A portrait of Freud by Edward W. Eichel

In our recent post "How to...Master the Coital Alignment Technique," we casually mentioned Edward W. Eichel, basically the discoverer of the CAT position whose landmark study "The Technique of Coital Alignment and Its Relation to Female Orgasmic Response and Simultaneous Orgasm" was published in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy (Vol. 14, No.2, Summer 1988).
And then the dude himself posted in the comments! So we took the opportunity to get him to give us even more details on the ins and outs of the old, or rather, the new in-and-out:

You are the first person to put a name to and publish research about the Coital Alignment Technique -- how did that happen?

In the late 1960s I read about Sigmund Freud's so-called "orgasm theory": Intercourse had to be perfect for the man and FOR THE WOMAN, or the sex act would cause anxiety and depression. From his writing, it seems likely that Freud had the perfect experience himself -- but he was on cocaine, so he never had much to say about the "how-to" of doing it.

So did you have the perfect experience yourself....?

I happened on to the CAT spontaneously in my sex life; it was simply a matter of tuning in to the most intense sensation. When I had the experience of CAT, I was ecstatic. Like Dr. Frankenstein -- I had discovered the secret of life! So, I became a psychotherapist and dedicated my life to the big O.

Both pioneer sex researchers, and women who reported orgasm from intercourse in modern day studies, noted features of what I termed CAT, but no one was clear enough about the specifics of technique to be able to help others get there. So, applying my fine arts background, I spent a few years analyzing and animating medical drawings until I was able to define the technique of the no-hands orgasm well enough to provide the long missing instruction. As noted in your book The Big Bang, I should have gotten the Nobel Prize. But instead, psychiatrists -- in the pay of Big Pharma -- gathered their forces and tried to burn down the castle. The new intercourse was a cure for the most classic sex problems -- and, it got people to Nirvana without drugs.

What makes the CAT so good?

The CAT provides stimulation that makes it possible for the woman to climax, as well as the man. Instead of "the old in and out" (male active, female passive), the man and woman are equally active. The essential physical "alignment" combines (1) the male pelvic-override position, and (2) coordinated movement in which partners alternately apply pressure and counter-pressure in the upward and downward strokes of sexual movement. The necessary clitoral and vaginal stimulation for the woman, and the equivalent for the man, is provided in CAT completing a basic genital "circuitry." The coordination of sexual movement in CAT connects partners in a way that increases intimacy.  Their sexual responses are synchronized, leading to simultaneous orgasm regularly. (Nobody watches the clock.) The CAT is less strenuous than the "banging" thing, and orgasm is a quantum step more intense.

What's the biggest problem with the CAT?

The CAT is a natural physical alignment. So, the good news is that every man and woman is physically capable of doing it. But, it goes against the most primitive gender tendencies (male aggressiveness and female passivity). In alternating strokes of the up and down movement, partners must take turns leading and then following. Equality!  Just what we always wanted, right?

What are the misconceptions about the CAT?

The biggest misconception about CAT is that I "invented" it or "designed" it. 

Oops, sorry.

Actually, it is the discovery of something natural, that many people fall into without thinking much about it. In video footage of CAT, the couple appears so perfectly coordinated throughout the buildup and release of orgasm that it seems impossible that we could ever have had sex any other way. The mystery is -- how could we have missed anything so simple and logical? I spent five years making an instruction video on CAT using the live footage -- seeing is believing!  (And, I had fun doing portraits of Freud for the video).

In response to our description of CAT and the readers' feedback, you wrote that "We may be on the cutting edge of an evolutionary step." What did you mean by that?

Evolutionary scientists claim that we are progressing from a stage of development where each person competes for self-survival, to a stage where survival is based on collaboration. Consistent with that theory, the CAT indicates that for successful intercourse the man and the woman are interdependent. (Sorry about that.) It is not surprising that sex therapists trying to cope with the failure of female orgasm in relation to intercourse have recommended that people shouldn't make intercourse too important. But in spite of the frustration, particularly for women, most people report a preference for intercourse in their love-making.

What's the latest news/research about CAT?

In the '90s David F. Hurlbert and colleagues published a series of studies testing the CAT and reported success in the treatment of inhibited sexual desire, and depression. Dr. Milan Zaviacic (Slovakia) corrected the G-spot research -- he affirmed the CAT as a method of providing effective stimulation of the female prostate (the urethral sponge) that fosters the "vaginal" part of female orgasm. In the last several years, Dr. Stuart Brody (University of Paisley, Scotland) has done several studies showing that sexual intercourse is unique in its chemistry and correlates with factors of mental health. Dr. Brody cites CAT as a successful method for attaining sexual satisfaction with intercourse.

Just to double-check, did we get our description of the position about right?

I think your personal writing on CAT has been good and really funny.

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