Vaginismus? And low sex drive

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    Firstly I was wondering whether my issues might be vaginismus? I sometimes have trouble physically inserting tampons, but when it comes to sex I have virtually no problems physically getting it in. The main problem for me is the awful burning/stinging pain I get if I try to insert anything bigger than a bullet vibrator. It’s utterly horrible. Sometimes just my fiancé putting his finger in hurts. I can often go from completely fine to stinging pain if he just moves it at a slightly different angle. Obviously inserting a penis really really hurts and my fiancé says he can feel me tighten up. Our usual strategy is just for me to be on top and to leave it there without moving for a few minutes, until the pain starts to fade. Sometimes it does completely but most of the time it goes away a bit, and the sex is slightly to moderately painful for the most part. It can go away during sex but certain positions are extremely painful. Any pleasure that was building up during foreplay often vanishes and even if the sex isn’t that painful, it’s like I’ve gone numb down there and don’t feel anything anymore. The initial pain from being entered just saps it away. There are the rare few times I actually find sex enjoyable but most of the time I just want to get it over with.

    I’m just so fed up with it and I don’t know what to do. It all started during my first ever attempt to have sex, with my previous boyfriend. He couldn’t get it in at all to start off with and it was excruciatingly painful. It got easier to get it in anc a bit less painful but it was still very painful. It didn’t help that our relationship started going badly and I didn’t feel able to say anything, so I ended up just enduring the painful sex for the rest of the relationship (I broke up with him because he barely ever wanted to spend any time with me and made out I had issues for not being OK with it). My current fiancé I have a pretty good relationship with and I’ve been able to be open about this with him and he tries his best to help. We’ve got the sex to be much less painful but it’s still a big problem. I also still endure it because if I didn’t, we’d never ever have sex.

    The other problem is I think this is having a huge impact on my sex drive. I used to have a very high sex drive as a teenager/young adult and used to fantasise constantly about men and sex. It started to change when I went on the pill but it was definitely still there. Over time, I’ve just got less and less interested in it, until a year or so ago it just completely disappeared. I no longer feel sexual thoughts or feelings of any kind, respond to seeing attractive men in any way, have any desire to do it or masturbate, and I now actually find the idea of sex repulsive. I have very sporadic moments where I do feel turned on but they’re quite rare. I still have regular sex dreams though for some reason. But yeah I’m finding it distressing being like this and it’s making me feel depressed whenever I think about it. I feel like the fact sex is painful and often unpleasurable has massively contributed to this. It also doesn’t help that I developed a chronic illness a few years ago which often makes sex exhausting and leaves me feeling ill for the rest of the day, so that along with the pain just feels like it’s not worth it. Is there any link between painful sex and low sex drive? I’m just sick of the whole thing and I just wish sex wasn’t a major part of a relationship, therefore I wouldn’t have to bother with the stress of it anymore. I do worry what effect the lack of sex is having on my fiancé (we’re still doing it but on once every few weeks on average), as well as the dissappearence of my sex drive. I don’t get much of a physical reaction to him anymore either, the same as with other men. I know I find him attractive, I just don’t feel it anymore.

    What do people think about this? I’m also not sure what to do about it. I’m feeling utterly hopeless. Things like this aren’t treated on the NHS (I’m in the uk), so you have to go private, which is too expensive for me. I’d love to see a sex therapist but it’s just not an option. I’ve heard about dilators, but would they need to be combined with therapy to work?


    Hi JCL1596, I’m so sorry to hear about your struggles! I myself have been there. It sounds to me like you do have vaginismus, BUT on the bright side… you’re able to insert small objects in there! That’s a great start! I highly suggest you buy a dilator kit! They come in a variety of sizes, starting off very small and working their way up to the size of a penis. I struggled with the dilators myself, and could not progress so I had the BOTOX treatment that changed my life! My success story is in the Forum under the category Success Stories, if you’re curious, titled The End To My Nightmare 2018.

    I 100% relate to your lack of libido. If sex isn’t fireworks and mind blowing, it’s really hard to crave it. If something is more of a chore for you, then pleasurable and intimate for you but rather painful… you’re not going to desire it. But I promise you this isn’t forever and there are steps you can take to get to the amazing sex life you deserve!

    Like I said, dilating would be a great start! You’d practice with the smallest size first. Insert the dilator, leave it in for a while. Once your comfortable, take it out and put it back in and begin slowly moving in and out. Do this every day if you can but don’t forget to listen to your body. Sometimes a day or 2 off is needed to regroup. When you’re comfortable, move on to the next size up! It will be uncomfortable but it should be bareable!

    And if that fails you, maybe try physical therapy! Once everything opens up again. Or even the BOTOX treatment. That was key to my success. And the ladies at Maze really really take care of you and it was worth every penny!

    I had sex dreams constantly, and even hearing some girl talk about her sex life made me feel so down on myself. It was on my mind 24/7. It was absolutely haunting. And sex is all around us. In movies, on the radio, on social media… it’s hard to ignore. But girl you’ve come to the right place, don’t ever ever give up or get discouraged. You can conquer this!!! This will be your war story and you will come out on top! My sex life is incredible thanks to Maze and every female deserves the same!

    Start doing your homework, research, try things out, you’ll beat this! 🙂 Never ever be hard on yourself either, it may be a wee bit of a process but the weight it takes off your shoulders afterwards makes it all worth it!


    Hello! I am sorry that this is happening to you, thanks for sharing your story. I’m too anxious to share my story, but soon I will write it


    Hi JCL1596 – I’m so sorry to hear about what you’ve been through. This strongly sounds like it could be vaginismus or another sexual pain disorder of some kind.

    At any rate, feeling pain you don’t want during sex isn’t something you have to just tolerate. I hope you aren’t feeling down on yourself for not enjoying or looking forward to sex under these conditions – how could you when it causes discomfort both because of vaginal pain and because of your chronic illness?

    Part of your recovery process will likely need to include rebuilding a more positive relationship between sex and pleasure for you, which is why a lot of people have a therapeutic component in their treatment, though everyone’s journey is different. I highly recommend ordering dilators as a first step – any kind of treatment path you do end up taking will involve the use of dilators of some kind. If you do consider going the botox route, we’ve got several people on the forums in the UK with vaginismus who have gotten botox in London, who you can read about here:

    Please know you are strong for all that you’ve already endured, but that you shouldn’t have to feel pain during sex! Treatment and a happier sex life ARE possible. Let us know if you have any questions and I hope you’ll find a treatment plan that works for you!

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