Hi seaturtle! Thanks so much for posting – it is brave of you to share what you’re feeling and I also think it is great you are looking into this now so that you can have as much information about yourself as possible, which will help you make the right decisions for yourself about what you end up wanting.
For a little background, I had a lot of the same issues as you. I started dating when I was about 16 and from that age, no boy was able to penetrate me in any way – with a finger, penis, or anything else. It felt like that same “hitting a wall” sensation you describe and was just a total nonstarter. I was in college when I had a really negative experience visiting my college campus’s gynecologist and did some research online, eventually discovering that I had vaginismus. I eventually got the botox treatment at the Maze Clinic when I was 25 and my vaginismus is totally cured now.
I say that to give you the context that I have dated with vaginismus as a teenager, a college student, and a young adult. What you decide to do simply must be your own decision about your body, but speaking from personal experience, I don’t recommend jumping into a sexual situation just hoping it will work if you suspect you might have vaginismus. I have done this in different stages of my life and it ALWAYS backfired on me. It made things way more awkward to realize my body wasn’t doing what I thought it was supposed to and to have to try and explain the situation in the moment.
I think especially since you are in an exploration about whether you want to lose your virginity before marriage, it might be worth delving deeper into figuring out what might be happening with your vagina before you decide to get into a sexual situation. Knowing how your body works will give you more power and confidence in these situations, whether you decide you want to have sex sooner or later.
Here are a few things I suggest trying to give yourself more information to work with. First of all, it’s fully possible that your issue with trying to insert a finger was because you weren’t aroused. Do you own an external vibrator or masturbate often? If not, I recommend trying to use a vibrator while inserting your finger to see if you feel less resistance.
You might also think about getting a set of dilators to work with. They start off very small and can both help you figure out whether you can insert something into your vagina as well as helping you stretch out the vaginal muscles if you do find you struggle with tightness in your vagina. I used this set and it’s great:
Another thing to keep in mind is that your mind and body are extremely linked in how they respond to things. Feeling anxious or upset when you’re trying to insert something is way more likely to make your body tense up, making your vagina feel tighter. If you do try masturbating or dilating, try to relax as much as possible before you get started to make your body as receptive as possible to penetration.
If these experiments give you more to be concerned about, consider going back to your gynecologist and talking about all this to see if she has further insights or can diagnose you formally for vaginismus. And if she isn’t familiar with it, consider calling the Maze Clinic. They are always willing to have a free phone call with you and can send you in the right direction.
I know this is a lot to be going through, but I think you’re doing the absolute right thing by asking yourself questions about what’s happening and being pragmatic about finding solutions. I would have saved myself a lot of pain and embarrassment if I had tackled things head-on instead of hoping they’d just go away. Let us know if you have any other questions and how it all goes!