My GP diagnosed me with vaginismus. I have recently started dilating with minimum success. I dilate comfortably with my fingers (tried index and middle finger with success) but notice discomfort and pain when using dilators (even the smallest one). I feel a burning sensation upon entry however, once it is inserted it feels ok inside but then removing can sometimes trigger the same feeling. I find it very odd how I don’t feel this at all with my fingers but only with the dilators.
I think that what you are feeling with the dilators is totally normal. That burning sensation is the muscles at the vaginal entrance stretching, and it can take time to get used to the dilator size.
I think your finger doesn’t hurt because you possibly are more relaxed with your own finger, than a dilator which feels more foreign to you. And it is possible, that even the smallest dilator is slightly larger than your finger, which would cause more stretching and more discomfort.
If you are getting in the smallest size dilator, even with the burning sensation, I would continue to use it. When you feel that insertion with the smallest size feels more natural, maybe the burning sensation has reduced or even disappeared, then move up to the next size.
The removal feeling for a lot of women can sometimes be more triggering than the insertion, some find it helpful to “bear down” when removing the dilator and it will more naturally be expelled.