What They Don’t Tell You about the Hymen and Losing Your Virginity
Many people seem to believe that if one hasn’t had penetrative sex before, then their vagina hole is completely shut by the hymen. If we are being honest, I thought the same too for a long time.
But this is far cry from the truth; the hymen does not in any way cover the opening of the vagina.
TRUTH ABOUT THE HYMEN
The hymen is a fringe of tissue around the vagina opening that stretches as one interacts with it. It does not cover the whole vagina, allowing for virgins to menstruate and also use tampons and menstrual cups whilst menstruating. Women have different types of hymens; some are more stretched then the others while some look like a honeycomb with multiple small openings. I have discussed the various types of hymens in a previous post.
Hence the idea of breaking your hymen or taking one’s virginity is false and wrong. Your hymen is not broken or taken by anyone!
After your first sexual intercourse, the hymen does not disappear; it remains as an irregular ring of tissue around the vaginal opening.
BLEEDING AND PAIN DURING YOUR FIRST TIME
As the hymen is stretched, this may or may not cause bleeding to occur as it all depends on how thick your hymeneal tissue is. It is not compulsory to bleed on your first time!
The idea also, that one must feel pain on their first time is FALSE. In fact, the opposite should be the case if done accurately. Some people may feel slight pain due to the thickness and stretching of their hymenal tissue, however, our hymen can stretch without us engaging in any sexual activity; riding a bike, sports, fingering or tampons may cause the hymen to stretch.
Some are also born with very little hymeneal tissue that it seems like they don’t have a hymen- this means that one cannot test if one a virgin through the presence or absence of a hymen. I speak on this in detail here.
WHY DOES IT HURT?
If the first intercourse isn’t meant to cause much pain, why then do so many women complain of painful intercourse?
I have some theories for this.
- Many women have been told that it would hurt that they begin to anticipate and expect the pain. This causes anxiety and leaves them tense, making it difficult for them to relax their vaginal muscles. When these muscles are tense, they lead to painful intercourse. Anxiety also causes discomfort to lead to pain- if you have visited a gynecologist and you were anxious, you may understand why everything seems to hurt- these can fall into psychosomatic disorders.
- Many are simply unprepared. Boys may be very eager to penetrate even before the woman is emotionally ready to allow the vagina muscle to be ready for pain-free intercourse. With porn as an educational tool on sex is for young people, they may be deceived into believing that the pounding thrust seen in the videos is the way to give a woman pleasure- this motion may lead to more pain for the woman if her body is not fully ready for such thrusting.
- Lack of Lubrication- When a woman isn’t relaxed, their anxiety could lead to the lack of vaginal lubrication resulting in friction during sex. This friction causes pain for the woman.
- Past Trauma – If a woman has been sexually violated, it could make it very difficult for her to relax during intercourse- issues from past trauma may arise to block pleasurable sensations during consensual intercourse. I personally struggled with this for a long time and I want to help women break free from this- you can read my detailed post on this here.
WHAT TO DO ON YOUR FIRST TIME
- Ensure that you are mentally, physically and emotionally ready before you engage
- Use enough lubrication! Even If you believe that your vagina lubrication is enough, it doesn’t hurt to have a tube of lube around. They can be gotten in your local pharmacy or store.
- Start with fingers to allow you to stretch slowly before inserting a penis. The idea that one must stretch their hymen on the first day puts too much pressure on both the boys and girls. Make sure to start slow; you can use your fingers in your alone time to stretch it.
- Be GENTLE! Again your body is meant to be ready for penetration before any intercourse; this is how you can guarantee pain-free sex. Do not rush the process! Have a lot of foreplay (oral sex is not foreplay) before penetration- this allows both of you but especially the woman to be sexually excited and lubricated.