Have you ever actively tried to not have an orgasm during sex? Typically, the question and the focus is always on having one. But a different form of sexual play can come in the form of delayed gratification, such as an activity known as edging.
Edging can both lengthen a sexual experience and intensify an orgasm. In short, people who practice edging do it to both delay their peak in pleasure, and to make it that much more intense. If and when you edge, you essentially bring yourself to the “edge” of an orgasm, only to withdraw or stop the stimulation completely. You can continue this process for as long as you want, before finally allowing an orgasm to come to completion. And if you’re interested in this, you can do it alone or with a partner.
When it comes to edging, there’s no one-size-fits-all for the best stimulation to try. If you’re engaging in edging with a partner, talk about what you both are excited to do, as well as any limitations and consent issues before you get started.
Remember that up to 80 percent of people with vaginas experience an orgasm from clitoral stimulation, if that applies to either you or your partner. This could be a great time to integrate toys such as vibrators into your sessions. Some, such as the Lioness are designed to help you explore various states of arousal. For a different sensation, try other, less pricey tools including small brushes or feathers. Just make sure you’re purchasing objects that are meant to be used as sex toys!
In addition to potentially elongating sex sessions and increasing orgasm satisfaction, edging is also a great technique to help improve your communication skills. If you’re especially ready to stop faking orgasms, it’s worth keeping in mind that an almost fool-proof way to help your partner learn what you like is by telling or showing them. As psychologist and sex therapist Rachel Needle told Health, edging can be a great activity to build these skills, as you have to tell your partner what you want and how close you are to orgasm in order for it to work.
Edging might also benefit people who are struggling to have an orgasm to begin with. The pressure of figuring out how to get aroused or feeling like there is a rush to finish can take away from the sexual experience. Edging, by contrast, helps take that pressure off, as the point is to delay the end point. This can give you time to relax into the sensations.
Some people worry that an edging partner may become bored with the process. Try varying the sexual activities in order to keep the experience engaging. You can also try mutual edging so that it is a shared activity, or agree to do this activity whenever you are both excited to commit to a lengthier session.
And while porn is generally an unhelpful way to understand sexual activities in a real-world scenario, it’s not a bad idea to check out some edging-themed videos. These can provide useful visual representations of edging for people who still need a little more guidance.
- Fogarty, Lisa. “Edging Is the Sex Technique That's About to Change Your Orgasms.” Redbook, Redbook, 18 June 2019, www.redbookmag.com/love-sex/sex/a23292273/what-is-edging/
- Silverman, Sam. “What Is Edging? A Sex Expert Explains.” Health.com, 24 Apr. 2019, www.health.com/sex/edging-sex.