5 Ways Women Can Orgasm That Don’t Involve Sexual Activity

5 Ways Women Can Orgasm That Don’t Involve Sexual Activity

Women don’t need to have sex in order to reach orgasm. In fact, they don’t necessarily even need any genital stimulation at all. Here are five ways women can experience what scientists call “non-genital” orgasms.

1. Some women can literally think themselves to orgasm.

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Is It Possible to "Undo" a Circumcision? Here's What We Know About Foreskin Restoration

Is It Possible to "Undo" a Circumcision? Here's What We Know About Foreskin Restoration

A reader asked the following question:

"If you've been circumcised, is there any way to get your foreskin back?"

Some circumcised men lament the removal of their foreskin, wishing to be "uncircumcised." This has led to the emergence of several products and procedures designed to restore men's foreskin; however, they remain quite limited in what they can accomplish.

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Are Sex Researchers More Sexually Active Than Everyone Else?

Are Sex Researchers More Sexually Active Than Everyone Else?

When you study sex for a living, people have a tendency to think that you really love sex—and that you must be having it all the time, too! In other words, people often assume that you’re doing “mesearch” instead of research.

But is that really the case? Are sex researchers any more sexually active than the rest of the population? Let's take a look at the data.

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Disability Desires: People Who are Aroused by the Idea of Becoming Physically Disabled

Disability Desires: People Who are Aroused by the Idea of Becoming Physically Disabled

Paraphilia is the term psychologists and psychiatrists use to refer to any unusual sexual interest. It’s important to note that an unusual interest is not necessarily harmful and it's not necessarily a sign that the person who has it is mentally disturbed either. Indeed, the mental health community makes a clear distinction between having a paraphilia (an unusual sexual interest) and a paraphilic disorder (an unusual sexual interest that is non-consensual in nature and/or that is seriously distressing to the person who has it).

Hundreds of paraphilis have been identified over the years, with some sources putting the number at over 500.

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5 Fascinating Things Americans’ Google Searches Have Taught Us About Sex

5 Fascinating Things Americans’ Google Searches Have Taught Us About Sex

Google Trends has quickly become one of the favorite research tools of sex scientists. Why? In part, because not everyone is willing to participate in sex studies and, among those who are, we know they don’t always answer survey questions honestly. For instance, some people won’t report what actually turns them on because they’re embarrassed by it. Likewise, others lie about how many people they’ve had sex with in order to make themselves look better in the eyes of others. When people go to Google, though, they have a powerful incentive to tell the truth because, otherwise, they won’t find what they’re looking for. As a result, Google searches are thought to be very revealing because they can give us a glimpse into the things that people might not be willing to share with scientists, or anyone else for that matter.

In the last few years, several research papers have been published exploring the contents of Americans’ Google search histories. In this post, we’ll take a look at five of the most fascinating things we’ve learned so far from this unique research tool.

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People Are More Willing To Have Sex With Bisexuals Than Have Relationships With Them

People Are More Willing To Have Sex With Bisexuals Than Have Relationships With Them

Bisexual people, both male and female, tend to be stereotyped negatively. For example, they are often seen as sexually confused, secretly gay, highly promiscuous, and incapable of monogamy. These negative views of bisexuals are held not just by many heterosexual persons, but also by many gays and lesbians as well. A recent study suggests that the popularity of these negative stereotypes could have implications for the sexual and romantic lives of bisexual persons.

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The Season of Sex: Why Sexual Activity Peaks in the Summer

The Season of Sex: Why Sexual Activity Peaks in the Summer

In the animal kingdom, there are some species that only mate seasonally. They do it just a few times per year, coinciding with their fertile periods. Humans, by contrast, are what scientists call "continuous breeders," meaning they are able to mate all year-round. However, the term "continuous breeders" masks the fact that humans' mating patterns still follow a very reliable seasonal pattern. Specifically, we tend to have more sex in the summer than we do at any other time of year.

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Three Sexual Fantasies That Are More Common Than You Think

Three Sexual Fantasies That Are More Common Than You Think

Paraphilia is a very general term used by psychologists to refer to any kind of unusual sexual interest. The number of desires that have been deemed paraphilic has grown substantially over the years to the point where hundreds of things have now been classified as unusual turn-ons. As it turns out, though, a lot of these desires aren’t so uncommon after all. In this article, we'll take a look at three specific sexual desires that are typically considered to be paraphilic, but that are actually quite common in terms of the number of people who have fantasized about them before.

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Americans’ Support for Same-Sex Marriage is at an All-Time High—Even Among Republicans

Americans’ Support for Same-Sex Marriage is at an All-Time High—Even Among Republicans

Over the past decade, there has been a dramatic change in support for same-sex marriage in the United States. Consider this: in 2007, the Pew Research Center conducted a national poll, which found that just 37% of Americans were in favor, while 54% were opposed. By contrast, this year’s poll found quite the reversal: nearly two-thirds (62%) are now in favor, with 32% opposed. This all-time high comes just two years after the Supreme Court decision that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide. 

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The Orgasm Gap in Porn is Bigger Than We Realized

The Orgasm Gap in Porn is Bigger Than We Realized

Porn has been criticized for a lot of reasons, but one of the most common complaints lodged against it is that it isn’t realistic, especially in the way it depicts women’s sexuality. For example, some have described it as “a fantasy world in which women…always experience orgasm.” While there’s a lot of truth to the general idea that porn doesn’t provide an accurate depiction of sex, you may be surprised to learn that this specific critique does not appear to be valid. In fact, research suggests that, rather than the female orgasm being ubiquitous in online porn, it’s actually pretty uncommon.

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Sex Question Friday: Why Do Men Have Nipples?

Sex Question Friday: Why Do Men Have Nipples?

A reader submitted the following question:

"Why do men have nipples? Do they have some purpose I don't know about?"

Thanks for this great question! I've been asked about this many times before while teaching human sexuality classes to college students, so here's what I tell them: 

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What No One Ever Told You About People Who Are Single (Video)

What No One Ever Told You About People Who Are Single (Video)

Even though the marriage rate in the United States recently hit an all-time low, most Americans still view the institution positively and consider it to be the ideal relationship state. Why? It is deeply embedded in our culture that a monogamous marriage--finding "the one"--is the key to happiness and meaning in life, while being single is just lonely and sad. As it turns out, however, a lot of what we've been told about marriage just isn't true.

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Are You Asexual? Here’s How Scientists Measure Asexuality

Are You Asexual? Here’s How Scientists Measure Asexuality

Sex scientists have become increasingly interested in the topic of asexuality in the last few years. For example, they’ve published studies on everything from the genital arousal patterns of asexual individuals, to the biological correlates of asexuality, to the masturbation practices of asexuals. However, all of this research has generated some controversy over how best to measure asexuality because different researchers have used different definitions and measurement techniques. For example, some have focused on self-identification as asexual, while others have focused on a self-reported lack of attraction and/or behavior. If the broader literature on sexual orientation has taught us anything, it’s that identity, attraction, and behavior don’t always line up in the way that you might expect and shouldn’t be used interchangeably.

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Yes, Botox For Your Butt Is A Thing—But, No, It Doesn’t Cost $25,000

Yes, Botox For Your Butt Is A Thing—But, No, It Doesn’t Cost $25,000

For the last two days, articles about “anal Botox” have been blowing up my Facebook and Twitter feeds, with most of the headlines (like this one from Cosmo) saying something along the lines of “Anal Botox Is A Thing, And Costs Up to $25,000.” To me, the surprising thing about these headlines wasn’t that people were putting Botox in their butts, but what they were supposedly paying for it. Let me explain.

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The US Government is Poised to Move Backwards on Sex Education

The US Government is Poised to Move Backwards on Sex Education

In the final budget proposal submitted by the Obama administration last year, funding for abstinence-only sex education was put on the chopping block. They proposed eliminating abstinence-only programs entirely and, although it didn't ultimately come to pass, their proposal at least showed recognition of the fact that we need a new approach to sex education in this country. Study after study has shown that promoting abstinence only just doesn’t work. In fact, if anything, it seems to be counterproductive. For example, research has found that the U.S. states with the most abstinence-only programs actually have the highest rates of teen pregnancy [1]!

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4 Things Science Has Taught Us About Polyamorous Relationships

4 Things Science Has Taught Us About Polyamorous Relationships

During my teaching stint at Harvard a couple of years back, a few colleagues from out of state came to visit me on a lovely spring afternoon. I gave them a brief tour of campus, followed by some bar-hopping through Harvard Square. It was a memorable day for several reasons, but mainly because, over a few drinks at my favorite local dive bar, we laid the groundwork for one of the most ambitious research projects I’ve ever undertaken in my professional career. Specifically, we set out to conduct the largest and most comprehensive scientific investigation of polyamorous relationships to date.

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How Many American Adults Have Had a Same-Sex Experience?

How Many American Adults Have Had a Same-Sex Experience?

Since becoming an adult, how many Americans have ever had a sexual experience with someone of the same sex? And how has this number changed over time? According to a recent study published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior, 8-9% of American adults today have had a same-sex experience—a figure that has doubled since the late 1980s. Check out the infographic below for a closer look at the numbers and how they have changed over time.

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Older Women Who Marry Younger Men: They're Stigmatized, but Highly Satisfied

Older Women Who Marry Younger Men: They're Stigmatized, but Highly Satisfied

Both before and after the recent election of French president Emmanuel Macron, his wife, Brigitte, found herself to be the target of constant attacks on social media. Why? Because she happens to be 24 years older than her husband.

Age-gap relationships in which a woman is significantly older than her male partner have always attracted a lot of attention and scrutiny. Case in point: remember what big news it was when Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher were together? As you may have noticed, this same scrutiny isn’t usually applied to relationships in which men are significantly older than their female partners. As some evidence of this, just consider what a non-issue it has been that U.S. President Donald Trump happens to be 24 years older than his wife, Melania (the same age-gap as the Macrons).

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Genital Arousal and Sexual Desire Aren’t Necessarily the Same Thing

Genital Arousal and Sexual Desire Aren’t Necessarily the Same Thing

Scientists who study sexual desire have long been wary of over-relying on self-report data because people don’t always tell the truth on surveys. Some people answer questions about what turns them on and what their sex lives are like in whatever way makes them look best. For example, someone might underreport their sexual desires and experiences in order to appear wholesome, or perhaps because they don't want to own up to something. To get around this issue, many sex scientists utilize devices that can measure genital arousal under the assumption that “genitals don’t lie.” Among researchers who subscribe to this belief, they have a tendency to let genital data trump self-report data whenever they seem to be saying different things.

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How Many Americans Identify as LGBT?

How Many Americans Identify as LGBT?

How many people in the United States identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT)? A large, nationally representative survey conducted by Gallup last year put the overall number at 4.1% of the U.S. population. It is worth noting that this number increased from 3.5% in 2012, which suggests that as the LGBT community has made more social and political gains--including nationwide marriage equality--more and more Americans have decided to come out.

The overall number is just one small part of the story here, though. 

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