9 Reasons Why People Fake Orgasms

Faking an orgasm is more common in society than some may believe. Both men and women are participants. Let’s dive into the research on how common faking an orgasm is for men vs. women, and 9 common reasons why people do it.

Key takeaways:
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    The best way to deal with a sexual partner who is faking their orgasms is by having open and honest communication about it.
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    When there are mental or physical conditions limiting a person’s ability to experience an orgasm or if there is trauma, a licensed therapist who specializes in sex therapy can help.

No one wants to be on the receiving end of having a sexual partner fake an orgasm. But there are numerous reasons why this happens and it’s not always because of a lack of sexual interest. Do you ever wonder if this has happened to you without your knowledge?

According to research, as many as 28% of men and 67% of women admitted to faking orgasms with a sexual partner. Let’s discuss the various reasons why people do it in the first place.

1. To bring disappointing or unpleasant encounters to an end

When engaging in sex, it can be difficult to enjoy when the sex is disappointing, uncomfortable or painful. Rather than showing disappointment, faking an orgasm is often the fastest way to bring the encounter to an end, while avoiding conflict and hurting the other person’s feelings.

2. To arouse the other person and cause them to peak

There are several reasons why a person might want to fake an orgasm for the pleasure of their partner. Sometimes it’s more difficult for a person to experience a sexual peak until they notice their partner is having an orgasm. In such situations, a person may sacrifice their own orgasm so they can give their partner one before running out of steam.

This is common when one person isn’t as in the mood or is just taking longer to become aroused. There is also a large percentage of women who have anorgasmia (an inability to climax) from either a lack of personal exploration and insight into what turns them on or a physical or mental health condition.

3. To avoid awkwardness and confrontation after a disappointing encounter

When people engage in a sexual encounter that is disappointing for at least one person, they may fake an orgasm to avoid the awkwardness and confrontation that follows. Often, a person will feel like a failure in the bedroom if they are unable to make the other person climax. Faking an orgasm is an easier way to avoid the feelings of inadequacy the other person may experience afterward.

4. To deceive

When someone is cheating or planning to cheat, they may fake their orgasms so that it doesn’t alert their partner to the fact that they are not feeling sexually fulfilled. They may not want to raise suspicion about any sexual activities they’ve been engaging in that may cause a delay in the amount of time it typically takes for them to reach an orgasm.

5. Because it can be sexually arousing

A fake orgasm can be just as sexually arousing to the person faking it as it can to the person who perceives it as a real orgasm. This can sometimes ignite the beginning of a real orgasm for a person, especially if they like to experience climax at the same time as their partner, and a fake orgasm can sometimes trigger a real orgasm in their partner.

6. Out of fear, insecurity, self-consciousness or embarrassment

There can be a lot of fear and insecurity surrounding a person’s ability to experience an orgasm. For women, it can sometimes take a long time until they reach a climax. A significant percentage of women have never experienced an orgasm, and some are physically incapable of having a vaginal orgasm.

Rather than admit this, they may fake orgasms out of fear or insecurity of being perceived as inexperienced or not sexual. Orgasms often involve a complex set of mental and physical components and there is nothing wrong with not being able to climax. It can also be embarrassing to become vulnerable enough to experience an orgasm with a person when a baseline of trust and familiarity has not been established.

7. Fear of being unable to reach an orgasm

When a person is unable to consistently have an orgasm, it can create stress and anxiety from the fear that they will not reach a climax. This can cause a lot of pressure, which may prompt a person to fake an orgasm rather than try and fail.

8. A maxed-out pleasure ceiling

We all have different thresholds for the amount of joy and pleasure we allow into our lives. Once we reach that level or pleasure ceiling, it can cause a person to clam up and push people or pleasure away. If a person hasn’t experienced heightened sexual arousal to be a normal part of their pleasure, they may fake an orgasm. This could be due to suppressed feelings of guilt around pleasurable experiences, or that they do not believe they are worthy of experiencing such joy or think that something negative will follow.

9. A mental or physical condition

There are a variety of physical conditions that could prevent a person from having an orgasm. There are also many mental health conditions that impact a person’s sex drive. Sexual trauma or physical trauma can also prevent a person from mentally allowing themselves to experience an orgasm. If you or your sexual partner is experiencing an issue with faking orgasms, it’s best to have open and honest communication about it. If it's rooted in a mental or physical health issue or stems from trauma, a licensed therapist who is certified in sex therapy can help.


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