Post # 1
This may be a little Too Much Information, but I don’t know where else to go at the moment. For as long as I can remember, I’ve had a hard time with vaginal penetration. I tried using tampons when I first got my period, but I’ve never been able to get them in right/all the way/comfortably, so I’ve stuck with pads. I didn’t lose my virginity until I was in college, but it consistently hurt everytime regardless of toys, lube, foreplay, etc. Around when I started dating my fiance, I developed chronic monthly yeast infections and the pain with sex got worse. I attributed this to new medication and a larger partner. But for three years now, the painful sex has gotten worse, the yeast infections are still happening, and in the last two months, I haven’t been able to have any penetration at all.
I was seeing the same gynecologist for two years and she kept writing everything off. She was never interested in figuring out what was causing these problems and kept giving me an anti-fungal to take for the yeast infections. I finally got fed up last month and went to see a GP who sent me to a urologist who just yesterday diagnosed me with vaginismus. The good news is it’s treatable via dialators and pain medication. She’s also referred me to a sex therapist and physical therapist to work out any other underlying issues.
My question is does anyone else/has anyone else ever dealt with vaginismus or similar conditions? Did treatment work for you? Is your sex life better now? Because for the last 2.5 years, my sex life has greatly suffered. I have an infinitely patient fiance who has been supportive the whole time, but I’ve felt worse and worse as time has gone on. I’m 26 and have no sex drive because in my mind, it isn’t worth the pain.
So any stories or words of encouragement would be appreciated right now. Thank you!
Post # 2
r/vaginismus may be helpful.
I just learned about it recently. It seems pretty active; there’s a lot of discussion and sharing of information. There’re women in different stages of this, too; some are starting out, some are just getting their medical devices and regimens and learning how to use them, others who are seeing progress, and still more whose treatments were successful.
It seems like a nice place.
Post # 3
Post # 4
Rhopalocera : There’s a subreddit for everything! I don’t know why I didn’t think to check there but that’s going to be my new favorite one.
dublingirl : Thank you for sending that article! It was nice to read a success story. I’ve just become so jaded by the whole thing I’m convinced it will never work, which is definitely the wrong attitude to have about the whole thing.
Post # 5
dublingirl : thanks for that! I wonder if I have it, as the handful of times I’ve tried with my husband (I waited until marriage, and we just got married a few weeks ago), it’s been so painful for me that we have to stop. I’m going to schedule a gynecological appointment in the near future if different methods don’t work! It’s frustrating! (So I feel you, OP!)
Post # 6
I can’t help with the vaginismus but I can recommend taking acidophilus bifidus for the chronic yeast infections. I take 1 pill (6 billion active cells) per day and rarely get them anymore.
Post # 7
queenbatgirl : Can’t help with the vaginismus but I am posting about my experience with candida. About 7 years ago I was on a repeat script of antibiotics and basically ended up with oral and vaginal thrush. I went to my docot who repeatedly gave me scripts for oral drops, pessaries, creams and oral tablet which basically did bugger all and I suffered through 18 months of thrush. I even took high dose probiotics but they just dulled the symptoms but it never went away.
I got so sick of it that I turned to Dr Google and saw people were making kefir to help rebalance their gut flora. I got on gumtree and got some free kefir grains from someone who had some to spare. (Gumtree is like Craigslist where I live) I literally put my grains in milk and left it out covered for 24 hours until the kefir grains did their magic and turned the milk into a runny yoghurt which is essentially milk kefir.
I literally took my first small amount (30ml) and felt so much better symptoms wise. Within less than a week of taking my home brewed kefir daily, my thrush disappeared. I still used the topical cream on my lady bits for another two weeks but after that I’ve never had thrush again. I still take my daily dose of home made kefir and I’ve noticed a difference in my digestion, skin and overall health.
Seriously consider getting some kefir grains and making kefir. Don’t buy dried or frozen ones of the internet go on Craigslist and get some ready to go ones from someone in your area. The dried/frozen ones can sometimes be tricky to bring out of their Inert state.
Another thing too. Some of your pain with sex is probably caused by your thrush too. It took me half a year of sex after being thrush free to relax enough mentally and physically to not have Penetration hurt. I was preempting pain on penetration so my muscles would tense up and shut up shop essentially. I don’t think the thrush is helping with the vaginismus because you are actually probably physically sore and red down there. I’d first concentrate on getting the vaginal thrush under control and then worry about the vaginismus. Thrush will make sex hurt for anyone irrespective of whether they deal with vaginismus.
Sending you a hug and I hope you can get everything happy down there. I know that vaginismus is hard one to deal with but if you are committed to doing the leg work I’m sure all will come good. Having an accurate diagnosis is the first step and you now have one xx
Post # 8
cmsgirl : Thank you so much for sharing your story! I’m glad you found relief. I’m going to look into kefir definitely because I also think clearing up the thrush is important. My new doctor doesn’t seem as concerned with it as the vaginisumus, but I feel like it’s all related.
It’s just nice to talk about it with people. Sex is such a taboo subject and I honestly didn’t know until recently that sex doesn’t always hurt for everyone every time.
Post # 9
I don’t have any personal experience with vaginismus. Just wanted to add that sometimes when you have recurring yeast infections your partner needs to be treated as well! You guys can pass it to each other. It’s worth asking your GP about. Also, sounds like your Gyn sucks. If you have the option I’d look for a new one.
Post # 10
queenbatgirl : Yes, taking about sex with people you know in real life can be a bit taboo. Thank goodness for the anonimity of the internet and the easy access and availability of alternative information available on there. I’m a nurse and dealing with a constant period of thrush where modern medicine did nothing for me made me really truly respect alternate medicine and its value in conjunction with modern medicine.
Honestly, I think treating your thrush would be the first step. No matter how much mental work, therapy, dilators etc you do for the vaginismus, if your vagina and vulva has split sore thin, sensitive skin due to thrush, sex will be painful full stop. You can’t overcome the mental part of vaginismus if the physical pain due to an actual cause like thrush hasn’t been sorted first. All that will do is reinforce the mental message between your brain and your muscles down below, that penetration hurts.
If you need anymore info on kefir or just want to talk to someone, PM me.
ETA: that I agree with a PP. Get your fiancé treated for thrush too. A lot of new medical research is saying that treating a sexual partner too for thrush or BV may be beneficial in stopping a reoccurrence.
Post # 11
queenbatgirl : I haven’t experienced it, but heard a great podcast on it once, I wish I could remember what it was called! It was with a physical therapist who suffered from vaginismus and worked out how to work through the muscles with her fellow physical therapist colleagues and now she specializes in treating it. Shes had success with many patients, it just takes time. Glad you got a diagnosis and referral.
Post # 12
I’ve dealt with vulvar vestibulitis for years, ranging from severe when I first developed it to very mild now. It’s not exactly the same as vaginismus (from what I’ve read) but there seems to be overlap.
It sucked, big time. It took about 6 months for a nurse practitioner to suggest that this might be the cause, while the gynecologist kept treating me for BV even though those tests always came back negative. I felt like I would never figure this out and get rid of the pain. I also had an unsympathetic partner at the time who was pissed about it and never stopped resenting me for that time period when sex was difficult (he’s now my ex-husband, buh bye).
I saw a specialist who prescribed a combination of hormones in a gel form to be applied topically, as well as sending me to a vaginal physical therapist who would put pressure on the sore, tight muscles (I think muscles) at the opening of my vagina. It would sting, and then the pain would sort of release and relax. That combination really did the trick. I still have to do a little work to make sex completely pain free- usually a little lube and a couple kegel squeezes/releases to relax the muscles. But things are infinitely better.
I’m so glad you found specialists to help you work through this, and I hope it gets better for you!
Post # 13
cmsgirl : Thank you! It’s been 2+ years of constant yeast infections. My perineum cracked twice last year and my doctor didn’t want to figure out why, which was so frustrating. I tried a low carb/low sugar diet, probiotics, etc. I just found someone who grows kefir here in Washington so I’m going to send him a message this week and see if he can help me out.
I agree completely with everyone that clearing up the thrush is more important. I wish that doctors took yeast infections more seriously. All anyone wanted was to prescribe diflucan without even working on what could cause them or how to prevent them in the future! Ugh!
I’m glad I posted this and heard stories from other people. I’ve suggested to Fiance before that he should get treated for his thrush (he definitely has oral thrush) but he’s stubborn and hasn’t listened yet. I’m going to keep pushing though because all of my symptoms got a lot worse when we started having sex.
Post # 14
I don’t have much to offer, but hoping to give you some peace of mind. I work at a physical therapy clinic that does Womens Health therapy, and its unfortunate that not many people (doctors included) know about it! There are SO many women who could benefit from these services, you are not alone! I start physical therapy school next month and womens health is definitely at the top of my list of areas to explore, because we’ve had so many women in incredible pain come in who are desperate to find relief.