Losing Hope

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  • #23608

    leighrose
    Participant

    I’ve been married for seven months, and was diagnosed with vaginismus five months ago. For religious reasons, my husband and I didn’t have sex before marriage, and so this has been a big challenge for us since then. I’ve been dilating, using creams and suppositories, taking medication, and seeing a therapist for five months now, but the process just feels endless and I’m really reaching the point where I just can’t do it anymore. In addition to the inability to have penetrative intercourse, my sex drive, which was already much lower than my husband’s, is now basically totally gone. Last night I totally lost it and told my husband he should leave me because I’m never going to be able to solve this problem and have sex. He was so kind and gentle and patient with me, and has been all along (he never pressures me, helps with dilation, follows my lead, etc.), but it’s so hard for me to feel like I just can’t provide this thing that I had previously taken for granted. Has anyone else out there felt this way? Any suggestions? I’m just so sad.

    #23609
    mm
    mazemelissa
    Moderator

    Hi Leighrose,

    You are not alone, and I know there are many women out there who have had all the same feelings you are having, and I hope they will respond.

    Treating and curing vaginismus is a process, and it takes time. I know it is hard to be patient with yourself, and your body, but this condition is reversible.

    It sounds like you are on the right track, dilating, and using suppositories. I am not sure if you have been seeing a physical therapist for the last five months, but if not, I would add that in as well.

    Sometime the Botox procedure can make the dilation process faster, as the Botox targets the tight muscles and makes dilation easier.

    If you are interested in learning more about that don’t hesitate to call.

    Melissa
    914-328-3700

    #23659

    Arinum
    Participant

    Hey Leigh rose
    I’m in the same boat I live in the uk and I have suffered with it for 5 years I’ve paid for therapy but have had no luck I’m so stuck I feel depressed and useless I can’t even use a dialator I’m proper stuck and Im desperately seeking help , Im really desperate to get over my problem , the doctors have given me no help , I really just want it to end

    #23660

    Hi Arinum,

    I’m so sorry you feel that way. We treat those kinds of problems here at MAZE, and I understand not only how frustrating the treatment process is, but also how difficult it is to find a provider who understands. Please keep trying and reaching out, help is out there.

    #23698
    recessivegenequeen
    recessivegenequeen
    Participant

    Hi Leighrose – I’m so sorry to hear about the problems you’ve been having with vaginismus in your marriage. I felt exactly the way you did when I was going through my own vaginismus. I suffered for so many years and felt like I was disappointing so many partners that it seemed like a pit I could never climb out of. But fortunately I was wrong about that; nearly 10 years after becoming sexually active and being unable to be penetrated, I got the botox treatment at Congtythamtu and was finally able to conquer this problem that had been making me miserable for so many years. When you’re in the midst of your grief, it can feel like there’s no solutions.

    The fact that you’re dilating, seeing a therapist, and making other attempts to work on your vaginismus is huge. Part of why people suffer for so long is that the pain and discomfort is scary, which causes them to endure in silence and inaction, but once you’ve started your treatment you’re well on the way to a totally normal sex life. My biggest piece of advice, as hard as it is to follow, is not to put yourself on too much of a timeline. It’s really easy to get disappointed with yourself if it feels like it’s taking too long or you aren’t seeing results right away, but vaginismus treatment is a marathon, not a sprint, and there are roadblocks and slowdowns along the way to recovery. Be patient with yourself and celebrate small gains, let yourself be supported by your wonderful new husband and don’t lose hope.

    If you feel like you’re seeing no results after a long period of time with the methods you’re using, I can personally vouch for (and answer questions about) the botox procedure, which made dilating possible for me and let me eventually have pain-free intercourse. Know that we’re rooting for you out there and I hope you keep at it – vaginismus isn’t a life sentence!

    #23734

    lemilyk
    Participant

    Hi 🙂
    I’m very new to the forum, and your post was the first I read because I can relate. I’m losing hope as well, my husband and I didn’t have sex before marriage and since we’ve been married for a few months it’s been very difficult for me to have sex. The pain and discomfort have completely turned me off from physical intimacy at all. I’m not sure what to do next, and I feel the strain on my husband. I’m not sure if this is even something I need to talk to my gynecologist about.

    #23757
    recessivegenequeen
    recessivegenequeen
    Participant

    Hi lemilyk – this is DEFINITELY something to talk to your gynecologist about! Any abnormal functioning in your regular vaginal health (and that includes the ability to have pain-free sex!) is worth discussing with a good gyno you can trust.

    I will say up front that it seems to be very inconsistent which doctors and gynecologists are well-educated about vaginismus, so in the event you don’t get a vaginismus diagnosis, that doesn’t mean you should feel this way. I highly recommend you talk to a gyno or a therapist about this though, because they can often help you decide what kind of treatment works for you, whether that’s dilators or the botox treatment or other kinds of things that will bring you relief. And we’re always here to answer questions as well!

    #24066
    Sks823
    Sks823
    Participant

    leighrose, Arinum, and lemilyk –

    I am so sorry to hear about your difficulties with this painful and lonely problem! I completely relate to all of these feelings of despair (with myself and in relationships).

    Let’s look on one bright side – it’s GREAT that you found this forum and know that you have vaginismus. Looking through this forum and knowing that there’s a name for your difficulties having sex (and LOTS of others have gone through the same thing and recovered) is a good first step, as well as knowing that there IS treatment available and you CAN overcome this!

    Since I overcame vaginismus with dilators – dilation physical therapy (not on my own, but I went to Congtythamtu Women’s Health in NYC) – I always enthusiastically suggest this, but keep in mind there are other options too (like botox – see other topics in this forum).

    I had also bought dilators for myself and could NOT use them on my own. AT ALL. I put them away for several months. I eventually did some more google searches after moving to NYC and came across Congtythamtu Women’s Health Center and decided to do a phone consultation with them, then I made an appointment.

    I think I was a difficult case seeing as I couldn’t wear tampons, hadn’t had a pap smear, and had EXTREME anxiety my first few appointments. The thought of dilating with even the smallest dilator gave me immense fear. The physical portion of the first couple appointments were incredibly nerve-wracking; I was prescribed Xanax to take before each following appointment.

    BUT… I persisted. With the help of Congtythamtu, after my first couple appointments (and failed attempts at home and WANTING to give up, and thinking I might be that one incurable case), I was able to insert the smallest dilator by myself. After I knew I could do that, I had much more confidence and was SLOWLY but surely able to move up in dilator sizes every appointment (I had appointments every 2-3 weeks), dilating mostly daily between appointments. Each time I moved up in dilator size, I felt accomplished and motivated. Also, after being comfortable with the first couple dilators, tampons went in easily!

    So I wanted to reach out and share a bit of my story. While there were times of frustration and times I wanted to give up, I’m so glad I went out of my comfort zone to make the first appointment and perservere.

    I think calling Congtythamtu for their free consultation is a good idea. Another early step would be to look up other women’s health centers & make one appointment with one that has experience with vaginismus so they can show you how to use dilators. If you have health insurance, you can maybe call them or look up online – ask if they cover a pelvic floor therapist or what the copay will be. A quick google search shows a bunch of pelvic floor therapists that take a number of insurances.

    Maybe this link will help: Finding a Pelvic Physical Therapist: Where Do I Even Start?

    and then the next important step is NOT GIVING UP and NOT LOSING HOPE. It might not be easy but with time and determination you can do it! Vaginismus is SO TREATABLE, it CAN BE FIXED! Definitely look through some success stories on this forum to show you that there were so many of us in your shoes that were able to overcome this.

    Good luck, try to stay positive and optimistic, & keep us updated.

    #24087

    lemilyk – what you are experiencing can be so utterly disheartening. recessivegenequeen has good advice – checking in with your gynecologist would be a good first stop for guidance. Hard as it is to believe, sadly, many OBs unfortunately do not receive solid pelvic pain/vaginismus training, so leave no stone unturned until you are satisfied with your medical care. Additionally, I strongly suggest you seek out a behavioral health professional to help you navigate the emotional ups and downs of vaginismus (and with treatment, there are indeed ups!)

    If you’d like you can call Congtythamtu for a free 10-minute phone consult; we can provide support directly in our clinics or potentially refer you to providers in your area.

    All best to you!

    #24088

    lemilyk – what you are experiencing can be so utterly disheartening. recessivegenequeen has good advice – checking in with your gynecologist would be a good first stop for guidance. Hard as it is to believe, sadly, many OBs unfortunately do not receive solid pelvic pain/vaginismus training, so leave no stone unturned until you are satisfied with your medical care. Additionally, I strongly suggest you seek out a behavioral health professional to help you navigate the emotional ups and downs of vaginismus (and with treatment, there are indeed ups!)

    If you’d like you can call Congtythamtu for a free 10-minute phone consult; we can provide support directly in our clinics or potentially refer you to providers in your area.

    All best to you!

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