Category Archives: Health

Gay man sues Chinese psychiatric hospital over ‘sexuality correction’

A gay man from northern China is suing a psychiatric hospital he alleges attempted to “cure” him of homosexuality with drugs, confinement and beatings.

The 32-year-old, who uses the assumed name Yu Hu, claims he was held against his will at the Zhumadian No 2 People’s hospital in Henan province in October last year. There, he was forced to undergo what doctors called “sexuality correction therapy”.

“During his confinement, Yu received coerced treatment, including medication and needle injections, as well as physical and verbal abuse,” Chinese media reported on Tuesday after a local court agreed to hear the fruit seller’s case.

His 25-year-old partner, who asked to be named only as Yang, told the Guardian Yu had been forcibly admitted to the hospital on 8 October after family members, including his wife, discovered he was gay.

About two weeks later, Yang raised the alarm after Yu asked to be rescued. Yang said he eventually secured his partner’s release with the help of Ah Qiang, a prominent LGBT rights activist from Guangdong province.

Homosexuality was legalised in China in 1997 and the country is home to an increasingly vocal gay community. Shanghai’s annual gay pride celebrations, which begin on Friday and have the theme “I Am Me”, are now in their eighth year.

But activists say some hospitals and doctors continue to prescribe drugs and use electroshock therapy as a bogus form of “conversion therapy”.

Last year, Channel 4’s Unreported World broadcast undercover footage showing employees at one clinic in the city of Tianjin administering electric shocks to a gay rights activist.

Reached by phone on Tuesday, Yu declined to be interviewed.

Yang said the hospital’s actions had left Yu feeling traumatised and afraid. “He even has nightmares about being forced to take drugs and being beaten and tied up in the hospital.”

Yang said he hoped a legal victory would put Chinese hospitals offering “conversion therapy” out of business.

“I want to make it clear that homosexuality is not a disease. It cannot be cured. I want this to be a warning to those hospitals [that claim it can be].”

An official who answered the telephone at the offices of the hospital’s Communist party committee on Tuesday afternoon said they were not aware of the case and had yet to receive a summons from the court.

 

By Christy Yao

When forbidden sexuality meets unchanging religious tradition

(RNS) Multiple reports are surfacing that Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen’s profile was found on gay dating apps, that he had tried to pick up men and that on prior occasions he had patronized the Orlando club in which he massacred so many on Sunday (June 12).

If this is true, it matters a very great deal.

It might move the motivation for Mateen’s horrific act to a very different and psychologically more complex place in which one man’s inability to reconcile himself with his sexuality cost 49 other people their lives — and then cost him his own life.

It might end up making the motivation of the horrifying Orlando massacre look more like: I want you. God says I can’t want you. So I must kill you.

And it opens up the broader issue of the severe mental health challenges facing young people who discover, against the stern teachings of their religious traditions, that they are attracted to members of the same sex.

This intersection of religious authority and forbidden sexuality is a very dangerous one, and it must be navigated by all who are raised in religions that reject same-sex attraction and relationships. It is a problem in multiple religions, including Judaism, Christianity and Islam, and leaders in all religious traditions face the urgent responsibility to address it.

As a privileged married heterosexual and an evangelical Christian ethicist, I finally came to terms a few years ago with how terrible this problem is for LGBT Christians and embarked on a reconsideration process. It led me to a posture of solidarity and moved me to open up my traditionalist lifetime-covenantal-marital sexual ethic to include gay and lesbian unions. This was seen as a grave error by some of my fellow believers. But many LGBT people and their families were desperately grateful. It offered at least one way out of the impasse between traditional religion and sexuality.

Look at it this way. When a young person from a strict religious upbringing discovers the powerful force of his own sexuality, it is scary enough. But if that sexual interest flows toward people of the approved sex, religious authorities have at least a marginally comforting answer: You and your sexuality are normal, but you need to wait till you are married to have sex. It’s difficult, but it can be done. Pat on the back, and out you go.

But for lesbian, gay and bisexual young people, the answer is very different: You are not normal. Your sexuality is uniquely sinful, a rejection of God himself. You must repent and change. You can never act on these sexual attractions. How long must you wait to have a sexual or romantic relationship with someone you actually desire? Forever. You can never, ever, do it, or you will incur God’s wrath.

These answers come from all recognized and trusted authorities in the young person’s world — first parents, then also religious teachers and leaders, and finally most friends from church, synagogue or mosque. Quite often the answers are accompanied by the sternest, sometimes the cruelest, verbal, emotional and even physical violence. Even the very tentative declaration that a young person may be feeling some same-sex attractions can send religious parents and pastors through the roof. At best, relationships survive, but the person’s sexuality is rejected by those whose approval matters most.

So when the irresistible force of a forbidden sexual orientation runs into the immovable object of an ancient religious tradition, what is the affected person supposed to do?

A large number of young adults ultimately abandon their religious traditions as hazardous to their health. Some are in gay nightclubs early Sunday morning because they are welcome there — and would not be welcome in church eight hours later.

Others spend years attempting to conform their desires and behaviors to the religiously prescribed options, such as celibate singleness or heterosexual marriage, remaining in their religion at the cost of cauterizing their sexual identity.

Some ping-pong back and forth between these options, both of which they find agonizing and neither of which they can sustain.

Others eventually find peace in creating, or discovering, a version of their faith that can accommodate the sexuality they have, rather than the sexuality that the tradition demands they have. They find a place where they no longer have to choose. This is usually a very long and difficult process.

And it may be that one particularly troubled young man “solved” his problem over the weekend through mass murder.

So, to America’s orthodox religious leaders, I again ask:

Is the consistent, acute, totally predictable psychological distress caused to these young adults by your understanding of God’s moral rules a relevant consideration for your teaching and pastoring?

In light of this suffering and what is now known about human sexuality, do you still believe that this is what the God you are trying to serve really requires?

Might it be that some aspects of your understanding of sexual ethics are revisable rather than the eternal will of God?

Which of you will take some risks to get a serious conversation going about these issues in your faith community, on behalf of your own most vulnerable young people?

 

By David Gushee

Ask Auntie Gigi: How Can I Stop Feeling Ashamed Of My Sexuality?

Welcome to Ask Auntie Gigi, a weekly advice column where Elite Daily senior sex writer Gigi Engle answers your most burning sex questions.

Sexual health and wellness is extremely important in healthy relationships. But it’s often a taboo topic. Auntie Gigi is on a mission to overcome the stigma and help you become the most informed, sexually knowledgeable person you can be.

We’ll be exploring everything from anal and threesomes to sex toys and foreplay. No subject is too taboo. No subject is taboo PERIOD. This is a forum to explore your deepest desires and have your questions answered fully and with plenty of sass.

Information is the key to sexual satisfaction and Auntie Gigi is here to help!

Question from the reader:

Dear Auntie G,

I read your articles and I felt good because I am still not comfortable with my sexuality, but reading about a woman who is comfortable with her sexuality made me feel so much better.

I find myself to be a very sexual person and I don’t like it. I feel like people get turned off by my sexuality and I wish I didn’t have such a high sex drive. I also am looking for intimacy and I think that sometimes I use sex to feel that closeness. But I end up feeling emptier than before, like not just physically hollow, but emotionally and mentally. It is a terrible and debilitating feeling. I’m embarrassed about the number of people I’ve slept with.

So, my question is, how can I feel empowered by my sexuality instead of ashamed of it?

– Rae

Hi Rae,

Thank you for your openness and honesty. I really appreciate that. So many women need to know that they aren’t alone in feeling this way.

This advice is not going to be filled with the jokes, irony and puns that one might usually expect from me. No, this subject is far too important and deserves to be treated with delicacy and care, much like your sweet and delicate heart deserves to be treated with care.

Rae, I can tell that you’re a smart and strong woman. It breaks my heart that you feel like this about yourself. You should NEVER feel ashamed for being a sexual person. I want you to know that sexuality is a blessing, not a curse. I’m also acutely aware that this is easier said than done.

So, allow me to let you in on a little secret. Your Auntie G wasn’t always so sexually empowered. No, these feelings of contentment and strength in my sexuality took years of cultivating. Like most young women, I was told from an early age that boys don’t date “sluts” and that they don’t settle down with “easy” women.

My mother was always very open with me about sexuality and desire. She taught me to feel comfortable in my own skin and to embrace my womanhood, but even she once told me that “No one buys the cow if the milk is free.”

We women are socially conditioned to fear our sexuality, to act as the gatekeepers of men’s uncontrollable desire. We are the ones who must remain chaste to catch a husband.

And it is complete bullsh*t.

You say you’ve slept with a lot of guys. I say, so what? A number is just a number. I couldn’t tell you how many people I’ve slept with if my goddamn life depended on it. The amount of people you have sex with has nothing to do with who you are as a person. It definitely doesn’t make you a bad person.

You should not be scorned or punished for having a sex drive and for wanting to feel pleasure. That is a sick joke society wants to play on us.

So no, there’s nothing wrong with having lots of sex in and of itself.

What I do want to address are the REASONS you’re having sex. It’s one thing to be a sexual person and to sleep with people because you like sex. It’s another to use sex as a means to fill a void or to make yourself feel better or to make a guy like you. If you’re using sex as a weapon or a substance, that’s when it becomes dangerous and can damage your self-esteem.

There is no such thing as a slut. It’s a disgusting term. Sex is a healthy act everyone should feel empowered to enjoy.

But please also remember that sex should be beautiful and hot and FUN. It should never make you feel bad about yourself. You’re a vibrant, interesting, smart woman. Any man who dares to make you feel unworthy just doesn’t deserve you.

One of the best lessons you can ever learn is that if you let someone take advantage of you, they will. So, don’t use sex as a weapon, don’t use sex as the basis of your identity and don’t use sex to feel wanted by a man.

Use it only for yourself.

And please do it safely. Condoms are NOT optional. I’m serious.

I hope this helps.

Yours in lust,
XOXO Auntie Gigi

 

By Gigi Engle

Not just for the young: Sexual health is linked to general health, experts say

Grandma and grandpa are having sex. So are the great grandparents and likely even people in their 90s and beyond, regardless whether they have a partner. And sexual health experts say that’s a good thing. A very good thing.

Sexual health is linked to general health, so it’s important for people of all ages to take care of both, says Michael Krychman, medical director of the Southern California Center for Sexual Health and Survivorship Medicine in Newport Beach.

General health is a better predictor of sexual activity than age. Yet with age comes biological and psychological changes that can make sex frustrating or more challenging, but that is no reason to stop having sex and fulfilling sexual desire. Instead of surrendering to the societal myth that sex is for the young, Krychman said people need to communicate and ask for help in solving the problem or at least finding other ways to get pleasure.

“We are now understanding the combination of biological changes that happen: veins, arteries, nerves, hormones and social issues,” Krychman said.

Often for men that means erectile dysfunction and for post-menopausal women, vaginal dryness and decreased libido. Chronic diseases such as diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure and various medications can also affect sexual function.

It may not sound so sexy but Krychman compares boosting your sex life to boosting your financial life: have a plan and work hard.

“We think we are on autopilot,” he said. “But we really need to address those issues in a detailed fashion. Sexual health is very important. It takes time, money and effort.”

Spokane sex therapist Stephanie Kuffel said sometimes people need to shift their focus and concentrate on pleasure instead of more goal-oriented sex such as intercourse and orgasm.

“That can reduce the anxiety and pressure and make it more fun,” Kuffel said.

She agrees that it’s important for people as they age to talk about their sexual function and seek help. She encourages people to ask their physicians questions about sexual health.

Kuffel added that there are lots of good books on the subject of specific problems related to sex for those 50 and older.

Today it’s more socially acceptable to talk about sex issues for older adults — and the chronically ill. Perhaps it was the birth of Viagra, the little blue bill approved by the FDA in 1998 to treat erectile dysfunction. Soon after former Sen. Bob Dole, then in his early 70s, started talking about sex, it helped make the topic of sex dysfunction less taboo. In 2012, there were 8 million Viagra prescriptions written with total sales of about $2 billion, according to CNN.

Or perhaps it’s all those baby boomers — the self-absorbed “me” generation — who sparked the sexual revolution of the ’60s and ’70s taking charge in old age and demanding more of sex now that they are in their 60s.

Krychman said men have been able to talk about sex and their body parts for decades, but society wasn’t so open-minded about women and their bodies. He sees that changing in what he calls a second sexual revolution. Boomers, especially women, are demanding to know how to maintain a healthy sex life in the face of breast and other cancers, chronic diseases and medications.

In April, women got their first-ever drug, Addyi, to treat low sexual desire in pre-menopausal women. Even though there is no specific drug, Krychman said post-menopausal women can have great sex if they only ask physicians for help.

In 2007, the first comprehensive survey on the sexual behaviours and problems in people ages 57 to 85, the fastest growing segment of the population, was published in New England Journal of Medicine. Before then, the sex lives of older Americans weren’t researched and weren’t considered an important part of late life.

The study discovered that people are sexually active well into their 70s and 80s and think of sexuality as an important part of life. Even though sexual dysfunction is prevalent, the survey said sex problems are infrequently discussed with physicians.

Krychman is glad that’s changing and people are realizing sex is an important life-long desire and sometimes it takes work and professional help to have great sex.

“I think it’s important to bring a dialogue of sexual health into the forefront,” he said. “It’s not hopeless and helpless.”

By Erica Kurless

Female Orgasm 101: Clitoral Vs Vaginal

 

Controversy over vaginal versus clitoral orgasm is nothing new; it’s a debate that has consumed sexologists and psychoanalysts for the last 100 years. Modern research has just added fresh fuel to the controversy.

In 2014, a team of Italian sexologists published a review in the journal Clinical Anatomy that concluded vaginal orgasms don’t exist. Female orgasm is only possible if the clitoris is stimulated during masturbation, cunnilingus, partner masturbation or with a finger during intercourse. Penetration alone is not enough.

This latest swing of the pendulum – from the view that vaginal orgasm is the ideal that women should aspire to and anything else is second rate – is unlikely to have affected women. Indeed, one of the more interesting threads in this whole debate is the predominance of men’s voices. Perhaps what we should be talking about is why male experts dictate the parameters of women’s pleasure.

Frigidity and failure
Sigmund Freud was one of the first to investigate the “dark continent” of female sexuality. He declared the clitoral orgasm “infantile and immature“. A woman could claim sexual maturity only when she experienced a vaginal orgasm, he said, ignoring her “amputated penis“, the clitoris.

Inability to achieve vaginal orgasm meant a woman was “frigid” or “not a real woman”, claimed Freud and many of his followers. This failure was attributed to deep-rooted neurotic problems.

The pressure was on. To be “normal” and “mature”, women had to orgasm during sexual intercourse. And successive generations were diagnosed with sexual dysfunction when they failed to achieve this holy grail of sexual response. Many felt like failures; their bodies had let them down.

Unsurprisingly, faking orgasms during intercourse became the norm. No one wants her partner to think she is failing to be a “real woman”.

Celebrating the clitoral orgasm
Then US sexologists William Masters and Virginia Johnson came along. Observing couples having sex in the laboratory in the 1960s, they concluded women’s orgasms started in the clitoris and then extended to the vagina.

Any pleasure women experienced through penetration was due to the connection between clitoris and vagina. They reported “frigidity” as resulting from poor sexual technique, not women’s ambivalence about their social role. And that women were capable of multiple orgasm, while men were not.

Feminists in the 1960s took up this research with glee, declaring the clitoral orgasm the mark of a liberated woman. Some went further, arguing women should eschew penile penetration altogether. Now a symbol of women’s oppression, it was unnecessary for sexual pleasure.

The feminist argument went mainstream when Shere Hite appeared on the cover of Time magazine in 1987. She had interviewed 1,844 American women and declared the “true” female orgasm was clitoral. The female sexual revolution seemed to have been won with women speaking for their own sexual pleasure.

Phallocentric backlash
Then came the inevitable backlash. In recent years, there has been a proliferation of sex research attempting to establish the superiority of the vaginal orgasm, and the role of the penis in producing it.

In echoes of Freud, we are told the vaginal orgasm is the only way for women to achieve sexual, life and relationship satisfaction, as well as good psychological health.

Women who don’t have vaginal orgasms are described as emotionally unstable, with immature defence mechanisms and low emotional intelligence. Apparently, you can even identify a woman who has a history of vaginal orgasm by her walk – it is that central to her very being.

So what causes a vaginal orgasm, according to these researchers? Not stimulation of the clitoris during intercourse. Rather, a long penis, which allegedly gives an evolutionary advantage to well-endowed men. Or long-lasting intercourse, which we are told is much better than “foreplay”, with simultaneous orgasm during intercourse being the best of all.

Would it surprise you if I told you this phallocentric research is all conducted by men? Would their interest in the vaginal orgasm possibly have something to do with maintaining the primacy of the penis?

After all, the implications of the clitoral orgasm are grave for heterosexual men. Women can pleasure themselves (or be pleasured by each other) as effectively as they can be pleasured by a man if the penis is superfluous to their ability to orgasm. A man’s fingers become more important, or his smell, which some heterosexual women rate more highly than penis size.

A woman’s perspective
From a woman’s perspective, this whole debate is a little irrelevant.

Some women enjoy vaginal penetration – with penis or fingers – and gain considerable sexual pleasure as a result. Other women prefer to be touched, use a vibrator, or receive oral sex. A lucky few have orgasms in their sleep, in the absence of any physical stimulation. And some prefer to have a cup of tea.

To imply that all women are the same, that we should have any sort of orgasm and are dysfunctional if we don’t, is the most damaging part of this controversy.

Regardless of how orgasm is achieved, it is, by definition, an extremely pleasurable experience. And no woman I know would rate one form of orgasm as more “mature” than another. Most would just be happy to have one, any old way.

 

By Jane Ussher

Orgasms: Are We Expecting Too Much?

What is the ‘orgasm imperative’ and is it harmful to our mental health?

Scientists are now warning that getting too used to orgasms could actually be harmful to our mental health, naming the emotional risk the ‘orgasm imperative’. After shouting down the idea immediately, (how could expecting regular orgasms possibly be a bad thing?), we are now coming round to the reasoning behind it.

‘Orgasm Imperative’ is the term given to the pressure to climax during sex by couples across the globe. Although it doesn’t sound too problematic, the failure to make your partner come can cause huge emotional distress.

In current society, an orgasm is required in order to validate the act as ‘sex’. Both parties are expected to achieve climax (in perfect unison and harmony according to every Hollywood film ever made), and if one of the two fails to do so, the ‘sex’ is deemed a disappointment and sometimes declassified to ‘foreplay’ or even just a ‘fondle’.

‘Why didn’t I manage to satisfy them?’ ‘What did I do wrong?’ ‘Did they not enjoy themselves?’ ‘Will they find someone else who can?’ Shame and guilt are common emotions when it comes to sex and for what? It’s all natural.

Planned Parenthood statistics show that 30% of women have trouble reaching an orgasm during sex, with female sexual dysfunction rates as high as 43%. An inability to climax doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s a problem, it can be down to anything from insufficient clitoral stimulation to mood and timing in some cases.

We put far too much pressure on orgasms, with many people using it to judge their technique and to reassure themselves that their partner is still interested and engaged. By expecting to climax on a regular basis, we are setting our partners unrealistic goals and expectations that they simply cannot meet, causing shame, anxiety and guilt.

Many people struggle to orgasm and it’s ok to admit that. Removing the pressures from orgasms will lead to a much healthier and more enjoyable sex life.

By Jenny Proudfoot

21 Reasons It Hurts When You Have Sex

Because everyone knows that sex is supposed to feel good, it can feel sort of weird and awful when it doesn’t.

But pain during sex isn’t something to be ashamed of — especially since it’s a complaint that Alyssa Dweck, M.D., gynecologist based on Westchester County, New York, assistant clinical professor of ob-gyn at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and author of V is for Vagina, hears all the time. “It’s more common than you’d think, and there’s a lot you can do about it,” she says.

Typically, there are two culprits: Vaginal dryness or infection. (Note: Neither have to do with your “small vagina” or his large endowment. Men!)

Here’s why you might be experiencing pain during sex, according to Dr. Dweck — and her advice on what to do about it (besides see your own doc, who’s best suited to diagnosis you).

1. You use hormonal birth control. The hormones reduce fluid secretion so your vagina is naturally drier.
The fix: Lubricant can go a long way. Make a water-based brand like KY or Astroglide your go-to; rely on a longer-lasting silicon formula like Replens Silky Smooth, or Wet Platinum for water play; and try the very effective coconut oil if you use a method besides condoms for birth control and STD protection. (Otherwise, oil-based lubricant will break down the condom and render it useless.)

2. You’re a week away from ovulating. Your vagina’s natural secretions vary throughout your cycle and dip after your period but before your mid-cycle egg drop.

The fix: Use lubricant or wait until you ovulate (about two weeks before your next scheduled period). Mid-cycle, you’ll have more mucus-y discharge, which reduces friction for better-feeling sex.

3. You skimped on foreplay. Taking your time getting to the main event gives your body a chance to lubricate itself so painful dryness isn’t an issue.
The fix: Use lube or patience. Both should work👌.

4. You’re taking antihistamines. The daily allergy meds you take to dry up sinus secretions can dry out your vagina too.

The fix: Ask your doctor about alternative treatments so you can wean off the meds.

5. You did the worst job shaving. Depending on the wound placement on the vulva or labia, and the sex position you’re working with, infected hair follicles and shaving rash can make sex feel preeetty awful.
The fix: Treat the infected area with an antibiotic or hydrocortisone cream, and lay off sex until it’s cleared up.

6. You have a yeast infection. While yeast infections tend to be more itchy than painful, they alter the pH in your vagina, which can inflame vaginal tissue, causing pain upon penetration.

The fix: Abstain from sex until your yeast infection is resolved. (Topical OTC remedies can be a total a godsend.)

7. You have chlamydia. Frequently asymptomatic, this STD can cause scaring and inflammation that makes thrusting uncomfortable.

The fix: Abstain from sex until you can see your doctor to get tested.

8. You’re bloated AF. If you have IBS or colitis, or just wolfed an entire burrito, bloating can make sex feel particularly uncomfortable. Especially if you washed down said burrito with half a pitcher of margarita — sex with a full bladder is The Worst.
The fix: Wait until you digest or – at the very least — pee before penetration.

9. You have a uterine fibroid. This benign, non-cancerous uterine growth is made of muscle tissue. It’s miniscule and most people never even notice it — unless it grow large enough to get jostled around during sex.

The fix: An ultrasound can confirm this diagnosis, which is either left to go away on its own or surgically removed.

10. You have an ovarian cyst. This non-cancerous, fluid-filled growth on the ovary can cause pressure during sex — or acute and sudden pain, if sex causes the cyst to pop or leak. (The fluid is usually clear so you might not even notice.)

The fix: Diagnosed by ultrasound, there are a few treatment options: Relax and do nothing — cysts often go away on their own; have it surgically removed; or take birth control to suppress ovarian function and prevent cysts from growing (this last one is the best option for women with reoccurring cysts).

11. Your sex position isn’t working for you. The tilt of your uterus affects your comfort level during sex: Say yours is pointed backward, you’ll feel pain in missionary position and pleasure on top.
The fix: Switch positions — and try girl-on-top, which gives you more control in terms of depth and angle of penetration.

12. You have endometriosis. It’s when the cells that typically line the uterine (and do the whole shed-and-bleed thing every time you get your period) grow elsewhere — like on the fallopian tubes or on the tissue that lines the pelvis. While endometriosis has been linked to fertility issues and pelvic pain plus over-the-top cramping, the bleeding isn’t necessarily dangerous, just uncomfortable, particularly when scarring occurs.

The fix: See a doctor for diagnosis and treatment, which can include going on birth control or (sometimes) surgery.

13. You’re really pregnant. The closer you are to your due date, the heavier your uterus. When you lie directly on your back, the weight can compress a large blood vessel, causing discomfort that some interpret as painful.
The fix: Avoid lying on your back. Women who are further along in their pregnancies tend to be far most comfortable in doggy-style or side-by-side positions.

14. You use spermicide. Lots of women are sensitive to the stuff. If you’re one of them, the irritation can increase your risk of infection and microtears in the vagina. Ouch.

The fix: Use regular condoms to contain sperm instead of kill it.

15. You have vaginismus. This involuntary clenching of the vaginal muscles makes penetration painful if not impossible.

The fix: Sometimes triggered by psychological trauma or fear, treatment often involves therapy, so talk to your doctor.

16. You’re breastfeeding. Lactating and breastfeeding lower estrogen and make vaginal tissues more delicate.

The fix: Use a lubricant during sex and a vaginal moisturizer the rest of the time.

17. You’re going through early menopause. You’ll have low estrogen levels that cause dryness and thin vaginal tissues, making your vagina especially delicate — and susceptible to tears.

The fix: Use lube or talk to your doctor about estrogen pills.

18. You ODed on indoor cycling. Your regular cycling session can put pressure on the nerves and bruising on the vulva, which can to cause general discomfort that reveals itself in the form of pain during sex — particularly if you set your bike up incorrectly.
The fix: Use a padded saddle or wear padded shorts. Then raise your handlebars and/or lower your seat to change your positioning and alleviate the pressure.

19. You have vulvodynia. It’s a rare but miserable syndrome that causes chronic pain throughout the vulvar region — so not just during sex.

The fix: Because this is believed to be a neurological condition, there’s no go-to fix — your doctor might prescribe estrogen, steroid cream, or antidepressants to isolate the offending agent.

20. You have Sjogren’s syndrome. It’s a rare immune system disorder characterized by dry eyes and dry mouth and — yep — dry vagina.
The fix: Lube. It’s like magic!

21. The last time you had sex was Hard. Core. Rough, vigorous thrusting can cause microtears in the vagina that lead to scarring and sensitivity.
The fix: Abstain from sex until pain goes away, and make sure you’re properly lubricated the next time you have sex.

 

By Elizabeth Narins