Gittel and Shuey have been married for almost 10 years. They get along fairly well, and are kept busy with their three little ones and their demanding jobs. They’ve come to discuss the ostensible problem of Gittel’s low libido.
“I don’t know what we’re doing wrong,” Shuey began. “I try different ways to give her pleasure, but she just doesn’t seem to be able to enjoy. Her body doesn’t respond.”
Gittel continues their story:
“It’s definitely better than it used to be, though.”
I ask in what way.
They go on to describe how at the beginning, Gittel was so stiff and scared that it was as if she was frozen. She could barely tolerate any sexual activity at all. They’d married young, and neither of them had received very much in the way of premarital education, especially about sex. But while Gittel was reserved and inhibited, Shuey was excited to experiment. Gittel fidgeted in her chair as Shuey described how difficult it was for them to consummate the marriage.
“My body seemed to know what to do, hers didn’t. So I needed to ‘break her in.’”
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Elisheva Liss, LMFT is a psychotherapist in private practice. Her book, Find Your Horizon of Healthy Thinking, is available on She can be reached for sessions or speaking engagements at More of her content can be found at