Sex can be as liberating for the body as it is for the mind. Unfortunately, in some cases, intercourse causes more discomfort than pleasure. This is especially the case when one or one of the partners suffers from dyspareunia, pain felt during and after intercourse. On her Instagram account, feminist illustrator Annabel Trotignon, aka @troty__, chronicles the obstacle course to cure these still taboo ailments.
“Basically, I was doomed, especially my pussy. All I had to do was order the coffin and choose the soundtrack for my vagina’s funeral ceremony »says the young woman mockingly after her second appointment with the doctor.
Annabel just learned about vestibulodynia for the first time. This pathology, described as a burning/twitching sensation, causes especially severe vulvar pain during penetration. The factors that can cause it are many: repeated infections, hormonal imbalance, trauma…
At home the pain came suddenly.
“If I decided to share my journey, it was because I would have liked to have encountered my testimony as I tried to understand what was going on inside my body. That I would have liked to have been understood, without judgment, without having to justify myself and without worrying in the fog.
Having pain during sex is not normal. It’s a signal to heed and it’s HIGH time for things to get moving and for us to start listening to our pain. »
5 years of medical wanderings
It is estimated that people predisposed to vestibulodynia spend an average of 5 years medically wandering before being diagnosed. However, this disease affects 10 to 15% of people with vulvas during their lifetime. “This figure is huge, but we don’t talk about it very little because it affects the vulva, so it’s taboo, who cares, it’s embarrassing or it’s disgusting,” regrets the designer.
In her illustrated testimony called “Dear vulva” and published on her Instagram account, the young woman laments the lack of support from the medical community, which very often wipes out the symptoms mentioned by women who come for consultation.
“As a result of my testimony, I received dozens of messages from women who recognized themselves. Unfortunately, in many cases they cannot get help from a caregiver who can treat them. Either because they have already tested most of the treatments offered today, or because no one has received any training in the city where they live.
The advice that is often given is that gynecologists are not necessarily the most informed on the subject and therefore you should not hesitate to make an appointment with sexologists, obstetricians, physiotherapists of the perineum, etc. And above all the most important point: if you’re in pain, you’re in pain, period! »
In her latest drawings, the illustrator offers valuable supportive solutions, in particular through the website of an association dedicated to raising awareness of perineal and vulvar pain: https://perinee-bien-aime.fr/.
Discover his testimony in drawings here:
A precious testimonial to share with you…
And to discover @Troty__’s unfiltered and humorous work, head over to his Instagram account here.
Illustrations reproduced with the kind permission of Annabel Trotignon