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Experiencing Painful Intercourse With a History of Sexual Assault

Today we are going to discuss a topic that doesn’t get much attention.  We are going to talk about sexual assault, specifically how it contributes to painful intercourse down the road.  Ladies who have been sexually assaulted may suffer a variety of mental and physical illnesses for many years after the assault, and whether the assault was one year ago, five years ago, or ten+ years ago, ladies who have been sexually assaulted oftentimes have a difficult time with intercourse.  Even if she is in a wonderful relationship or loving marriage, painful intercourse among survivors is common.

Ladies who have been assaulted oftentimes have physical and emotional tension surrounding intimacy.  The act of intimacy, or even just the thought of it, can bring up memories or flashbacks of the assault.  She may tense up physically and have a tough time becoming lubricated, even if it’s with someone she loves and wants to be intimate with.  Sometimes significant trauma can cause a disruption or shift in hormone production.  Without enough estrogen, the tissues in the vagina become affected and lubrication production will be reduced.  In addition, estrogen imbalance will only contribute to any depression or anxiety she may be experiencing already.  It’s like a snowball effect where all these issues come together to make the other worse.

Assault is hard to talk about, especially with strangers, but we can work with you and your partner if necessary.  Assault survivors are safe with me.   If your painful intercourse is not caused by anything physical and you have been assaulted in the past, we can talk about ways to slowly work up to intimacy.  Below is a helpful video; the section on assault starts at approximately the 6th minute.

Posted in Anxiety, Depression, Examinations, Hormones, Uncategorized

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