Sunday, July 13, 2008

My experience

My husband and I had made the decision to wait until we were married before having intercourse. I went in for my first ob-gyn exam two months before getting married. The appointment didn't go well, to say the least. The exam hurt and I had a panic attack during the process. However, my doctor told me that I should come back after the wedding night and that the exam would be easier after I had intercourse.

The wedding night and every day after that did not prove what she had told me to expect. We were unsuccessful in having intercourse. I went back to the same ob/gyn doctor and things went about the same in that second appointment. She proceeded to mention that 'This is probably something called vaginismus. I don't know anything more than that.' and 'There are doctors in New York that deal with this.' From there I started research online about this disorder. Everything that I read confirmed the 'vaginismus' diagnosis. If you were recently diagnosed with vaginismus or are in the process of overcoming this terrible issue, then you have probably read a lot on this topic. The post below tells a little more about this condition.

There were days where I had all the hope in the world and others where I was frustrated beyond words. I went through months and years of various therapy treatments. I tried sex therapy, hypnotherapy, physical therapy, various at-home physical therapy, dilators, and relaxation & anxiety reducing techniques. I had some success with a few of them but not the success I needed to fully overcome the condition. After getting over the fear of 'touching' myself I used dilators periodically. I was not as religious in this practice as I should have been. However, whenever I would make significant progress I would get terrified and feel that I couldn't go any further on my own. Hypnotherapy did not work at all for me, but that doesn't mean it wouldn't work for others. Everyone has there own level and outlook on their vaginismus, and this has a great effect on their motivation and determination. There were days when I would have zero motivation and others where I didn't want anything more. All during these years of varied treatments I had inquired with the Women's Therapy Center - the 'Doctors in New York that deal with this.' My husband & I were both very hesitant because of the price and location. How could I fly to New York and pay thousands for treatment with doctors I had never met? Our skepticism got the better of us and we didn't pursue this route right away. After exhausting all other possible remedies we booked treatment in January 2008 with the Women's Therapy Center. This was the best thing I could have done and felt bad that I hadn't done it earlier. The treatment was intense, frustrating, stressful and an amazing, motivational, and life-changing experience.

After completing my undergraduate degree, turning 26 and following the intensive treatment program at the Women’s Therapy Center, I was finally able to use a vaginal applicator, tampon, have a successfully completed pelvic exam and have intercourse with my husband of six years.

8 comments:

jill s said...

so proud of you for doing this.

riggsfam said...

Wow. I can't imagine your frustration, Amy. We love you.

mindy said...

amy you are incredible.

when i found out i had a mild case of vaginismus a few months before getting married...you were there for me every step of the way...and i assure you...if it weren't for you...i wouldn't have had the courage to even try the dilating kit. you helped me daily. you believed in me & gave me such strength.

thank you. from the bottom of my heart!!!!

mindy said...

Amy, this is great that you're helping others! So glad your treatment was successful!! I love you!

Mom said...

The last comment wasn't Mindy, it was Mom! I'm so proud of what you're doing to help other people through this! I'm sure it wasn't easy to put your story out there. You have a lot of courage and a lot of compassion. Love you! Mom

buaslbutterfly said...

I've been married for three years. I've known I've had a problem since the honeymoon. I saw your link on facebook and read your blog. I hope that I can find sucess. I was curious as to what your experience was like at the women's therapy center. If you would not mind messaging me on facebook. I would appreciate that.

brokenvee said...

Your story sounds so very much like mine! Except, I'm as single as you can get. I tried sex with an ex-boyfriend and it was impossible, like you said. I had some very painful exams, and my gyno had no clue what was wrong with me. I went to see a vaginal pain specialist last week, and although she was GREAT, I had a panic attack during the exam, so now she wants me to see a counselor and work on my anxiety first. It's scary that I have such a long (and probably expensive) journey ahead of me, but your story gives me hope. I think it's great that you've been able to "come out" to people you know about it! Congrats to you!

Living with Vaginismus said...

Thanks so much for sharing your story and for linking to my blog! You give me hope.