Why do women have orgasms? That may seem like a strange question, but it’s one which has perplexed scientists for decades and provoked fiery academic debates along the way.
The real question is, what is the evolutionary function of the female orgasm? In men, orgasms have a fairly obvious evolutionary explanation, since they are tied to ejaculation. For women, it’s unclear what function they serve.
Most animal species don’t show any evidence of a female orgasm, although some do (certain monkeys and apes, for example). As with many unsolved mysteries, plenty of theories have been put forward – some with evidence, some without.
One of the earliest theories – pair bonding – suggested female orgasms helped couples remain together. Children require a great deal of care and so women who stayed “bonded” to a man long enough to have him provide care and resources for her child would have been at an evolutionary advantage.