A Research Survey of

  Sleep-Related Female Orgasms and Sex Dreams©

Conducted by Franceen King, Ph.D.

 

Preliminary Results – first 200 responses

 

This page contains some partial, preliminary results from the first 200 responses to this Survey for those of you who have been waiting.  The most important point is that these responses are neither uncommon nor unhealthy!

I recently published a much larger collection of statistics and anonymous commentary from survey respondents in book form, Waking into “The Big O” – a New Look at Sleep-Related Female Orgasms (2012).  The Table of Contents is posted below. Truthfully, I think the information is really ground-breaking, if not revolutionary!  I am profoundly grateful to all the women who have completed this survey in the past.  They have made a huge contribution to the understanding of women’s sexuality.  I am continuing to run this survey, nonetheless, to gather more information since this response has not been studied with women above college age since Kinsey’s time (1953).   

           

Due to increased interest, I also published my doctoral dissertation entitled Sleep-Related Female Orgasms: A Survey of Biological, Psychological, sociological, and Cultural Factors (2006), in book form. The abstract, introduction, and Table of Contents are posted here.  Both of these books are available at my e-store for $16.00 plus postage by clicking on the titles, or by ordering from Amazon.com (SRFOs) or Amazon.com. (Waking).  After completing the survey, I will send you a discount code which can be used for purchasing Waking into “The Big O” at my e-store.  If you have any questions, please contact me at 813-971-8808, or DrFranceen@aol.com.

 

Return to survey

 

PARTIAL  RESULTS – first 200 responses:

 

The first 200 respondents ranged in age from 15 to 85.  Overwhelmingly, they were SRFO experiencers looking for information online.  Consequently, they represent the largest group of SRFO experiencers to be studied since Kinsey, and the only group of healthy women above college age to be studied at all since then.

 

96.5% of respondents reported experiencing erotic or overtly sexual dreams.

91.5% reported having dreams in which they were having sex with someone else.

   46% reported dreams in which they witnessed others having sex.

 

94.5% reported awaking from sleep feeling sexually aroused at some time.

 

79% of respondents reported that they sometimes experience lucid dreams, in which they are aware that they are dreaming and able to influence the content of the dream.  Interestingly, of those who experience SRFOs, 69% said they did not think SRFOs were more common with lucid dreams.  Of the 21% who have never experienced a lucid dream, over half have experienced SRFOs. 

 

91% of respondents report that they are able to experience sexual orgasm when they are awake:

 

          74% through masturbation

          75% through masturbation and fantasy combined

          65% through manual stimulation by a partner

          60% through oral stimulation by a partner

          48% through vaginal penetration by a partner

 

39% of the respondents reported that they are sometimes able to experience orgasm as a result of waking sexual fantasy alone without any physical stimulation.

 

87% reported waking into a physical orgasm at some time in their life.  Since this survey is not a representative sample of women, one cannot say that 87% of women experience these SRFOs.   In Kinsey’s extended sample of almost 7789 women on this topic, he found that 22% had experienced “sex dreams with orgasm” at some time in their lives.  Of women who sometimes dream about sex, he found that 37% would likely dream to orgasm by age 45.  He estimated that only 70% of women would ever dream about sex; but today it appears that almost 100% do.   Later research (Wells 1986) suggested that this figure was probably getting much higher due to the influence of social and cultural factors.  From the narrative responses it is clear that most respondents were actively experiencing these and looking for information online.   Interestingly, I found two very short online surveys which have appeared since the time of my dissertation.  Both simply ask women if they have ever experienced a sleep-induced orgasm.  Both surveys show a YES response rate of around 80%...consistent with this survey.

 

Of the 87% in my survey who have experienced SRFOs (SRFO experiencers), 90% reported times when these have been preceded by awareness of an erotic dream; 50% report times when there has been no preceding dream awareness at all; and 36% report times when the preceding dream has had no obvious erotic content.

 

95% of experiencers had had a SRFO within the previous five years.

 

Of the SRFO experiencers, 28% reported that they experienced their VERY FIRST orgasm this way, at ages ranging from under 10 (5%) to mid 50s (1%).   Kinsey had reported that 5% of his overall population experienced their first orgasm as dream-related. 

 

Of the SRFO experiencers, 10% reported that SRFOs are the ONLY orgasms they have ever experienced at any age. 

 

When asked if they were aware, prior to this survey, that women sometimes experience SRFOs, 91% of respondents said yes, while 9% said no.  I have included in this 91% the 18 experiencers who had never heard of these and thought they were unique, or that something was wrong with them. 

 

When asked how they first learned about SRFOs, 93% of the experiencers learned by experiencing one.  This is not surprising since this topic is not covered in sex education classes and is only rarely covered in discussion or print.

 

A total of 9% of respondents had no previous awareness of SRFOs at all prior to this survey.  Only 12% of respondents, including some experiencers, learned about SRFOs from a book or magazine, the internet, a friend or relative, or school.  Only one participant mentioned a sex education class.

 

When asked about subjective reactions to SRFOs, experiencers were allowed to check all that applied, therefore the following responses do not equal 100%:

 

            5% feel worried about them

            16% are confused about them

          10% are embarrassed by them

          56% are curious about why they occur       

            2% feels afraid of them

          77% enjoy them

          13% used to feel worried, confused, embarrassed or afraid, but no longer are

          41% find them amusing or entertaining

          50% look forward to them

          19% actively try to make themselves have one

 

When asked when they first experienced a SRFO, experiencers reported as follows:

 

  5% under age 10

15% between ages 11 and 15

22% between ages 16 and 20

37% between ages 21 and 30

12% between ages 31 and 40

  7% between ages 41 and 50

  1% between ages 51 and 60

            1% can’t remember

 

Obviously this spread is influenced somewhat by the numbers of respondents in each age category, as were the responses to Question 17d and 17f.

 

17d:  During which age periods have SRFOs been most common for you?  Overall, in response to 17d, women reported whatever age decade they were in to be the peak frequency range.  Older women reported more frequency in older age ranges; i.e., women in their 60s often reported peak frequencies in their sixties, with the 50s as a close second place. 

 

17f:  During which of the following conditions have SRFOs been more frequent for you?  Respondents could check as many situations as applied; however, some of these situations; i.e., pregnancy, menopause, widowhood, etc. are somewhat age-related.  These responses clearly suggest that there are a variety of factors… physiological, psychological, and social… which influence the occurrence of SRFOs.

         

                 33% During the premenstrual stage of your monthly cycle

                 16% During your menstrual flow                     

              19.5% During the beginning of your monthly cycle, after your menstrual flow

              9% During pregnancy 

                2.8% During nursing after giving birth

           8.6% During recovery from pregnancy

           8.6% During the beginning of menopausal symptoms

              9% After menopause

         14.3% At the beginning of a new romantic relationship

         30.4% During periods of frequent waking orgasms or sexual arousal                           

         38.5% When between, or without, a sexual relationship

             .5% After death of spouse or sexual partner

         21.8% During periods of anxiety or worry

            16% Could not notice any common situations

Other situations mentioned:

              2% When ovulating

              2% At the end of a relationship

              2% When feeling aroused before sleep and not masturbating                              

              3% When meditating a lot/kundalini active

              3% When withdrawing from antidepressants or discontinuing birth control pills

              2% When flirting, feeling attractive/romantic

              1% During IVF treatments           

 

Only ten women reported ever having discussed this topic with their physician or gynecologist (4), psychological counselor or therapist (5), or spiritual advisor/minister (1).

 

More analysis and commentary will be forthcoming.  Please encourage your women friends and family members to participate in my survey.  I am so grateful for your assistance.

 

 

Table of Contents – Waking into “The Big O” – A New Look at Sleep Related Female Orgasms

 

 

AUTHOR’S NOTE …………………………………………………….……………………..…..…….iii

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS……….…….…………………….…………………..…...……………...iv

ABOUT the AUTHOR…………………………….………………………………..…v

 

DEDICATION…………………………………………………………………………….vi

 

INTRODUCTION……………………………………………………….…….…………1

 

CHAPTER 1:  LIFTING THE VEILS ON ANOTHER SEX SECRET……….7

   

CHAPTER 2:  HOW DO WOMEN LEARN ABOUT THESE SRFOs?. 13

 

CHAPTER 3:   WHAT SHALL WE CALL THESE?   SLEEP-RELATED

    FEMALE ORGASMS (SRFOS)………………………………….……..…..…21

           Examples of SRFOs…………………………………………………………25

    

CHAPTER 4:  IS THERE SOMETHING WRONG WITH ME?……..….31

    

CHAPTER 5:  HOW COMMON ARE THESE SRFOs?…….……….......39

    Survey Data from Kinsey……….………………………………..............39

    My Survey………………….…………….…………………………………………40

    Age of Onset…………………………….……..………………………….………43

    First Orgasms………………………………….…..………...…………………..45

        

CHAPTER 6:  HOW DO I KNOW IF I’M HAVING AN ORGASM?..49

     Elements of Orgasm…………………………………………………………..50

     The Experience of Orgasm………………………………………………...52

    

CHAPTER 7:  WHY ARE MY SLEEP ORGASMS SO INTENSE?……..57

     Lack of Inhibitions and Voluntary Muscle Control……..……….57

     Nerve Pathways……………………………………..………………….........59

     Mapping the Vagina..………………………..….….………………………..61

     Orgasms Through Fantasy Alone – “Thinking Off”…….……….63                                       

 

CHAPTER 8:  IS IT POSSIBLE FOR WOMEN TO EXPERIENCE

      SLEEP ORGASM EMISSIONS OR “WET’ DREAMS?………………69

    

CHAPTER 9:  WHAT CAUSES SRFOs?........................................75

     Old Theories……………………………………………………………..……....77

            Demons……………………………………………………….……..….……77

            Pathology……………………………………………………………….……80

            Biological Compensation……………………..………………..……..80

                 Frequency………………………………………………………..........81

                 Active Incidence Throughout the Life Span….…………..85

            The System Check Theory…………………………..………………..90

     Newer Understandings……………………………………..…………….…90

            Brain Activity During Sleep……………………………………………91

                 The Human Sleep Cycle…………………………………………….91

                 Sleep Disorders Related to Sex…………………..…….………93

                        Sexsomnia………………………….…………………………..….93

                        Epilepsy………….……………….……………………….………..95

                        Sleep Paralysis…………………..…………………………….…96

            Hormonal Fluctuations……………….……………………………....98

                 Puberty………………………………….……………………………....99

                 Luteinizing Hormone…………………………………….……….100

                 Oxytocin………………………………………………………………..105

                 Cortisol……………………………………………....…………………106

                 Dopamine…………………………………………..………………...108

            Behavioral Factors………………………………..………………..….110

            Cultural Factors………………………………………………………….112

            Psychological Factors……………………………..…….……………114

                 Anxiety and Arousal……………………………..….………..….114

                 Physiological Stimulation & Excitation Transfer……...115

                 Healthy Homeostasis or Excitation Integration……….120

                 Spiritual Interests and Practices……………………………..124

                 Education/Intelligence……………..……………………………128

 

CHAPTER 10:  WHAT DO DREAMS HAVE TO DO WITH

     SRFOs?............................................................................133

     Sex Dreams – Frequency…………………………………………..…….133

     Theories of Dreaming……………………………….…..…………………136

            Dreaming as a Psychological Process……………………….…136

            The Empiricists………………………….………………………….…...137

            The Neurophysiologists………………………………………....….138

            The Consciousness Researchers……………….…..……………141

     Sex Dreams – Content……………………………………………………..142

     Lucidity and Volition…………………………………………..…………...149

            Background…………………………………………………..………..…150

            Lucidity and SRFOs…………………………………..……………..…152

 

CHAPTER 11:  WILL I EVER EXPERIENCE AN ORGASM WHILE

      AWAKE?..........................................................................159

     Orgasm Training………………………………….…………………………..163

            Masturbation……………………………………..………….………….167

            Fantasy………………………………………………………………………168

     Penis-Vagina Intercourse (PVI)…………………………….……….…170

 

CHAPTER 12:  HOW DO I STOP OR START HAVING THESE

      SRFOs?............................................................................175

     Stopping……….……………………………….………………………………..175

     Starting…………….………………………………….………………………….177

 

CHAPTER 13:  EPILOGUE -EMBRACING THE INNER

      GODDESS……………………………………………………………….……...183         

 

APPENDIX – A

Table of Contents of Sleep-Related Female Orgasms –

      A Survey of Biological, Psychological, Sociological, and

      Cultural Factors….……………………………………………….………….186

 

APPENDIX – B

A Research Survey of Sleep-Related Female Orgasms

and Sex Dreams conducted by Franceen King, Ph.D…………….189

 

REFERENCES…………………...………………………….……...………………199

 

 

TABLES

 

Table 1.    Previous Knowledge and Learning about SRFOs….14

Table 2.    Reactions to SRFOs……….…………………………………….15

Table 3.    Experience of SRFOs with and without erotic

dreams…………………….……………………….…………….41

Table 4.    Age of First SRFO………………………..………………………45

Table 5.    First Orgasm Ever as SRFO………..………………………..46

Table 6.    Waking Orgasm Response by Behavior……………….55

Table 7.    Age of First Orgasm…………………………………………….56

Table 8.    Ability to Experience Orgasm by Waking Fantasy

Alone…………………………..……………………………..….64

Table 9.    Active Incidence and Frequencies of SRFOs………..82

Table 10.  Common Conditions Associated with SRFOs……….84

Table 11.  Active Incidence of SRFOs by Age Decade…………..86

Table 12.  Awakening from Sleep Feeling Sexually

Aroused…………………………………………………….….113

Table 13.  Attitudes about Sex……….……………………………….…114

Table 14.  Incidence of Erotic Dreams including Sex with

Another………………………………………………….…….134

Table 15.  Incidence of Erotic Dreams Observing Others…..135

Table 16.  Incidence and Frequency of Lucid Dreaming…….154

Table 17.  Relationship between SRFOs and Lucid

Dreams………………………………………………………...155

 

ILLUSTRATIONS

 

Figure 1.  Incidence of SRFOs among young women

     1953-1986..……………………………………………………………………44

Figure 2. Stages of the Human Sleep Cycle………………………….92

Figure 3. Fluctuations in Duration of Sleep & REM periods

     by age………………………………………………………………………………93

 

Dr. Franceen King is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Board Certified Clinical Sexologist in private practice near Tampa, Florida.  She is also an ordained minister. This survey is being conducted to gather information about several topics that have been neglected in recent sexological research.  www.franceenking.com

 

© 2012 Franceen H. King