Losing your virginity comes with a flood of different emotions like excitement, fear, happiness, oh, and pain. Wow did you not expect the pain, but you heard it's supposed to hurt a lot less the second time, and every other time after.
Only, for you, it's painful every single time, you tense up and don't know why. Your partner tells you just to relax, but it's not that easy, and it feels like it's something you can't control. Why does this happen? I might just have an answer for it, and a way to make it better.
Pelvic Floor Dysfunction. Pelvic what now?
Pelvic Floor Dysfunction, according to a blog written by the Florida Hospital, "refers to a wide range of disorders that occur when muscles of the pelvic floor are weak, tight or torn." Ouch. The pelvic floor muscles keep your organs in place, and when they are weakened, you can develop PFD. The range of symptoms can go from the strong frequent urge to urinate, painful periods and difficulty with going a number two. The symptom I found most surprising was painful intercourse.
This isn't something my gyno ever talked to me about or even my regular doctor. I literally just found out this existed, and it makes a lot of sense in terms of the issues a lot of women, in particular, have with their sex lives.
Definitely do not pull a me and self-diagnose, talk to your gyno. I have researched a good chunk of ways that this issue can be fixed, or at least made more bearable. We deserve a sex life that doesn't involve pain to the extent we experience it, it's time to be liberated ladies!
Try doing yoga. Three out of four women surveyed said their sex lives improved in all aspects due to doing yoga. Yoga relaxes you, which is where the benefits of a better sex life come from. You can try yoga in a class, or even watch a video on Youtube and teach yourself.
Kegel exercises are another thing to try. Kegel is when you contract and relax the muscles of your pelvic floor, where your uterus and bladder are held in place. The goal is to give your muscles a toned effect, and this can result in reducing pain (yay) during sex, being aware of yourself climaxing/ having a better orgasm (HELLO) and helping with urinary incontinence too. The basics are pretending you're holding your pee when you really have to go. Do this for two to three seconds on an empty bladder and then release. Once you get the hang of it, do about five sets of ten reps a day, and await the improvements.
There is also pelvic floor physical therapy you can try. The International Society for Sexual Medicine says you are "taught how to contract and relax pelvic floor muscles in relation to other muscles and breathing and timing techniques to make the exercises more effective. These exercises can stretch tight muscles, strengthen weak ones, and improve flexibility." Other forms of therapy include self-education, manual therapy, pelvic floor biofeedback, electronic simulation, and vaginal dilators. I know some of those terms sound like a foreign language, so I'm linking the website for you all to check out.
In terms of sex positions, it's honestly up to you and how you feel. Experiment with what feels good and what doesn't feel so good. If you have a solid man in your life, he'll do whatever he can to make sure you feel the best you can. Use a pillow under your pelvis and have him hit it from behind, because sis, it makes the world of a difference compared to the lovely standard missionary. That's something I've heard helps. Cosmopolitan has done a fabulous job of listing five positions you should try if sex hurts, and I hope they work and feel as great as they look.
To all my ladies who experience painful sex on the regular, I feel you, and we deserve better. Talk to your gyno about what you're experiencing, and don't let any guy tell you to "relax and stop tensing up." Have some great sex!