Gender, Sex Ed

How Many Young Adults Have Ever Faked an Orgasm, and Why They Did It

October 30, 2019 by Justin Lehmiller

It is a widely known fact that people sometimes pretend to orgasm during sex. But just how many have ever done it? Why do they do it? And how do fake orgasms differ for men and women? Check out the infographic below for a look at what research on young adults has revealed with respect to people’s experiences with faking orgasm and the motivations behind pretending to climax.

As this infographic reveals, women are more likely than men to have previously faked an orgasm, which is consistent with all of the other studies I’ve seen on this subject. In addition, women and men differ in terms of why they fake orgasms, as well as how they do it.

In terms of reasons, men are more likely to do it for their own benefit (such as just wanting to be done with a sexual experience they’re no longer into), whereas women are more likely to do it for a partner’s benefit (such as not wanting to upset their partner, or having a desire to make their partner happy).

In terms of methods of faking orgasm, women tend to rely more on vocals and breathing, while men rely more on body movements.

To learn more about how and why people fake orgasms, check out the infographic below; however, note that because this research is based on college-age adults, the results don’t necessarily generalize to older and more diverse samples. For example, older adults may report even higher levels of fake orgasms (given that they have more sexual experience) and they may fake them for different reasons (given that they’re more likely to be involved in long-term romantic relationships).

Infographic on how many men and women have faked an orgasm and why.

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Image Credit: Unsplash

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Written by
Dr. Justin Lehmiller
Founder & Owner of Sex and Psychology

Dr. Justin Lehmiller is a social psychologist and Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute. He runs the Sex and Psychology blog and podcast and is author of the popular book Tell Me What You Want. Dr. Lehmiller is an award-winning educator, and a prolific researcher who has published more than 50 academic works.

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