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There are two very different definitions.

Most often, “forced orgasm” refers to orgasms that are given (with consent) to a willing participant, usually as part of a BDSM scene.

“Here, the person receiving the orgasm is submissive to a dominant partner,” explains Caitlin V., MPH, clinical sexologist for Royal, a vegan-friendly condom and lubricant company. “Often, they’re bound or restrained to prevent them from escaping the stimulation.”

However, “forced orgasm” is sometimes used to refer to orgasms that occur during an assault.

Ultimately, what a forced orgasm entails depends on factors like the receiver’s anatomy, sexual preferences, and pleasure and pain tolerance.

The giver’s stamina, sexual preferences, skillset, and pleasure and pain tolerances also factor in.

Typically, people with vulvas have a shorter refractory period than those with a penis.

So for people with vulvas, forced orgasm usually entails (consensually) making them orgasm over and over and over and over without a come-down period between each orgasm, explains Carly S., a kink-inclusive sex educator and founder of Dildo or Dildon’t, a pleasure product review and sex educational platform.

“It could look like having the receiver tied down while their partner holds a high-powered vibrator against their body, eliciting orgasm after orgasm,” says Carly S.

Other examples include:

  • the more submissive partner asking permission to orgasm
  • the more dominant partner telling their partner when to orgasm
  • a role-play scene involving a doctor or other authority figure “forcing” a patient to orgasm during a gynecologist exam or other scenario

People with penises typically have a longer refractory period, soforced orgasm may look more like orgasm denial or post-orgasm torture, says Carly S.

The point of (consensual) forced orgasms is pleasure. But forced orgasms may not be pleasurable the e-n-t-i-r-e time.

“Typically, forced orgasms start off as being pleasurable,” explains Carly S. “But [as] more orgasms occur, the body can become so sensitive that the orgasms become overstimulating and even painful.”

However, orgasms release a whoosh of feel-good endorphins. So when all is said and come (again and again), the resulting feeling is pleasure, she says.

Good news: You don’t need any fancy-schmancy bondage gear or vibrators to explore forced orgasms!

Know your body

Learning your own body through things like masturbation, self-care, sensual touch, and intuitive exercise will help you get the most out of any flavor of partnered play — including forced orgasm partnered play.

Know your partner’s body

Forced orgasm play should be reserved for lovers who are already veryyyyy familiar with their partner’s body.

Don’t despair, new boos — that just means you have an excuse to get it on. For the sake of familiarity, of course. *Wink*

Talk about it!

Despite their name, forced orgasms aren’t something you force on a partner.

They’re something you decide to explore (for the sake of pleasure!) together ahead of time.

Some ways to bring it up:

  • “I recently read an article about forced orgasms, and it sounds like something that might be fun to try together. Can I send you the link so we can chat about it?”
  • “It really turned me on when you said, ‘Come for me, baby girl’ the last time we had sex. I’d love to continue exploring that kind of forced orgasm in bed. What do you think?”
  • “I think it could be really sexy to have you hold a vibrator on my hot spot making me orgasm over and over until I have to beg you to stop… is that something you might be interested in exploring with me?”

Pick a safe word

“This is one act in which it’s really important to pick a safe word,” says Caitlin V.

“If, for instance, you’re role-playing, your character may want to scream out ‘no’ and ‘stop’ even though you want them to keep going,” explains Caitlin V.

Pick a word that wouldn’t come up naturally in the scene. For example:

  • pineapple
  • avocado
  • elephant
  • giraffe

… you get the gist.

Figure out a pain scale

“Forced orgasms combine pleasure with pain in a very immediate way,” says Caitlin V. “Establishing a way to measure pain and communicate that pain is important to keep the play safe and exciting for all.”

The 1 to 10 scale is always a good pick. For example: “I’m currently at a 7 out of 10 on the pleasurable pain scale, and I don’t want to go higher than an 8 out of 10.”

So is the stop light system: “Yellow light! I really need a breather before we continue.”

Get specific

Are you going to use restraints? How about a vibrator? What about vibrators plural?

Are you going to role-play during the scene?

Are you going to keep going until the receiver orgasms a certain number of times? Or are you going to keep on going until the receiver asks to stop?

“There are so many different scenarios that a forced orgasm can occur in,” says Carly S. “So for your first time you should discuss a script for what the play is going to look like so you’re both on the same page.”

Consider incorporating different toys

The first time you explore forced orgasms, there’s no need to incorporate a new toy. As Caitlin V. likes to say, “change one thing at a time.”

But the second, third, or 10th time? Go ahead and add-in that brand new pleasure product.

If you’re on the market for a new vibrator, Carly S. recommends a wand-style vibrator.

“The long handle of the toys can make them easier to navigate, hold, and use,” explains Carly S.

Plus, due to the size of their motor, wand vibrators tend to be the most powerful vibes on the market.

Yep!

“The adrenaline rush someone can get from being forced to orgasm is so great, that after [they] can experience something known as sub-drop,” says Carly S.

What is sub-drop?

Sub drop is the name for the state someone can enter after a play session when there’s a drop of endorphins and adrenaline.

Symptoms include:

  • temporary feelings of depression or sadness
  • physical or emotional exhaustion
  • body aches and pains
  • sleepiness
  • hunger or thirst

To help a partner manage sub-drop, Carly S. recommends engaging in aftercare.

“Aftercare can include drinking juice, cuddling, taking personal space, playing video games, ordering takeout, or any number of other things,” she says. “Really, it’s anything that prioritizes your partners’ emotional, physical, and mental needs and well-being.”

How you respond will come down to what feels safest to you.

Jill McDevitt, resident sexologist for CalExotics, explains:

“You might scream and call the police. You might pretend you like it so you can get out of there without further violence. You might cry, feel confused, and feel numb. You might not have any feeling or reaction at all until hours, days, weeks, or even years later.”

These are all perfectly normal and OK reactions.

“There’s no right or wrong way to feel, or respond,” says McDevitt.

Different professionals can be helpful at different stages in the experience.

During or immediately after

Contact your local emergency services if you’re in immediate danger or are injured.

Your local authorities, for example, will allow you to report the incident — what happened is a crime.

You may consider going to the hospital and talking with a doctor about getting a “rape kit.” These can be a helpful way to collect evidence, though the process can be difficult for some. You can learn more about the process here.

(FYI: You can get a rape kit and decide *not* report the assault to the police.)

Another option: Call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-4673.

In the following days, weeks, or months

Reach out to your friends, family, or partner(s) — you don’t have to go through this alone.

“If the experience has caused disruption to your physical, emotional, or mental well-being, consider reaching out to a mental health professional,” says Caitlin V.

Knowing what to say to or do for a loved one going through this can be tricky. These tips can help.

Believe them

“Believe them, believe them, BELIEVE THEM,” says McDevitt. “Validate that what happened was wrong! And they didn’t do anything wrong to deserve it.”

Remind them that orgasm is just a bodily reaction

“Affirm that orgasm is a bodily reaction, and orgasms do not mean they consented, or that they enjoyed it,” says McDevitt.

Lay out their options

Plus, how you can support them in those options.

For example:

  • “Do you want me to listen and offer advice? Or just listen?”
  • “I can help you take this to the proper authorities.”
  • “I can help you find a professional to support you.”
  • “I can come with you to talk to your [insert person of significance here].”

Support their plan of action

Support whatever they decide to do — even if what they decide to do is nothing at all.

“Don’t tell them they ‘should’ report it, or ‘should’ see a counselor, or ‘should’ try to forget about it and move on,” says McDevitt.

“Sexual violence is largely about taking away someone’s power and agency,
explains McDevitt. “So you want to find every opportunity to support their agency, including their decision of how or what to do following the assault.”

“Forced orgasm” is the name for the kinky and consensual sex act of bringing a partner to orgasm during a power exchange and the name for orgasms that occur in non-consensual settings.

The former is a type you and your partner(s) might have interest in exploring for the sake of pleasure.

The latter is sexual assault and can be incredibly confusing, disempowering, and scarring for the person who has it.


Gabrielle Kassel is a New York-based sex and wellness writer and CrossFit Level 1 Trainer. She’s become a morning person, tested over 200 vibrators, and eaten, drunk, and brushed with charcoal — all in the name of journalism. In her free time, she can be found reading self-help books and romance novels, bench-pressing, or pole dancing. Follow her on Instagram.