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Author Topic: painful sex?
katie gurl
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my boyfriend & i have tried to have sex two times now & everytime he tries to penetrate me, he can only get the head in & my vagina feels like it's tearing. it feels like if he goes in anymore it won't fit. i've asked him if he feeels like his penis is running into anything & he said no, but it feels like the penis is in the wrong direction. like when you insert a tampon in the wrong direction & hit the wall. i tried to insert his penis myself because i know the angle of my body & it still did not work. my two closests friends just lost their virginity & i want to have sex & them talking about it makes me wanna cry. i feel so bad for my boyfriend, is there anyway i could be helped? do i have vaginismus?
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Heather
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Okay, first things first. It's going to be okay. Two times of trying something is...well, only two times of trying something.

Sex -- be it intercourse or any other kind -- is like anything else: getting it just right tends to take practice.

Have you already read this -- From OW! to WOW! Demystifying Painful Intercourse -- and thought about, talked about, and tried everything on it, including staring with a sexual health exam to find out if this is or isn't about a physical issue, including making sure you are HELLA sexually aroused and excited first, including using plenty of lubricant, etc?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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katie gurl
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yes he had a lubricated condom, he bought female & male lubricant & used both! i was pretty aroused, but i've never been able to "come" before, does that mean anything?
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katie gurl
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i just read it, i am nervous about pregnancy, but we haven't even really had sex & i am on birth control & we used the strongest condom-so my fears weren't present at the time.
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Heather
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Not being able to reach orgasm doesn't mean vaginal entry will be painful, no. Orgasm is something that is mostly about the brain and central nervous system, not about your genitals. And someone who orgasms all the time could still experience pain with entry.

So, you did use lubricant: check.
And you say you were not feeling t all anxious (even though it seems like you feel like intercourse going well is a huge deal, so you probably did feel anxious).

How about the other things on that piece there, like having a sexual health exam to see if this is anything physical?

Or again, not being "pretty" aroused, but VERY aroused? How about engaging in plenty of sexual activities that aren't intercourse that you get a lot of pleasure from first, and for more than just a few minutes?

How about communication between you, and things like experimenting with positioning, etc?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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katie gurl
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maybe anxious wondering what it'd feel like to have a penis inside of me? but not anxious, i did not anticipate pain because my friend told me there was barely any pain! i go once a year to see if it is anything physical, but i'm not due for my one year check up yet. my boyfriend & i performed oral & manual sex on each other, so i felt aroused, i wanted to have sex. i wouldn't know the difference between pretty aroused & VERY aroused:/ we've been together for 10 months & i still always feel like i am doing something wrong physically. i never know:/ he usually is the one pushing for more physical things, but for the past month it's been me, but i just don't know. & yes the first time we tried bottom, top, standing, backwards, sideways, everything we could think of that wouldn't make the vaginal muscles tense :/
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Heather
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Also, have you experimented with vaginal entry with your own masturbation? If so, how has that gone: the same? Different?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Heather
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Can you tell me a bit more about what you mean by:
• "i wouldn't know the difference between pretty aroused & VERY aroused:/ we've been together for 10 months & i still always feel like i am doing something wrong physically." And...
• "he usually is the one pushing for more physical things, but for the past month it's been me, but i just don't know"

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Heather
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Oh, and with the annual GYN exam you have: have there ever been any issues or problems with your speculum exam?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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katie gurl
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i don't masturbate, i never feel the need to, so i never have! but fingering the first time wasn't painful!
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Heather
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Let's keep taking more to try and get to the bottom of this, but already, if insertion with fingers has felt good and not painful, and there have not been any issues with speculum exams, you can rule out vaginismus.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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katie gurl
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Can you tell me a bit more about what you mean by:
• "i wouldn't know the difference between pretty aroused & VERY aroused:/ we've been together for 10 months & i still always feel like i am doing something wrong physically." well i've never been able to come when he fingers me, i don't know if that's normal. but with talking to other girls they say the vaginal muscles contract (which it happened once but it was oral sex so idk if anything came out)

• "he usually is the one pushing for more physical things, but for the past month it's been me, but i just don't know" he used to say i never have the drive to do anything physical with him, which is true. but since the beginning of november, i've been the one iniating anything physical. so wouldn't that mean i would be easily aroused?

since i am 17, i haven't been allowed to get a speculum exam yet. but i do go to the OBGYN for irregular flow, ovarian cyst, etc..

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katie gurl
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fingering only feels painful when he has his finger completely in & his hand is pushing against the outside of my vagina!
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Heather
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Okay, sounds like we need to clear up a few things for yu before we move formward.

Orgasm and ejaculation aren't the same things, not even for people with penises. But they are even more separate for people without a penis. Female ejaculation is fairly rare, and can happen with or without orgasm. More times than not, when someone with a vulva reaches orgasm, nothing "comes out." However, during arousal, and sometimes orgasm too, vaginal lubrication is typical, but it's not triggered by orgasm the way ejaculation often is with guys.

As well, the muscled of the vagina contract...well, they can during a bunch of things, not just with orgasm. You contract some of them just when you urinate, for instance.

If you've seen an OB/GYN for ovarian cysts, you should have had a speculum exam. And there's no age someone has to be to be allowed to get those. Rather, it's something a doctor would or wouldn't do based on need, and investigating things like symptoms with cysts would be one reason to do that exam.

quote:
he used to say i never have the drive to do anything physical with him, which is true. but since the beginning of november, i've been the one iniating anything physical. so wouldn't that mean i would be easily aroused?
No. If you did not feel any desire to be sexual with this person, that would mean you were not feeling desire. (And if you were not and he was pushing for sex, or you had any kind of sex when you felt no desire to, we should talk about that.)

Being aroused, sexually, means that in your mind and body, you are feeling "symptoms" or effects of your sexual response cycle revving up. Things like, well, feeling stronger and stronger desire to keep engaging in sex once you've started at a given time, feeling your genitals and other body parts become more sensitive or fuller, feeling your heart rate rise, your breathing bet a bit faster, a little dizzy even. make more sense now?

We can keep talking, but it's sounding to me like part of the issue here may be heading to intercourse too soon for you, before you've really spent enough time exploring your own sexuality, including with masturbation, exploring sexual activities and your sexual responses with other activities, finding out what really revs you up and what doesn't, and, of course, making sure you really are feeling the desire to be sexual in a relationship or situation where you weren't pushed there at all, or feel you need to have a certain kind of sex to make someone happy (you said you felt so bad for your boyfriend intercourse didn't work out right away).

So, like I said, we can keep talking, but my best advice so far, based on what's come out of our discussion, would be to chill out on intercourse for now and take more time getting there, so you have some more of the things in place -- knowing what very aroused is, feeling strong desire, knowing your own sexuality more apart from with your boyfriend, maybe experimenting more with fingering, since you enjoyed that, etc. -- that support intercourse feeling good and going well.

I'd also include in that thinking about how loaded this is for you and seeing if you can't unload this some. For instance, friends often aren't honest about their sexual experiences with friends, so some of your friends may not be having the awesome intercourse they say. It taking more than a few times for intercourse to go well is no great tragedy for your boyfriend: it should be no big deal, seriously. And any one kind of sex going a certain way based on our expectations or how friends talk should be something we feel more relaxed about. Things like all of that can play a big part in something like this both becoming a bigger issue than it should be, but also going poorly because we have packed it with so much worry, you know?

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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katie gurl
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yes this makes sense. my boyfriend isn't pressuring me into having sex, i was the one who asked & he was conflicted with religion-so i didn't want him to think his decision was a bad one. but yes "feeling stronger and stronger desire to keep engaging in sex once you've started at a given time, feeling your genitals and other body parts become more sensitive or fuller, feeling your heart rate rise, your breathing bet a bit faster, a little dizzy even" that has happened before. it's just very frustrating because i wanted it to be exciting & satisfying but it was none of that. it was just extremely painful & made me cry!
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Heather
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So many people have some really unrealistic expectations about vaginal intercourse, especially with first-time intercourse. The sense it will be so much more exciting than anything else, be satisfying, etc? Well, that happens for some people, but not others, just like some people have that kind of experience with oral sex, but not others, etc.

Know what I mean?

But it does sound like you have a handle now on what becoming aroused can feel like: would you say you were felling those kinds of ways, in big ways, before and during these attempts at intercourse?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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katie gurl
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i felt my heart racing faster & i couldn't stop kissing my boyfriend. but nothing like the dizzyness & such, that was something else. if you're VERY aroused, is the vaginal opening wider?
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Heather
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So, what usually happens in terms of the vulva and vagina with high levels of arousal are some or all of the following:
• increased vaginal lubrication
• vaginal "tenting" where the cervix moved back further, creating more room in the vagina
• a relaxation of the muscles of and around the vagina
• increased blood flow to the area, which tends to increase the size or fullness of the mons, inner and outer labia and internal and external portions of the clitoris

You can probably see how all of those things can contribute to ease with any kind of vaginal entry.

I think one thing for you to work out, through thinking, talking and experimenting, is why fingering feels good but intercourse hurt. My best guess is it's more mind than body, but that's something you'll need to figure out.

On that note, did you ever get any help/treatment with the severe depression you were having a while back? If not, that certainly can have a big impact on both desire and arousal for all and any kind of sex.

How about working out the body image stuff that was going on between you and your boyfriend in terms of how he was talking about your genitals? Did that improve and get resolved? If not, that's something that could be yet another factor here.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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katie gurl
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yeah that'd make sense why it would be easier to have sex.
i didn't get any treatment or help, but every feeling i had went away. i used to feel like just punching my pillow & crying, but about a month after that post i started to feel like i was in eternal bliss & i don't cry for no reason anymore.

& yes, we had a big discussion. i told him how hurt i was. it ended up spiraling out of control as to where i said something extremely hurtful, along the lines of falling out of love. he showed up to my house (even though he was out of town) & i cried so hard because i knew i didn't mean it & i thought he thought i really did mean it. but he understood where i was coming from & he says now that he really isn't bothered by the taste/smell. he is always really excitied for oral sex!

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katie gurl
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is there anyway birth control could be affecting the situation in anyway?
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-Firefly-
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Hi Katie,

Sorry your question was missed! By birth control, do you mean the combined pill (i.e. one that has both estrogen and progestin)? If so, then it's possible that it has an impact on how much desire and arousal you feel. Some pills can have that effect on some people. It may be worth discussing this with your doctor and seeing if taking a different pill might help.

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