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Updated Dirty Laundry: Multiple orgasms and the legal age of consent, more complex than you think

By Apartment613 on October 8, 2011

Photo courtesy of Jessica Ruano

A professional sexual health educator with an alarming lack of tact, Nadine Thornhill is used to airing out other people’s unmentionables. After a well-deserved summer break, her sex column, Dirty Laundry, is back and will run once each month on Apt613. To ask your questions, or to say hello to Nadine, contact her at

Dear Dirty Laundress,

What constitutes a multiple orgasm? I have to confess I’m a little obsessed with the idea of making my wife cum over and over again. We’ve tried different things – toys, g-spot stimulation and she says she has them sometimes, but I can’t seem to tell when it happens.  I’d love to make them happen for her consistently.  Any advice?

Over Achiever

The thing about orgasms, OA, is that they aren’t like dogs. They don’t always come on command.  Some people have bodies that are capable of multiple orgasms, while others don’t.  Some people experience them consistently.  For others they show up unexpectedly, like a second cousin at a wedding, but more fun and less socially awkward.

As for what constitutes a multiple orgasm? Well, that varies too. A multiple orgasm might be a series of rapid climaxes in succession.  It might be one orgasm and a brief refractory period and then another orgasm.  Or it could mean two or more orgasms experienced an hour apart, but within the same session of sex.  People define multiple orgasm in different ways, but in my opinion the definition isn’t nearly as important as people’s experiences.

I think it’s great that you’re so dedicated to your wife’s sexual pleasure, but when it comes to orgasms it really is quality, rather than quantity that counts.  My advice to you is to focus your attention on what makes your wife feel good. Her body, like every body, has it’s own way of experiencing and responding to stimulation and the best experiences will come when you both respect what her body does naturally.  She may or may not be a person who has consistent multiple orgasms. And those multiple orgasms may or may not look like what you expect.  And orgasms are reliably elusive when sex is goal oriented.  So my final piece of advice is that as long as your wife is game,  keep experimenting with those toys and techniques but do so in the spirit of fun and let whatever happens happen.

E.T.A.  Many thanks to the reader who pointed out that my original answer was based on out-of-date legislation. I sincerely apologize for my mistake. Please find my revised answer below.

Since you wrote to me, LE, I’m going to assume you’re asking about the age at which a person can legally consent to sex.  The answer is not unlike one of those word problems from eighth grade math.  So sharpen your pencils…this will be on the test.

Before we begin it is worth noting that under the law, “all non-consensual sexual activity, regardless of age, is a sexual assault.”  (Department of Justice, 2005).  Now on to today’s lesson…

The consent law reads as follows:

“The age of consent laws apply to all forms of sexual activity ranging from sexual touching such as kissing to sexual intercourse (Department of Justice, 2005).  The age of consent is 18 years where the sexual activity involves exploitative activity, such as prostitution, pornography or where there is a relationship of trust, authority or dependency. For other sexual activity, the age of consent is 14 years (Department of Justice, 2005). However, consensual activity with those under 14 but over 12 may not be an offence if the accused is under 16 and less than two years older than the complainant (Pilon, 1999).”   However, in 2008 the Tackling Violent Crimes Act raised the age of consent from 14 to 16 years of age.  A “close in age” exception allows youth aged 14 and 15 to consent to non-exploitative sexuality activity with a person no more than five years older; and for youth aged 12 and 13 to consent to non-exploitative activity with a person no more than two years older. 

Which means:

–  If Alex is 18 and Sam is 21, Alex can legally consent to having sex with Sam.

–  If Alex is 16 and Sam is 21, Alex can legally consent to having sex with Sam.

–  If Alex is 16 and Sam is Alex’s 21-year-old boss at the Herb and Spice, Alex CANNOT legally consent to having sex with Sam.

–  If Alex is 15 and Sam is 21, Alex CANNOT legally consent to having sex with Sam.

–  If Alex is 14 and Sam is 16 and a half, Alex CAN legally consent to having sex with Sam.

–  If Alex is 13 and Sam is 15 and a half, Alex CANNOT legally consent to having sex with Sam.

–  If Alex is 11, Alex CANNOT legally consent to having sex with Sam, regardless of Sam’s age.

Got it? Well here’s a bit of a curve ball.  The laws regarding sexual consent also say that  unmarried persons under 18 cannot legally consent to anal intercourse.  Which means:

–  If Alex is 18 and Sam is 21, Alex can legally consent to having anal intercourse with Sam

–  If Alex is 17 and Sam is 18, Alex CANNOT legally consent to having anal intercourse with Sam (or anyone else).

–  If Alex is 17 and Sam is 17, neither Alex NOR Sam can legally consent to having anal intercourse…unless they get married before graduating high school.

Finally, it is worth noting that both the Ontario and Quebec court of appeals have struck down the anal intercourse exception to the Criminal Code. There goes Alex and Sam’s excuse for a prom-night wedding!

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  • Fact Checker

    This information is wrong. type in age of consent canada into google and you will get the following page:

    It would behoove you to check your facts before dishing out legal advice.

  • You’re absolutely correct – Nadine’s made the necessary corrections to the post.
    Thank you Fact Checker.