Is this what an orgasm feels like to everyone else?

Jay Dee

Is this what an orgasm feels like to everyone else?

Mar 13, 2017

I’ve been playing with a new chat feature on the website, and it’s been interesting to talk to some of my readers.  Here’s a question I received this week and I asked if I could write a post about it.: Hi! I’ve got an odd

Is this what an orgasm feels like to everyone else?I’ve been playing with a new chat feature on the website, and it’s been interesting to talk to some of my readers.  Here’s a question I received this week and I asked if I could write a post about it.:

Hi! I’ve got an odd question. I am newly married (9 months) and have had one orgasm. I think. I am curious how orgasms feel to other women. Truthfully, I hated it. I am a high anxiety person and have been medicated for several years. I’ve had panic attacks in the past. The orgasm felt similar, but also very distinct. For example, my vision narrowed, I became unaware of my surroundings, had very heavy and irregular breathing, and my body tingled. I was half way enjoying myself and halfway sure I was dying or having a panic attack. Is this what other women feel (minus the dying and panicking part)? Also, why don’t we talk about this stuff more, between women or in church or something? It would have been nice to know what to expect so I didn’t freak out on my husband. To his credit though, he handled it like a champ.

I’ll do my best to answer, and I hope people will chime in in the comments to add their experiences and perspectives.

Every orgasm is a different

Firstly, not only are orgasms different from person to person, but they’re different from orgasm to orgasm.  Some are stronger, some not.  Some last longer, and some are shorter.  Some sneak up on you, and some build up.  Some feel deeper and others are more shallow.  And that’s only four dimensions of orgasm, not to mention how they feel if they’re produced by different stimulation. (vibrator vs fingers vs hands vs penis,

Orgasms from vibrators, fingers, tongues and intercourse can all feel different.  As well, orgasms produced by stimulation of different parts feel different.  Vaginal vs. clitoral vs. anal vs. nipples.  It’s even possible to have orgasms without any physical touch.  And then there are orgasms that happen outside of a sexual context.  Some women get orgasms from working out which have been dubbed “coregasms”, and you can have orgasms from doing kegel exercises.

The point is, you can have orgasms many different ways and they can all feel different.  So it’s really hard to nail down “this is how orgasms are”.  That said…

Orgasms generally have some things in common

Orgasms always come with involuntary contractions of the pelvic floor muscles.  In fact, in studies, that is how one concretely tells whether or not an orgasm has occurred.

As well, many women (and men), hold their breath up until the point of orgasm.  And so, breathing can be erratic as you suddenly inhale to catch your breath again.  So, yeah, that’s pretty normal.  This is especially true if you’re the one “doing the work”, as it were.

Many people experience their body tingling.  It could be all your skin or localized.  Some people experience only their genitals tingling others only their face, or just their extremities (fingers and toes, sometimes nose as well).

And yes, some people experience their vision narrowing or tunnel vision.  Some even blackout from particularly strong orgasms.  As well, many people experience strong shaking in their limbs or torso after and/or during orgasm.

So, do most women experience what you’ve experienced?  Yeah, I’d say that’s fairly common.  In fact, the French term for orgasm translates literally to “the little death”, so I’d guess that many feel a bit like their dying as well.

I hope that knowing what you’re experiencing is fairly common will help with the anxiety about orgasms at least.  Hopefully, you can go from “half way enjoying it” to fully enjoying it and you can manage to have lots more.

By the way, taking some time to learn to have an orgasm is also a common experience among women, so don’t stress about that either.

Why don’t we talk about this stuff more?

Why don't we talk about this stuff more, between women or in church or something- It would have been nice to know what to expect...Well, there are a lot of reasons, many of which I talk about in this post.  But, the long and short of it is that Greek beliefs got adopted into Christian theology and for a long time we were taught that anything physical was evil, and specifically that sex was a sin that was only mitigated (and then only barely) by having children.  Of course, the Bible teaches us quite differently.  Sex was created prior to the fall and is in no way sinful.

But, it’s hard to change hundreds of generations of bad teaching.  That’s one of my big reasons for having this blog, to encourage people to talk more about these important issues.  Because if we don’t talk about it, we’re going to be dooming more and more Christians to having common difficult sexual challenges without any support.

So, reader, I’m very happy you spoke up and asked.  I hope the answers in this post help reward your bravery.

To the rest, please be brave with her and share your experiences, especially the women:  Is this what an orgasm is like, generally, for you?

Looking for help?

27 thoughts on “Is this what an orgasm feels like to everyone else?”

  1. A says:

    When I orgasm I enter a dream like state – the state that a lot of people are in right before they fall asleep like that state where nothing you are thinking about makes a whole lot of sense. Many times I find myself also thinking about a color blue, purple, etc. No idea if anyone else ever experiences that because it’s not really something I would talk about.

    1. S says:

      I “see” colors too! Not always, and it varies. But I’ve wondered if others do this, we’re not alone. Cool!

    2. Zaylou says:

      I’ve only orgasined twice. The first time i was fixated on a dungeon (really weird because i have never liked at porn and don’t have a sex scenario – or anything – connected with a dungeon. The second was a red apple. I’m glad you asked because i was also curious about that.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I found this article really helpful. I often wonder if I am experiencing orgasm or just good sex because the one time I had an orgasm out of this world. I’m not sure I’ve had another like it since but it was over 6 years ago so maybe I’ve built it up like crazy over time.
    Anyways, I’m thankful that others are talking about this so I can continue learning.

    1. Jay Dee says:

      I’m glad it helped!

  3. Norah says:

    Let me see if I can explain. I have only had three types of orgasm, cunnilingus, intercourse and handies. They are all different. Cunnilingus oragams tend to be more intense explosive rolls over and shakes and whimpers. They start off with a tingling feeling and then it multiplies. Then BAM!! it all comes crashing down. Vaginal orgasm are not like this. They are more calmer, sweeter and I tend to just close my eyes and have a euphoric feeling ending with a content sight. Handies (manual stimulation) are in between the those two. I think this is because of my mindset. I find oral to be more erotic so I get a higher high from the drug. Does that make sense? I find intercourse to be more loving, sweet, enduring so it’s less body racking. Again handies are in between. In fact I can have a couple of vaginal orgasm and be okay. Cunnilingus orgasm are literally “a little death” for me. I don’t want to be touched in any erogenous zone after that. Penetration is just about all I want at that point. I would love to work on multiple ones though.

    1. Dave says:

      I love the term Handies!

      1. Norah says:


      2. ToeCurler says:

        Me too! I’m going to borrow “handies” and use that with my hubbie

  4. Dave says:

    Some weeks ago after having had an unusually powerful orgasm, I told my wife whilst laying next to her that I have this unusual feeling of warmth flowing from the centre of my body out to the extremities. I have been married for nine years and can’t recall having had this experience before. I felt totally satisfied, a sense of complete peace, and a strong spiritual connection with my wife. The realities of the world seemed to disappear and I could relax in oneness with my wife. My wife doesn’t always orgasm but I more than make it up to her as she can orgasm multiple times.

  5. Kay says:

    I did not realize I was orgasming at first because I didn’t know what to expect. People made it sound like orgasms are these mind-blowing “you’ll know it when it’s happening” thing, but I honestly didn’t know. I just knew once I got to a certain level of arousal my breathing got a little irregular and I felt satisfied and sleepy afterward, and only when we were reading our premarital book chapter on sex did I realize that was totally an orgasm. Duh. I know now that they weren’t very strong then, which makes sense because we did not have sex before marriage so the fooling around we did with clothes still on. They are usually much stronger now after 10 years of marriage, though yes, they are different based on what we are doing. I find oral to be the most intense but almost too intense where it sometimes crosses into discomfort for me, so orgasm during sex is the most pleasurable and satisfying to me.

    I think it was probably Sheila Wray Gregoire (or maybe J Parker?) who wrote about how women with control issues are going to have a hard time orgasming because you *have* to let go in order to go. It kinda sounds like the writer of this post might have this issue, since control issues usually go hand in hand with anxiety; I can see how your first decisive orgasm could be terrifying if you don’t know what to expect because you do lose control over your body! I hope knowing that that is exactly what is supposed to happen and that God designed our orgasms to be a beautiful form of surrender in this way may be helpful to her, that and PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. The more she reaches orgasm, the more normal it will become and the anxiety will gradually lesson. Push through the panic, give yourself permission to let go, and it will get easier and more enjoyable with time.

  6. David says:

    Jay could you please do a article on “energy orgasms” //tantric sex minus of course the New Age aspects (if that’d possible )…and or is that what Solomon and his wife were talking about in Song of Songs (blow North and South Winds –chapter 4…the “all night aspects of their love making encounters…and the “eating and drinking “from one another which I suspect means way more than just “physical exchanges ” of bodily fluids)…thanks!

  7. MaBeck says:

    My thoughts about this article are…why does she fear the “out of control” feeling? And I wonder if, after some healing from the Lord, if she’d feel safer, and then be able to easily enjoy making love and orgasming.

  8. Mike says:

    It is interesting to find out how women feel when having an orgasm. From a man’s point of view, if interested, I would like to share what it is like for me. Maybe you can compare. Once aroused, the tingling starts at the tip of my erect penis. Through friction It continues as a swelling of pressure deep within the groin. Then there comes a Point Of No Return, the contractions build, and I start to ejaculate. The orgasm feels like the most amazing release of pressure and pleasure I’ve ever had. I hold my breath, clench my teeth, curl my toes, squeeze my abs, go semi-conscious, and then I let go. If I want to have multiple orgasms, I squeeze my PC muscles as hard as I can just at the Point Of No Return. I have the orgasm but not the ejaculation. Since I don’t need a refractory period, I can have another orgasm after a bit of time. Another orgasm can be had every minute or so for 10 to 20 minutes or more. If I want to make love to my wife for an hour or more, I don’t ejaculate. Once I ejaculate, I go to sleep.

    1. ToeCurler says:

      Wow! Can you teach my husband to do that?

  9. A says:

    I kind of understand the anxiety and almost unpleasant feeling.
    I one toy that provides a lot of direct clitorial stimulation and when I orgasm using that toy it is so intense it is almost unpleasant (toy called the womanizer).
    I find that I enjoy toys and stimulation more if they provide clitorial stimulation along with stimulation of the labia (toy called the je joue mimi).

    We don’t know what type of stimulation the person asking the question was receiving but I just wanted to throw out a possible idea for the sensation and possibly recommend stimulating a larger area so the build up is more gradual.

  10. Libl says:

    When I first started having orgasm as a teenager (masturbation, though at the time I didn’t know that is what I was doing. It simply felt good to do it) they felt like I had a sudden urge to urinate. Over time, the urge to urinate abated and I started having the involuntary pelvic muscle contractions. As my orgasm experience grew as I entered marriage, it is very deep, consuming, vision narrowing, and like I am entering another dimension. These were all clitoral orgasms.

    I now have vaginal orgasms, but they are not as mind-blowing and satisfying. I don’t have the involuntary pelvic muscle contractions like I do with cliroral. Instead, my vaginal walls squeeze and I feel pleasure, but not that amazing relief.

    I can also orgasm from dreams, much like clitoral orgasms. And, I have had orgasms just from my jeans seam pressing on me, though it it is just the fluttering. It isn’t like I roll my eyes back and moan and lose control.

    Oral can make my legs shake uncontrollably, but hubby won’t give me oral anymore, so hard to say now.

    1. Northern Exposure says:

      You’re just going to leave us hanging on that last comment? Why in the world (if that’s how you get mind blowing orgasms from oral) would your hubby stop pleasing you?

      1. Libl says:

        You tell me.

        We did oral and manual for 8 years of our marriage, then he initiated a cold turkey all out stop. I didn’t orgasm with him for 3 years and finally broke down. We had a huge fight in which he said: 1. He never liked it. 2. I took too long (5-20 minutes) 3. I was bad at giving him oral. Even when we did have oral in our marriage, he wouldn’t let me finish him orally. I asked if he thought it was sinful, he said no. I asked if he would give me feedback on how to make it better. He said no.

        That was 5 years ago. Since then, he has performed oral on me twice, but not let me finish, and he let me do a little on him once for about 20 seconds.

        A few months ago he said, “we have sex your way.” To which I responded, “no we don’t. If we did there would be a lot more oral.” He didn’t respond, which is unusual because he has to have the last word.

        I have sought advice and counsel over these years to which I simply receive men scratching their heads and saying they cannot understand why he wouldn’t want to give oral, but especially why he wouldn’t want to receive. I realize he is quite the rare anomoly among men.

        The guy is surrounded by oral sex. It is inferred or even simulated in so many of the movies and tv shows he watches. He likes to watch “sex facts” videos on YouTube and they always talk about oral sex. One of his favorite cult movie bits he quotes often to me, but convienently skips the bit about oral sex. The guys at work are all about “getting head.” On the rare occasions he succumbs to the porn temptation he seems to like lesbian stuff which depicts oral sex.

        It seems he resented my orgasming. He stopped being interested in getting me there and then stopped bothering getting me there. He only does PIV and seems to think I ought to learn to orgasm from PIV only. I have quoted science, and explained how I work sexually and he just says God made a mistake.

        Even when I took over and started masturbating during PIV to achieve orgasm, he would detach and not be part of it. It took over a year before he started to enjoy it and that’s only because he discovered how pleasurable it is on himself when my body orgasms. He now, finally, seems to enjoy my having an orgasm for its own sake, but not very. A couple months ago I went 3 weeks without an orgasm during sex. He noticed, but did nothing about it. His version of “doing everything I can to help” involves thrusting in me until I am sore, no matter how many times I tell him that it doesn’t work that way.

        I know a lot of guys complain about not getting oral from their wives but at least they can orgasm through intercourse. Imagine if you couldn’t orgasm at all through intercourse and your spouse took the only way you could orgasm away from you, but everyone said you couldn’t do anything about it because you can still have intercourse, thus they aren’t depriving you. Besides, sex is more than just having an orgasm.

        At least I figured out that I could masturbate during intercourse. But the loss is felt so keenly.

        1. A says:

          This bothers me so much – am cut to the heart with how things are going with you and your husband.

          We have had a lot of sexual struggles in our marriage mostly because as the wife I am the high drive spouse. For a few months, my husband decided that sex for me was all about orgasm and that I shouldn’t be so focused on that/shouldn’t have one.

          I shut that down fairly fast with the idea that if he wanted to start not having orgasms and it was mutual then we could do it but of course he still wanted one.

          Scripturally we have a command to not withhold spouses sex and probably to not force certain sex acts which I would say would be more fringe sex acts that a spouse has never done before or expresses strong dislike for such as anal sex, etc.

          I would argue that your spouse is withholding sex because you don’t orgasm frequently also, I would say oral sex is not a fringe act being that he did give you oral for a long time before he stopped and that it is a fairly widely accepted sexual activity that doesn’t have any serious health risks.

          Anyway, the agreement me and my husband landed in is that I orgasm 100% of the time we have sex which extends so far as we even plan for me to orgasm during ‘quicky’ even if that means the sex may no longer be ‘quicky’. Also, I will refuse sex if an orgasm is not possible such as in instances where we only have 5 minutes but I know I could not orgasm in that timeframe.

          Reframing the issue might be helpful when you talk to other people – imagine this senerio – you say, well, I never refuse my husband sex. He can have sex whenever he likes he just cannot orgasm as I won’t allow it. Who in their right mind would say that you aren’t being a gatekeeper and sexually refusing him in that instance?

          Also, I feel like we over emphasize women getting sexual or emotional closeness from sex and not needing an orgasm. If that is the case then why does that not also apply to men meaning that they don’t orgasm for 40% to 60% of the time? I do enjoy closeness but if I don’t have an orgasm this invariably leads to me laying awake anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour after sex trying to calm down so I can sleep. I refuse to keep going through that and acting like my pleasure doesn’t matter when 100% of the time he is getting a happy ending.

          Blessings to you, sister

          1. Northern Exposure says:

            “A”, you’ve offered some good advice to Libl. By asserting your needs and standing firm on your desires with your husband, you’re a great example to others. It’s not selfish to expect a loving male marriage partner, who’s foremost desire “should be” to tend to his wife’s bedroom needs. And you’re right. This myth that women should be passively willing to settle for less in bed vs. expecting “the best pleasuring possible” from their husbands is absolutely dead on!

        2. Northern Exposure says:

          Wow! My initial response is he has some type of control fetish. The “we have sex your way” makes me wonder. I think of sex with a partner as doing it “our way” and if that means changing it up during the same sex session so you both find contentment, that’s fine!

          What strikes me as even more weird is his dual attitude on the issue. If he was simply off-center about one side of the issue (i.e. he didn’t like doing oral on you) that’s not entirely unique to guys. I don’t get it, but there are guys like that. But your husband is mega-weird on the other side of this issue as well in that he doesn’t even want you to do oral on him. And as you point out, that’s very unique for guys.

          Perhaps he doesn’t want you doing oral on him because he views that as a debt he needs to repay, and he believes you’ll call him on it. This way he can say all oral is eliminated from the marriage so it’s a level playing field. Which of course it isn’t because that’s almost 100% how you get off.

          I can’t for the life of me imagine leaving my spouse unsatisfied. In fact, I’ve always put her needs ahead of my own. I’ve always made sure she was pleased even if it wasn’t happening for me on those rare occasions.

          But what’s even more strange about your husband is he knows that oral is what gets you off and he pulls that away from the marriage bed entirely! Hence, we’re back to the control issue.

          As far as the amount of time spent going down on your spouse, I don’t personally view 5-20 minutes as a big deal. I feel the longer she goes, the more erotic the resulting build up, and the greater the intensity when she reaches orgasm. So I’m never in any hurry when I’m down there going to work. In fact, this might sound weird as well, but on those occasions when she’s climaxed quickly (like 2-5 minutes) from oral, I’m the one telling her that I wanted her to last longer.

          And during those times when she does take longer, I certainly have never complained about those marathon sessions because I know she loves every second of of what she’s getting and that’s the husband’s job, to satisfy his spouses sexual needs. The odd thing is she’s apologized to me on those rare occasions when oral on her takes 30 minutes. I’m like, I’m in the zone, I love it, don’t worry about it.

          Your husband’s comment that he never liked doing oral on you after 8 years of marriage also seems strange to me. Like how did he last 8 years if he never liked doing it? This is the argument you typically hear from husbands who think it’s great that their wives are oral experts while dating, and then several months into the marriage it all comes to a grinding halt. I’m puzzled by the significance of 8 years with no problems. Did something else happen in your marriage at about that same time?

          As far as his complaint that your oral technique on him was inept, I find that somewhat hard to believe given your attitude about oral sex. If you were one of those wives who did the “oh my, it’s so yucky”, I could maybe see where your technique was pitiful because you were just trying to get it over with. But you’re the exact opposite from what I’m reading in your posting. You desire getting it and giving it. People like that usually possess the advanced techniques. But let’s just say for the sake of argument that your technique was lacking. It’s not too difficult to convey to your spouse what feels good, and how you like your oral. I’m sure he has no problem communicating how he likes his steak cooked.

          And finally, the fact that he wouldn’t let you finish him orally is super weird on a level all by itself. There are armies of husbands like me who are in relationships where the wife isn’t interested in that part of the sexual union. As I posted yesterday, I don’t bring it up, because to me, that’s something your spouse does out of love and pure desire. Guilting them into it just doesn’t have the same erotic outcome. At least for me.

          Just curious, what would happen if you just cut sex off entirely? How would he respond? It seems to me that if you’re willing to do straight up sex with him that culminates in his orgasm satisfaction, he needs to do likewise for you using a method that works for you.

          1. Libl says:

            To answer your first question about did anything happen in our marriage at the time? Not that I am aware of. Sex at that point had always been a bit strained. I do recall him sighing and rolling his eyes and shifting uncomfortably during giving me oral sex. Our sexual frequency was dwindling. He had started traveling for work, and thus started finding masturbating easier than having sex with me. As he told me during an argument, “you keep talking about making love. I just want to get my rocks off.”

            As for cutting off sex, he would just turn to masturbation, and likely soft core porn.

            We have been down these paths, which is why I conceede to how things are now. His attitude has changed some towards me and our sexual relationship.

            If anything, I would ask that you pray for him, for us. Kind of a man to man sort of thing.

            The only other thing I can think of is that it is God’s mercy on me to take it away because Hubby’s oral hygiene is pretty much non-existent. While he never gave me an infection before, maybe he would have.

            1. Northern Exposure says:

              You’re describing a spouse who has simply stopped caring. And his “get my rocks off comment” pretty much certifies my comment that he’s a selfish individual. I feel awful for you. It’s such an injustice that any spouse, male or female, just checks out sexually or emotionally on the one that they vowed to love forever. We’ll keep you in our prayers!

  11. Anonymous says:

    I get the sensation of being the verge of blacking out/ being lightheaded. My breath catches. My hearing is dampened, and then everything spasms down there. It is amazing but takes a tremendous amount of concentration, consistent stimulation, and being on top is the best!

  12. Northern Exposure says:

    I’ll toss in a man’s view of orgasm. Like a woman, they are all slightly different. My observations are as follows: The most mind blowing orgasm of all is oral with light stroking and testicle fondling. For me that’s the trifecta for the most mind-blowing orgasm. At the risk of using a non-Christian word (Nirvana) it’s the one word that others can probably relate too.

    When you cum from oral, it’s transcendent, it’s the most intimate and intense experience you’ll likely ever share with your wife. It’s like you lose all attachment to self during that brief orgasm. There’s a closeness, a oneness to the act of fellatio culminating in orgasm that is hard to describe properly, because it’s really so far beyond words. Others have discussed that dream-like state orgasms bring them, and I’ve found that this one takes me there, and it’s so good that you never want to leave that special place.

    My current spouse has never completed the act, but I’ve just learned over the years that it’s probably better to settle for less and accept her hesitation. I’ve considered discussing it with her in the past, but I guess my feeling is if it’s not something deeply heartfelt and innate in your spouse, something that she desires to do to make you feel wonderful, then it really loses its meaning, and frankly I doubt that the guilt orgasm from oral stimulation would have the same nirvana-like intense feeling.

    Secondly, is straight sex. This can be intense also, but not to the same point of orgasm from oral. Orgasm from regular sex varies considerably with each act and with each position. Some positions lend themselves to a super closeness while others are just more animalistic, and for me, there’s no real consistency to the orgasm intensity with regular sex. Sometimes it’s wonderful, other times it’s so-so. There’s no way to predict it for me except to say that the longer I typically go between acts of sex, the more intensity builds up and the results are a bit more explosive, no pun intended.

    Lastly is the old hand-job. If your spouse does it right, and is really into mastering “her art” it can be a great experience. If she’s not sure what she’s doing, or she’s just going through the motions to get you off so that she can move on to other things, it can even be uncomfortable.

  13. Kailin Jones says:

    Check out this post from J at Hot Holy Humorous:

    She goes through a number of different orgasms (maybe better, the number of different feelings of orgasms).

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