This post started life with a plea for help from Jim, a man whose partner is frustrated because she hardly ever has orgasms during sex, in spite of a lot of stimulation. She is in her early 20s, has only tried to masturbate a few times, and has had only a handful of orgasms in the two years that she has been sexually active.
I've researched this topic a number of times over the years and have accumulated a long list of links to good resources, so I decided to share the best ones with him, and now with you.
This was my response:
Most people don't realize it, but an orgasm is something women have to learn to do. Or, really, it's something our nervous systems have to learn to do. Some girls are lucky and start masturbating when they're little, but a LOT of us start later and have to catch up. Because, as Drs. Julia Heiman and Joseph Lopiccolo pointed out 40 years ago in their groundbreaking book, Becoming Orgasmic, "the more orgasms a woman has had, the easier it is to have more."