Faking orgasms is a disservice to society. Why give a standing ovation when the play is bad?
These were the musings during my first year of university when I contemplated sex and orgasms. This thinking did not stop me doing it years later, but then again, everyone knows taking one’s own advice is poor etiquette.
This is a question many should ask themselves when they find themselves giving a “hoot and holler” in the sack while simultaneously wondering whether the video recorder is picking up the new How to Get Away With Murder or whether it is easier to pick up milk from Pick n Pay or from Checkers on the way home.
This sexual charade is somewhat widespread and is not specific to gender, race or religion. According to sex psychologists, it is not just women who fake orgasms but men as well, for a whole host of reasons.
Research found that the overarching reason that people faked satisfaction was to play to a certain social script. This plays out when people meet, participate in conversation (this is sometimes optional or minimal), engage in coitus and culminate that engagement in the socially acceptable manner by showing satisfaction. Much like one would do after consuming a good meal, compliments are paid to the chef.
There is a need not to disrupt the social order of things. However, this pressure can, in many instances, lead to people pretending to enjoy what is a tepid bowl of soup or an undercooked chicken.
Granted, not everything can be magical all the time but repeatedly faking it means you are continuing to indulge in substandard coitus cuisine.
This is a problem on two levels: with long-standing couples and during one-night stands.
For couples, this is the meal you will be having every night, so why would you want it to be lukewarm and lacking in flavour? Is it simply because you did not want to hurt the feelings of a new beau?
Well, now it is 20 years later, the children spend only one night a week in the house and she (or he) still does “that thing she (or he) thinks you like” but really makes you want to feign narcolepsy.
Now, instead of looking at the above and thinking “That could be my life”, you could stop rousing the neighbours from their slumber, look him or her dead in the eyes and say: “That was probably the worst thing that has happened to me lying down. And this includes the time I had my wisdom teeth out.”
Or something more subtle and sensitive.
In the future, it could literally mean the difference between figuring out the number of people coming to the renewal of your vows and the number of a good divorce lawyer.
One would think it would not matter with one-night stands but, alas, it does. In this scenario it is not just you and your partner but also their future partners. You may not see it as your problem but think how much community service you have done in the past few years. It may be time to give a little something back.
It is just wrong to let a person think that their “signature move” had you seeing stars when, in reality, it had you musing about the continual decline of Generations. Or how that trick had you trying to remember whether the emergency services number was 10111 or 10222.
It is wrong to let them think that they inspire thoughts of the Kama Sutra when they instead inspire thoughts of the conservative part of the Bible, that speaks about abstinence.
With social media, the courting process has been reduced to swiping left or right, clicking “follow” and choosing “add friend”. No longer do we have to wait the requisite amount of time to possibly “get some”. This means that hook-ups have gone from “slow roast” to “microwave”.
This ups the chances of “spreading bad sex” – exponentially.
As my one friend said about her sexual partners: “I am judging you like a Roman emperor.” Don’t let them go out and be judged harshly. Think of it as a customer service survey.
If Vodacom calls you and asks you how its service is and you have not had an internet connection for three days and phone calls are repeatedly cut off because of network issues, but you say “great”, you have done many customers a great wrong.
Now Vodacom thinks that it is keeping people connected whereas they are all sitting there in frustration looking at the network bars.
We cannot be a world of people faking customer service surveys and secretly complaining about it to friends. We have to move society forward through innovation and feedback. To some extent, enjoying sex is our civic duty.
Kagure Mugo is the cofounder and full-time curator of HOLAAfrica! She is a part-time pseudo-academic and part-time wine-bar philosopher