Funny the things you talk about while driving, but it’s why my good lady wife and I enjoy such a strong relationship. We talk about stuff. She’ll put forward a point of view, I’ll put in my ten cents, and more often than not, we end up surprising each other.
I forget how the discussion started, as I was dodging dozy drivers on our way back down to Victoria. Mrs S made some remark about male orgasms not being as intense as the female variety, of which we hear so much, to which I responded; “Not always.”
“Oh come on Bill, that’s nonsense.” My other half mocked. Well thank you ‘Cosmopolitan’.
“Seriously. Sometimes an orgasm can really rip you up, head to toe.” I explained. Which has on occasion been true for me. There have been times when ‘la petit mort‘ has completely shut down my brain functions and sent a massive surge down my spine for a few ecstatically intense moments, my back arching uncontrollably, my toes clenching and the sensation washing through me like a warm tidal wave on steroids, blowing my hindbrain like some whole body tectonic marshmallow detonation which completely drains me.
“Yes, but what about men who point and shoot, then just roll over and head for the shower?” She asked.
“Well, sometimes it’s like that.” I conceded, which is true. “Male orgasms vary in intensity, and you have to really go looking for the big ones, but you really know when they hit.”
“It’s odd you know.” She said. “A female orgasm gives a deep emotional connection, fulfills an intense need for more than mere sexual satisfaction. Male orgasms by comparison seem so, well, superficial.” She enlarged on the topic, leaving me to dodge round a particularly indecisive line of three pickup trucks. While I did, I gave a little thought to the matter. Honestly, I’d never given the subject that much cogitation. Well, you don’t. Not if anyone is listening anyway. It’s about as personal as it gets, and people don’t generally like having their sex lives discussed in front of them. There’s always that sense of attempted humiliation.
“It’s not something we men generally talk about between ourselves.” I pointed out. Which is also true. Men don’t really discuss sex the way women sometimes do. An air of one upmanship almost always rears it’s tiny one eyed head. “Men don’t generally talk about their orgasms because if anyone does, it just sounds like they’re bragging and no-one believes them.” Which is also true. We males are conditioned not to discuss matters sexual because for most of us it’s a famine rather than a feast, but no-one wants to admit they’re starving because everyone else will laugh at them. Even if they themselves are just as hungry.
I thought about that point for a moment and tried to create an analogy. Eventually I ended up comparing one appetite to another and posited thus; in this age of instant gratification; sex, like food, is often gobbled or consumed hurriedly or perfunctorily, like a person with a heavy thirst downing a pint in one. And speaking as a male, I’m often thirsty. Women are choosier, more discriminating, they lack a man’s immediacy, our hard wired hunger. For us males it can be any port in a storm, now. Which kind of explains the social need for prostitution and also why we men bolt our sex hurriedly because we’re secretly afraid it’ll be the last for some time. We always feel we’re on short rations, whether this is actually true or not. Which is why the male orgasm is often such a hurried affair. We consume it like junk food, hurriedly and without savour. We rarely take our time. Too often it’s “Come on darling.” Bang. “Was I really that good?” And the immediate hunger is sated. For the time being.
Nor do we Western men know how to talk about sex the way women do. Because we’re taught from an early age it’s like discussing what your turds look like in the toilet. Peer pressure and parental embarrassment condition us to consider it weird. Outlandish even. The only person we’re likely to have that sort of discussion with is our Doctor when he’s trying to work out what that strange pain is you’ve been getting for the last six months. Which may also explain why men use porn so much. Like a graphic novel it’s exciting and occasionally informative. And if you aren’t able to attract a sexual partner, or have never worked out how to navigate the secret maze from first smile to bedroom. Well, porn is all you got.
Furthermore, most ‘formal’ sex education is done in large groups, which let’s face it, is not an ideal forum. Discussing your most intimate needs is something only to be shared with a select trusted few, not a bunch of strangers, who, human society being what it is, will often point and laugh to shut down a discussion they feel uncomfortable with. Because we’re taught in the outside world that sex is ‘dirty’, not the natural expression of a basic human appetite. The salaciousness of it all gets in the way. It’s so, well, dishonest.
Then there are people who I will simply refer to as ‘vociferous outliers’, who, in order not to feel excluded and sidelined (Which from a psychological point of view is an expression of their own innate sense of inadequacy) will promote their own version of sexual reality as the ‘new normal’. Deliberately shutting those of us whose tastes are less exotic out of any reasoned discussion. Their way is the only way “So shut up you fascist you’re oppressing poor ickle me.” Like a plague carrying fly they land on any related, vaguely sensible discussion and infect it with their own preferences, no matter that they are the minority. Like Internet trolls they want to shut down the topic thread, because they can’t simply walk on by and let the grown ups talk sensibly. They have to leap around like a toddler in a tantrum to get their ‘point’ across. Even if it is only loosely connected with the topic under discussion. Which for most other people acts as a further barrier to modestly intelligent examination of the topic, and leaves the rest of us stuck where we started, hiding behind the metaphorical bike sheds at school, sharing our ignorance.
Rather ironic isn’t it?