Featuring: JAIME EDMONDSON
Nicola sat crumpled in a corner, rarely saying anything. She was wearing jeans, a frumpy gray T-shirt, running shoes and sport socks. When she finally spoke, she said she felt stuck in her life and that even simple tasks were daunting. She choked back tears, zigzagging from silent to seething. She seemed about to explode.
Later, she did.
When we met for an intimacy-coaching session, Nicola revealed that she and her partner were married and did not like having sex with each other. As Nicola told her story, she was emotionally erratic: laughing one moment, then crying—up, down, up, down. The fluctuations were so dramatic that I thought to myself, She’s hysterical—and severely underfucked.
Physicians over the past 2,000 years would agree. The word hysteria has Latin roots and means, literally, “womb dis-ease.” Since the third century b.c. the term has been used to define the condition of female sexual deprivation. The symptoms range from nervousness, depression, mood swings, irritability and loss of sexual appetite to a general tendency to “cause trouble.”
The treatment for the affliction, which was administered for millennia, was a vigorous massage of the clitoris performed by a doctor—a treatment designed to bring on “hysterical paroxysm,” or what we today call orgasm. However, over time, the number of women suffering from hysteria became so great and the treatment so labor intensive that doctors, rather than delighting in the task, sought to delegate it to midwives. By 1952 the American Psychiatric Association dropped the term hysteria for being ambiguous and later replaced it with the equally ambiguous female sexual dysfunction, or FSD. I prefer to call this ailment SUF (severely underfucked).
As a modern-day sex coach, I estimate that at least 75 percent of women suffer from this problem. I have devoted my professional life to curing it. When women are well fucked, they—and everyone else in their lives—benefit. Although we commonly think the word libido refers just to our sexual drive, psychoanalysts Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung defined it as being our “life force” energy. It affects everything we do. Here, illustrated through real-life scenarios with my patients (the names have been changed), are the five most common SUF symptoms and the remedies that made them disappear.
Nymphomania nervosa, or fear of sluttery
Jason and Penelope had been dating for a year. During a weekend getaway they got very drunk at a party. This led to backyard sex, balcony sex, lights-on sex, cock-slapping-Penelope’s-face sex. Jason was thrilled. He felt they’d reached a new level in their relationship.
When they returned to the city, Jason was swamped with work. Penelope called on Monday. Jason got distracted and didn’t call her that day or the next. Two days later, when he did call, Penelope was furious. She accused him of thinking she was a tramp, of using her, of having no respect for her. Jason was bewildered. He felt that they were in a great place, that all was well.
Penelope had allowed herself to be deeply sexually open with Jason. That left her feeling vulnerable. She needed reassurance that he still respected her and didn’t think any less of her. Although things have gotten easier for women, the residue of the madonna-versus-whore dichotomy remains: Nice girls don’t do naughty things. Thus, both women and men must take conscious steps to make it okay for women to be the naturally voracious creatures they are.
In my sessions with Jason and Penelope, I recommended that they do two things: (1) Create a no-slut zone. I told them both to banish the word slut from their vocabulary. If Jason labeled other women sluts in Penelope’s presence (or in his mind), did he think she would be willing to 69 with him and be filmed while she did it? Nope. (2) Be even more attentive. Call. Text. When a couple starts breaking through sexual barriers, it can be a vulnerable time for the woman.
Jason did these things, and Penelope relaxed. It was safe for her to let go. Everything about her lit up. She could let herself be ravished, and she appeared ravishing.
Dominatrix turbulentus, or taming of the shrew
Chelsea was a type-A physician who ran her own clinic, working 14-hour days and overseeing six other doctors. She bullied everyone in her life, from her office staff to her husband, Mark, who tried to please her until they were both fed up with his tiptoeing around.
In a one-on-one session with me, Chelsea related that she’d once had a brief extramarital affair during which she’d had hours-long sex for days at a time. During this period other people told her she seemed calm and pleasant. She stopped having arguments with sales clerks. Her road rage evaporated.
The contrast was clear. My diagnosis: Chelsea needed to be not only fucked often but fucked hard.
I coached Mark to take a more dominant stance with her. I told him that she would respond to a partner who could pin her wrists above her head while prying her legs open with his knee and growling into her ear how he would fuck her senseless. I advised Mark, “When you feel her subside even a bit, throw her over your shoulder and take her to the bed, the couch, the desk. Take her you must. Do not hesitate.”
The caveat? “No” always means “no.” However, a “maybe” means she just isn’t convinced yet that her partner can handle her. His assertiveness will convince her. It worked. Once Chelsea saw that Mark could wrangle her feistiness, she relented and received what she craved most.