Autumn, thanks so much for opening up and sharing your journey. I totally agree with what bettyslocombe and Persevere have said – it’s an unfortunate truth that so many women have known your struggle and are familiar with so many of the moments on your path that you describe, however painful they have been.
It can definitely feel overwhelming at first to contemplate all you need to do to address your vaginismus, but I found that it helped to focus on just one step at a time. Just like anything hard you’ve ever done, it happens one day at a time, and you’ll have good days and bad days, but it’s possible to make incredible strides if you keep at it. Working on your vaginismus is hard but it’s also healing, and you will get a lot of autonomy back as you pursue greater comfort in your body.
It is also absolutely true that any man who’s really worth spending time with will be understanding and supportive – and I think in this aspect the best approach is to share in a straightforward way (once you feel ready) what your relationship to sex and your body is, especially emphasizing the fact that you want to take steps to work on the problem. I think your partner will see the situation in a positive light if he sees that it’s something you acknowledge as a thing you want to be better and are taking clear steps to pursue that.
If you’re looking for a first step, my recommendation is to start calling the type of professional you think would be most helpful (a gynecologist, sex therapist, pelvic floor specialist, or the Maze Clinic) and ask if they have experience dealing with vaginismus. All you have to do is make a few calls at first, and once you learn more you can make a plan for how you want to proceed, one day at a time. So many women have dealt with this issue and there are treatment providers out there that can help.