Hi ladies. In a prior post, Dr. Pacik discussed a patient’s potential perception of the dilators:
“I learned a new word yesterday as it relates to vaginismus, the word embarrassment. In an article discussing the use of vaginal dilators following treatment for gynecological cancer women were interviewed to determine how they perceived the need to dilate following radiation treatment (see reference). The psychological and emotional implications that make dilation intrusive were studied. A number of women volunteered that this created embarrassment for them. I have been very focused into the fear and anxiety that relate to dilation and have not thought about the potential embarrassment that may be present. The majority of participants were embarrassed because of the perceived sexual nature of the device, seeing this as a sex toy, or dildo, used for erotic pleasure. Comments ranged from “what will people think”, to invasion, and rape. Fear was a common initial reaction.”
In thinking about this, I’ve only ever thought about the way I perceive the dilators – in a non-sexual way and as a necessary component to stretching the muscles, following the treatment program, and overcoming vaginismus. I’m wondering how the male partners perceive the use of the dilators. For example, do they become jealous because of the perceived sexual nature of the device, seeing them as sex toys, dildos, or used for erotic pleasure or do they, too, understand that their use is necessary to overcome vaginismus?