Help - it hurts.

What do you do when sex is painful? I looked everywhere and did everything I could think of and felt alone and stupid and broken.

I read books that said they answered the tough questions and didn't find my answers. I went to the doctor and gynecologist and had exams. Everyone said I was healthy and fine. One doctor one time mentioned I had a little too much yeast and told me to get the Monostat yeast infection treatment which I did. I tried three different doctors with this issue and gave up. I went to therapy and had several good things happen which I will share but the physical challenge of pain during intercourse was not alleviated.

It is hard to describe how horrible it is to live in a society where sex is romantic and easy. In the movies they kiss a little and then are going at it. I would kiss my husband and go cold with the thought of the pain and discomfort coming next. Friends would talk about how they went at it like rabbits when they first met. I would smile and hide my embarrassment that from my honeymoon on I hated sex.

Yet here I am today having pain-free sex that I enjoy and if you are like I was - Don't give up!
My solution happened in three ways; mental, emotional, physical. I started therapy and doing some reading on my own and found out that I had a bad view of sex. I had been the victim of date rape as a teen and had developed very negative views of men and sex. I began to change my thinking to a healthier perspective and began to understand my husbands desires and needs as healthy and normal. I also began to see myself as God's creation meant for sex and intimacy with my husband. This was a mental change that helped prepare me for the emotional.

I began to change the way I saw and communicated with my husband. Instead of him being the enemy that wants the dreaded sex. I changed my attitude and perspective on how safe I was with him, how I loved and wanted to be with him, etc. I tried to share my true feelings instead of hiding myself behind silence or a facade. When he didn't reject me and my feelings I began to trust him and grow in intimacy with him. (we had setbacks on both sides - it wasn't all pretty) I began to relax more, communicate more and be more open to sex but I still had problems with a burning sensation and pain during intercourse.

I was doing research one day and found that I had the symptoms of a person with an overgrowth of yeast. Not just a yeast infection that many women get once in a while but an overall problem with overgrowth. Some people (men and women) get this from an imbalance of bacteria in the body. A common reason is antibiotics which kill the good bacteria or intestinal flora with the bad and create an imbalance. Based on the symptoms, I believe that I have overproduced yeast since I was a child and have had this problem without understanding it. I started taking the good bacteria or intestinal flora not knowing how it would relate to my painful sex symptoms but a few months later I had easy, pain free sex. No burning, no pain - just fun. I found out that the yeast is an irritant and even the lotions we used caused the burning sensations. This was all gone.

The journey was long and many avenues were used to find help but in the end we have a stronger, better marriage and a good sexual relationship. These may not be the same solutions for your issues, but the point is to keep looking, keep trying and lean on us when you need encouragement.