I want to do it but my body won’t let me!

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    Hi guys.
    So I am 23 years old & I have been with my partner for 6 years going into 7.
    I have not been able to have sexual penetration or even insert a full finger. I have tried multiple techniques such as relaxation, sex therapy, even drinking and smoking weed to try & help me relax…ALL HAVE CLEARLY FAILED!
    I am reassured to know that I am not the only person with this problem as I feel so lonely as I am surrounded by friends and family that can do this with no problems.
    My partner is so supportive throughout but there is always that voice in the back of my mind that wonders what if one day I push him too far and he wants to find a girl who can have sex. He reassured me he wouldn’t but of course it makes you worry.

    I tense up my legs uncontrolably whenever he goes near, I try my best to relax, breathing etc. But I end up getting so upset because I am petrified.

    I do even struggle to do the kegal exercises, I can barely feel movement.

    I do have some dilators but I am petrified to use them, what if it hurts what if…what if…
    It makes me feel as though I sound like an immature child but my anxiety has built up so much over the years.

    I hope that one day I can post one of the success stories and be able to have sex and enjoy it and have children as that is one thing I do so desperately want in the future.

    Thank you for listening.

    mmHelen Leff, LCSW

    First of all know that you are not alone. Fear and anxiety around pain is hard to contend with and tends to set up a vicious cycle. Perhaps being prescribed an antianxiety/antidepressant medication such as Zoloft for a time can help calm some of the anxiety to help you get started with the dilation process. Seeing a pelvic floor physical therapist may be a good idea. At Maze we provide an integrated model where both clinician and therapist support you with the challenges of dilation. There is a Botox procedure which is especially helpful when anxiety is overwhelming. It is a short cut to dilation (you will still need to dilate) as you wake up from the procedure with the largest dilator inside. It connects your mind and body to the fact that something the size of a penis is able to be inside your vagina.
    I too hope that one day you can post a success story and have pain free and pleasurable intercourse.


    hi BethT5,
    Yes, as Helen said, you are definitely not alone. Her recommendation to see a good pelvic PT is a great one. Pelvic floor physical therapists are trained to treat patients with vaginismus and high pelvic tone. However, if it is too difficult to have an exam – and for many women with vaginismus it is – I second Helen’s recommendation to get more information about the Botox procedure we do here at Maze. Vaginismus IS treatable.


    Hi BethT5! Your story is so familiar to me as someone who used to have bad vaginismus. I was equally anxious – both about being penetrated and about my partner leaving me if I wasn’t able to perform eventually. I eventually got the botox procedure described above and it changed my life completely. It’s something I’d seriously recommend if you aren’t able to dilate on your own.

    One thing I want to say is that as long as you put off using those dilators, the more power they hold over you. As much as we wish it would be otherwise, vaginismus doesn’t go away if we wait long enough. We can only conquer it when we confront it head on. It can only happen when you’re ready, but you can decide for yourself that you don’t want to suffer anymore. I encourage you to take one small step and see how you handle it, what strength you discover. It’s the way out of this dark tunnel you find yourself in, stepping toward the light in the distance.


    Hi, just a quick question. Is the botox treatment only needed if you can’t use dilators at all? I can manage dilators so can success be reached without the botox?


    Hi guys,

    Sorry for the late response, thank you everyone for the feedback! I am going to go the doctor & talk to them about Botox. Unfortunately I live in the UK.

    I am going to pluck the courage to begin with the dilators. recessivegenequeen Thank you i as I nearly reduced to tears when you mentioned you were so similar to me.

    I will also get in touch with a pelvic Pt fingers crossed see how it goes. I will post any progress!

    Thank you!


    Endofmythether – yes, botox is for people who have NO success whatsoever dilating and really need the additional help. If you can get dilators in, you likely don’t need it!

    BethT5 – I’m so glad to hear about all these strides you’re taking! Please let us know how things go, I’m sure that your hard work will come back to you in spades.


    Hi Endofmythether – thanks so much for sharing on our forum. And recessivegenequeen – thanks for your continued terrific support!

    Please allow me to make one clarification: the Botox procedure is of course for those who have not been able to insert anything into their vaginas, but it is EVEN recommended for women who can accommodate a small dilator/finger/tampon, etc. yet not much more. This may not have been the case awhile back but we do now offer it to any woman who is experiencing challenges due to vaginismus. Botox relaxes a woman’s vaginal muscles and enables her to move more quickly through the process of comprehensive treatment and healing (no matter what her starting point may be).

    Every woman is different, and that’s why we’re glad there are several treatment avenues to explore (i.e. dilation, PT, Botox, etc.). Please don’t hesitate to call us with any questions you may have about what is right for you!


    Hey guys,

    A year & a bit later & I can finally say that I am now having sex!
    I persisted with the dilators & managed to get to size 4, as I knew that size 5 would be the a similar size to my partners I decided to go for it.
    I managed to breathe through it and after the initial thrust it was fine, I cried for around 15 mins afterwards after nearly 8 years of battling with this issue.

    We are now having sex regularly, it still feels uncomfortable for the initial trust but after that it is enjoyable! (Still cannot believe it)

    I will eventually post my success story in full here, because I would like to help support women who have the same issues see some light in that very dark long tunnel.
    Because in all those years I always assumed I was completely broken, alone with this issue (until I found this site) & their was no hope but I was so so wrong.

    Hopefully now I can be on my way to creating a family I have always dreamed of.

    mmHelen Leff, LCSW

    Hi BethT5, CONGRATULATIONS!!!! So happy for your news. I went back to read your first post Feb 2019 and here you are having overcome your vaginismus. At Maze we recommend dilating immediately before intercourse to insure pain free penetration for the first few times you have penetrative sex. We also suggest maintenance dilation 3X a week (intercourse counts as dilation!).
    Can’t wait to read your entire success story!


    Congratulations BethT5!!! Woohoo!! Yes absolutely post your success story, we’d love to read it! I’m so proud of you for all of your hard work and persistence! You are a vaginismus warrior! 🙂 I second what Helen said, keep up with the up keep!


    Congrats BethT5! It’s so wonderful to hear about your success – I know it’s a great help to women still struggling to see people who have overcome vaginismus to build the sex life they want. You should be so proud of yourself, and we look forward to whenever you decide to share your story in full!


    BethT5, I am SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOo happy for you! CONGRATULATIONS!! I am so so so so insanely happy for you. I bet it’s the biggest weight off your shoulder EVER to not have to worry after years and years of anxiety regarding sex/penetration/starting a family! I COMPLETELY relate

    Sending love and more congratulations!! 🙂

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