I'm 23 Years Old and I've Never Had an Orgasm

But don't cry for me: Sex can be wonderful without orgasms.

by Sarah Astner
11 June 2015, 11:00am

This article originally appeared on VICE Germany

I'm lying on my bed with my legs spreadeagled. Two women are kissing on the screen in front of me, one slowly getting penetrated by a man from behind; a cloud of Ikea's vanilla scent permeates my room. I've decided to try and do it myself – to give the whole orgasm thing another chance. But it's impossible; somehow I feel totally out of place, like I'm just not cut out for climaxing.

Sixteen minutes and 38 seconds later, I give up and make myself a cup of tea. While stirring in the sugar, I'll introduce myself to you. I'm 23, and I've never had an orgasm. For starters, I get bored of masturbating really quickly – it doesn't really do anything for me, not even when I'm alone in my bed. That made me feel strange for a long time, but not any more.

I like to watch porn for aesthetic reasons, but not because it makes me horny. That doesn't apply to most of the material, of course, but luckily the industry is re-orienting itself. In general, I think women are more beautiful than men – there's something about tits on screen that gets me going. And pussy, too. Dicks irritate me sometimes. It's a little bit like roulette: you never know what's gonna pop out of a guy's pants.

Related: Can You Tell Which of These Porn Star Orgasms Are Fake?

For me, an orgasm is a mystery. It's the Higgs boson – its existence has yet to be conclusively proven. But you can't miss what you don't know, and unfortunately most of my sex partners have failed to understand that. That's why I fake my orgasms. I think I'm good at it too, because, so far, all the people I've had sex with have seemed to think of themselves as total studs.

I have to admit that some of them were really good – as good as french fries with ketchup AND mayo – but I'm talking about the entirety of the act. The kissing, the groping, the beating heart, the dirty words. The beautiful rawness and the desire and your knee jammed in between two car seats. I love having sex, I just don't climax. How could I?

I moan and I shake because that gives men pleasure. I once told a guy I dated about my problem. Two glasses of wine got me tipsy and slowed the communication between my synapses. He was handsome, older and brought along a lot of baggage, which I didn't mind. I thought it would be an interesting experiment: I wanted to see what would happen, how he would react and act. At first, he seemed overwhelmed, maybe a little uncomfortable. He recommended pillows, developed a temporary head tick and helplessly rubbed my clit. I just lay there, looking at the peach-coloured blanket.

Aside from some pistachios giving me a stomach ache, that was the worst part of the evening. Some people just aren't meant for each other, physically. It all got a bit much by the end and I felt sorry for him, so appeased him with a fake orgasm. Once it was all over I turned to look at him. He seemed so proud.

I think it's great that he took my orgasm seriously. You can't take that kind of selflessness for granted. It could have been fun, but in the end his keenness made everything too psychological. He reminded me of a panting dog running after a treat. He really should have concentrated less on the goal and more on the journey.

Here's a thought: if people stopped making such a big deal out of the fact I don't come, maybe I could finally let go and actually come. I'm tired of worrying that my inability to climax will loom over my relationship like a stormy cloud, and I'm pretty sure it's that stress that keeps me from knowing what an orgasm feels like.

So let me sprinkle a little sugar on you, dear men of the world: Sex can be wonderful without an orgasm. For me, it's just the bright red cherry on top of the cake. Intimacy with the right person is horribly exciting and fulfilling. The sizzling in the air, the breathlessness before a kiss – they taste better than cactus-flavoured ice cream. Making people happy makes me happy. Orgasms are not my priority. It would be really nice if it happened at some point in my life, but we all need to loosen up a bit before it does.

Lead photo by Weronika Izdebska

Got trouble orgasming, too? These could help:

How to Have an Orgasm With Your Vagina

How to Fake an Orgasm