If you asked a woman in the Western World about the most painful experience of her life, she would inevitably rank childbirth at the top. Most traditional healthcare providers however aren’t bringing up the potential fora pleasurable orgasmic birth experience with expectant mothers. Why? The topic of women’s pleasure is still taboo in many cultures. The academic literature on the topic is also sorely lacking.
Western culture has deeply embedded notions of birth being excruciating in every sense. It rarely recognizes the potential for pleasure in the birthing experience. In societies with higher levels of sexual shame, women actually experience more pain during childbirth.
Luckily, there is a growing movement of practitioners supporting women in more natural birthing processes. They are encouraging them to access their pleasure for a more enjoyable and profound experience.
These practitioners are guiding women through orgasmic or ecstatic birth by teaching them to access the intelligence of their bodies. The goal is to decrease pain and find bliss in childbirth — flipping the switch on the current cultural narrative, and including birth as a part of women’s sexual experience.
What is Orgasmic Birth?
Orgasmic birth embraces childbirth as an essential part of a woman’s sexuality, similar to menstruation and menopause. Put simply — orgasmic birth is the experience of having an orgasm during labor. This however can look and feel different for each woman.
According to one study, nearly 0.3 percent of women experience orgasm during labor. It’s important to remember that the experience of orgasm is subjective for women though. Many women may experience pleasurable sensations during childbirth, but may not feel comfortable talking about it. Or they feel they don’t have the support to fully embrace the experience.
Debra Pascali-Bonaro, the director of the documentary “Orgasmic Birth, “ explains that “an orgasmic birth is a heightened physical and emotional sensation.” She points out that all orgasms are a subjective experience — and the same is true for ecstatic birth.