoughts about sex rather than the sex itself. When this happens, your brain is not paying full attention to the sensations that your nerve endings are sending to it. In a way, part or most of the communication from your genitals to your brain is being ignored at that moment in order for the brain to concern itself with whatever the ego is preoccupied with at the moment.
So imagine that you are having sex or getting sexual contact from your partner, but your brain isn’t fully paying attention. You’re going to miss the full experience of that touch, that kiss, that stroke, that pressure, that wetness. This is particularly problematic for people having difficulty with desire or arousal. If their brain is not recognizing the signals of arousal that the body is trying to send, it doesn’t really register.
How this might happen in sex could be seen in those people preoccupied with a judgment about sex or perhaps a concern about their body. In this case, your focus is taken away from the tactile sensations that you are having over your skin, your genitals, your entire body so that the message is ignored by your brain and you miss out on recognizing that moment of pleasure. The more your brain is preoccupied with other thoughts, the less pleasure it can register. Even more distressing is that when the brain is preoccupied with thoughts that are anxiety provoking (“I don’t like my body”, “Maybe my partner is not really enjoying themselves.”), it stops sending signals back to the genitals that are needed for lubrication or for an erection, etc.
There is a remedy, however, which is to slow down the activity and focus on the tactile sensations that you are experiencing. You will increase your pleasure when your brain is allowed to focus on each touch, each movement, and the way your body responds. Focusing on the present moment during your sexual contact will also increase the experience of the pleasure as the brain filters out distractions to focus fully on the communication from the your erogenous zones and genitals. Feeling more during sex by slowing down the action and focusing on sensation is to take a play out of the Neo-tantric playbook and get closer to sexual spirituality and ecstatic consciousness.
My wife and I have been married for more than 25 years, and while I have given her deep spot vaginal orgasms, they haven’t been the ones where she contracts or shakes.
Rather, they are hardly noticeable and it seems like she is holding back. I try to read as much as I can about relationships and foreplay and sexual technique I know that above all else she must; 1. feel special and appreciated. 2. feel deep emotional connection. 3. feel feminine beautiful and sexy.
To have hot passionate sex and most importantly…..
5. For me to have more self confidence
I work really hard on these things….but she still only wants to orgasm by herself….
We will have sex (lights out missionary most of the time) at least once a week. but she will often turn me down only to hear her masturbating later on after she thought I fall asleep. While I am totally supportive of solo play (and have bought her two really nice LILO vibrators), she hasn’t wanted to orgasm with me. I thought about buying her a nice glass dildo for Valentine’s day but I’m not sure how she would receive it at this point. I have tried to encourage her (gently) to try new things (expanded orgasm techniques, massage, g spot stimulation, oral sex etc.
I have told her that I am open to whatever she brings and that I’m in service to opening her up and awakening to her own inner beauty…leading her back to her own sensuality and that I want to be connected with you on all levels of my being with you as a sexual man – because that’s where I want to take her — in every way I can — up leveling myself toward that place in the relationship.
But sometimes (often) I feel like I am speaking to an empty room I’m just not getting the level of sexual response from my lover that I so long for in my life…
Clearly for me, the arching of the back, the thrashing, and the quivering of a woman’s orgasm (g-spot and otherwise) is so beautiful, but what delights me the most are the sounds: a woman scaling up the octaves of orgasm….and then singing out her arias of bliss There is no more beautiful music in nature.
I don’t want to sound pathetic but I have only experienced this in my fantasies and I am at a complete loss as to how to make this happen in true life.
Can you help?
So close but yet so far
Buy a Kamasutra. It’s the sex bible. Introduce it to her, maybe it’s just that she’s tired of missionary. There are literally hundreds of different positions you can try, maybe you can find a new one that’s good for you and for her 🙂
“The more your brain is preoccupied with other thoughts, the less pleasure it can register. Even more distressing is that when the brain is preoccupied with thoughts that are anxiety provoking (“I don’t like my body”, “Maybe my partner is not really enjoying themselves.”), it stops sending signals back to the genitals that are needed for lubrication or for an erection, etc.”
Wow, I think those statements sum it up for me. Sexual relations with my wife are truly a struggle for me because of the thoughts that go on in my brain. I call it the “shittee committee” that reminds me of bad thoughts and not pleasurable ones. It is no wonder if have difficulties most of the time. I know that sex is supposed to be pleasurable for us. It is hard to feel pleasure when this stuff is circling around in my head. I liken it to playing golf while concentrating on every part of the swing and going out of bounds. It doesnt work and one suffers “paralysis from analysis” Doctor, thanks for this great article. I had wondered if you were going to write again.
How can I have sex with my husband can you help me with some ideas please?