Newly Married and Afraid of Sex

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

hi, i am married last week. It is an arranged marriage . my husband is my relative whom i called brother till last year. though i like him,whenever he touch me i am afraid. he is pushing me into sex. i am a virgin so am bit afraid and also when ever he tries to talk to me i become angry and snaps at him. i avoid sleeping with him. i feel like i am tied down. i want to make my family happy. what should i do?

A: I’m so sorry you find yourself in this situation. Sex goes with marriage. Your husband’s expectations are not unreasonable. What is unreasonable to me is that you were entered into a marriage so unprepared to be fully a wife. Of course you are scared! Since you two couldn’t get to know each other before you married, you do need to find a way to get emotionally and physically comfortable now.

To get some idea of how to answer your question without using American standards, I did what most people do these days: I went on the Internet. Here’s the most sensible suggestion I found:

“Some traditional cultures which practiced arranged marriage had conventional routines for introducing sexuality into the couple’s new life together. For instance, the Sanskrit Kamasutra of Vatsyayana recommends a multi-day courtship sequence for newly married couples beginning with complete sexual abstinence and progressing through specified forms of romantic wooing to actual sexual activity.”

I hope that you and your husband can work on this together. Arranged marriages can and do work. But it takes a willingness to be sensitive to each other, to listen to each other, and to be willing to make the effort.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 26 Apr 2013

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2013). Newly Married and Afraid of Sex. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 31, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2013/04/26/newly-married-and-uninterested-in-sex/