Thank you for writing in with your question. I am very sorry that you lost your mother at such a young age. Significant losses like that can have a profound effect on us and might be the root of the problem you are having. A part of you might have shut down emotionally in order to protect yourself from further loss. This makes sense at the time, but if it continues, it can lead to other problems.
I understand your hesitancy to seek help but I really hope you will consider seeing a therapist, especially one who specializes in grief. Therapists are human, so they will make mistakes, but they are trained in helping people through difficult times – in a nonjudgmental way. Your university most likely has a student counseling center that would be easy to access. If not, look for a private therapist or a grief support group. In the meantime, keep talking with your brother since you share such a significant loss.
Finally, don’t worry so much about having sex until you give yourself time to heal and feel geniune connection to others again. Take it off the table.
All the best,
Dr. Holly Counts