The penis advice columnDear Marilyn:

This is an embarrassing question. My husband and I are both 27 years old. Everything about our relationship is good, except that intercourse is very uncomfortable for me. Using lube helps at first, but he takes a long time to reach orgasm and by the time he finishes, I am in a lot of pain.

I am from Denmark, and this is my first relationship with a circumcised man. I’m wondering if this has something to do with our problems and, if so, what we can do to make things better?

—Liv C., Cincinnati

Dear Liv:

Your problem is a common complaint of American women. Most American women have never been with an intact male and don’t know what normal sex feels like, and most European women haven’t been with a cut male.

Circumcision amputates healthy genital tissue with tens of thousands of specialized erogenous nerve endings. All that sensitivity is lost. And sadly for you, as a result many men take longer to reach orgasm, which increases the pain. Cut men also lose the gliding mechanism of the foreskin that provides for gentle intromission (penetration) and sexual intercourse without abrasion.

So what can you do?

Start by trying a different lubricant, then try other positions. Many women say that being on top helps relieve some of the chafing they feel. This position often allows a woman to position herself so that she’s stimulated with less pain.

No man should be robbed of his natural penis and a healthy sexual future. And no woman should have to suffer the consequences. Understanding the underlying issue may help you and your husband work on a solution together.

Thank you again for writing. My best wishes to you.