No matter how quickly technology and science seems to have evolved in our lifetime, there are still so many unanswered questions when it comes to women and sex -- What's the purpose of the female orgasm?, Does the G-Spot really exist?, and most recently, Why do women moan during sex? Although there hasn't been much research conducted on the latter, there is some new information on the topic.
Last year, researchers at the University of Central Lancashire and Colin Hendrie of the University of Leeds conducted a study whereby 71 sexually active heterosexual women between the ages of 18 and 48 were asked about their "copulatory vocalization" (i.e., vocalization during sex).
It seems the female moan is similar to the female orgasm being a byproduct of the male orgasm. That is to say, the majority of the women in the research study had orgasms during foreplay with their partner or while masturbating. The women's moans, however, were most often made before and during the man's orgasm.
From the Archives of Sexual Behavior's paper "Evidence to Suggest that Copulatory Vocalizations in Women Are Not a Reflexive Consequence of Orgasm":
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"These data together clearly demonstrate a dissociation of the timing of women experiencing orgasm and making copulatory vocalizations and indicate that there is at least an element of these responses that are under conscious control, providing women with an opportunity to manipulate male behavior to their advantage."
Of the women polled in the study, 66 percent said that they moaned to speed up their partner's climax, and 87 percent stated that they vocalized during sex to boost their male partner's self-esteem.
Conclusion: Many women (subconsciously?) moan for their man's sake, not a reflection of their sexual pleasure or satisfaction. Dang, us ladies need to go back to the drawing board on this one.