Advertisement

What is intercourse?

Intercourse is a form of lovemaking that is often well suited to men's orgasm and pleasure, but not necessarily to that of women. Vagina-to- penis intercourse may give only indirect clitoral stimulation. To reach orgasm during vagina-to-penis intercourse, many women need direct and sometimes prolonged clitoral stimulation, both before and during intercourse. Many women with male partners who get infrequent erections, find that sexual pleasure actually increases, partly because penetration by the penis is no longer the focus of lovemaking. Standard male definitions call all the touching, licking, sucking, and caressing that turns us on "foreplay" to the big act—intercourse. However "outercourse," all the other stuff that we do in bed, can be as important as intercourse or more so.

Our Bodies, Ourselves: A New Edition for a New Era

More About this Book

Our Bodies, Ourselves: A New Edition for a New Era

America's best-selling book on all aspects of women's health With more than four million copies sold, "Our Bodies, Ourselves" is "the" classic resource that women of all ages can turn to for...

Continue Learning about Sex and Relationships

How Your Weight Affects Your Sex Life
How Your Weight Affects Your Sex Life
You’ve heard it before: Your weight affects your health and extra pounds can up your risk of heart disease, stroke, high cholesterol, joint pain and s...
Read More
What are the physical effects of sexual abstinence?
Bonnie Lynn Wright, PhDBonnie Lynn Wright, PhD
Sexual abstinence has physical effects. Normally sexually-active men may have nocturnal emissions ag...
More Answers
8 Reasons to Have Sex Right Now
8 Reasons to Have Sex Right Now8 Reasons to Have Sex Right Now8 Reasons to Have Sex Right Now8 Reasons to Have Sex Right Now
You can improve your health just by being intimate.
Start Slideshow
How Can I Stay in Good Sexual Health as I Age?
How Can I Stay in Good Sexual Health as I Age?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.