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Ask Trixie : We're ready to have sex but I'm really worried about it hurting.

I've been dating my boyfriend for a while and were ready to have sex but I'm really worried about it hurting. I am very sensitive to pain and I am wondering does it really hurt that badly? What should I expect? – Anonymous

Hi Anonymous - Thanks for writing!

Because we’re all built differently it’s hard to know whether vaginal penetration is going to hurt or not. It didn’t hurt at all for me, and I didn’t bleed either. But some of my girlfriends had a pretty rough time of it.

The good news is that foreplay is your best friend! As you get more aroused, you’ll probably get more lubricated and relaxed, which will help. And be super generous with the lube! You or your boyfriend could also try to gently insert one finger and see how that feels. Slowly work your way to two fingers. Some women I know have had a lot of success with a set of graduated vaginal dilators (here's an example of what I'm talking about) but they do cost some money.

If it hurts, stop and do something else that feels good. Intercourse isn’t the be all and end all, and if it takes a while to make it comfortable, don’t worry. By the way, penetration with a penis or dildo can be sometimes be painful the first time or the 50th time, depending on the size of what's going in there. But if you're relaxed, aroused and well-lubricated and it's still very painful, please talk to your gynecologist to see if there's anything else going on physically like vaginismus. Here's a good post from Scarleteen you should also read.

Good luck!

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