Women Want It, Too

I'm almost a little too embarrassed to write about this but today's NYT had a story about how men enjoy sex with or without a commitment, while women don't.  Big duh, I know.

But what was really interesting was the point Natalie Kitroeff made: that women like hooking up with men casually as much as men do, just wish they had more orgasms.

"Like generations before them, many young women . . . are finding that casual sex does not bring the physical pleasure that men more often experience," Kitroeff writes. "New research suggests why: Women are less likely to have orgasms during uncommitted sexual encounters than in serious relationships."

At the same time,she notes, researchers say that young women "are becoming equal partners in the hookup culture, often just as willing as young men to venture into sexual relationships without emotional ties."

I grew up in the '70s when "free love," or sex, was everywhere.  We had Woodstock and hippies, communes and VW campers.  Sex was, well, everywhere. Young people broke out of the constraints of the day and just had fun.

But with it came the realization that men were, quite literally, making out better than women.  While they could choose as many partners as they wanted, women were more limited, or disrespected more, if they did. But what was missing in all that was what young women have discovered today, Kitroeff says -- we want to feel good, too.

“The notion of sexual liberation, where men and women both had equal access to casual sex, assumed a comparable likelihood of that sex being pleasurable,” Kim Wallen, a professor of neuroendocrinology at Emory University who studies female desire, told Kitroeff. “But that part of the playing field isn’t level.”

Researchers have found that women were twice as likely to reach orgasm from intercourse or oral sex in serious relationships as in hookups, Kitroeff reports.

Women were far more likely (two-thirds of a group surveyed) to enjoy a physical relationship when in a committed relationship.

Young men in another study "often admitted that they are less focused on sexually pleasing a woman they are seeing casually than one they are dating," Kitroeff points out. 

So what should we get from all this?  Clearly, that both women and men are hooking up in casual, as well as serious relationships today. And that women would like to start enjoying them just as much as men!


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