Orgasms, Kegels and Pelvic Floors, Oh My
I couldn’t orgasm, and I was pissed. I was frustrated with my partner, his predictable pumping, and his unsatisfying sexual surrender. I was frustrated with myself, my malicious mind, my ravenous body, and maybe, just our overall routine.
As one of those ‘strong, independent woman’ types, I knew he didn’t claim all the blame. Men do need to know what they’re doing - as well as respectfully explore our bodies - but at the end of the day, I knew it was my own disconnected mind and body that were stopping any kind of supreme satisfaction.
So I did what any strong, independent, woman would do. I started googling. Not only myself - but the biggest, grandest O I knew - Online.
Google. Search. “why can’t I #$&%! orgasm?”
With 100 million results in less than 0.39 seconds, I was clearly not the only one in this mess. In fact, 75% of women can’t orgasm solely from penetration. Obviously, there is no ‘one pump fits all’ when it comes to female pleasure.
And then I got sucked in to the black hole of female pleasure that can only be compared directly to NASA’S voyage of discovery when it comes to actual black holes. Lots of questions. No answers. Minimal research. A universe of dissatisfaction.
I did unearth one major theme in the realm of female pleasure - the power of the Kegel. At least I thought. Kegels are pelvic floor exercises, and article after article promised a better chance of orgasm, just a hop, skip and floor squeeze away. It took me some time to realize that Kegels are more like the fad diet of female pleasure, an alleged quick and easy solution to placate the complex layers of a problematic pelvic reality.
BUT it did inspire my curiosity to dive deeper into the world of sexual health and wellbeing, and here I am today, exploring all things pelvic floor, which turns out to be one of our most crucial body parts - that no one is really talking about.
An undefined number of women worldwide suffer painfully because of their pelvic floors, a body part meant to support both pure pleasure AND fundamental function.
I decided to attend a Pelvic Floor workshop with Liron Murphy, a knowledgeable, experienced and ‘passionate about helping all pelvic floors’ Physiotherapist, who recently opened a clinic in Tel Aviv.
Since the first step towards positive change is awareness, I felt inspired to share some of the juice about my journey down under - because guess what? It’s time to air out our pelvic floors, once and for all.
WTF IS THE PELVIC FLOOR AND WHY DOES IT MATTER?
Puberty. Periods. Pregnancy. Birth. Menopause. At every phase, our pelvic floor sits like a hammock inside, literally holding up all of our organs, holding in our pee and poo, and creating our central core, which includes our diaphragm, stomach, back and floor. Our core parts are connected by various muscles - so when we have a problem with one of these things, it may likely affect another, especially if not taken care of properly.
THE FACE OF FASCIA
If you haven’t heard of it yet, allow me to introduce you to fascia. Fascia is like that meaty steaky part of our interior related to both flexibility and tension. Call it your connective tissue, or the glue that holds our organs in place, which makes up a major part of the pelvic floor. Today, there are practices where you can roll it, press it, massage it, cup it, all of which creates healthier connections within our body.
But if your fascia isn’t healthy, it can create a host of uncomfortable symptoms across the core.
That means that if your pee flows loose without your permission, if you experience lower back pains, unexplained pain during sex or overall vaginal discomfort – it could have everything to do with your pelvic floor.
This omnipotent pelvic floor relates to everything we do - lifting heavy things, coughing, laughing, breathing, carrying babies – our pelvic floor is what is holding us in, up and together. For the women who might piddle a little when they laugh really hard – okay, sometimes a good laugh IS glorious...but it could also be your pelvic floor’s fault.
But don’t necessarily start doing your Kegels just yet. (and see #3 below)
While my journey began in search of a simple orgasm (ha), what I uncovered was a wealth of healthy knowledge about pelvic floors, which touches not only on our sexual health but is deeply involved in our overall well being as women.
Now that you have a basic understanding of what the PF is responsible for, here are the 4 most intriguing tips I picked up along the way:
4 INTRIGUING GOODIES I LEARNED ABOUT THE PELVIC FLOOR
1. One in 3 women suffer from pelvic floor issues.
Is it your mom, your sister, or your best friend? You may not know because many women don’t go chatting freely about their pelvic floors. Problems with our pelvic areas are often kept under wraps. Some women might believe that piddling a little is normal and not understand that something is wrong. While it is a common happening among women, it is a symptom that can and should be treated asap.
Some women may share their pain with a GYN, who either ignore or minimize a symptom they can’t see. Well. There are 3 common diagnosis for women with pelvic floor issues. Listen up.
Also to note, these percentages are listed across the board in the PF field of knowledge; however, it’s believed that more women encounter issues than actually fess up to them.
INCONTINENCE – 30% of women experience this. It’s when you laugh, cough, or breathe too hard, and your pee escapes your body without letting you know. It could also mean you need to pee often and URGENTLY.