Dear Em & Lo: I Climax Too Early (And I’m a Woman!)

photo via flickr

Dear Em & Lo,

I’m an 18-year-old girl/woman and I want to be more sexually active, but every time I have sex with my boyfriend I orgasm super quickly (like in less than 5 minutes) and it feels weird to keep going. What should I do? I really want to keep up with my boyfriend but he says he could go for hours but I can only last for minutes.

— Early Bird

Dear Early Bird,

We’re publishing your letter despite the fact that we know how many of our female readers will be thinking, And her problem is what, exactly? This is one of those problems that a lot of women would love to have. But just like there are men out there who can’t enjoy sex because their penis is too big, there are women like you who are troubled by how quickly and easily they climax. (And we suppose there are men and women alike who truly believe that it ain’t easy being beautiful — but that’s for another advice column.)

We’re not entirely sure what you mean when you say that it feels “weird” to keep going after you’ve climaxed. Do you mean weird emotionally and psychologically? Like, you feel like a faker or you feel silly? Because you don’t need to feel any of these things. It’s perfectly normal to keep going after you climax — in fact, it’s one of the best things about being a woman. A man who climaxes first and then “keeps going” until his partner has climaxed is more limited in his options, due to his flagging member — he pretty much has to stick to oral and manual sex after that.

But perhaps intercourse feels physically weird after you’ve climaxed? Which would make sense, because a lot of women tend to be even more sensitive after they’ve had an orgasm. This helps to explain why, for some women, intercourse actually feels better after an orgasm — and why, for some women, the first orgasm is kind of like breaking the seal, and after that, the orgasms keep on coming (as it were). But perhaps things are too sensitive for you after intercourse? In which case maybe you just need to switch things up, move to oral or manual sex for a bit, then back to intercourse? Or just change positions into one that stimulates you in a different way? It’s all a matter of experimenting until you find what feels good — and not weird.

The best part of all this experimentation is that there may just be another orgasm in it for you! If you can relax and not stress out about how “weird” it is to climax so quickly — and it’s not weird, we promise you: it’s awesome! — then you may just find yourself climaxing again. And again. In which case, you should definitely not brag about this “problem” to our other female readers!

Bird by bird,

Em & Lo



  1. o god thanks ladies for bringing this up. cos i thought something was wrong with me. and the guy said “usually girls have no problem coming again and again”. and i think to myself – i’m not feeling it. yes i had that super soon orgasm but when i told him i would probably need a break to climax again he thought that’s odd. i can relate. the weird feeling. it’s like continue doing something that felt super intense a minute ago but now it’s just nothing. zero. you do something sexual yet you don’t feelit as something sexual. more like a duty to keep on going.

  2. I don’t know what to do and I felt like I was the only one. I climax prematurely.. and I don’t know if it is even an orgasm, but I think it is.. I get them BEFORE there is even intercourse. It starts when there is foreplay, Kissing.. the rubbing.. and I have an orgasm and it’s over. Back to Zero… nothing.. I keep going but there is nothing there.. I don’t know if I should see my Dr. What could a Dr do?

  3. Think about something disgusting, or concerntrate on so something else.

  4. Well for me its just the kissing my nipples and foreplay that makes me climax early. I really do understand your plight early bird.I kinda wish there was a straight answer like take this fruit it’ll help or something straight.

  5. Sorry for the long-winded response, I realized I didn’t provide much substantive advice, and just rambled on about myself.

    Here’s what I would advise:
    Post-orgasm, esp. if you are feeling more sensitive down there, take a break from the intercourse and cuddle/play a little bit. Sometimes my boyfriend will play with my nipples (I LOVE this) and kiss/nibble at my neck. Consider keeping him up (or help him along if you want to finish faster) with a little manual or oral sex. Sometimes it really helps me to change my focus back to his pleasure, and servicing him often turns me back on and helps me re-gain interest. Or if you want to continue the intercourse, switch positions to change up the sensations and visuals.

  6. I don’t have the problem of coming so easily or quickly like the letter’s author, and I certainly don’t orgasm every time I have sex, but I do empathize with her b/c when I do orgasm (currently averaging 1 orgasm every 3 sex sessions), afterwards I do tend to lose some interest in the sex we are having, it just doesn’t feel the same.

    There are many reasons why I think this happens to me. I sometimes chalk this up partly to my long-established habit of using masturbation as a sleep-aid; after the release, I just want to relax and bask in the after-glow while winding down for sleep. Since I generally only orgasm during intercourse when I’m on top and putting in most of the physical work, my muscles just go to jelly post-orgasm and I can’t sustain the energy I need to be on top of him. If my boyfriend wants to keep going (which is almost always) we usually switch up the position so I can be on bottom or in a more passive/relaxed position until he finishes or I get a second wind. (not to say I stop participating, I don’t just become a dead log post-orgasm. That would be inconsiderate to my partner IMO)

    But I do have to say that intercourse just doesn’t feel as good – maybe its because I’m wetter and maybe a little looser (i.e. relaxed) so I don’t get the same intense friction-related sensations as before the orgasm, but I definitely don’t have the same energetic focus or drive to continue f*cking, and its easier for my mind to wander to other things, like my growling stomach, or the errands I have to get done the next day.

    Here’s the best way I can hope to describe it:

    Pre-orgasm: I’m likely very horny and intensely focused on the pleasure that intercourse is giving me, I’m concentrated on adjusting positions/speeds/angles to maximize what feels good (whether or not it leads to orgasm doesn’t matter as much, like I said before I don’t orgasm every time I have sex). So at this time, my mind is almost completely detached from any reality other than whats going on in the bed and btw my legs. Other than a vague knowledge of my surroundings, I am totally focused on my boyfriend and me and what we are doing together.

    Post-orgasm: after the release, there’s the after-glow where Im still buzzing a bit, but very soon reality starts creeping back in and within a few minutes I am completely conscious of my situation: what weird facial expression my partner is making, the uncomfortable sensation of sweat dripping down my neck, knee pain and muscle soreness, the sounds of workers repairing the telephone lines outside the building, his roommate going to the bathroom, etc. So essentially the sex-haze clears from my eyes, and I become much less interested in what we are doing, because suddenly I am hyper-aware of all the things that I was able to block out and ignore when we got started.

  7. I’d have thought that those women who haven’t had problems orgasming in their teens would be quite likely to have orgasms more quickly then than later on. That was certainly true for me. If I was really turned on, I would sometimes come in mere moments (which isn’t as much fun as it sounds like — it was often less satisfying than taking more time). I’m pretty sure I slowed down quite a bit by the time I was 20 or so. So if Early Bird is like me, she may well just grow out of this problem in the same way guys do. Orgasmic response is one of those things that can vary hugely over one’s lifetime, for many many different reasons.

  8. At first glance I thought this letter was just fake, and then I decided to give it the benefit of the doubt. Maybe this writer just happens to be in the same place at 18 that it took me til my 30s to get. So here’s my two cents –

    Five minutes or so isn’t fast if all the necessary elements for an orgasm are in play

    After a first orgasm, I might have a second or third, or not, but a certain amount of time after that first orgasm, things don’t feel as good anymore.

    My advice would be to vary position, rhythym, or take a break from intercourse and do something else for a while. That seems to help.

  9. First of all, if by “sex” you mean “intercourse” then I don’t think five minutes before you have an orgasm is all that short a time. Taking admittedly great liberties with averages, average intercourse lasts a little more than five minutes, and 25% of women say they always have (some kind of) orgasms from intercourse, and more say they usually or often do. If your partner could only go two minutes instead of hours then ta-da, suddenly you’d be “frigid!”

    That said…

    I think the feeling of weirdness or discomfort with continued sex after orgasm is more common than a lot of women let on. Although it’s commonly considered a “male” thing, plenty of women are “one and done” when it comes to orgasms. And of those I’d say while about half are ready to continue if their partner wants to, quite a few others are ready shift gears and start talking about their day, to go to sleep, to start thinking about breakfast, and so on.

    And, again while it’s usually called a “male” attribute, a subset of those women also come both easily and early. Which, if their partners are still in the mood, can leave them feeling a little hung out to try. Even though that hung-out-to-dry feeling is typically considered a “female” attribute.

    Call me a rebel here but I think it’s even less likely that women this happens to are going to disclose being “premature ejaculators” than men are. First because it’s a little embarrassing. Second because a) “everybody knows” orgasms are hard for women, b) “everybody knows” women can always have another orgasm (in contradiction to item #1), and c) “everybody knows” sex for women is about “feeling close” rather than horny so continuing sex after orgasm without feeling weird is supposed to be perfectly “natural.”

    This is why I’m so happy Early Bird has piped up about her experience. She’s not alone! It can be a problem! It doesn’t feel lucky, either for her or her partners, or for women like her or their partners.

    The good news is that while the underlying mechanisms are probably a little different, some of the techniques men are taught to deal with premature orgasms might work for you. And no, I don’t mean cliches like thinking of baseball statistics or imagining out-of-shape in-laws naked. I mean the real things like communication, acknowledgement, pacing, practicing “edging” by yourself and then later with a partner, and (radical though it might sound) doing “foreplay” to get him up to speed.

    Which leads me to return to my first thought: how many more women would find themselves in Early Bird’s shoes if more men learned how to last more than 3-5 minutes? I say this not to knock men (at all) but to say it’s funny how we assume that women’s orgasms are “hard” just because they don’t tend happen as quickly as their male partners. I mean, consider if Early Bird’s partner was more quick on the trigger she might still think she had “problems” reaching orgasm during sex!


  10. i have the same “problem” as the writer but i find it easier to climax again and again; maybe i need a little time to start going on at it. the second (the third and the next) are as quick as the first one… it’s amazing!

  11. I also am a woman who comes relatively easily and afterwards, it can feel physically uncomfortable. It’s not sensitive in a sexual way. It’s almost like you get just the friction and it doesn’t feel sexually stimulating anymore, if that makes sense.

    Changing positions usually helps some. I usually come on top, and then we switch to whatever position he wants.

    Alternatively, if there is a position that feels good for you but in which you don’t come as easily, you could start there so he gets more time in before you have your orgasm.

  12. I also have this problem sometimes and I would have to say it feels physically weird. Sometimes the guy will want to keep going and I need to rest for my own little “refractory period”. After that it’s back to zero for me and I need some foreplay to get going again and the second time I last longer. I feel your pain girl!

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