Vaginismus – A Mans Perspective
July 10, 2012 at 9:14 pm #8559
First off, I’d like to tell everyone how my day went. I woke up worried and skepticle with no idea of what to expect in the coming hours. Around 7 AM, we arrived at a very nice Victorian style home on Bay Street in Manchester, NH. From there, we met Dr. Pacik and his team. Let me tell you that it was a huge relief because this team naturally made you comfortable with a procedure that the rest of the world would try to keep “hush-hush.” We then met two others and their significant others who were there to receive the same treatment. I then thought “Wow…we really aren’t the only people in the world that struggle with these issues!” As my wife was prepped for surgery, the anxiety that had been encompassed with meeting new people and making new friends suddenly came back in full force. Finally, it was time for the procedure that we traveled nearly 1000 miles to have done. Thirty minutes later, the procedure was complete and my wife started to make jokes as she came out of her anesthesia. What a relief, my wife did wonderfully in the procedure and I didn’t pass out on the OR floor. Let me add that being able to go into the OR, sit over the Dr. Pacik’s shoulder and actually SEE what is causing these women problems provides so much insight and an understanding that words just can’t describe. I can’t even explain how much my perspective changed when I saw the muscles contracting with my own eyes. I suggest that every man that is accompanying a woman in need of this procedure do exactly that…go in, sit over Dr. Pacik’s shoulder and learn what is causing your woman pain during intercourse. Currently, my wife is nearly 12 hours post-op and she is doing very well (sleepy, but well). She has been able to continuously dilate all day with a variety of sizes. This is extremely exciting for us due to the number of problems that she has previously encountered with dilation.
Before I get off my soap box, I would like to write a little blurb for all the men that currently are trying to work thru such a difficult disorder. Firstly, my wife and I have been married for 1.5 years. We have been struggling with sexual intercourse since even before our marriage for a total of about 3 years. Initially it really made me question whether or not this was the woman for me. I know that’s terrible to say, but it is a decision that has to be made from a man’s perspective. Luckily, I’m dating one of the most incredible women in the world (in my eyes) that has the strength and will to overcome such a disorder. Therefore my decision was quick and basically a “no-brainier.” As time went on, with multiple unsuccessful treatments passing by left and right, emotions started to truly come out. We’ve had many nights of fighting, crying, and pouring our emotions out to each other. This is where it’s difficult for us guys. Assuming that most of you are like myself, I don’t do EMOTIONS very well. I didn’t enjoy sitting down to discuss our PROBLEMS and definitely didn’t want to start another fight about sex (or the
lack of). However fellas, let me tell you that this is where we are wrong. You need to do these things because if you have committed yourself to this woman (and you have if you answered the question earlier correctly) then we need to effectively communicate about the issue. Talking about these problems makes things better. Not only does it help with this issue, but it makes you a better listener and a stronger couple. Who knew that a little adversity (okay, a lot of adversity) could make you stronger as a couple. That’s exactly what happened with us. Even though I initially separated myself from the situation and wanted her to deal with this problem, I was able to overcome MY fear and become her individual support group. This is why we are here in Manchester doing this procedure. We have commited ourselves to beating this disorder and strengthening our relationship in the process. We are tired of trying things just to try them. Tired if going to specialists that referred us to other specialists. We found Dr. Pacik’s success stories online and had to inquire. We started talking with Dr. Pacik and his team in late-April. Here we are two short months later already post-op and in the recovery process. What excitement….I’m ecstatic to be here and want to add to the success stories that I’ve read about. I can’t wait and I know another person that can’t wait as well!!!July 10, 2012 at 10:44 pm #9996
Hi PalmTree and welcome to the forum. What a touching and inspirational story and you are 100% correct – it was so nice to hear of this through a man’s perspective. Thank you so much for sharing this and I know it will be so helpful for the partners of women with vaginismus to read. For any forum members who are awaiting treatment or who have inquired about treatment, please have your partner read this helpful post. I was very touched by the entire story and loved what you wrote “We have commited ourselves to beating this disorder and strengthening our relationship in the process.” My sincere Congrats to you both for taking the first step in overcoming vaginismus and thank you again for sharing!!!July 13, 2012 at 7:17 pm #10004
Palmtree, I am so grateful that you not only took me up on the challenge of posting but for your suggestion of creating a portion of the Forum for men. It has been a joy taking care of you and your wife. The two of you made profound progress as did the others. I have no doubt that you will have a successful outcome.
Over the years I have been impressed with the amazing support men are capable of giving their loved ones who struggle with vaginismus. By the time they are seen for treatment most couples have come to some type of balance in their relationship. Men leaving, divorce, relationship upheaval, attempts at suicide…these are all the ugly aspects of vaginismus. Many of these women never make it to treatment. For the ones that do arrive for treatment, there may be bickering, frustration with living like roommates or brother and sister, frustration with failed treatment attempts, yet when they arrive they are pulling in the same direction.
As women live in a world isolated from being comfortable discussing their plight, so too men do not share these stories with their friends. Here too isolation and acceptance are the operational words.
For years I have thought of giving men a voice, a place where they too can post, tell their side of the story and get advice. A place where they too can feel a sense of community and remove the shackles of isolation. A place where they too can learn and be educated. As I was in the early phases of developing a treatment plan for vaginismus, I tried joining vaginismus yahoo groups to read what women were posting to better understand vaginismus. I was denied every step of the way because I was male, and never had an opportunity to join.
Recently Heather, our moderator, and three vaginismus patients sat around the picnic table at the office over lunch and brainstormed how men could be more involved. The men were eloquent in their comments about how vaginismus affects them also, and how it would be impossible for them to discuss this with their friends. And so, from this simple conversation, a portion of the Forum was created for men to post.
There is no doubt that women need a Forum for women and by women. Where they can post anything on their minds and not feel as though they are being judged. This will remain. Yet I look forward to the men having a place to participate because in the end sex is a two way street, and through honest communication, we can all learn from one another.August 18, 2012 at 7:37 pm #10187
All I can say is that I’m so ecstatic about the decision that my wife and I made for her to get treated by Dr. Pacik. We are a little over a month post-procedure and have had successful intercourse 4 times now!!! Words cannot describe the feeling once you initially get to experience full intercourse with the woman that you love so dearly. The increased intimacy has allowed us to find the playful and fun relationship that we once had in the beginning. The tension that I described in my last post has eased away because we have been able to gain that “closeness” that we desired for so long.
During our initial attempts at intercourse, my thrusting has been limited. We believe this is mainly due to my wife’s anxiety level. It seems like every time we have intercourse, it gets easier. With that ease comes less anxiety and more of an ability for me to thrust. I will caution the males that we need to be careful with women who have high anxiety levels. It is difficult at times for the male (especially myself) to not thrust while in the moment. However, vaginismus patients need us to be strong and let them feel comfortable prior to our movements. My wife and I have transitioned from the missionary position to woman-on-top to help with this. With her on top, it gives all the control to her and helps with her anxieties as well.
I once again have to thank Dr. Pacik and his team! This has been such a HUGE success in our eyes and has completely changed our lives. We are so much happier as a couple and can’t keep our hands off each other! 🙂 Vaginismus is a difficult disorder on so many levels (physical/emotional). However, making it through this disorder together will strengthen relationships and make couples stronger! I know that it has made my wife and I stronger as individuals and in our relationship!August 20, 2012 at 2:28 am #10196
I’m so happy for you both! xxApril 30, 2017 at 1:23 am #20876
I just came across this and wanted to share our success story from a mans perspective. I married my wife in january of 2007 and Vaganismus was an instant problem. We went through all the typical embarrassing feelings and resentment towards each other, Vacations would be ruined if we tried to have intercorse. I did though decide early on in my marriage that i wouldn’t let this ruin my marriage so when it came to Our sex life we both became masters of oral sex. Tmi, i know but i was determined to not let this ruin the Love we have for each other and i can honestly say that All those years i felt very sexually satisfied and so did she. even though under the surface there was that nagging problem. She was petrified to go to the Gyno. So i told myself, “when she is ready she will go” it took 6 years and one day she was just so sick of it all that she made the call to the Gyno and we went and it was a painful experience with the speculum exam but when the Doctor said “there is nothing wrong with you, you have one of the most beautiful cervixes ive seen, perfect for making babies.” if was such a relif for us even though we pretty much knew what was wrong having a diagnosis was the best thing. She had no surgery, i got her a diolator and let here every night just have time to herself to work through those emotions. it took about 3 months after that before she was able to have comfortable intercorse and 1 year later she was pregnant and we now have a 2.5 year old beautiful daughter and trying for another baby. Every time i look at my beautiful daughter it makese everything we went through well worth it. All i can say for advice is stick by your Woman, there is more than one way to be satisfied in the bedroom, gently suggest her to go get a diagnosis but dont push If you support her and she sees this she will eventually make that difficult decision. Show her love and compassion weve been married for 10 years now and yes it feels like weve been through tuffer times then some people who are married for 40 years but i wouldn’t trade my for nothing in this world.May 2, 2017 at 2:12 pm #20890
I love this post.
Thank you for sharing your story.
Not all women love the feeling of intercourse, especially women who have or had vaginismus, but they should be able to work through the exercises/dilation and successfully achieve penetration without pain.
Intercourse is only one way to have sex, and we don’t want to forget all the other fantastic ways to give our partners pleasure.May 7, 2017 at 2:59 pm #20907
It’s so interesting to me to hear the perspectives of men who have loved women going through such a difficult situation. Many of them, once they are on the other side of vaginismus, seem to have a shared reaction: a feeling of gratitude that overcoming this adversity has made the partnership stronger. That was the feeling my boyfriend most often cited after we were able to have sex once I’d had the botox procedure – he felt that overcoming a big problem made us closer.
None of us want to have vaginismus, and our partners don’t want to watch us suffer through it. But I think all of us who have dealt with vaginismus can agree that it gives us skills we didn’t have before and forces us to be more open and vulnerable communicators with our partners. And those are skills that can help a relationship thrive for years and years.
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