The Nonorgasmic Woman
What if you could not experience an orgasm? Wouldn't that put a bit of a
damper on your sex life? Well, this is a surprisingly common scenario
for many couples as many females are "nonorgasmic" or "inorgasmic."
Estimates are in the 10% range.  Of course, this can put a strain on a
relationship both for a fella and his honey.
Apparently, the lack of nookie can make everyone involved a little
crabby: researchers have
noted that a healthy sexual life contributes about 15-20% to the relationship's
viability and satisfaction but an unhealthy sex life does the opposite at a rate
of about 60-70%.  In other words, lack of sex and quality sex strongly
and readily contributes to failed relationships.
So we're going to look at some interesting studies using the Way Back
Machine. Back in the 70's, while society was wrestling with free love and,
more importantly, the breakup of the Beatles, researchers were frantically
looking for solutions to the issues of nonorgasism - is that a word? - and found
a few things worth noting. Now nonorgasm can be due to medical conditions,
medications and childhood abuse.  However, as it
turns out, there can physical reasons as well which will be discussed below.
For example, one study put 8 nonorgasmic women into a fairly involved program with the
ambitious goal of getting them to the point where they could orgasm,
especially with their spouse and thus achieve a more satisfactory sex life for
all. They actually achieved their goal - all 8 women become orgasmic - and presumably
lived happily ever after. (Follow up work six months later actually showed
that all women stayed orgasmic.) However, if you read the details of the study, the
experiences of two of the women is particularly important. These two women
had to spend 45 minutes daily masturbating with a virbrator for three weeks before they could achieve an
orgasm and had to practice Kegels while they were at it as well!
NOTE: Kegels are excellent for women for many reasons, but subsequent
research has not verified their usefulness in overcoming the ability to achieve
For these two women, orgasm was something had to be
developed and was a process requiring considerable patience and effort. By
all accounts, it appeared
that these women did not have a psychological issue, but rather that a
physiological one: their vascular,
capillary and nervous system simply could not support an orgasm. The researchers
speculated that these women had to develop these physiological systems through
weeks of stimulation and pointed out that other studies indicated that a lack of
"sufficient vascularity" could be the underlying issue. This is
verified by the fact that females can become nonorgasmic after the ravages on
veins and arteries of diabetes.  Yes, diabetes can produce similar
problems in males.
A similar study was done a few years later on 3 nonorgasmic women and documented
that it took 3, 4 and 6 weeks of regular masturbation for these women to achieve
an orgasm.  The old adage "if at first you don't succeed..." really applies
Is this possible? Well, certainly, and there is an analagous situation in
men. Men, generally in middle and senior age, may experience a lack of
morning erections and/or sexual activity. This leads to atrophy of receptors,
musculature and "vascularity" in a sense as well. These men find that they
need to literally practice ejaculating for a time and "get back into shape".
The good news is that subsequent research has verified that, generally, nonorgasmic women can become
orgasmic through proper strategies. Masters and Johnson, for example,
found an 83% and 60% success rate just a few years later. 
2) Archives of Sexual Behavior, 1972, 2(2), "The Role of Masturbation in
the Treatment of Sexual Dysfunction"
Archives of Sexual Behavior, 1976, 5(3), "Group Therapy for Nonorgasmic
Women: Two Age Levels"
4) SEXUALITY AND DISABILITY, 6(2):83-92, "Diabetes mellitus and female sexuality"
5) Handbook of Clinical Family Therapy, Chap. 18, "Couple Sex Therapy:
Assessment, Treatment and Relapse Prevention", p. 464.
Archives of Sexual Behavior, 1974, 3(4), "Directed Masturbation and the
Treatment of Primary Sexual Dysfunction"