Boyfriend, Mom and panic oh my!

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    Here comes the novel/my story…

    I am 23 years old and I have vaginismus (gosh darn why doesn’t spell check recognize that as word!). Wow, that was weird to type. I recently scheduled my appointment with Dr. Pacik for November 17th and the nerves are already setting in. I’ve known for a while that something was ‘wrong’ I guess. Nothing, and I mean nothing has ever been inside- no tampons, fingers, dilators, gynos, nothing. I’ve tried talk therapy, dilation, and even using strong doses of Ativan for gyno appointments. I am just so terrified that something will hurt, and then it became that nothing could go in there. It has been so wonderful speaking to Dr. Pacik and the women he has connected me to, lurking here on the forum and reading Dr. Pacik’s book. Before all of this I felt like no one understood. It felt like I was broken because I didn’t know of anyone else who had the same difficulties. (On a lighter note I have to say being in a sorority, I always seemed to win the old ‘never have I ever’ game with the virgin card : P) Friends would always tell me just to get drunk and do it… it’s not that hard. Now I know that I’m not weird and that this is a real issue. An issue that I can do something with it.
    I still have a lot of fears about the procedure, mainly just getting to the procedure part. I have extremely high anxiety, especially when it comes to medical issues. I still can’t get a shot without tearing up, I wasn’t able to swallow a pill before I was 18 and I have only had blood drawn once- which resulted in a panic attack. The thought of putting an IV in my arm is terrifying to me as well. Dr. Pacik has mentioned extra things like nitric oxide that he can offer to help calm my nerves, which I am sure I will need.
    Aside from the nerves I am very fortunate in that both my boyfriend of 2.5 years and my mother will be joining me for the trip to New Hampshire and the procedure. Here comes my question: Does anyone have any advice on who to involve in which parts? I know that ultimately this is about me and I shouldn’t worry about the others necessarily, but for those who are more type A and extremely anxious you might understand that that is far easier said than done. My mother and boyfriend get along well, they just aren’t really close. I know that I need my mom there for parts to talk me down off the ledge and well just to be my mom, but I also want my boyfriend there. He is also a virgin and has been so understanding with my fears and issues. I want him there almost to prove that it’s a real issue. I think this is something that will be important for us as a couple as well. He is not, however, very receptive to therapy at all. He just doesn’t see any value to talk therapy, I’ve brought him to one of my sessions and it was a disaster!
    Anyone have any advice or words of wisdom? Thank you so much to any of you who stuck with the reading to hear my story 🙂


    Hi DJ. Welcome to the Forum and thank you for your post. I am so, so happy you found Dr. Pacik and will have this procedure in November! Please know we are all here to support you!!! I, too, suffered from primary vaginismus and was never able to insert a thing prior to receiving this procedure. I was so nervous but, thank God, Dr. Pacik and his staff understood this and were incredibly supportive and caring and got us through it. They truly are like no other people and care so, so much.

    Concerning nerves you may have about the medical procedure, this is so, so common and something that I too shared prior to my procedure. I found a great post from Dr. Pacik that I wanted to share:

    He writes:

    “For patients who have high anxiety, sedation is given using IV Versed (IV Valium) before even coming into the operating room. Additional sedation is given as needed but we try to avoid too much sedation as this interferes with the cotton tipped testing to rule out vulvodynia and/or vestibulodynia. Finger exam is very gentle using topical anesthesia just to feel the spasm; no speculum is used while awake. The oxygen mask is pure O2 no funny stuff! Speculum exam, injections and progressive dilation are all done while under anesthesia. As our vets keep emphasizing there is no need to worry. The entire staff is very supportive.”

    Concerning how much to involve your mom and boyfriend, I found two excellent posts to share:

    Thread from auntie who accompanied her niece to NH – Very touching

    In it, she writes:

    “I want to tell you about what I witnessed. My niece diagnosed herself, found Dr. Pacik and set up this procedure on her own. Her mother, her boyfriend, her brother and I went to NH with her. Her brother stayed at the hotel while the rest of us accompanied her to Dr Pacik’s office. He encouraged us to be in the room with her during the procedure. She said that was what she wanted so we scrubbed up and went in, sitting at a discreet angle, of course. I won’t get into detail but what I saw that day affected me deeply. It was a very intense experience and up until that point I did not know the full magnitude of what she was dealing with. She was tough and came through it like a rock star and her boyfriend was truly stellar in his support of her. She is having great success now and is happy as she can be. This experience has changed me profoundly and all I want to do is help encourage others who are considering this procedure or are perhaps hesitant. Dr. Pacik is a truly warm individual who really cares about his patients. During the procedure he turned to us periodically to explain what he was doing and why and he kept us all very involved in my niece’s treatment. He will put you at ease immediately and put your fears to rest. Everyone at his office was wonderful and supportive and went out of their way to make us all feel involved and secure.”

    Thread from a boyfriend who accompanied his girlfriend to NH – Very moving

    I hope this helps and would love to hear from other veterans who were accompanied by their boyfriends and moms. How much and in what aspects did you involve each person? Sending you hugs and support!!!


    DJ, my story is very similar to yours! I am 22 years old and will be receiving treatment this Monday! I am also terrified of needles, I have never even had my blood drawn as I refuse and start to cry! I think I am most afraid of having to actually face my problem and work to fix it. The past year I have just avoided my vaginismus by not engaging in anything that may remind myself that I have this issue. I am so happy I have you ladies here to vent to even though I have not met any of you!


    Hi viv!!! You are going to do so, so, so, so good on Monday and it will be here and over with before you know it. You, too, DJ will do amazing on the 17th. You will both be in such great care with Dr. Pacik and all of the amazing staff up there! Please know you have our support!!!


    I am DJ”s mother. I would do anything for my daughter. She is an amazing young woman who can accomplish anything she attempts. I want her to have faith and believe that she can conquer this obstacle to her happiness. I am honored that she wants me with her but I don’t want her to worry about me or how I am feeling. How do I convince her that I am there to do whatever helps her? I am fine sitting in the waiting room or at the hotel. Ill stand by her side or go get coffee. I don’t want her to worry about me. My greatest wish for her is happiness. I want to do what is best for her. How do I now what that is?


    I am 23 years old and I have vaginismus (gosh darn why doesn’t spell check recognize that as word!).
    this made me angry too, but wordpress spellcheck also doesn’t recognize ‘spellcheck’ as a word. so its opinion is pretty worthless.

    Dr. Pacik

    Hi Anita
    I wanted to answer your inquiry before I treat DJ on Monday. I have many mothers, dads, cousins, aunts and siblings who come along for support. We never know how it is going to work out with the counseling, but I generally find that everyone is interested as long as it is OK with the patient. We don’t have to make too many plans for now, this will be discussed during the treatment and we will all figure it out. Not to be too concerned about this.
    DJ-I have all sorts of notes to help support you through your anxiety. Here too there is no need to worry, you will see how easy your treatment is. If any of the vets want to chime in, comments are always appreciated.


    Wishing you well for tomorrow DJ! I just know everything is going to go so, so great. Sending you all hugs and support!!!

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