Surveys are inherently flawed where there is a bias in the acceptability of the responses. Frankly it is amazing that any woman ever admits to being non-orgasmic. The turn-on explains the bias. But given female masturbation is so rare why do so many (relatively) of these women volunteer?
The answer is in the research findings themselves. When they masturbate women orgasm on average 95% of the time[i] and within four minutes.
So any research into female orgasm will always attract a disproportionate number of women who masturbate because such women are most confident about explaining (in explicit terms) how they are able to orgasm.
Only some women have a responsiveness that enables them to stimulate themselves to orgasm. A woman needs to know how to achieve arousal but she also needs circumstances that are conducive to female orgasm.
Men’s sex drive means that they naturally prefer sexual activity that is sociable and interactive. Men’s need for intercourse inherently involves another person because their drive can only be satisfied by penetration.
But women do not have the hormonal drive that men have to penetrate. So their orgasmic ability is not enhanced in any way by another person. Neither do women get ‘the shakes’: the overwhelmingly pleasurable sensations arising from penetration with an erect and highly sensitised penis.
The sexual urges some women have to stimulate the clitoris are channelled into masturbatory activity alone rather than into sexual activity with a lover. Female masturbation is a private and personal affair that relies solely on a woman’s own sexual responsiveness (orgasmic ability).
Not having a sex drive means a woman can easily forgo masturbating. A romantic attachment may conflict with her enjoyment of abstract eroticism. Misgivings about the taboo nature of fantasies may also deter her.
It would be nice to think that Nature (or the evolutionary process if you prefer) might have had the generosity of spirit to have given women a complementary ability to orgasm with a lover. Unfortunately we only evolve the capabilities that we need for survival and for reproduction.
Looked at another way Nature has been kind to women. Masturbation provides women with the opportunity to enjoy orgasm without exposing themselves to the life-threatening risks of pregnancy and childbirth.
[i] Among all types of sexual activity, masturbation is, however, the one in which the female most frequently reaches orgasm … in 95 per cent or more of all her masturbation, she does reach orgasm. (p132 Kinsey 1953)
Excerpt from Jane’s book Women’s Sexual Behaviours & Responses (2013)