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I tried to lose my virginity in high school*

I tried to lose my virginity in high school but it was too painful and then, I tried again, a year later, with the same outcome. I didn’t think this was unusual because I had heard that losing your virginity is supposed to be painful. I remember being afraid but I also thought that was normal. I finally did start having sex with a boyfriend, in college, and besides the occasional pain, I think everything was okay with him.

The real problem started after I’d been in a relationship for several years. Sex with this boyfriend got increasingly more and more painful. At first, we couldn’t have sex for long periods of time. This, of course, frustrated him but I thought it was normal. I associated was some degree of pain with sex because that was all I knew. As time passed, we had to stop during sex sooner and sooner. Afterwards, I was in agony and would curl up in a fetal position on the bed, next to him. During the fifth year of our relationship, we sometimes couldn’t have sex at all until finally we didn’t have sex for over six months.

When I first realized that all this pain wasn’t normal I attributed it to the many problems in the relationship. Then when the pain got severe I thought it must be medical so I went to my gynecologist. She told me I had a yeast infection and gave me a prescription. Then I started feeling a burning sensation which I thought must be the yeast infection so I took more medicine. The burning sensation increased and I tried a different medicine.

I changed gynecologists and tried another kind. That summer I went to around ten different gynecologists and a few dermatologists. Each one looked at me like I was crazy and said there was nothing wrong with me. A few recommended using more lubrication. I thought I must be a freak and I would never have a normal relationship. I thought my life was doomed.

Finally, one doctor gave me Ross and Ditza’s card. I didn’t want to travel from Manhattan to Long Island every week (which is what they recommended) but the trip was more than worth it. They told me I had vaginismus and assured me they would cure me. I was so relieved that someone could look me in the eye with confidence and they had plenty of experience with women who had the same story as me. This in itself was a miracle!

In just a few months I was having pain free sex! (with a new boyfriend) A year has now passed and I have not had any pain during sex for the entire time. I am enjoying sex for the first time in my life and I finally understand what all the hubbub is about*!

– E.H.

* Results may vary from person to person