Painful Smear Tests

Hi everyone,

I’m 24, turning 25 in a month so I went for my first smear test yesterday. Friends had said it wasn’t pleasant but was overall quick and worthwhile doing. I didn’t think too much of it although I was feeling a bit nervous but excited to get the first one done.

I mentioned to the nurse that I was a virgin, to which she replied I didn’t need to do it if I didn’t want to, I decided to go ahead anyway and get it done.

It was EXTREMELY PAINFUL, I physically couldnt help but tell her to stop. She tried three times and could hardly put the speculum in at all. She asked if I wanted to try but I can’t even put tampons in there
I started to cry, and once I started I couldnt stop.
Luckily, she was so kind and understanding and reassured me it was normal. I told her about all of my anxieties about it. I think I might have vangnismus as I’ve always had problems with using tampons etc. Obviously it gives me anxiety as I worry when I do want to have sex it will be tricky, and I’m very limited with who and how I can have sex as I’d have to be totally relaxed and comfortable. I also feel embarrased that I’m almost 25 and still having these issues and feeling this disconnected to my body.
She gave me some ideas of things I an do to work on it and heal my relationship with it, but I’m almost too scared to try incase they don’t work and then I really am stuck. What if I can never have a successful smear? What if when the time comes I can’t have a fufilling sex life? Why don’t we talk about this more. At school, I was taught all about erectile dysfuncion and the things we could do (at an all girls school) but never once made aware of any of the problems we have to over come as people who own vaginas. The nurse kept saying “it’s just what it means to be a woman” (to have these difficulties we must work on and overcome) and I felt so fustrated that at 25 I’m so in the dark about my own body and the problems I may have with it.

Anyway, thank you all for sharing your stories, I feel alot less alone now and more motivated to take matters into my own hands and work on this. I would love some feedback and thoughts on my experience. Thank yoU!

Hi Lilypad and welcome

For the record I’ve never been able to comfortably insert a tampon but sexual intercourse was fine.

You might be interested to take a look at the Jo Divine website. At first sight it might look a bit risque as it’s a business selling sex toys, however there’s a lot of good information on there about a range of gynae/sex related topics: I suggest using the search facility e.g.