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Unconsummated Marriage

I found this woman’s blog a few weeks ago and it makes me feel pretty sad, but I understand her need to let people know they aren’t alone in the issue and her need to talk about her hurt and pain.

Dear Rabbis, professionals, journalists, bloggers and anyone I thought could help,

My name is Sad Jewish Girl (SJG). I’m writing to let you know about a problem in our community you might not be familiar with, that of unconsummated marriage. This is a direct effect of the poor sexual education that women often receive throughout high school, college and kallah classes. I am writing a blog about my experience so that people who are not familiar can learn about this and so that those who are familiar can realize that someone else is in their situation and can hopefully gain chizuk from it. I am doing this because no one else in the frum community that I know of has done anything to publicly help, talk about or support people in my situation, even though Baruch Hashem there are therapists who exist and can help.

In case you think this is uncommon, you are wrong. It is very common in religious communities (not just Jewish also Mormon, Christian). To find out more about it you can contact Talli Rosenbaum who has treated hundreds of religious/ Jewish couples for it by emailing her at talli@tallirosenbaum.com.

The blog link is: http://unconsummated.blogspot.com. To read it through from beginning to current you can start from the last post here and scroll up: http://unconsummated.blogspot.com/2011_05_01_archive.html

Be warned, the blog contains strong emotions and sometimes very detailed descriptions because I am after all dealing with the topic of sexuality.

Please take a moment to think about this topic, consider sending this email on, doing an article on it or posting it up on your blog (or linking it on your blogroll) or talking about it with your students or in your communities.  You can literally save someone’s marriage. Maybe even their (emotional) lives (at the very least).

Thank you,



{ 97 comments… add one }
  • Tova May 28, 2011, 11:04 PM

    Perhaps this woman’s blog will bring some attention to the under-researched sexual disorders vaginismus and vestibulitis. They are virtually unheard-of in non-religious communities, while very common in sexually repressive ones.

    • Dr. Shrink May 29, 2011, 7:06 AM

      not sure I agree with you. It is a standard diagnosis in the DSM, and known to all LCSWs, psychologists, and psychiatrists. I am not familiar with any indications that it is more or less prevalent in one group vs. another BUT BUT BUT would seemingly be a more complicated and “worse off” in circles where $exuality is associated with shame and kept quiet. How is one supposed to bring these types of issues to the table for open discussion to help people and make them realize they aren’t alone/can get help, when we can’t even talk about the issue responsibly.

      • A. Nuran May 29, 2011, 10:13 AM

        Dr. Shrink, I think we can all agree that truth, openness and knowledge are always better than distortions, secrecy and ignorance. If couples don’t know that Tab A goes in Slot B a week before their wedding any difficulties they encounter are going to be magnified.

    • samir May 29, 2011, 9:50 PM


      SJG – have you tried the womens therapy center in long island?

      • samir May 29, 2011, 9:52 PM

        and i see you have at least quoted them

  • A. Nuran May 29, 2011, 3:04 AM

    Absolutely tragic. And so much of it could easily be prevented or treated.

  • Dr. Shrink May 29, 2011, 4:14 AM

    Religions distort and shun $exuality, labeling it as shameful. Hence this woman is right on the money. Again, we see the distortions of organized religion and how it is bastardized to function in self fulfilling ways (negatively), such as ego promotion, manifested thru violence, aggression, or even simply “holier than thou” mentalities to put others down and rob us of our most basic human instincts. I believe organized religion is evolving into blatant stupidity, and am speaking out against it. Serve God and be spiritual on an individual basis-after all, it’s between you and God.

    • DRosenbach May 29, 2011, 7:31 AM

      Like most anything else, religion is likely a neutral factor here — it’s wayward practitioners that “label sexuality as shameful” or employ “holier than thou” attitudes.

      • Dr. Shrink May 29, 2011, 8:08 AM

        Incorrect…research indicates higher levels of shame and lower levels of $exual satisfaction among more religious groups. It is not “a neutral factor” as you claim, rather it is in fact a statistically significant factor.

        • DRosenbach May 29, 2011, 10:43 AM

          What you are asserting is not supported by the research, because your study does not control for covariance based on wayward practitioners, and statistical significance is irrelevant here, because all it reveals is that the results were determined to not be because of chance (95%).

          What you should be quoting to me is the clinical significance, but even that is still not controlling for confounding factors. For example, would you suggest that Judaism promotes being below the poverty level? I wouldn’t, and I don’t think you would either. But if you studied a cohort of Jews from Williamsburg, Brooklyn, you might come to a different (erroneous) conclusion, and the Jewish religion would be found to promote higher levels of things like malnutrition and economic harship and lowere levels of oral hygiene and education status — but is that Judaism, or is that the culture of Williamsburg, altogether distinct from the actual religion of Judaism? It’s the latter.

          Removing all religions other than Judaism, and removing so many people poorly-influenced by wayward practitioners of Judaism, your claims are indefensible, and you ought to retract your assertion that religion is not a neutral factor.

    • anon May 8, 2014, 11:55 AM

      Vaginismus doesn’t have to have ANYTHING to do with religion, shame, etc. It is also NOT completely preventable. Although it tends to occur in women who are well-educated, middle-class and who have sex a little later in life, it can happen to anyone. Trust me from personal experience.

  • Avrumy May 29, 2011, 5:59 AM

    This issue is probably greater than any of us is aware. I Just learned that a very frum cousin of mine just gave a get to his kallah of one year. I imagine this is part of it. Nebach.
    Ignorance is not bliss.

    • Dan May 29, 2011, 10:49 AM

      “I imagine this is part of it.”

      Why do you imagine that? Can you not think of anything else which could lead to divorce?

      • Avrumy May 29, 2011, 7:49 PM

        In these communities they research each potential partner in such depth that we “know” it can’t be they were wrong for each other. The families made the decision that they belonged together. So these teenagers saw each other once before the wedding and it was a done deal. I think sexual dysfunction is a very possible explanation for such a perfect couple to dissolve within a year.

        • Dan May 30, 2011, 12:08 AM

          You are making fun?
          Could your parents have made the decision of who you belonged with?
          For blazes, they probably would have chosen a girl.

          • Avrumy May 30, 2011, 7:43 AM

            What educated person with any self-affirmation would accept someone your parents choose to be your spouse?
            Notice, I said educated. To quote Yentl, about many chassidishe shidduchim: “Who’d have predicted the moment would come when I’d find myself grateful they’ve kept women dumb”.
            Fear not. I told my parents years ago to stop looking for a girl for me. 🙂

            • Anonymous May 30, 2011, 4:27 PM

              “What educated person with any self-affirmation would accept someone your parents choose to be your spouse?”
              many indians, apparently. and guess what? from the ones i know, it worx!
              but don’t let that get in the way of your fixed view!

  • sk May 29, 2011, 7:35 AM

    This is very much a hidden crisis. I know of one couple where the bride “did not open up” to her groom’s advances. She feared that perhaps she was lesbian or infertile. Their intercourses were painful. A few visits to a therapist and a slow approach gradually opened her up. But it was a long process.

    Judaism does not shun sex, it promotes it. But for many Jewish brides, after years of being strictly shomer negiah, it is difficult to transition to sexually excited in one night.

  • Bubba Metzia May 29, 2011, 7:58 AM

    There was an episode of Glee that talked about this issue not that long ago. Unfortunately the relationship depicted ended in divorce.

    But hopefully if the issue is addressed soon enough in real life situations like that wouldn’t have to happen.

  • Dan May 29, 2011, 8:09 AM

    What is confusing me, is that it doesn’t seem she grew up in a very sxually repressive culture.

    According to the profile on her blog, she grew up MO, went to a school that had sx ed, and was not shomer negiah.

    How sxually repressive could that be? Do you really need to actually have teenage sx to avoid this?

    • DRosenbach May 29, 2011, 11:22 AM

      Is it realistic to suppose that one need be a sexually-active teenager to avoid this?

    • chanah May 30, 2011, 9:34 AM

      How sexually un-repressive could her upbringing really have been if she didn’t even know where the the bedikah cloth went? Sounds like a lack of education to me.
      Similarly, education can go a long way to teach women the basics about physical intimicy (which is definitely more than to just “shove it in”) in situations where hands-on practice is frowned upon.

  • Zahava May 29, 2011, 8:40 AM

    Dr. Shrink,

    I don’t know which religions you are talking about, but in Judaism sex is a mitzvah. Please don’t write thing that you don’t have a clue about.

    To SJG, my heart goes out to you. May HaShem guard and protect you, and help you overcome your problems.

    • DRosenbach May 29, 2011, 11:07 AM

      That may be so, Zahava, but so is Levirate marriage and judicial execution of convicted violators of halacha, and we echew the performance of both these and many others — the fact that marital intimacy is a positive thing doesn’t negate the reality that a negative attitude towards non-marital intimacy exists that very often transfers over.

      Dr. Shrink may be incorrect, but I would characterize his misstatement as a confusion of understanding rather than total ignorance. Some people — including Torah observant Jews — get the feeling that Judaism promotes sexual repression, and members of subsects that promote arranged marriages after a single hour-long date might sense this to a greater degree. But that’s culture — not religion.

      If someone wants to be part of a motorcycle gang, he shouldn’t complain that he gets wet when he’s on the road — he should instead quit the gang and buy a car. So too, if those in sexually repressive sebsects desire things that their subculture prohibits, they should quit the subculture, not complain about it.

      • G*3 May 29, 2011, 8:20 PM

        Anyone who thinks Chareidi culture equals (that is, identical with) Judaism should read tanach. Yehuda, one of the heilige shvatim, wore a ring(!) which he gave to a prostitute he picked up on the road. Rus, the paragon of tznius, crawled into a man’s bed to seduce him. Rivkah was from out-of-town, her father wasn’t frum, and she wore a nose ring(!).

        These people, and many other characters in tanach, would be far from welcome in Chareidi society.

        • Dan May 29, 2011, 8:22 PM

          Are you welcoming yehuda into your camp?
          He sentenced his daughter in law to be burned for becoming pregnant.

          • G*3 May 29, 2011, 8:49 PM

            My culture isn’t identical with Judaism either. So?

            • Dan May 29, 2011, 8:52 PM

              Who is trying more to be identical?

              • G*3 May 29, 2011, 11:15 PM

                Trying has nothing to do with it. The correct question is, “Who thinks that their culture is identical with Judaism?”

                Many Charedim beleive that Moshe Rabeinu would fit right in to their communities. They’ve told me so themsevles.

                • Dan May 29, 2011, 11:21 PM

                  Firstly, I think he would. (Just a disclaimer on my opinions.)

                  But my point is, I’d like to at least give them credit for trying to get it right.
                  Whatever you may gripe, I think we need to admit they are trying to practice authentic Judaism as it was always practiced.

                  So maybe you think they got a couple of things wrong. Maybe they did. But they’re trying. It’s a good faith effort to get it right.

                  (And you really think Moshe wouldn’t fit in? What would he be? MO? Really?
                  And Yehuda, you think he’d be swinging around after the prstitutes? Seriously? Yaakov chose him to rule over the Jewish nation for eternity. I’d rather think I don’t understand one story than the whole narrative.)

                  • G*3 May 30, 2011, 8:27 AM

                    Of course Moshe wouldn’t be MO. He wouldn’t be any kind of Orthodox (or Reform, or any other modern-day movement). Judaism in Moshe’s time was almost nothing like Judaism is today.

                    It’s an open question whether Moshe could even read the script our sifrei Torah are written in, everything in the siddur would be completely foreign to him, and his version of Judaism centered around sacrifices and the priesthood rather than study and ritual. Moshe wouldn’t fit into any Jewish group that exists today.

                    In short, Judaism has been different in different times and places, and no one group or subgroup can claim that their particular practices, let alone their culture, are identical with “Judaism.”

                    > I think we need to admit they are trying to practice authentic Judaism as it was always practiced.

                    You’re right, they are. And that’s the problem. There is no such thing as “Judaism as it was always practiced,” but they’ve nearly managed to convince themselves that Moshe wore a shtreimel.

                    • Dan May 30, 2011, 9:29 AM

                      Oh? “Judaism has been different in different times and places”?

                      How different? I think we should agree that chareidi judaism is pretty clearly based directly on the Talmud, which is pretty clearly based on the mishna, so that puts as the same for about 2000 years.
                      I guess you contend it was different before that. Well how the h-ll do you know?

                    • G*3 May 30, 2011, 1:29 PM

                      > I think we should agree that chareidi judaism is pretty clearly based directly on the Talmud,

                      Nobody paskens straight from the Talmud.

                      Yes, Orthodoxy can trace a straight line back to the times of the gemara. No, that does not mean that the amoraim would recognize today’s Judaism. Let alone Chareidi culture.

                      > I guess you contend it was different before that. Well how the h-ll do you know?

                      Read tanach. Read history.

                      There are certain constants, like Shabbos, but much of what we think of today as “Judaism” developed slowly over time. Besides, this discussion is not so much about halacha as it is about culture. It’s clear from tanach that most men wore jewelry. Chareidi yeshivas won’t accept kids whose father wears a wedding band, let alone earings. The taanaim and amoraim all had jobs. Yarmulkes, let alone black hats and shtreimels, are new. Women covering their hair is something that has gone in and out of fashion over the centuries and in different places. Old photographs and older paintings show observant women in shirts that don’t cover their collarbone. Yiddish, the heilige language of the Chareidi world, started as a German-Hebrew hybrid. And so on and so forth.

                      It occurred to me that you’re earilier comment, “And you really think Moshe wouldn’t fit in? What would he be? MO? Really?” implies that MO is Chareidism’s nebbish cousin. An argument can be made that MO, which encourages interaction with the wider world, is closer to traditional Judaism than Charedism which scorns everything not directly related to learning.

                    • Dan May 30, 2011, 5:54 PM

                      Well that’s ok then. My judaism is about the halacha, not about the culture.
                      Of course moshe didn’t wear a streimel. And nobody would tell you that wearing a streimel is an integral part of Judaism, much as you like to think they would.

                    • G*3 May 30, 2011, 8:01 PM

                      > My judaism is about the halacha, not about the culture.

                      Then I take it you agree that Chareidi culture is not the same thing as Judaism. However, you wrote, “Whatever you may gripe, I think we need to admit they are trying to practice authentic Judaism as it was always practiced.” Even halachically, what we do today is not what has always been done. At most, we can say that they are trying to follow the spirit of what has always been done. After all, nusach sefard is only a couple of hundred years old, kabalas Shabbos only five hundred years old, and until the last couple of decades no one checked vegetables with a light box.

                      > Of course moshe didn’t wear a streimel. And nobody would tell you that wearing a streimel is an integral part of Judaism, much as you like to think they would.

                      I didn’t claim that anyone would. I wrote, “they’ve NEARLY managed to convince themselves that Moshe wore a shtreimel.” (Emphasis added.) Thankfully the historical revisionism hasn’t actaully gotten that bad. But there are people who will tell you in all seriousness that Moshe learned from a Vilna Shas, and more mainstream, there are people who will claim that Moshe davened Shachris Mincha and Maariv, had two sets of dishes, etc.

                      I’m reminded of the bear video that was circulating

                    • Dan May 31, 2011, 5:49 PM

                      “But there are people who will tell you in all seriousness that Moshe learned from a Vilna Shas, and more mainstream, there are people who will claim that Moshe davened Shachris Mincha and Maariv, had two sets of dishes, etc.”

                      Nobody would tell you Moshe learned from a vilna shas or any shas. Why don’t you make serious points instead of exaggerating?

                      Moshe definitely had two sets of dishes. The gemara says taam k’ikar is min hatorah, and we derive some of the halachos from the way korbanos were treated, as well as the dishes which were conquered from midyan.

                      You don’t have serious doubts, you are just plain ignorant.

  • Yoreh K'chetz May 29, 2011, 2:02 PM

    People just need to learn how to relax, figuring it out is part of the excitement. Both can have plenty of fun even if they’re doing it wrong. Maybe some “instructional” videos would help 😉

    • Dan May 29, 2011, 2:03 PM

      She tried all that, take a look at the blog.

      • Yoreh K'chetz May 29, 2011, 4:18 PM


        Too brutal on the eyes to read white text on a black background. One page and I’m hallucinating…

        • Dan May 29, 2011, 4:21 PM

          I know it. I’ll excerpt the part:

          “I’m 24 years old, well-educated, from a Modern Orthodox background. I took sex-ed in high school, didn’t keep shomer negiah, went to a kallah teacher (who was useless), was never molested or otherwise sexually abused. Whatever you’re going to suggest, I’ve done it, ranging from watching pornography to reading erotica. Yet a virgin I remain. Email me at sadjewishgirl (at) gmail (dot) com”

        • Dan May 29, 2011, 4:43 PM

          The profile says:
          “Whatever you’re going to suggest, I’ve done it, ranging from watching pornography to reading erotica.”

    • Tova May 29, 2011, 2:07 PM

      “People just need to learn how to relax, figuring it out is part of the excitement.”

      You obviously didn’t read the woman’s blog. Vaginismus is a diagnosed sexual disorder, and it is not cured by “relaxing”.

      • A. Nuran May 29, 2011, 11:56 PM

        Well, in essence relaxing is the the solution.

        Simple, right? Yeah, like playing chess is simply moving the pieces so that the opponent’s king cannot move. Simple doesn’t mean easy. And it doesn’t mean straightforward.

        As my teacher says “The important things are always simple. The simple things are never easy. The easy path goes through a minefield.”

        • danielGA May 30, 2011, 1:20 AM

          has she tried prescription muscle relaxers or anxiety drugs?

          • Yoreh K'chetz May 30, 2011, 4:39 AM


            I’d perscribe her a couple hits from the bong, maybe a nice reposado to go along with it. Guaranteed to turn her into a different woman 😉

        • A. Nuran May 31, 2011, 1:19 PM

          Tova, just in case it’s not clear I’m not minimizing this woman’s problem. I’m saying that some advice may be true but completely unhelpful. “Chip away everything that doesn’t look like a statue”, “Hit the other guy without getting hit”, that sort of thing.

    • Tova May 29, 2011, 4:34 PM

      Phil, it’s clear you didn’t read the woman’s blog. Vaginismus is a recognized disorder, and it cannot be cured with a command of “relax”.

      • Yoreh K'chetz May 29, 2011, 4:56 PM


        For once you’re right 🙂 . I didn’t read her blog before posting my original reply.

        Did see a show where some muslim chick had the same problem, she ended up going to a couple Israeli doctors that took a few months to get it solved.

    • ipitythefoo May 29, 2011, 9:45 PM

      I think that in general this is the right idea. 99% of people get it pretty quickly, hers is just a sad unusual situation.

  • Sara May 29, 2011, 5:48 PM

    FWIW, this is not only a problem for seriously frum girls. Sex education and feeling right about one’s body are not the same thing, and there are those who find it difficult to go from a place of ‘no touching’ to ‘touching everywhere, everything’ especially with so much ‘don’t’ and ‘never’ and ‘you’d be ruined if’ that goes with it. And it goes for boys, too, by the way, who get so frightened of a woman’s body (some of them really have not seen a naked woman before, and some did not realize that women had pubic hair–if they saw anything, it was the porn photos of indecent maganizes one of their friends might have had. There is mutual shock and worry, disgust and years of induced shame. Some get over it. Some talk through it. Many are too ashamed to mention it, and marriages continue as a miserable sham. A good friend was married for a year without consumating–the husband was impotent, but she believed (and he seemed to, too) that it must be her who is so hideous. In the end they divorced–sadly, because maybe their marriage might’ve been saved with good premarital education for BOTH, and some open-minded people to speak to them and find out openly and without prejudice what did or did not go on.
    For what it’s worth, this is not only a problem in the Jewish community. Mormon and Catholic couples sometimes face similar silence and worry, shame and guilt, stress and fear. It doesn’t help when people then assume it must be one or another’s problem, rather than a couple’s need to figure out what they did not know and no one told them, really, before.
    That, even before we get into the high percentage of girls (and boys) who come into marriage with a history of undisclosed sexual abuse, that often has no place or voice in religious communities.

    • A. Nuran May 30, 2011, 12:01 AM

      Good s$x education isn’t just plumbing and pathology. Ideally it’s about being honest with yourself and others, knowing what you really value, understanding your own arousal and desires, clarifying your deeply held values rather than just parroting what you’ve been told to value, not being ashamed of what you are and a lot of other things.

      Susie Bright and The Guide to Getting it On are much better guides than high school “health” class let alone the kallah/chosson classes for just this reason.

    • Anonymous May 30, 2011, 5:55 PM

      And it goes for boys, too, by the way, who get so frightened of a woman’s body (some of them really have not seen a naked woman before, and some did not realize that women had pubic hair–if they saw anything, it was the porn photos of indecent maganizes one of their friends might have had.

      That story was about Ruskin and classical Greek statues and it wasn’t even true about him.

      I think you must be christian or have never done it with a yeshiva boy! the talmud is filth, it is full of useful sex tips. If American Jews are having this problem it is a problem of Americanisation imo all their puritan hang-ups.

      fwiw i didn’t know what I was doing at first but I figured it out, you can only learn from experience.

      • A. Nuran May 31, 2011, 1:35 PM

        And plenty of yeshiva bochurs are just as prudish, erotically-stunted ignoramuses as any Christian. A lot of the Talmud’s tips and the rules of everyone from modern “gedolim” to Shulan Aruch and back to the discussions of the Sages can be just as wrong and stifling as anything that came out of the Vatican.

        • Dan May 31, 2011, 5:52 PM

          Yeshiva guys know plenty what’s what.
          There is plenty enough in the gemara from pesach pasuach, to ein kishui ela l’daas, to boel beilas mitzva b’shabbos.

          • Yoreh K'chetz May 31, 2011, 8:47 PM


            That’s all book knowledge, not hands on experience. You can read all you want about driving a car, that won’t make you a good driver unless you get behind the wheel.

            • A. Nuran May 31, 2011, 11:12 PM


  • Oy Vey May 29, 2011, 8:47 PM

    Okay, she has some made up sexual disorder called vagismus or whatever. She went to doctors, kallahs, therapists, etc. How does she not know how to have sex? I simply don’t understand. Is she nervous or something? Because you insert the thing in the middle one. Simple as that.

    • Outskirt May 29, 2011, 11:27 PM

      “made up sexual disorder”

      You, sir or madam, are an idjit. She has a serious disorder and this seems to be a very unusual case. This is sad.

    • A. Nuran May 30, 2011, 12:12 AM

      “Made up disorder called vagisimus or whatever.” It’s not a “made up disorder”. It’s very real. Cruel loud-mouthed ignorance like yours is half the problem. Women who suffer from this are ashamed and afraid of being laughed at because of fools like you, so they don’t talk about it and don’t seek help.

      As for not knowing how, there are lots of religious girls who don’t even know the names for what’s “down there” let alone how it all works except for a few lectures given a week or two before they’re married by someone who has to be proper and modest about the whole thing when earthy, explicit and frank are called for. They’ve been told it’s a shameful secret thing that icky stuff comes out of and turns holy Torah scholars into ravening beasts. And, oh yes, it makes you magically dirty half the month.

      For a lot of religious young women that’s it. If you think it’s just a matter of “In. Out. Repeat if necessary” I hope you don’t get married. Your wife will be miserable with her three inch, ten second wonder. With any luck she’ll discover adultery, girls or things that take AA batteries.

      With sick, backwards attitudes like that how many will be comfortable with ***uality let alone take the time to learn their patterns of arousal?

    • Tirtza May 30, 2011, 6:24 PM

      As a kallah teacher who frequently talks to girls long after their wedding night I can tell you, for women at least, it is much much more then inserting A in B. It is a very emotional and vulnerable experience, especially in the beginning.
      I feel awful for the woman who writes this blog but thankfully she is brave enough to share her story for the aid of other young women who may be experiencing this situation alone and perhaps with not such an understanding husband.
      Education definitely needs to improve- but thankfully is taking great steps forward. Just ten years ago my kallah classes were 99% halacha. This left me feeling terrified and clueless. My whole understanding of relations was a quick look at two medical pictures and my teacher telling me to “close my eyes, picture my future children, and make pleasing noises for my husband.” My husband and I still look back at the wedding night as a sad, painful experience for both of us.
      Luckily i now know many kallah teachers that talk frankly and for long periods of time with girls about exactly what to expect, dispelling fears and listening to rumors girls may have heard to give perspective. Too often I think communities think good kallah education will take away from the maydle-ness of the girl. I think this is never true and leaves the girl feeling thrown out on her own. I remember being so confused at the sheva brachos and feelings like my mother and friends/family had either been lying that it was a happy thing to get married or maybe what we had done had been wrong or even assur. It was a horrible experience for no reason and why should newlyweds have this added stress?
      Thank you SJG for your bravery!

      • A. Nuran May 31, 2011, 1:15 PM

        The old bromide “Men share interests. Women share confidences.” has some truth. Gals talk about things with their girlfriends that would shock most guys to lifelong impotence. Don’t any of these girls have married friends, older sisters, young aunts or female cousins they can speak to en tutoyant? Or are customs radically different among the Orthodox than they are among women everywhere else in the world?

        I understand the frum have ritual requirements which need some training. It just seems the kallah teacher’s job would be a lot easier if her students had grown up talking to each other and to trusted members of their extended families.

        A few years back my wife and I had a lot to do with one of our students getting married. They’re guardians for one of her younger sisters who has spent a year or so living with them. The younger sister is a lot more mature than most of her high school friends. The friends ask her intimate questions. When she doesn’t know she asks her older sister who has a leg up being married with two children. Sometimes the older sister (our former student) chats with my wife who doesn’t have kids but is about twenty years older. Answers filter back.

        Another good friend – call her an adopted sister – recently set a girlfriend straight on a few things. The girlfriend had gotten married, intercourse was painful, and they hadn’t conceived. A few pertinent questions determined that both she and her husband had grown up in very conservative, modest homes and hadn’t received much instruction. It turned out they were, hmmmm, trying to negotiate a connection using the wrong port leading to protocol errors, misplaced packets and unpleasant buffer overflow. Some compassionate, earthy girl-talk helped immensely. If the first child is a girl I’m guessing they’ll name it after her. Doctor’s visits, embarrassment, frustration and a broken marriage averted by women chatting with each other the way women do.

        Does this female network function among the Orthodox?

      • A. Nuran May 31, 2011, 1:46 PM

        My reply seems to have been eaten. Just in case it doesn’t bubble up later, here’s the main point.

        Women talk to each other more frankly and about very intimate matters – not just those ones – than most men.

        One of our dearest friends – call her Older Sister – is married with two children. Her youngest sister is living with her to establish residency. Younger Sister’s friends talk to YS because she’s very mature for her age. When she doesn’t know she asks Older Sister. If OS doesn’t have an answer she chats with her great aunt who has seen it all or my wife who has at least seen about twenty more years of it.

        My wife grew up in a traditional culture half way around the world. Girls who had questions about these things, and what girl doesn’t, talked with their married female friends or older sisters or young aunts. If it was really serious they’d talk to grandmothers because grandmothers know everyone and everything.

        Don’t Orthodox girls talk to each other or trusted relatives?

        • Lirehagi June 12, 2011, 10:45 PM

          Not as much as your wife’s culture, apparently. As far as I can tell, for older teen girls there are 3 categories

          1) don’t talk about this sort of stuff. Ever. Except for a minute with their mom when they have their first period. May actually not have any interest in the subject, or such surpressed interest that it hasn’t surfaced yet

          2) embarassed into silence. The souls who get talktaive at sleepovers at 3 am, or any inconveinient time. A hallmark of this type is that she reads romance novels, but when it comes to her? She has a crush on her brothers friend/some local guy, but would never talk to them because it’s frowned upon and she’s shy. Not inclined to look at diagrams or do actual research.

          3) the “earthy” type you refer to. Either associated/s with guys, has more blunt than tact, or the sort whose curiosity has outgrown shame. Usually devilish and fun to hang out with. Can make subtle, elegant pervy jokes

          type 3 is rare

  • Anonymous May 29, 2011, 11:08 PM

    surely the community would notice if you fail to produce a baby within a year of marriage, that is very uncommon! At least if this catches on it will reduce the birth rate.

    • Avrumy May 30, 2011, 8:17 AM

      Infertility rates are also climbing, making it doubly hard for couples without kids delivered on schedule.

  • sarah May 30, 2011, 1:03 PM

    I came across this blog from reading her blog as she mentioned this. I am actually horrified and disgusted by some of your comments.
    I have been through what she went through, and to say its a made up disorder is sickening. It is everthing she said it is, and to put it mildly, its hell. I did everything with my husband before we got married but never actually had penetrative sex, I wasn’t scared to have sex and knew everything about it ,we just thought we’d wait until we got married. And it was a huge shock to discover that I had vaginismus and it took us a year to have a sex after going through therapy and doing stuff on our own to overcome it.
    I’m not sure why I couldn’t do it, but it’s more common that people realise, with Jewish and non Jewish people.
    A bit of resepect is in order, especially when you don’t have a clue what you’re talking about.

    • Maypaki May 31, 2011, 10:15 AM

      Primary Vaginismus.
      If you have it, then your body is NOT designed for sex.

      It is God’s way of telling a woman that she is DESTINED to become a nun or celibate.
      So if you have it, go on and BECOME A NUN.
      Or be CELIBATE.
      That’s because it is God’s way of controlling the global population. God created women with such sexual dysfunction to keep them away from sex and thus preventing conception. Unfortunately, most women don’t realize it and would still go through days and weeks of therapy which is just time consuming.

      Trying to remedy your condition is against God’s will.
      God does NOT want you to have sex.
      If you’re a woman, don’t get married & don’t have sex if your VAGINA wont let you.
      God had CLOSED the gates of your virginity.
      FACE IT! You have a NUN’S VAGINA.
      It is time to give up on men and become a NUN.

      VAGINISMUS may be the answer to overpopulation.
      God truly works in strange ways.

      There are two types:

      1. Primary? vaginismus? – oops, she has a nun’s? vagina. Violating a nun’s? vagina is immoral.

      2. Secondary vaginismus – happens? usually after giving birth or menopause. It means God doesn’t want you to make MORE kids. A natural? birth control.

      It is the answer to? overpopulation. Sex is not for everyone. Some are unfit for sex.

      Vaginismus may be the strongest evidence that God exist.Some higher power can manipulate a woman’s body to control the population.
      I am now an enlightened man.

      • A. Nuran May 31, 2011, 11:14 PM

        Twaddle. If that were the idea it would be a lot easier to just reduce fertility.

      • Anonymous June 1, 2011, 2:13 AM

        you’re kidding, right?

        • Maypaki June 1, 2011, 4:49 AM

          God has other forms of birth control. They are:
          1.) Dry Vagina
          2.) Thick hymen
          3.) Infertility

          I am a man who believes in WOMEN’S? RIGHTS. Without women’s rights, women would still be treated as baby factories instead of human beings with choices.

          If a? woman has a right? to say NO to sex, then so does her VAGINA. She should respect her VAGINAL RIGHTS. They are:

          1.) Vagina’s right to refuse sex.

          2.) Vagina’s right to self-pleasure

          3.) Vagina’s right to self-lubricate.

          If a woman has Prime Vaginismus, it means her VAGINA is refusing sex. Penetrating a dry,unaroused and unwilling vagina is RAPE, especially if she is dumb about her vagina. Her vagina is not consenting to any man. It’s God’s form of BIRTH CONTROL.

          Some, particularly women, have limited or no masturbation skills and end up having Vaginismus, dry vagina or thick hymen. Because God forbids them to learn about sex to control? the population.
          God owns their vagina.

          • Tova June 1, 2011, 12:20 PM

            You’ve written this garbage all over the internet. Go away.

  • Lirehagi May 30, 2011, 4:22 PM

    And then there are the girls who sneak around, feel guilty, and cry to me at night.

  • Moish the spacedout BT June 1, 2011, 8:44 PM

    Every woman has the right to the knowledge that leads to sexual fulfillment- Discovery of stimulating the clitoris , male penetration only after sexual stimulation of either or both, and then after liberally using genital lubrication like KY. Also experimenting with different sex positions that enhance orgasm and help connect with the G spot. I s this in the repertoire of a “kallah teacher”?

  • Maypaki June 23, 2011, 7:52 AM

    I finally realized that God is indeed a male. The reasons are:

    1.) If God is a female, she would never inflict women with painful intercourse. She would merely inflict them with infertility. Her empathy towards women’s feelings will always prevail.

    2.) It is known in history that men treat women as property. Therefore, if God inflicts a woman with primary vaginismus, thick hymen or dry vagina, then her vagina is now the property of God. She’s meant to control the population.
    God uses her as an instrument to reveal who the real rapists are, thereby upholding women’s most divine right -the right NOT to be raped.

    This proves that God is a male, because for him, there are things more important than empathy towards females.

    This explains why painful intercourse is MORE COMMON among females than males.
    Because God is a MALE and treats some women as his property to control the population.

    FYI: The clitoris is not used for intercourse and pro-creation. It is used for outer-course and non-penetrative masturbation.

    It maybe a different type of test.
    He want’s to test her obedience to her DESTINY: nunnery or celibacy.

    I am now an enlightened man. Vaginismus strengthened my belief in God.

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