Never before have women been able to express their needs as openly as they are today – theoretically at least. Nevertheless, everyone has to find the way to a fulfilled love life for themselves
Complex lust: women are pickier during sex, say psychologists
His work was certified “the effect of a nuclear bomb”. In fact, the biologist Alfred C. Kinsey wrote in his book The sexual behavior of women only that women are sexually active than previously thought. That masturbation also increase their sexual satisfaction with them. And that they not only feel excitement when certain parts of the body are stimulated. Almost the whole body of the woman – a single erogenous zone!
In the post-war years of prudery, these were unheard-of insights. Finally, the 19th century echoed – and among medical opinion prevailed the desire for sex is simply not the female nature.
Historical milestones of lust
In this interactive graph you can point to the pictures to learn more:
- World first vibrator
- World first vibrator
Various models will be presented at the World’s Fair in Paris. The device is designed to release tension and relieve “hysteria”.
- Sigmund’s sofa
Freud distinguishes the “mature” vaginal from the “immature” clitoral orgasm and thus triggers decades of insecurity among women.
- Enlightenment Made in Germany
Magnus Hirschfeld founds the world’s first institute for sexual research in Berlin. There, the doctor also deals with male and female homosexuality.
- Lady Chatterley’s lover
The book, which deals with the amorous escapades of a married woman, appears – and is immediately banned. It is not until 1960 that the Chatterley ban ends.
The books of the American sexologist Shere Hite cause a stir. Their theses contradict the notions of monogamous, heterosexual female pleasure.
In the digital age, sexuality is also changing – like, is still unclear. Scientists are investigating how the app “Tinder” will influence the love life of the next generation of women.
New freedoms, complex lust
This seems a long time ago. Women as well as men use dating portals. They buy sex toys, watch porn. Women’s magazines give tips on how to get out of the affair after one-night-stands. And yet the question remains: is that already sexual equality? Can women really live completely free? And if they do not want all that, is that a problem?
If Dr. Jorge Ponseti wants to clarify the difference between male and female desire, he shows a picture. On it two technical devices. One has a toggle switch for “on” and “off”. The other is littered with buttons, knobs, flashing lights. “Female sexuality is incomparably more complex, there are more set screws,” says Ponseti, a psychologist at the Institute for Sexual Medicine, forensic psychiatry and psychotherapy in Kiel.
Men tick differently
How strongly the environment and her own feelings in women influence the desire for sex, Ponseti examined with the following experiment. He allowed women and men to look at different picture sequences. There was always an erotic scene on the final scene: a couple having sexual intercourse.
The depictions before either showed a perfect world: happy families, cuddly couples. Or the subjects looked at empty rooms, demolished houses or even scenes of violence. Then they should rate their sexual arousal. In men, this rating was relatively independent of the images they first saw. On the other hand, disorder or aggression had a disastrous effect on women.
Clutter is unsexy
For Ponseti, who explains the differences in sexual behavior, especially from an evolutionary perspective, a sensible reaction. “Women are more picky about sex, and that was crucial to human history.”
The fact that women are more likely to go sneaking in the face of dingy caves than to get excited has, therefore, less to do with fiddling – but with the will to survive of our ancestors.
Loyalty is not a natural talent
The scientists are also arguing about how it really is about the nature of female pleasure. Studies on sexuality allow very different interpretations. A work by the Hamburg Institute for Sexual Research, for example, examined how desire changes in the course of a partnership.
If the sexual interest in both sexes at the beginning of a relationship was at a similarly high level, it waned markedly in women after two to four years. In men, the desire for sex with the partner remained consistently high even after years. Some scientists see this as further evidence that women just eventually lose interest in sex.
Predisposition or socially desirable behavior?
The US author Daniel Bergner interpreted the results quite differently. In his opinion, women only lose interest in sex with their previous partner. Women are not natural talents for monogamy, but masters of socially desirable behavior. Would like to go alien, but do not.
Female sexuality fits in no drawer today. Are women rather the listless or voluptuous sex? The company now allows more perspectives. This can be seen even in the Catholic marriage counseling, where many employees today undergo additional sexualtherapeutische education. “Sexuality is an important issue in almost every couple counseling,” says the pedagogue Hedwig Bergmann, who works in the marriage counseling of the Archdiocese of Cologne.
Women express emotional needs earlier
The role of the woman as well as her self-image have changed a lot on this point: “We now often experience couples in which women often feel like having sex – but not their husbands.” This does not necessarily have to do with greater sexual desire. Bergmann: “Women often find it easier to address emotional issues, even when it comes to sexual needs.”
The sociology professor Paula-Irene Villa of the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich considers such signs of a “decapitated” society to be a long-term consequence of the women’s movement. Older women, in particular, have a different sexual self-esteem: “The generation that was socialized in the 1970s got the ideas of feminism – even if not every woman could always do it.”
Performance pressure also in the sexual area
But the liberation from prudery had side effects. Expert Villa: “Everyone talked about sex – it was visible everywhere.” That has increased the pressure on both sexes. The result: “We also live in a performance society in the area of sexuality,” says Villa. Social media, Internet dating and online porn consumption would have compounded these tendencies.
It fits in with the zeitgeist that a lack of desire or sex quickly becomes a problem. In 1998 came “Viagra” on the market. A pill that pushes the “on” button on any man who wants sex. However, a preparation that reliably ignites the much more complex female desire is still not on the market. Although a corresponding drug was approved in the US in 2015. But its effect is scientifically far less well documented than the side effects.
Christa Gubler, a therapist at the Zurich Institute for Clinical Sexology and Sexual Therapy, does not believe in such simple solutions anyway. “Sexuality is as different as human beings.” Everyone has to find out for themselves: What is pleasure, excitement, desire for me? When do I feel like?
Especially with regard to the signals of one’s own body, women often have some catching up to do. In Gubler’s seminars she makes this observation more often. “Women talk about butterflies in the stomach and interpret this as being in love.” An excitatory reflex in the abdomen could simply cause a better blood circulation.
Important requirement: accept yourself
Equally important is the work on the self-image, says Gubler. “When I look in the mirror, can I affectionately accept what I see there, what’s stopping me?” Who wants to have a fulfilled love life, must be free. And first of all upstairs. In the head.