20th November 2001: “I feel like an unwoman”

This is an extract from my diary, when I was 17. For a few months, every time I tried to lose my virginity and have sex with my boyfriend, it didn’t work because I had vaginismus – the anxiety made my vagina involuntarily clamp shut.

“It was Rob’s and my 6 month anniversary yesterday. We tried to have sex again but didn’t manage.

It’s so frustrating. I feel like an unwoman. How can it be so difficult to have sex?

Rob was nice about it, told me he loves me anyway, and it doesn’t matter to him, but it matters to me! Everyone can have sex, why can’t I?

He annoyed me because he said he had to go, and it’s been OK recently, him going. We’ve been working on it. This time he said he’d leave by 11.30, but by the time we’d finished trying to have sex, it was 11.45.

Still, I was SO upset, I felt like such a failure. I wanted him to stay for another 5 minutes. Just for us to lie together because we hadn’t hugged since we gave up on sex. He agreed, grudgingly, but then after 2 or 3 minutes he leapt up, saying he really had to go.

Even when I was hugging him, he was trying to get away.

Thing is, I know he really does love me, so although I feel insecure sometimes, with him I do know he loves me. It’s not insecurity so much with him, it’s just general annoyance.

Stuff he does just pisses me off because it’s thoughtless, not so much because I worry he doesn’t love me.”

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