The Myth That Young Men Don’t Want Love Is Spoiling American Sexual Culture

Writing in the New York Times on Sunday, Peggy Orenstein -- author of the book Girls & Sex, painted a bleak picture of young women’s sex lives. Even in consensual relationships, female pleasure is often a low priority: According to nationally representative data collected by Indiana University researchers, about a third of women ages 18-and-over report experiencing pain in their sexual encounters (when anal sex is included, the number rises to 70 percent) as compared to about five percent of men. And worse, many view this joyless sex as both normal and obligatory. College-age women, Orenstein writes, are “more likely than men to use their partner’s physical pleasure as the yardstick for their satisfaction, saying things like ‘If he’s sexually satisfied, then I’m sexually satisfied,’” while men are more likely to judge an encounter against the barometer of their own orgasm.

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