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I am 55 years old, post menopausal, and celibate for 13 years after the death of my husband. I have never had children. Upon attempting sex after this time, I found it painful and impossible. There was a constrictive ring at the opening of my vagina that was not elastic and would not stretch. I have trawled through hundreds of website pages to get information on this, without success. Most of the information I have found is written by men, and dealt with disease, psychological problems, etc. Having been to my gynecologist, I feel compelled to post this, in case there are other women in the same situation - for post menopausal women who present no disease nor psychological difficulty with intercourse, but suffer from painful or impossible penetration nonetheless. In my case, although I was very sexually active, my hymenal ring never tore, but, due to my youth and continued sexual activity, was very elastic and stretchable. This is, in part, due to hormones, particularly estrogen found in the vaginal tissue. However, after years of inactivity, compounded by menopause where there was a great reduction of estrogen, my hymenal ring no longer stretches, but is impenetrable beyond 1 or 2 fingers. I have started a course of vaginal estrogen, but this was not quick nor successful enough for me. I have a surgical choice of either incisions to 'tear' this ring, or dilation by the surgeon (wherein the hymenal ring may tear anyway). Presently I am opting for the surgical dilation. I hope this post helps other women in the same situation, as there appears to be little information on the internet regarding painful sex occurring at the vaginal opening, where there is nothing else wrong. This is a natural occurrence in older women who have been inactive, are childless and have gone through menopause. And it can be treated so you can resume a normal sex life.
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