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week 4. pleasure and experiments

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Welcome to Week 4!

Welcome to the last week! We will wrap the program by talking about your own meanings of sexual pleasure and some fun sexual experiments that you could try by yourself or with your partner.

 

Please take enough time to read and reflect.

For the best experience, we recommend to view this page in a full-page view on the desktop, but feel free to view it on mobile with your preference!

contents

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1 min read + 2 min video

6 min read + 3 videos (4 min, 5 min, 17 min)

2 min read 

2 min read + 2 videos (5 min, 14 min)

10+ minute reflections

contents
sexual pleaure

sexual pleasure

Have you ever

faked an orgasm?

Watch this short video, featuring several women who talk about how often and why they faked an orgasm. 

Here is some more scientific view, written by our expert, Keeley Rankin. you can read the full article here.

Why women struggle to find their orgasm

Keeley Rankin on xxTALK

Imagine you are hiking up a mountain. The trail is great - a bit of a workout but enjoyable. You feel energized, engaged, relaxed and overall good about your walk. But, you notice that as you get closer to the top, you seem to be going around and around - instead of up to the top. 

 

This is how most folks who struggle to find their orgasm feel. The start to head up the arousal curve (the imaginary curve from 1 - 10 | 1 = a little aroused, 9 being the point of no return, 10 = orgasm) and you plateau around a 7 or an 8. You try to feel that sudden shift in sensation pushing you to the 9 and then the glorious 10, but for some reason you get stuck. And in the worst case scenario you start heading back down the curve, distracted, disconnected and disheartened.

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In this article I am going to give you the three main reasons women struggle to find their orgasm. 

 

I often tell my clients that it is normal to expect that about 20% of the time your body does things you may not understand. Our bodies are not machines, but in general, 80% of the time, we want to be able to be in a relationship (notice I did not say control) with our pleasure. Meaning, if you want to head to and orgasm, 80% of the time you are able to move there when you choose. 

 

It is important to mention anytime orgasm is a focus of an article, that over focussing on orgasm or making it the most important part of your erotic experience is missing the point. It would be like going to the symphony and waiting for the ending of each song. Projecting that the ending is somehow better than the beginning or all the middle parts is dramatically missing the experience. 

 

That being said, orgasms are glorious. Have you noticed how each one is different? Some are flowy like a dress in the wind, some are strong and powerful like a wood chopper and some are whole journeys in and of themselves. While some people say you can have ‘chocolate orgams’ or ‘breath orgasms,’ I am much more of the practical sciency side of things: a series of muscle contractions in the genital region that is accompanied by sudden release of endorphins.

I’m guessing you have heard before that many women struggle to reach orgasm. About 10 - 40% of women have trouble reaching an orgasm. Why so many women are not climaxing is a pretty complex answer. 


The three main areas I check in with clients around are physical sensations, erotic turn-ons and emotional openness.

Physical Sensations

Most people’s bodies need a certain type of sensation or stimulation to reach an orgasm. If you are masturbating in a way that cannot be replicated by another, or not getting the stimulation you need, your body (and your brain) will not know how to move up the arousal curve into orgasm. 

Erotic Turn-ons

What do you need to get into the mood? Are you aware of your fantasies? Do you need a gentle caress and sweet words, do you need a strong spank on the bottom? Maybe you want some long, connected eye contact or to be told a sexy story? Each of us in a unique and ever changing mystery of arousal. What we want and how we want it is some of the most important information we can ever learn about ourselves (at least in my opinion). If you are not getting the things you need to become aroused, or are unable to ask for what you want, or do not know what you want - you’re most likely running into trouble finding your orgasm.

Emotional Openness

This can be a big topic to try to summarize in a blog post. The main takeaway is that our hearts need to be open and trusting to be able to let go into orgasm. Not only with our partners, but even with ourselves. For folks who have experienced traumas in intimacy or sexually, trusting that it is ok to ‘let go’ into orgasm can feel subconsciously like a loss of control that is not safe. I say subconsciously because often you want to let go, but something is holding you back. 

It is also important to ask yourself do you have difficulty orgasming all the time or mostly when with a partner? 

 

If you are struggling when you are maturbating to find your orgasm, you’ll want to start here. Learning your own body first without the pressure of someone else watching you or distracting you is often the route many women take. 

 

There are all sorts of places to learn about how to masturbate or what your body might like. My two favorite resources:

 

Betty Dodson |Dodson and Ross

OMGYes

 

If you are able to easily find your own climax but when you are with a lover you lose the connection, communication - communication - did I mention COMMUNICATION is going to be your key. You want to share what you need, what you want, your desires as well as potentially the fears you are having. 

Yes, sharing your fears can make you feel very vulnerable but it is often a very important step in letting for into the orgasm. 

 

It is also worth mentioning here that sex toys - vibrators and dildos will most likely be your best friends. I call my Hitachi Magic Wand my second boyfriend. Explore sex toys and find the ones that do you right!

 

Your pleasure is worth exploring and understanding. Your body is a unique, pleasure palace just waiting for you to open her up. 


Dive deep into any fear holding you back, communicate and get exploring. 

Sexual experiments

Let's admit it. We all have sexual fantasies but the conversations around sexual fantasies and experiments could feel more frustrated than having a conversation about sex. Explore your sexual boundaries with your partner could be a fun, exciting, and bonding experience. A lot of people don’t know what fantasies they feel comfortable experimenting with. 

Still embarrassed? Let's watch some videos to start with. 

sexual experiments
Our Secret Fantasies
The School of Life

Our Secret Fantasies

There’s a lot constantly going in the fantasy part of our minds that sounds pretty strange and at times, frankly, shocking. But coming to terms with our fantasies – and realising they are not our reality – belongs to the art of knowing how to live more easily with ourselves. Enjoying our Youtube videos? Get full access to all our audio content, videos, and thousands of thought-provoking articles, conversation cards and more with The School of Life Subscription: https://t.ly/4bvm7 Be more mindful, present and inspired. Get the best of The School of Life delivered straight to your inbox: https://t.ly/zMkYn FURTHER READING “Every day, each one of us entertains, in the caverns of our minds, a host of secretly very enjoyable but deeply taboo ideas and scenarios. We fantasise about the downfall of rivals, sudden wealth and fame, reversing and accelerating time, eliminating colleagues, anticipating the stock market, the death of various people (even a few we’re meant to love) – and of course, of having sex with a huge variety of entirely inappropriate people in a plethora of highly forbidden or just pretty non-standard ways…” You can read more on this and other subjects here: https://goo.gl/8gl7fb MORE SCHOOL OF LIFE Watch more films on SELF in our playlist: http://bit.ly/TSOLself SOCIAL MEDIA Feel free to follow us at the links below: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theschooloflifelondon/ X: https://twitter.com/TheSchoolOfLife Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theschooloflifelondon/ CREDITS Produced in collaboration with: Emma Ehrling http://www.emmaehrling.co.uk/ #TheSchoolOfLife
The Sexual Fantasies of Others
The School of Life

The Sexual Fantasies of Others

Despite talk of liberation, our sexual lives remain the focus of immense amounts of shame. One way to deal with this is to expand - with dignity - evidence of what people are truly like. Here, some brave individuals reveal what it is they deep down want and think about. We applaud their courage, and find it poignant too. Enjoying our Youtube videos? Get full access to all our audio content, videos, and thousands of thought-provoking articles, conversation cards and more with The School of Life Subscription: https://t.ly/t9acs Be more mindful, present and inspired. Get the best of The School of Life delivered straight to your inbox: https://t.ly/ghYC8 FURTHER READING “From adolescence onwards, one of the great struggles we face is how to reconcile our desire to be normal and good with the contents of our sexual fantasies. For most of us, there are some alarming bits of our imaginations that simply refuse to fit in with the rest of our allegiances: we may be deeply interested in monogamy, and yet after a while, could find that we are only excited by the attention of complete strangers. We may be believers in every kind of gender equality, yet in bed, dream of humiliating someone. We perhaps want to be strong and competent, but are drawn to sexual scenarios in which we’ll be ordered to follow a master or mistress around on a chain on our hands and knees...” You can read more on this and other topics here: https://goo.gl/ex9WXH MORE SCHOOL OF LIFE Watch more films on RELATIONSHIPS in our playlist: http://bit.ly/TSOLrelationships SOCIAL MEDIA Feel free to follow us at the links below: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theschooloflifelondon/ X: https://twitter.com/TheSchoolOfLife Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/theschooloflifelondon/ CREDITS Produced in collaboration with: Chloë Ellingson http://www.chloeellingson.com #TheSchoolOfLife

Are you now ready to explore your boundaries? Here is some inventory you could try out with your partners. You can go through this list with your partner and evaluate how comfortable you and your partner are with trying each of these items. Again, as we learned from the last week, make the conversation judgment-free zone and keep open-minded! [1] It is okay if one of you does not want to do something that another person wants to try. Ask questions about why s/he wants to try it out, and what makes them turn on. It will be a fun and hot conversation!

* If you are reading this from mobile, we recommend you to visit from the Desktop later to better see the table. 

explorations
you
your partner
watch porn together
I'd love to explore!
I'd love to explore!
read erotic fiction together
I'd love to explore!
maybe
kiss a member of your same sex (if you are straight), or of the opposite sex (if you are gay)
maybe
I don't want to
have sex in a public place
I don't want to
I don't want to
have sex in a semi-public space
maybe
I don't want to
use a vibrator in front of your partner
have your partner use a vibrator on you
stimulate your partner's anus with your finger or mouth
have your anus stimulated with fingers or mouth
have anal sex
have a threesome with someone of the same sex
have a threesome with someone of the opposite sex
have an orgy
watch an orgy
talk dirty with your partner
perform or receive oral sex
allow your partner to dominate you
dominate your partner
spank your partner
receive a spanking
have phone sex
masturbate in front of your partner
watch your partner masturbate
visit a strip club
perform a striptease for your partner
use restraints on your partner
have your partner use restraints on you
use a blindfold on your partner
have your partner use a blindfold on you
incorporate food into a sexual encounter
wear a provocative lingerie
wear a costume during sex
use a strap-on
have your partner use a strap-on
have sex with the lights-on
role-play a fantasy

Take a quiz to discover your sexual preference that you may not have discovered yet

This is a quiz developed by Sex coach Jaiya Ma. It's a great tool to help you to assess your erotic preference. Click the button below to take her quiz.

sexperiment table

Let's get kinky

You may have noticed that many items on the table above are somewhat kinky. The word 'kink' refers to any sexual practice that falls out of conventional sex, including loving touch and romantic talk. [2] It is easy to connect kink sex with BDSM (something like the Fifty Shades of Gray), but there are many other categories falling under kink.

BDSM

Role-playing

Fetish

Voyeurism / Exhibitionism

Group Sex

Bondage, discipline, dominance, submission, sadism, and machoism. Lots of activities could be BDSM, such as paddle spanking, dominant/submissive role-playing, bondage, and pain play

kinky sex could involve imagined scenarios. It could be just talking about a fantasy in bed, or wearing costumes, or acting out scenes in front of strangers.

fetish is a behavior treating non-sexual objects or body parts sexually. For example, it could be feet, shoes, or leather.

Voyeurism refers to a fantasy of watching someone undress, or a couple having sex without their knowledge. Exhibitionism means wanting to have sex in a public place.

any act that involves more than two people. It could be threesomes, sex parties, and orgies.

You will be surprised that around 50% of randomly surveyed people were interested in kink, and more than 20% of sexually active adults engage in role-playing, tied-up, and spanking. [3] [4] 35% of surveyed adults are interested in voyeurism. [5] 

If you have not tried it before, you should remember the number one rule is safety and respect. Here are some tips that help you safely exploring it! [6]

  • Open communication, again, is very important! 

  • Make it clear what role you and your partner are playing during sex. It could be dominant and submissive, owner and pet, master, and slave. You could also switch your role, even within a scene. 

  • Respect. Although BDSM could involve pain or humiliation, respect and honor outside the bed are essential. BDSM principles and aspects do not leave the bedroom unless you and your partner agreed to have 24/7 dynamic. 

  • If you and your partner are interested in exploring S&M (sadism and masochism), start small and slowly. Check-in with your partner frequently about how it feels. 

  • Set safe words. For example, you can say yellow to slow down the play and have a check-in; and red to stop all sexual activity. It will keep your boundaries respected. 

  • Aftercare matters. It is the process of soothing and nurturing, lets you and your partner have a debrief, and increase intimacy.

let's get kinky

Optional listening

PODCAST: Kink and BDSM 101 from Queer Sex Ed