Let’s get real: By no means should sex be measured by whether or not you and your partner(s) achieve orgasm. As we’ve mentioned before, there are many ways to enjoy sex without reaching climax—it’s about the journey rather than the finish line. But that said, sometimes, you do really want to reach that finish line.
And sometimes the stars align just right and you can not only have an orgasm yourself, but at the same time as your partner.
We know what you’re thinking: surely that has to be some kind of sexual unicorn. Simultaneous orgasm does in fact happen, though not as often as most of us would like it to. But the right circumstances—and a little effort—can make it far more likely to happen. Expecting to orgasm at the same time as your partner is a highly unrealistic standard to hold yourself to, but it’s certainly worth some experimentation.
Switching things up in bed by using lube, spending more time on foreplay, and trying new positions can make it more likely that you and your partner climax at the same time. So, have an open mind. You never know when the stars will align just right.
Do your homework.
You’re better at playing an instrument if you know all the notes and chords and how they work together (obviously). The same goes for intimacy. You’re far more likely to achieve an orgasm if you know what turns you on and you’ve communicated that with your partner. For instance, there are so many lesser-known erogenous zones that you might be neglecting—or you might really benefit from some dirty talk to get you going. It’s impossible to overstate the importance of communication when it comes to intimacy, your preferences, and your boundaries, but having a conversation with your partner will pretty much always benefit the both of you (they want to know how to turn you on just as much as you want to know how to turn them on). Talk about how and where you like to be touched and what your partner(s) can do to amplify your pleasure—and ask that they share the same about themselves. Set the mood with lighting as you have the conversation, and then let things go from there.
Beware the orgasm gap.
Research consistently shows that women experience orgasms far less frequently than men, especially during penis-vagina sex, so it’s important to keep that in mind. Since it may take a little more time for women to approach orgasm, you may need to place more focus on clitoral stimulation if you want to orgasm at the same time during penis-vagina sex. A vibrator can help with that: It can be especially helpful to use in positions that don’t typically involve a lot of clitoral stimulation, like reverse cowgirl and spooning. You can also use a vibrator during foreplay to bring your partner closer to orgasm before penetrative sex. Or, you can climax at the same time even without penetrative sex through mutual masturbation.
Talking things out isn’t just important before intimacy. During intercourse, keep one another updated (in the sexiest way possible, of course) on how you’re feeling and whether an orgasm is on the horizon. You don’t even have to overthink it—a simple check-in will do: “How does that feel?” “I’m close.” “Keep going.” “A little slower.” If one partner is outpacing another, slow down the stimulation a little to cool things down if your goal is to climax at the same time. You can also use this opportunity to switch positions or try something new (like oral, or a vibrator).
Don’t put too much pressure on a result.
If you’re in your head too much, a simultaneous climax is going to feel even more impossible to achieve. One of the best parts of sex is that it can help you get out of your head and into your body. If you spend the whole time worrying about whether or not you and your partner will be able to achieve the elusive simultaneous orgasm, you’ll only set yourself up for failure and disappointment. Remember: Orgasm alone is a nice-to-have, not a must-have, and the same goes for simultaneous orgasms (especially!).
There are so many benefits of using lube. While it might most often be thought of as a tool for penetrative sex (penis-vagina sex or anal sex), it’s also a tool that can increase overall sensations during sex. That’s what makes it great to use with a vibrator—or even a hand. If your partner has a vagina and could use a little extra stimulation, using lube can help to increase their pleasure, bringing them closer to orgasm. It’s also great for hand jobs and external clitoral stimulation. Think of it as an extra ingredient that can amplify all the sensations that you or your partner are already feeling. Start with a pump or two, and don’t be afraid to reapply.
Try some new positions.
Orgasming at the same time can be easier in some positions than others. Why? Different positions allow for different stimulation. It’s worth noting, after all, that research shows that fewer than 20% of women (specifically, those with vaginas, in a 2017 study) can climax through penetrative sex alone. The remaining majority either require some kind of clitoral stimulation or say that clitoral stimulation has a significant impact on whether or not they orgasm. So, it makes sense that—for penis-vagina sex specifically—positions that allow for a bit more clitoral stimulation are more likely to result in that elusive partnered climax.
A 2020 study of monogamous straight, cis women found that it took an average of about 13 minutes to orgasm. Conversely, research shows that it takes men between five to seven minutes to climax—which pretty much explains the disappointment that can arise after a “quick” finish. The solution: Start with one partner having a solo session as the other watches, before eventually joining in.
Woman on top
It’s easier for women to control the pace of sex while riding, which makes cowgirl a great position for achieving dual orgasms. Grinding can help to get some G-spot stimulation, but hands can also be helpful in this position: Don’t be afraid to multitask with some clitoral stimulation while you’re riding.
As previously notes, simultaneous orgasm doesn’t have to be achieved through sex at all. Masturbating with a partner can be just as fulfilling. You can do it in bed together, or bring things into the shower for a change of scenery that can up the ante. If you start by focusing on solo pleasure, you can pivot to pleasuring your partner with a hand job or some finger stimulation. Just remember to communicate your speed and pressure preferences.
If you or your partner enjoy G-spot stimulation, then doggy style is another great option for a simultaneous orgasm. You might want to lead up to it with foreplay or even missionary, and while you’re in doggy, you can try different variations. Some people prefer to stand with their partner in the front leaning over, with their back arched and legs close together, while others take it to all fours. And on all fours, you can also shift to a position that’s closer to laying down (with your legs outstretched). Don’t be afraid to experiment and see which variations result in the best feelings for both you and your partner.
It has a reputation for a reason. Oral sex, alone, is a great way to bring your partner to orgasm. So when you couple receiving with giving, there’s bound to be more fireworks. Don’t let this position intimidate you—try it out in bed in a position where both you and your partner are comfortable (some strategically placed pillows can relieve pressure on the neck of the person on the bottom and the knees of the person on top). Even if you don’t finish in a mutual climax, you’ll have tried something new—and that’s an exciting prospect in itself.
Leave it up to fate.
Ultimately, simultaneous orgasm isn’t something you can count on—but making an effort in the hopes that it does can lead to a great time. If it happens, it happens, but if one of you happens to orgasm before the other—or not at all—at least you’ll have fun while doing it. As always, communicate with your partner about your needs and theirs, and you’ll both find satisfaction in some way.