Why men fake it: the truth about men and sex


First aired on Q (08/05/13) 

For years popular culture has told us that sex for women is different because of the fairer sex's emotions. But, Dr. Abraham Morgentaler says that's no so.

"It's absurd. It's nonsense," he told Q's Jian Ghomeshi in a recent interview. "The real truth is that men are just as complicated as women."

He recently wrote Why Men Fake It: The Totally Unexpected Truth About Men and Sex, which has been compared to the landmark women's sexuality book, Our Bodies, Ourselves, to show this startling truth to readers.

Having worked in men's health for over two decades, Morgentaler was blown away by a patient about five years ago. The man (in the book he's called David), told Morgentaler he was faking orgasms during intercourse -- a realm of sexuality often thought to be dominated by women.

"When he was going ... having sort of dates and one-night stands and stuff, he thought he was a big stud because he could keep going like the energizer bunny," said Morgentaler. "Then, of course, he fell in love, which causes all sorts of troubles for us."

Thumbnail image for whymenfakeit.jpgDavid started noticing his partner was feeling badly about her feminine skills because she couldn't bring him to an orgasm, so -- to spare her feelings -- David began faking his climax. Morgentaler became fascinated with not only why David was faking his orgasms, but also, more broadly, why men behave the way they do when it comes to sex.

Sex changes for men when they are in a relationship with feelings involved, says Morgentaler. The idea that men are selfish in bed is false, he says. "[It] is a caricature of what happens in young guys who have no idea what they're doing and they're looking for quantity rather than anything else to sort of assert their new masculinity."

Alternatively and against popular culture mythology, men in committed, emotional relationships gain their sense of masculinity through the eyes of their partner. Morgentaler offers Duncan, another anonymous patient discussed in the book, as an example. Duncan was a 27-year-old married paraplegic who couldn't have sex because of a spinal cord injury. Morgentaler treated Duncan, and when Duncan returned for a follow-up he said he felt like a man again because he was able to have sex with his partner, despite not having any feeling or sensation during intercourse.

Morgentaler says this shows how men gain masculinity from being able to please their partners. He notes men have a lot of problems ranging from erectile dysfunction to premature ejaculation, and lots of problems in discussing these issues. So, he urges partners to, "get your guy to go see the doctor, cause there's treatment for all of these."

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