As I mentioned in a previous post, I have kept vaginismus a secret from almost everyone that I know. The only people that know are my husband and my therapist.
At a recent therapy session, my therapist asked me why I hadn't told anyone. To me the answer is obvious- it's deadly embarrassing and shameful and I'd rather die than discuss it over a glass of Sauvignon Blanc on Friday night. My therapist asked me what I thought my friends would say. I said they would be shocked, but ultimately very supportive. But to be honest, they would probably be more shocked that I have kept it a secret from them, than shocked by the actual vaginismus itself.
I have an incredible team of lady-friends, most of whom I have known and loved for over 10 years. We have seen each other through break ups, pregnancy scares (obviously not mine!), many a career crisis, parent problems, engagements, marriages and babies... We are all fully functioning grown ups, with careers, relationships, houses and responsibilities, but when we get together with a bottle of wine and a 90s dance music playlist on Spotify, we revert to giggling, shrieking, gossiping girls, who tell each other EVERYTHING.
Except, we don't.
They don't know that, but there is a huge part of my life that I have kept hidden. I have never explicitly lied to them about having sex- it's more lying by omission. When we discuss contraception, I nod along and even manage to contribute, having been on the pill for years due to heavy periods. When we discuss sex, I laugh along and make suggestive, yet mysterious comments, hinting at a very exciting, yet private, sex life, but never ACTUALLY saying that I have had sex. It's very clever really. When we howl with laughter, discussing the moment we lost our virginity, I excuse myself and go to the bar/ the toilet/ outside for air... It's quite difficult to get around that one without a blatant lie.
What is sad is that I know if any of my friends came to me and told me they had this condition, I would be heartbroken for them, but would give them nothing but support and care. I wouldn't be disgusted or amused or embarrassed for them. And I know that they would do the same for me.
So why haven't I told them?
Maybe I should.
Bring on the wine and emotional chats...
GET IT TOUCH Y'ALL!
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