Think the female orgasm is a mystery? You’re not alone. Regardless of whether you’re achieving any When Harry Met Sally-worthy orgasms, the fact of the matter is that the female orgasm is pretty much worthless. OK, so maybe not to us, but to science.
While sexy sex is all well and good to evolve intimate relationships, researchers have long been puzzled by the need for the female orgasm given it plays no part in reproduction and is functionally redundant.
But two evolutionary scientists have now offered a new way of thinking about the female orgasm, concluding that the response — a release in hormones during the act —evolved in mammals more than 150 million years ago. This led the researchers to believe that the trait that we know now as the Big Oh had another function to begin with, which was to trigger ovulation.
The new theory may shed light on how the human female orgasm first evolved, but scientists Dr. Pavlicev and Dr. Wagner said that it doesn’t settle the debate about its current role in women. “All directions are open,” Dr. Wagner said, adding that deciphering the history of the female orgasm might improve reproductive medicine.
“I think you’re looking at the whole woman’s reproductive system a little differently when you have a model for how it might have evolved,” he said.