I still am, wink wink… okay rewind. I took the loyalty pledge and swore that I would remain a virgin until marriage. This was something that I was super proud of while in high school. Sadly, I –broke-my-virginity-while-riding-a-bicycle.
It was a beautiful afternoon and I was riding the bicycle real fast down a slope, and woops! there I was, hymen all over the place. Okay, to be honest, I thought one could lose their virginity from riding a bicycle… do I see someone judging me? No? Good.
You see how it starts? You set off on this state of being on heat, to taking care of the heat, to the point that you suffer for handling the heat. And if you know me well, I have a vice which is being a passionate sex lover, so you can imagine how hard it can be for me. Okay. Brain out of the gutter 🙂
Sexually active, yes! Enough libido, yes! Eager to try out positions, yes! Sex toys? Ahhhhh, hehe… So when I was diagnosed with Endo, I had already faced all these Endo-related sex symptoms. And let’s just say, the sex part was saddening, because it became extremely painful to the extent of not being able to handle the entire process at times.
See how a man would beg for ‘just the tip?’ Ha! That could be hell, too. You could start spotting in the middle of an amazing session, there you are, wonder woman and your nunu is your shield, conquering the world of D, and all of a sudden!!! The redzis visit. I mean, who does not want to enjoy some good stuff with her hubby? And I may sound as though I joke about it, but this is just so I do not fall into a pit of depression.
At some point, the fear of getting into the act started to build up – seeing my man kissing me seductively, and ending up lying that I’m constipated, just to disgust him and keep him off the idea :D. Those good old impulsive sex days are gone. Sex in the car? On the kitchen floor? Well sir, let me confirm with my calendar if that is possible and I’ll confirm next week. However, once you get to know your body, you may still end up being as spontaneous as always.
But it is not all bad, especially once you know what you are up against. You find ways to counter it. Someone once wrote to me and asked, ‘Jess, how do you enjoy sex then?’
Simple, I-don’t-have-sex-EVER!! hahaha! Just kidding.
Well, it all starts with one thing, communication! One of the key things that I learnt was that, when you have Endometriosis, you have to be honest with your partner about what your body is going through. So I have always discussed which positions might be better than others, and/or what fun sex things I can do that don’t involve intercourse.
You see, your partner may be going through a lot of different emotions, so finding out what works for both of you will not only improve your sex life, but may lead to discovering a whole bunch of new techniques that you might not have even considered before.
Anyway…Below are some additional tips that I have for you
Open and honest communication between you and your partner. I got to learn that both of us needed to be patient and understanding towards each other. In particular, we needed to develop an awareness of each others’ predicaments and feelings. As a woman with Endometriosis, I needed to explain to my hubby the nature of my pain, and how it affects me, physically and emotionally.
Secondly, Experiment! Experiment! Experiment! Some women are able to enjoy intercourse if it is shallow, or of slow and gentle penetration. So we started to experiment with a lot of foreplay. Some of us are able to have pleasurable intercourse if there is plenty of foreplay to stimulate the natural lubricants in the vagina. Or if you are on hormonal treatment and cannot get satisfyingly wet, artificial lubricants such as Durex Play can be used.
My doctor told me that even with the most patient and sensitive experimentation, some women with Endometriosis will not be able to experience pain-free intercourse. If this is the case, you need to find other ways of sharing intimacy – after all, intercourse is not the only way of being intimate!
Lying in bed together, kissing, hugging, holding, stroking, massaging, and mutually masturbating can be just pleasurable as intercourse if you want it to be.
Track your cycle and try at certain times of the month.
For most of us, discomfort caused by Endometriosis is constant. But the pain becomes even more excruciating during your period – and sometimes during ovulation. What I came to learn is when you keep track of your cycle, you can also keep track of any symptoms related to Endometriosis. This will help give you a better understanding of what time of the month influences potential pain the most, and when you’re more likely to be pain-free.
There are free mobile apps you can download, such as Flo Period Tracker, to log your cycle. Or you could keep track of your period by creating your own menstruation calendar.
Try different positions.
If you have Endometriosis, you may find that some sex positions will cause you intense pain. The missionary position tends to be the most painful for me since because of how my uterus is tilted and the depth of penetration.
Experimenting with different positions has taught me and my partner which ones hurt and which ones to try only at certain times, so that we can have the most pleasure during sex.
Although which positions are considered better will vary from person-to-person. Think modified doggy style, spooning, raised hips, face-to-face, or with you on top.
Find the right rhythm.
Sudden deep penetration and quick thrusting can exacerbate pain for most of us with Endometriosis. Finding the right rhythm can help you experience less discomfort during sex. Talk with your partner about slowing down and not thrusting as deeply during intercourse. You can also switch positions so that you can control speed and limit penetration to a depth that feels comfortable for you.
Plan for potential bleeding.
Bleeding after sex, known as postcoital bleeding, is a common symptom of Endometriosis. Postcoital bleeding can happen because penetration causes the uterine tissue to become irritated. The experience can be frustrating, but there are ways you can prepare for potential bleeding.
The bottom line.
Although Endometriosis can have a negative impact on your sex life, it doesn’t have to stay that way. Communicating with your partner about Endometriosis and its effects on your sexual desire, as well as pleasure, is key to your relationship. Do not let your partner view you as some fragile doll. Endometriosis doesn’t define you or your sex life.