Single and Dilating
October 17, 2013 at 8:30 am #9013
Hi ladies. In a prior post, this week, there was a question about having the procedure without a partner and using the dilators thereafter without intercourse. This is such a common feeling and please know that you are not alone with any of this at all and so many of Dr. Pacik’s previously treated patients have felt so similar in the past.
In a prior thread, the following has been written about these very concerns:
Patient 1: I’m wondering if I could hear from other women that went through the procedure without a partner and what their experience was like. I’m also curious how you ladies went about practicing intercourse afterwards without a partner.
Patient 2: I had my surgery in early July 2012. My cousin attended with me… and after surpassing the initial nerves, I felt comfortable and great in NH during and after the procedure. Getting used to the dilation process was interesting… and stressful in the beginning, but I was determined to make progress and follow through on Dr.P’s program. Upon returning from surgery, I was determined and continued with the program. I got purple in, pink and got blue in only a few times with lots of difficulty. My muscles were extremely tight and Dr. P mentioned that it would take me a while to stretch them out with dilation. A little less than a month after surgery, I had the opportunity to spend some time with the guy I was seeing and although I was nervous (about vaginismus, not about him) I pretended that “it’d had been a while” and I wanted to take it slow. He totally understood and we were able to achieve penetration on our “first” physical night, with little pain, lots of excitement and a lot of fun! Since then, it’s been getting better as I’ve learned to understand what I like, feel less nerves and become a bit more open with myself… he still has no idea about my struggles with vaginismus, and every now and then comments on how much better it is “now that we know each other”. I sometimes dilate a bit before I see him, but sometimes I don’t if I don’t have much time. While in NH I had the opportunity to see two great husbands with the patients that were sharing my room… they were concerned for their wives and doing everything to help them. I have also heard of wonderful partners that have gone through a lot to support their wives and girlfriends through the struggle – I think that is amazing! In some ways, I think it’s really very difficult for single women to enter into that surrounding without the same support… after all, all women are there because they want to be loved (pun intended 🙂 and when you don’t have that directly by your side, it’s hard not to feel self concious.. jealous… or even stressed. Regardless though, on the flip side, I think that in some regard, there’s an advantage to being single – you don’t have to tell any new prospects in your life about your struggles with vaginismus (if you don’t want too) and there is a bit less pressure to perform. You move at your own pace and do what’s right for you… and in some ways, that’s very freeing and liberating. Hope this answers your questions and concerns about being single and going through pre and post surgery. All the best to you (and all the other single ladies out there). I definitely feel for you… and understand what you are going through. Be positive, dilate and be strong (-:
Patient 3: First of all, I want to say you are in great hands! Dr Pacik and his team are incredibly compassionate and knowledgeable – they have changed my life. I’m single and was at the time of having my procedure in September last year. The opportunity for intercourse hasn’t arisen yet, and I’m still nervous at the prospect, because the last time for me was with my long-term boyfriend at the time (before I started having difficulties with Vaginismus). So I completely relate to your concerns about the first time. But once you have the procedure and are able to dilate, I’m sure you will feel a lot less nervous about it. Before I had it done I couldn’t even allow myself to think about dating again, let alone sex. Now that I dilate every day, with ease, I feel like intercourse will just be a natural progression when the time comes. I think I’ll take a similar approach the previous post and say “it’s been a while”…this will both gauge his patience and let him know you need to take it slow. If he’s not willing to do that it’s better to find out early, before sharing something so personal and misunderstood. I also just want to reinforce the importance of dilating – make time to fit it in, especially when you’re single. It keeps progress going (and anxiety at bay). All the best for your procedure, it’ll be smooth sailing! 🙂
In addition to this thread, Dr. Pacik has also written a great blog too: http://www.vaginismusmd.com/vaginismus/dilation/single-and-dilating/
He writes: “A number of my patients are single, yet they succeed in the treatment program. Once the Botox has been injected into the spastic muscles, continued dilator therapy is key to success and ultimately intercourse when the woman is ready.”
Please know that we are all here to support you and in your journey of overcoming vaginismus. In addition to the stories noted, I would love to hear from other women who have completed the treatment without a partner or while their partner was deployed? What were your experiences with dilation post-procedure and prior to having intercourse?November 20, 2013 at 8:27 pm #12179MollyParticipant
For all women concerned with entertaining the prospect of treatment for Vaginismus absent a parnter, I will introduce myself as a single woman who had the procedure on Monday (11/20/2013). I thought my life changed when I made the decision to have the procedure (sometime about February 2013). I underestimated the effect that the procedure would have on both my psyche and especially the way that I carry myself in the world now that I have been capable of dilation. Vaginismus has kept me from fulfilling sexual relationships with men since I was 16 years old. I did not even know that there was a clinical diagnosis of my condition, and believed that as a woman with broken access to sexual intercourse, I would just not be married or involved with someone for the duration of my life. When I googled my symptoms, I came upon Dr. Pacik’s site and immediately completed the contact me form. Within one week I mailed a 50% deposit for my procedure.
I had real fear about executing the post procedure schedule of after care without a boyfriend, but felt for sure that in order to achieve my goal of physical intimacy with a man I had to get this done, and if they (Dr. Pacik’s practice, single women on the forum) advised me that it was possible, I was not going to let fear of failure keep me from trying. The most difficult part of the process is reflecting on the years of my life where I shut myself off from relationships because I felt damaged.
The dilation is easier that flossing my teeth. I had the procedure Monday (11/18)/2013, and today I had to keep myself from over dilating (I have already done 4 hours, and recommendation from Dr. Pacik is 2 hours a day) due to the ease of the process, and how amazed I am that I am able to fully insert something in an area which was previously SHUT DOWN. The dilation is the easy part. I am two days away from the procedure, and I am my gratitude, enthusiasm and excitement continue to build. There is a momentum that comes from the painless procedure which builds as time elapses.
If you are single, don’t let that inhibit your decision to go through with the procedure. The procedure will get you (by means of granting you access to a fully realized sexual practice with your partner) to the relationship that you desire.
This (dilation as a single woman) is not hard. What is hard is reflecting on the lost opportunities to connect with someone because I owned my condition of Vaginismus as a personal failing. Today I dilated with the #5 glass (the largest I have in my possession is the #6 glass) and I was singing along to music to distract myself from apprehensive fear. I continued to do kegel releases and push until I realized that it was fully inserted. It was so easy I was blisssfully unaware that I had completed the process.November 20, 2013 at 8:54 pm #12180Dr. PacikParticipant
I continue to be amazed by your fortitude and courage. For someone who struggled with “complete vaginismus”, i.e. the complete inability to tolerate ANY form of penetration, you made amazing progress during the first day post procedure. I am happy that it continues to be easy for you, though others should know the first week or two can be difficult as you get used to the dilators. I hope to hear from you often and I know you will be able to guide many of our patients.November 21, 2013 at 3:32 pm #12183
Hi Molly. Welcome to the Forum and huge, huge CONGRATS on having your procedure this past Monday! This is so, so wonderful and I absolutely love reading your post! So many parts of it stand out for me. You wrote about not letting the fear of failure stop you from having the procedure. This is so worthwhile to read and I am so proud of you for going through with it. I, too, was terrified that I would fail and was the most nervous that I would not be able to do the dilating following the procedure. I didn’t ever believe that I could do this despite what anyone told me and it took actually going through it and doing it for me to know that it was possible; it had happened; and I was able to insert something inside of me for the first time. It was such a surreal feeling and I can totally relate to what you write “I had to keep myself from over dilating due to the ease of the process, and how amazed I am that I am able to fully insert something in an area which was previously SHUT DOWN.” You are doing so amazingly well post-procedure! You further wrote “the dilation is not hard … what is hard is reflecting on lost opportunities…” Please, please know that we are all here for you. Dr. P has so often written “you have to catch up emotionally to where you are physically”. I believe this statement is a work in progress and one of which I am still continuing to work on. Post-procedure, while I was able to successfully dilate and transition to intercourse, I would sometimes reflect and have issue with the fact that I wish so much I would’ve learned of this procedure and had it several years prior to when I did. I still very much wish this but I am so happy that I did discover it and it was the cure that I had been praying for 11+ years for. Now, I try hard to advocate so other women will not only understand the condition and associated symptoms but also, that there is a cure available in the form of this treatment. I get so, so happy when I read a post where a patient and forum member discovered this treatment through magazines, on-line blogs, forums, and social media – twitter, etc. I learned of Dr. P’s treatment through a yahoo Forum about vaginismus and still thank God that I happened to read that post on that night and then made the decision to contact the office. If you or anyone reading this post has any ideas of how we can collectively spread the word about vaginismus and this treatment, I’d love to hear all of your thoughts and ideas. Again, huge, huge CONGRATS on having this procedure and I can’t wait to read more of your posts. Sending hugs!!!!March 19, 2015 at 9:52 am #13686
Hi ladies. I wanted to share a recent excellent post:
I just wanted to comment quickly on going through treatment without a partner. I had a bit of a dramatic situation in that my then-boyfriend and I broke up two days after the procedure. I will say that I no longer felt pressured to succeed quickly, and I think things went much better for me without that pressure from him. I followed the usual dilation schedule that Dr. Pacik tells his patients (I did let him know that I had broken up with my then-boyfriend and therefore my situation changed, but was told to continue on like normal), and had absolutely no problem with transitioning to intercourse when the time came. CeeGee, as far as your question regarding dilating immediately before sex, I can only speak to my own experience but I didn’t and was fine. However, I must stress that everybody is a case by case basis, and even though I don’t dilate right before, I do dilate that day still.”
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