Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Vaginismus, what's that?

This post has been a long time coming, ha ha (if you laughed you either already know what this post is about or you just have a dirty mind) and is probably not suitable for younger readers.  Vaginismus is a very personal problem, and unfortunately you don't know that you have it until the worst, and most embarrassing, moment.

Vaginismus is described by the NHS (link available here) as when the muscles around the vagina tighten involuntarily whenever there is an attempt to penetrate it.  There are two forms, Primary Vaginismus - where the sufferer has never been able to have sex, and Secondary Vaginismus - where the sufferer has successfully had sex in the past but due to some trauma or incident can no longer do so.

I have Primary Vaginismus.  I did not discover this until the first time I tried to have sex, even penetration with a single finger was impossible.  Luckily I was with a very understanding man who even helped me research the problem, we didn't know at the time what the issue was, we just knew that I had a problem which he had never come across before.  Finding out that I was not the only one facing this issue helped me feel less of a freak, after all, wasn't sex supposed to be natural and easy?  Whenever girls/women get together and discuss losing their virginity this muscle issue is never raised and when I bring it up I always have to explain it, no-one ever says 'oh I have that, I thought I was the only one'.

Someone said recently that if you have enough alcohol the muscles will relax, but it is not that simple.  The muscles actually have to be torn, which is as nasty as it sounds, and then have to be prevented from closing up again whilst they heal.  This is done with dilators and a LOT of lubrication.  

I believe the dilators are available on the NHS from your doctor, but I bought mine privately.  There are five in the pack, the smallest being 7cm long x 1.5cm diameter (about the size of a tampon) and the largest 16.5cm x 3.5 cm (apparently the average penis size), also included is, for want of a better term, a handle which fits all the dilators.  You work through them starting with the smallest, using them every day to prevent the muscles from healing too quickly.  Mine are silicone, but there are glass versions too, and they arrive in a discreet little toilet bag.

There is blood involved but the bleeding stops once you have achieved successful repeated use of the largest dilator as it is at this point you stop tearing the muscles and are allowing them to heal, but not shrink back. 

In the worst cases, sufferers can be operated on, the muscles are cut under general anaesthetic, only the largest dilator is used after this as there is no need to further tear the muscles.

At this point, if you start having regular intercourse, the muscles will remain in their extended positions, if you don't then after a matter of weeks you will be back to square one and have to start dilating all over again.

Vaginismus and Smear Tests

Vaginismus does make it difficult, sometimes impossible, for sufferers to have a gynaecological examination and medical records are likely to show that they have never had a smear test.  In a lot of cases this will not matter as the sufferer will probably still be a virgin and therefore statistically much less likely to get cervical cancer, although this is still not impossible.

I will hold my hand up and admit that I have never had a smear test.  I didn't lose my virginity until two years ago, and after a week of very unsatisfactory sex, have not partaken since.  I know I am still at risk considering the number of partners he had had but I just cannot bring myself to go.  Maybe if I can find somewhere that can perform the smear other than my own doctor's surgery I might consider it.

In a strange twist of coincidence as I originally wrote this post some weeks ago, a fellow blogger has posted about the smear test and what happens when you attend, so for those of you who still cringe at the thought of a smear, read it, it is comforting.  I have obviously watched and read too many horror stories featuring rusty metal speculums and stirrups.

So with the permission of London Beauty Queen you can read her post here.

Vaginismus and Child Birth

Vaginismus may present some challenges during pregnancy, but will not normally stop the vaginal delivery process, although it may cause issues for pre and post-natal checks.

Natural hormones activated during delivery cause the body to involuntarily dilate, ignore any vaginismus impulse and automatically proceed with the delivery process.  The uterus and vaginal openings dilate with natural prompting and open up naturally. As a woman pushes the baby, it moves through the vaginal canal with no adverse effect from vaginismus. Epidurals or other pain relief would be available if required.

If anyone has any questions please ask and I will try and answer.


  1. Wow....Very interesting....Great post x

  2. Primary Vaginismus.
    If you have it, then your body is NOT designed for sex.

    It is God's way of telling a woman that she is DESTINED to become a nun or celibate.
    So if you have it, go on and BECOME A NUN.
    Or be CELIBATE.
    That's because it is God's way of controlling the global population. God created women with such sexual dysfunction to keep them away from sex and thus preventing conception. Unfortunately, most women don't realize it and would still go through days and weeks of therapy which is just time consuming.

    Trying to remedy your condition is against God's will.
    God does NOT want you to have sex.
    If you're a woman, don't get married & don't have sex if your VAGINA wont let you.
    God had CLOSED the gates of your virginity.
    FACE IT! You have a NUN'S VAGINA.
    It is time to give up on men and become a NUN.

    VAGINISMUS may be the answer to overpopulation.
    God truly works in strange ways.

    I am now an enlightened man.