Still stuck with soreness after sex – any motivation or tips?
May 10, 2022 at 5:44 pm #53436tetra444Participant
Hi, there. I posted about a year ago, here is the thread: https://www.mazewomenshealth.com/forums/topic/mostly-cured-but-still-have-soreness-after-sex/
A short summary first. I’ve had the diagnosis for over two years now, and in 2021 I made huge progress by getting a proper physical therapist who showed me good stretching exercises and got me in to a good dilation routine that lasted for about two months. Since then tightness have not been an issue, neither has any symptoms related to tightness been present (stabbing pain and burning, that I had before).
I do however still have an issue with being sore after sex. Almost always I will get a rift during sex, which I either notice right away or afterwards. It hardly bleeds any amount that is visible, but my partner can see it clearly when I notice the rift happening. I then have pain down there for at least 2-3 days, and never attempt sex again before 4-5 days (all though now a days we only attempt sex about 2 times a month or less).
This has absolutely killed my sex drive. I still had a sense of libido in 2020 and 2021, but I have not had any sex drive for at least 6 months. I don’t want sex, I don’t care for it. It just makes me sad. I’m crying as I’m typing this as it honestly feels like a part of me is “dead”. I’m constantly worried my partner will leave me, as we have no intimacy any more. I have a hard time pleasing him sexually as I really don’t care for any sexual activity anymore. Whenever we go 2-3 weeks without any sex, I notice I get sexually frustrated, but it’s all mentally. My body is just turned off all the time.
So in the previous thread I was given the advice to use oils and/or estrogen cream in the problem-area (right at the entrace of the vagina), as it is supposed to strengthen the skin, as it feels quite fragile. I did this for several months. After a couple of months, I went to my gyn who had no ideas other than a zink-cream (not sure what it’s called in English, but the main ingredent is zink anyways) as it is supposed to heal wounds. I noticed less tearing/rifts after a few weeks, but it still hurt afterwards. I then used vaginal suppositories with hyaluronic acid in them, every night for at least a month. I felt my vaginal walls becoming thicker and stronger – and it reminded me for a minute about how my vagina probably was before all these issues.
Unfortunately, none of these creams seemed to have helped anything during sex, even though I felt “healthier”, and after I stopped, my vagina now feels fragile again, and I tear every time I have sex. I’m about to try round 2 of the same treatment listed above, just because I feel like I HAVE to do something, I can’t just give up.
In January of this year I contacted another physical therapist, and she said I have a little bit of tightness (probably because I don’t dilate frequently anymore) and has given me several exercises to strengthen my pelvic floor and increase blood flow. Her theory is that I have too little blood flow to the area, making the skin at the entrance weak and vulnerable for tearing. I now do those exercises every day, and even though I feel like I have more control in the pelvic area (I can relax/strengthen “on command”, even during sex/penetration), I still get tearing.
I use tons of lube every time, I sleep naked and use cotton underwear. I never use soap near my vagina either, and have no allergies.
I’m sorry for the way this is all worded, I’m rambling a little. But I am honestly at loss. Nothing seems to work. I’m getting so depressed by all of this. Luckily I have a very good life otherwise. I enjoy my job, have a lot of friends and hobbies and am mostly a very happy go lucky person. But it’s extremely painful to live with this every day. It honestly feel like I’m mourning over the loss of a loved one or something. It’s awful.
Now, does anyone have any tips? Anything you can see in my story here that I haven’t tried already? Or maybe haven’t tried for long enough?
My next step if nothing works is to quit birth control. I’ve been on hormonal birth control (pills) for 10 years, with no issue for the first 7, so I have not really believed much in this theory that it’ll work. But at this point I can’t even call myself sexually active anymore, so perhaps quitting for a few months is worth a try.
Sorry again for the rambling and long text.May 21, 2022 at 10:25 pm #53643recessivegenequeenParticipant
Hi Tetra444 – I’m so sorry to hear about this long and frustrating situation. I haven’t had the particular tearing issue you describe, but having suffered from vaginismus for years before finally getting treatment, I understand completely what you mean when you talk about feeling like a part of you has died. It’s so hard to feel arousal or desire when you have such an inextricable link to pain with sex. I dealt with this last year because I’d experience major pain after my partner ejaculated inside of me – it turned out to be some sort of issue with his semen, which I think was irritating me internally, because once he started pulling out before ejaculating, the pain went away. All that is to say that I came to dread sex – I would enjoy it at first, but ending on the experience of pain cemented it in such a negative place for me for awhile. Your feelings are valid and it’s understandable why you would not be feeling in the mood.
It sounds like using the creams again is definitely a good starting place, as is getting back into dilating to make sure you’re as stretched out as possible. I think changing your birth control is a strong possible next step. I had to get on the pill a couple of years ago because of an issue I had with a cyst forming, and taking hormones just has all kinds of effects on the body – which also change as we age. I know I don’t have a lot of practical advice to offer, but I want you to know that you are brave for keeping with this exploration and I sincerely believe this is just a season in your life. This part of you can come back to life again, and I can tell you have the resilience to get to that place.
I hope that this next approach works for you, and please let us know how it all goes!
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