Home Forums Vaginismus Support Group Vaginismus General Coping with Feeling overwhelmed Reply To: Coping with Feeling overwhelmed


Hi Ashly_1996 – welcome to the forums! I’m glad you decided to seek help at the behest of your gynecologist; it can make it so much easier to endure when you understand that there are other people who have felt what you’re feeling and know how hard it is.

I had vaginismus for almost 10 years before getting treatment and for a lot of that time I WASN’T coping with the feelings. Like you’ve expressed, I felt ashamed and abnormal, I felt like I was the problem in the relationship and that I was a burden on my partner. I had partners who claimed not to care who were very sweet about it, but the feelings of shame didn’t go away because I still felt like something was wrong with me. The only thing that cured those feelings for me was finally seeking treatment and making progress at overcoming vaginismus. A newer partner of just a few months told me that he wouldn’t be able to be with me long term if I didn’t try to seek treatment of some kind, so I begrudgingly decided to. I didn’t FEEL ready but I CHOSE to be ready and to give it a shot and that was what made the difference. I started to make progress and to gain confidence and, eventually, to rewrite the narrative once I was able to have sex.

I highly recommend you explore treatment options and see how it feels to take a step, even if you don’t necessarily “feel ready”- it’s a scary and hard thing and you likely won’t wake up suddenly feeling eager to face it, but you can find the strength to decide you’re ready.

Also, as for telling a new partner you have vaginismus, it’s admittedly hard. I struggled with doing this but I recommend trying to start a conversation about sex and desire before you actually end up in bed together. A fake-it-till-you-make it approach can work at first – even though it’s a source of insecurity, you can regain some control by being the one to say, “Hey, just so you know, I have a pelvic floor issue/vaginal pain issue/however you want to present it that makes it painful (or impossible) for me to be penetrated. I’m working on it through therapy/dilation/whatever is true. But I still experience arousal and enjoy sexual touch and want to be intimate with you. Let’s talk about some things we both can do together.” It’s a hard conversation to have, but letting a partner know where you’re at with things also lets both of you figure out early on if it’s honestly something you can deal with. I think there are good and understanding people – I’ve known and loved some of them.

I hope some of this helps you, but know above all that you are not alone. Please let us know if ever you have questions or just need encouragement. Posting here in the first place was a big step and you should feel proud of yourself!