Ten percent of women are in your shoes, according to Rachel Needle, a clinical psychologist at the Center for Marital and Sexual Health of South Florida. “Letting yourself go can be scary,” says Needle. “And the more you stress out about it, the harder it is to focus on climaxing.” But it’s really worth the effort: Not only do they feel good, research suggests that orgasms can reduce stress, alleviate pain and symptoms of PMS, and may even help you live longer. There’s no universal map to “getting there” because everyone is different; learning about your body is key. “Masturbating is the best way to do this,” says Levine. “Once you’ve orgasmed on your own, you’ll be better able to guide your partner.” Often intercourse alone isn’t enough stimulation, adds Nelson, so experiment by using your hands and trying various positions. Don’t fret about how long it takes—anywhere from seven to 30 minutes is normal. Just lie back and enjoy.
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