When I first started having sex, I was so excited to be doing it that I totally glossed over all the things that sucked about it. Like the learning curve of figuring out how to contort your body for maximum pleasure. Or the fact that even with condoms, it was always a bit of a mess to clean up. Or, dear god, the fact that sometimes it hurt past the point of pleasure. To the point where I’d have to push my partner off me because my vag and the general area around it were ridiculously sore, and would remain sore for hours, sometimes even days.
At first, I was able to rally because I was finally having orgasms on the regular and it was fabulous, but I realized that I was not okay with semi-excruciating pain being a side effect of having an active sex life. You shouldn’t ever feel a twinge of despair when sex is imminent – when people say that women don’t really start enjoying sex until their late 20s, I’m convinced that part of the reason is because no one ever really talks about how to alleviate the pain and we all flail in silent suffering until the proverbial light bulb clicks on and we stop tolerating vaginal abuse and start making sex more comfortable. So, ladies, if you’ve somehow internalized the idea that sex is supposed to hurt, trust me, it doesn’t. Here are a few ways to minimize the pain.
1. Learn to love lube.
Maybe I was just oblivious, but I was under the impression that my own lubrication would be enough to keep everything free of friction and smooth…which turned out to be very false. My china pot does work hard, but she does have her limits and that’s where lube comes into play. My preference is for silicone lube, but water-based is easier to find. Silicone is very long-lasting, which means it can be hard to rinse away, but I prefer it to water-based, because most of those have glycogen (ie, sugar) and I prefer to play it safe and keep my bits sugarless. If you’re into really aggressive sex or marathon intercourse, lube should definitely be in your arsenal.
2. Choose less demanding positions.
If you usually let your dude climb on top or get it in from behind, switch it up and try spooning or girl-on-top. Spooning is a very relaxed position that doesn’t allow for a ton of thrusting, so it’s a lot less taxing for you and when you’re on top, you can control the speed and depth to your liking.
3. Don’t skip the foreplay.
Foreplay serves a two-fold purpose – it helps gets you in the mood both physically and mentally. It’s key to be relaxed – tension down there is not going to be conduciev to a pain-free experience and good foreplay means you’ll be more naturally lubricated as well.
4. Don’t forget to pee after sex.
Intercourse (whether via a penis or a finger) pushes bacteria into places bacteria doesn’t need to go, which can lead to gnarly infections. Peeing flushes it out and decreases the chance of you being rushed to the emergency room because you’re in so much pain from a UTI gone untreated (not like that’s ever happened to me or anything…).
5. If the pain is truly unbearable, you might need professional help.
There’s a condition called vaginismus, in which penetration is beyond agonizing. According to Dr. Google, the best treatment is a two-pronged approach of sessions with a therapist as well as physical therapy (Kegels, dildo play). Sometimes vaginismus is triggered as a response to previous trauma, so that might be something you needed to unravel.
Bottom line: sex shouldn’t be painful (unless you’re into that, naturally). If your body is in misery after something that is supposed to be delightful and lovely, examine your routine and make some changes. Don’t endure unnecessary suffering because you think it’s normal or that you’ll get used to it – if you’re allowing foreign objects to take shelter in your vagina, the least you can do is make sure her comfort level is at its highest point.
[Image Via. Olena Pantiukh / ShutterSock]