Vaginismus and Low Sex Drive

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    Hi everyone,

    I was just wondering, are having vaginismus and a low sex drive correlated? I only started having sex a few months ago, I find it very painful and uncomfortable and now I don’t care to be physically intimate at all. Are these two separate issues or related? What should I do?


    Thanks so much for sharing, lemilyk. This is tough stuff, and I hope you find comfort in this community.

    Although women who have vaginismus share similar symptoms, nothing is universal. That said, yes – pain and low desire can often co-exist and evolve into a chicken-egg kind of situation. If you are currently seeking care for vaginismus, your provider might be able to offer you treatment for low desire as well. At Maze, we provide holistic care, meaning that we approach issues from both medical and emotional perspectives. Treating the whole person is important, as everything is connected!

    I wish you the best of luck, and please keep us posted!


    My vagina hurt so bad dueling sex! I don’t know what to do 🙁


    It’s ruiningy relationship I may even get a divorce. It’s awful…


    Lemilyk, I want to chime in and say this is a TOTALLY normal experience for someone who has come to associate sex with pain. My sex drive was really diminished in the relationships where I felt the most pressure to keep trying to have sex (which didn’t work until I got treatment). I think that even stronger than the anticipated fear of physical pain was the distress of the negative emotions that came with it, the anxiety, guilt, shame, disappointment, and self-loathing. This is why, as Jennifer mentioned above, the best vaginismus treatments center around treating both the physical reactions and the emotional baggage you will have accumulated from these experiences. I know that can be daunting, but please know that vaginismus is COMPLETELY treatable. I’m 2 years out from my own treatment and my sex drive is back to normal, I enjoy sex, and people I meet now and have sex with have no idea anything was ever abnormal about the sex I had. I hope you’ll seek treatment – it’s so good for yourself to get out of the cycle.


    This is definitely normal! And I agree with others: I think it can be helped if also working on the emotional portion of this very difficult problem.

    It’s probably difficult to have a high sex drive and be excited about sexual things with your partner when you associate sex with anxiety, pain, disappointment, fighting.

    Going to a therapist while also doing some kind of physical treatment (dilators) will help you gain that confidence back that you WILL eventually overcome the pain/vaginismus and eventually sex will be enjoyable. That’s the route I went. When working my way up to larger dilators and realizing that fitting something that big IS possible and CAN be done without pain, sex became a little less scary and my confidence that I could have penetrative sex soared!

    When you gain some of that confidence back, try to continue non-penetrative sex with your partner (like oral).

    I also hope you’ll seek treatment – there are sections on this group all about dilating, pelvic floor therapy, and/or botox if you want to know more!

    Keep us updated! We’re all here for you!


    I totally think that it is related. I would not have sex in my relationships and thought it was because of a lack of sex drive. I then thought it was due to the trauma of the rape in college. I do desire to have that intimacy and love relationship. This condition has messed up 2 marriages and important relationships and broke my heart. When I hear talk of sex I shut down and I get nervous about his size.
    It’s way past time that I do something about this condition.


    Jennicat – it’s good that you have an understanding of where you are emotionally regarding your situation. And I think there are always a lot of complex factors working together – trauma and difficulty having sex can affect sex drive, and low sex drive can compound the problems – it’s all a cycle that can keep you trapped until you seek treatment.

    I can tell you’re strong – you’ve been through a lot and haven’t given up. I hope you’ll spend some time reading about treatment on these forums. I think you really have the power to change your life!

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