DEAR ABBY: I've been married more than 20 years and have three children.
What I haven't had is a real desire for sex - nor have I ever had, as far as I know, an orgasm.
Before my wedding, my mother warned me that sex was overblown, uncomfortable and messy, but she said I had to put up with it if I wanted kids and a good marriage.
Movies, TV shows and ED ads all suggest that "normal" women are just looking for the next opportunity to jump into bed with their man.
Am I a freak?
Are there others like me?
What do I tell my girls as they grow up?
- Waiting in Wichita
DEAR WAITING: Your mother did you no favor by saying what she did about sex. Sex can be "messy," but it is also supposed to be pleasurable, and both parties should be able to enjoy it.
If sex is painful, then something is wrong.
I would never label you a freak. However, you may be asexual, because some people are. If you have never experienced an orgasm, you may have married a man who was also sexually inexperienced.
It's a mistake to judge what sex is supposed to be like from media and/or advertising. People pitching products can be notoriously unreliable, and some television shows and movies strive for shock value. Your gynecologist would be a far more reliable information resource.
As to what to tell your daughters, there are many books on the subject, and your gynecologist may be able to recommend some literature. But please do not give your daughters the same message your mother gave to you, because it was wrong.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Contact Dear Abby at DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.