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ISSUE 121 VOL 19 PUBLISHED 5/2/2008

Sex on the Hill: Don't fake the funk

By Katherine Oyster
Contributing Writer

Friday, May 2, 2008

Picture this: you are having sex, have been at it for a while, and you are nowhere close to the finish line. Your partner has that excited, yet slightly annoyed and impatient look on his or her face, and starts to say things like, "Ooh, baby, I'm close. Are you close?" You want to sigh and say, "Nope!" but you know that might hurt your partner's feelings. You have two options: call it off because there's no chance you're getting off tonight, or spare your partner's feelings and fake it.

Faking orgasm -- rarely is there a topic that makes people so insecure. Knowing there are fakers in the world makes people question their abilities as lovers and adds a level of deception to sex that most would rather not think about. We are a world of great actors and actresses, and sometimes it is really hard to spot the difference between a full-fledged toe-curling orgasm and a really good fake from someone doing toe exercises.

It's not that difficult to fake an orgasm -- just contort your face, moan a little, and voluntarily contract your muscles when the time is right. Although it is generally easier for women to pull off an effective fake, it is not impossible for men. Since orgasm is usually (but not always) simultaneous with ejaculation for men, the one stipulation of male faking is the man must be wearing a condom. A hint though: do not let your fake orgasms be more convincing than your real ones. If you have a rock star orgasm when you usually just grunt once or twice, your partner will notice and be suspicious.

There are two common reasons for faking: not wanting to hurt a partner's feelings and/or trying to avoid the consequences. If your partner has been trying really hard for the last few hours to get you off to no avail, you might feel obligated to put on a show to reward his or her efforts. After all, you don't want him or her to give up hope and stop trying in the future. Also, if you usually do orgasm and you have an attentive partner, a fake might save you from an hour-long conversation about why you did not orgasm this time -- what is on your mind to distract you, what can your partner do better, etc. Sometimes it just doesn't happen, and the last thing most people want to do is analyze why.

A huge problem with faking is that you can trap yourself into doing it more than you would like. If you give the impression that a new move your partner is trying in bed is mind-blowing when in reality it is a dud, you will probably experience this move again. Then you have to decide if you want to fake every time your partner uses it or if you want to stop faking and explain that you faked it in the past. Once you establish a pattern of faking, you either have to continue faking indefinitely, or you must have a conversation explaining the reasons for your previous deception.

So, should we fake at all? By faking, we protect our lover's feelings and reward their efforts. However, we potentially cheat ourselves out of present and future pleasure by faking and develop a pattern of dishonesty in the relationship. Since it is perfectly normal not to orgasm during each and every sack session, setting the precedent that you do can cheat you out of good sex in the future and can give your partner an unrealistic view of their prowess as a lover.

As uncomfortable as it might be, talking about why you or your partner aren't having orgasms can improve your sex life and your general level of intimacy. If you are just preoccupied, you can explain to your partner and allay his or her fears about being bad in bed. If it is a technique problem, you can address it, suggest other alternatives, and end up changing your sex life for the better. Just as in life, honesty tends to be the best policy in bed.

Faking orgasm is one of the ultimate little white lies. You may initially do it to protect yourself or your partner, but eventually most fakers need to come clean or start out with a clean slate (i.e. a new partner). You can probably find merit in the occasional fake, but don't let continuous faking mask a serious or prolonged problem in your sex life or relationship as a whole. In the end, honesty with your partner in bed and in life leads to happy, trusting, and genuinely orgasmic relationships.

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