*Samar, 33, is a marketing executive in Chandigarh and shared his story with LM writer Roli Mahajan.
Jhatt mangni, patt byah
The moment I turned 30, I came under immense pressure from my family and society to get married and settle down. A serious hunt for a bride had been on for some years now but the pressure skyrocketed the day I turned 30.
At the end of 2017, I was told in very clear words – I needed to get married quickly. So when I met this girl, chosen by my parents – pretty, cute and equally shy – I said yes.
I was attracted to *Nancy and was proud to be seen with her. I didn’t think much about the kind of person she was, her likes or dislikes. I knew we would explore our personalities together in the years ahead.
All the ceremonies had drained us completely. So I did not initiate sex on our first night. Also, I couldn’t think of us trying to be intimate in a house full of relatives. Even for us guys it can be a bit embarrassing!
We packed to leave for Goa just a few days after the wedding. My friends told me to buy lots of condoms for back-to-back sex sessions. With dreams in my eyes, I went to the chemist shop and purchased twenty packs of all different flavoured condoms!
During the flight, I sat next to her and she suddenly shifted, just a little bit. She wasn’t comfortable with me even when we were in our honeymoon suite. I was stressed though I tried to act cool.
Was I expecting too much, I wondered. I kept on thinking if I was doing things wrong and of course, I couldn’t ask her upfront. I took her to the beach and deliberately held her hands. At least, she seemed to like holding my hand.
On the third or fourth day, we shared a kiss. 'Most couples must have done everything by the time we are just kissing!', I thought to myself. I was getting impatient and I think, she could tell.
I just didn’t know what was going on at her end. About a month after our wedding, we had sex again. It wasn’t what I had thought it would be and I felt really insecure. Did she like having sex with me? Was I good enough? Conversations like that were pretty awkward with her.
I also felt guilty that perhaps I had pushed her a bit too much, so I withdrew. Nancy did not initiate anything either. She would cook nice food everyday and we would talk about all things but physical intimacy was not going anywhere!
I had to finally ask my good friend Simran for advice. The fact that she was a girl helped because I don’t think that I could have faced any of my guy friends who bragged about seven days in bed after the wedding. I could barely manage an hour and that too had ended up in an awkward monosyllabic conversation.
Dating the Mrs
Simran heard me and said that I wasn’t giving enough time to Nancy to be her friend and build that trust where she opens up to me about her physical desires. I didn’t get it. When all other guys could be intimate without any problem, why was this happening to me?
According to Simran, I wasn’t unique. Another colleague in the office told me a similar tale except it was with his girlfriend. I decided to give this ‘trust-building’ and ‘more conversation’ stuff a shot.
I began by dating my wife! I took her out to see films. I would try to hold hands in the dark (call me whatever you like!). We also tried almost all Italian restaurants in the town only because her sister had said that she liked it.
Her first kiss
We did everything I could think of to get to know her more. And then, on her friend’s birthday party we had some truth-and-dare fun. She was a little drunk and that day she initiated a kiss.
It took some time (almost four months) but she started speaking about what she liked and how she liked it.
I now realise that due to my expectations of what sexual life in a marriage should be, I really was not allowing the delicate physical intimacy to develop. It took time but then all good things take time to bear fruit. Today, Nancy and I are best buddies and what’s more – we are finally using all condom packets that I purchased for my honeymoon.
*To protect the identity, names have been changed and the person/s in the picture is/are models.