16 December 2008

The Sexual Response Cycle: Men vs. Women

The Sexual Response Cycle: Men vs. Women

If you were to look at a graphic illustration of men's and women's sexual responses, you'd see that the peaks and valleys don't match up. This difference may account for much of the frustration women and men experience in bed.

So what exactly is this sexual response cycle? It has four phases: excitement, plateau, orgasm, and resolution. His sexual response cycle looks like an upside-down U. It rises rapidly through the first two phases, reaches its peak at orgasm, and then declines sharply back down. (Sounds a lot like reality, right?)

A woman's arousal cycle, on the other hand, resembles a squiggly line. The excitement usually builds slowly and then plateaus after a certain point. It takes longer for most women to get there, but once they do, they can maintain their arousal for an indefinite amount of time. Arousal begins climbing again as orgasm approaches, but doesn't necessarily drop afterward, since more than one orgasm is possible.

How can you solve this seeming disparity? Two answers: foreplay and foreplay — whether it's more foreplay before he orgasms or continued foreplay after he orgasms. More foreplay beforehand gets your arousal on the same cycle, since he's lengthening the amount of time spent in the earlier phases. Foreplay after his orgasm continues the stimulation to help you orgasm. Keep in mind, though, as I said in my book, Secrets of the Sexually Satisfied Woman, an orgasm is not the measure of good sex for most women! Since a woman moves more fluidly through the sexual response cycle, she can go from a milder state of excitement to more intense arousal to orgasm, and then back down to excitement. Take advantage of it!


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