Definition of delayed ejaculation

Definition Of Delayed Ejaculation

The simplest definition is the one set out by Marcel Waldinger (in Handbook of Clinical Sexuality For Mental Health Professionals, second edition, edited by Stephen B Levine).

In this he says delayed ejaculation means a man finds it difficult or impossible to reach orgasm and ejaculate despite receiving adequate sexual stimulation, having a hard erection, and experiencing the desire to achieve orgasm.

But is it this simple?

(Read more about delayed ejaculation here.)

Some men will struggle to ejaculate during intercourse, some during masturbation either by their own hand or by a partner’s hand, some during oral intercourse, and some during sexual intercourse.

Sometimes DE occurs in all situations… sometimes in specific ones.

Marcel Waldinger also makes the point that ejaculation may be delayed with all partners, in all sexual situations, and at all times – in which case the definition is of generalized delayed ejaculation (DE for short).

And sometimes, a man may have difficulty ejaculating only with a particular partner in a particular situation, in which case the condition is defined as situational DE.

So, for example, a man may be unable to orgasm and ejaculate inside his partner’s vagina, but he may be perfectly able to do so during self-pleasuring.

Or he may be able to ejaculate during sex with one partner but not another. Or even during sex with a man but not with a woman.

And then there’s perhaps the most obvious example of this, that a man may be able to ejaculate with one particular female partner but not with any others.

It is also possible for situational problems to occur from time to time, but not all the time, so a man finds himself able to ejaculate with one woman on certain occasions but not on others.

Another intriguing aspect of this problem is the fact that sometimes a man may be able to reach orgasm and ejaculate when he has a particular sexual stimulus – a fetish object, or a specific sexual fantasy, perhaps.

(This is probably about being more turned on in the presence of specific stimuli, and may even be a good way for a man with delayed climax to help himself reach orgasm – i.e. to find out what turns him on and then to incorporate this into sex play with his partner.)

It’s important to remember that DE is actually an involuntary condition. In other words, a man appears to have no choice about it – his body does something involuntarily. He cannot avoid the problem.

As such, it may be seen as similar to female orgasmic dysfunction, although it’s also been described as a process that disconnects the two phases of normal male ejaculation – emission and ejaculation.

As observed above, DE can be lifelong or it can be an acquired condition that develops later in life, and it can also occur in every sexual encounter that a man engages in, or it may just occur in certain situations.

Given this variability, it’s hardly surprising that there has been a lot of debate and even argument about how to define it.

However, what we do know is that the most common form of this problem is coital anorgasmia – which is, in the opinion of some authors, the only form of difficulty with ejaculation which should be defined as “delayed ejaculation”.

Even something as simple as a latex fetish or wearing a condom may help a man come – it all depends what turns him on. Anal stimulation and nipple play can be helpful here.

Coital anorgasmia means anorgasmia during sexual intercourse (which could serve as a complete definition in its own right).

In general a man can enjoy normal orgasm through masturbation, but not during sexual intercourse.

Although there are variations on this pattern, it’s fair to say this is reasonably common.

Another interesting observation is that a man’s erectile function is generally not affected, at least initially, although prolonged experience of anorgasmia may eventually produce erectile dysfunction.

How Common Is Difficulty Ejaculating?

There is a definite lack of data on the epidemiology of delayed ejaculation, but the few data that are available strongly suggest that it is more common than people have realized in the past. 

In one study, the US National Health and Social Life Survey, as many as 8% of men responding to the survey questionnaire admitted the experience of being unable to achieve orgasm during a period of at least two months in the previous 12.

In men aged 70 to 79 years old, delayed ejaculation is said to reach a frequency (prevalence) of 12%.

Even so, DE is most probably the least common sexual dysfunction. For comparison, premature ejaculation is reckoned to affect anywhere between 30% and 50% of men, possibly more.

As you might guess, there are many theories regarding the origin of DE.

Some of these are based on theories and observation, and aren’t backed up by good evidence or any reliable kind of empirical data.

This is a common problem with sexual dysfunctions in general, and this problem in particular, and the unfortunate outcome of such a lack of hard facts means there is no generally accepted and defined choice of treatment protocol.

However, the program on this website is one that seems to work for around 96% of men.