Out of Fear, We Haven’t Consummated Our Marriage Yet

22 July, 2021
Q I was married twice before and divorced as I was not able to have sex with my husband. I have extreme trauma whenever my partner gets intimate with me because of me having phobia that sex will be very painful for me.

After 11 years, I recently got married again to a very nice gentleman. It's been a month and I have not consummated my marriage. I really love him but scared of pain. I cannot relax and the pain is always a factor to me.


In this counseling answer:

Ask yourself if there is a particular reason why you feel these anxieties. Have you been abused?

You can either just cast your anxieties aside and do it without preparation.

The more recommended approach, however, is to make positive associations with intimacy. Go for a date night, be romantic.

Make duaa to Allah that He makes intimacy enjoyable.

Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatulahi wa barakatuh sister,

It is understandable why this is causing you such distress as it seems that this was what lead to difficulties and ultimately divorce in your first marriage. This is only adding to your anxieties and make the situation even more difficult to overcome.

As with anything that causes anxiety, the more you think about it and stress about it the more difficult that thing becomes and the even more anxiety-provoking it becomes.

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In this scenario in particular being calm and relaxed is vital in moving forward. This might be easier said than done so there a few steps you can take to try making this process easier and more successful.

Out of Fear, We Haven’t Consummated Our Marriage Yet - About Islam

Have You Been Abused?

Firstly, ask yourself if there is a particular reason why you are feeling these anxieties. Have you had a traumatic experience before, such as abuse? If so, you should seek counselling to deal with these issues or they may continue to prevent you from moving on in the future.

karim serageldin & naaila clay

Have you experienced pain as a result of intimacy before? Was there an obvious cause for this?

If it is something that you can do something about yourself then focus on this in moving forward in your current situation. If there was no obvious cause, go and see a female doctor to discuss the issue as it is possible that you could have one of the disorders that causes discomfort in intimacy.

Otherwise, as is more often the case it is usually a result of heightened tension and stress that has been developed in association with intimacy that leads to this phobia and constant fear.

There are two common ways to approach such situations, both being quite extremely different in their approach.

Option 1: Cast Your Anxieties Aside & Be Brave

The first is to just cast all the anxieties aside and do it without thinking or preparing. Whilst this is not always the recommended approach, sometimes it is necessary. The person who takes this approach comes to wonder why the wasted so much time worrying about something that wasn’t that bad or painful after all.

This approach requires no preparation but, of course, comes at the risk that the lack of preparation will backfire and cause more trauma.

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Option 2: Make Positive Associations with Intimacy

The other approach that is perhaps wiser in this scenario is to take it easier and prepare.

Make positive associations with intimacy that will take away the fear that you currently have and replace it with other things. For example, arrange a date night, go somewhere nice, do something that you both enjoy.

Have fun and laugh together, or light candles that smell nice and eat food that you like to eat.

These things will help to make you feel more relaxed and allow things to happen without placing any pressure on you.

Don’t make it so that intimacy must happen at this time as this will add to the pressure and instead make it a regular thing where it will just happen naturally when you are ready.

The positive experiences that are happening alongside this will develop a positive association with intimacy in your mind and make it easier for intimacy to occur again and again without fear.

May Allah make it easy for you and bless your marriage with happiness.



Disclaimer: The conceptualization and recommendations stated in this response are very general and purely based on the limited information provided in the question. In no event shall AboutIslam, its counselors or employees be held liable for any damages that may arise from your decision in the use of our services.

Read more:

7 Tips For Overcoming Your Fear Around Sex

13 Things You Should Know Before the Wedding Night

Husband Has Erectile Dysfunction; I Want to Divorce

About Aisha Mohammad
Aisha received her PhD in psychology in 2000 and an MS in public health in 2009. Aisha worked as a Counselor/Psychologist for 12 years for Geneva B. Scruggs Community Health Care Center in New York. Aisha specializes in trauma, depression, anxiety, substance abuse, marriage/relationships issues, as well as community-cultural dynamics. She is certified in Restorative Justice/ Healing Circles, Conflict Resolution, Mediation, and is also a certified Life Coach. Aisha works at a Family Resource Center, and has a part-time practice in which she integrates healing and spirituality using a holistic approach. Aisha plans to open a holistic care counseling center for Muslims and others in the New York area in the future, in sha' Allah. Aisha is also a part of several organizations that advocate for social & food justice. In her spare time she enjoys her family, martial arts classes, Islamic studies as well as working on her book and spoken word projects.