Karen Buono (35), a teacher from Wesley Chapel,
Florida in the US, spent most of her life suffering from a painful condition
called vaginismus, which causes the vaginal wall muscles to involuntarily
This meant she wasn’t able to insert a tampon, have a
pap smear or engage in sex. She was left confused after she tried to have sex
with several boyfriends who all told her the same thing – that attempting
intercourse with her was “like hitting a brick wall”.
After several failed attempts Karen gave up and instead
would lie to her partners, telling them she wanted to wait until marriage
before having sex.
It wasn’t until she was 31 that Karen was officially
diagnosed with vaginismus, after years of being told it was “all in her head”.
In a recent interview Karen opened about what it felt
like it when she was finally diagnosed.
“I knew something was wrong with me after I tried to
have sex with my boyfriend for the first time when I was 16. It was so awkward.”
Vaginismus is a gynaecological condition that causes
the pelvic floor muscles to involuntary spasm and constrict, making it
difficult – or in Karen’s case, impossible – to penetrate the vagina.
After finding a doctor who specialises in treating
vaginismus Karen was completely cured of the condition after just four months
of intense physical therapy.
She was finally able to lose her virginity at 32 – to her
husband Joe Johnson (38), whom she describes as “very patient”.
“When I was 25 I’d had enough. I paid $4 000 [about R54 300]
for my doctor to put me under anaesthesia to see what was wrong with me, but
they said everything was fine. I was surprised.”
Karen said she’d seen many doctors over the years and
they’d all told her it was “all in her head”. Finally a doctor suggested she “could
possibly have vaginismus – but he said there was no real cure and nothing else
they could do”.
At that point, Karen said, she gave up trying.
But when she met Joe online in April 2014 she fell in
love and knew he was “the one” – so she decided to seek medical help one last
time for her elusive condition.
Karen made an appointment with a local pelvic floor
specialist, Dr Lynn Deang, who she says was able to cure her condition in just
“It was one of the best days of my life. I was so
Joe proposed to Karen a year ago and they tied the
knot in April this year – with Karen’s “miracle doctor” attending the ceremony.
“My whole life has completely changed,” Karen said. “I
never thought I’d be able to experience the joy of sex.
“We’re trying to have a baby, which is something I
never thought I’d be able to do. I always wanted to be a mother, so this is
like a dream for me.
“You can never give up; it’s not all in your head. The
condition is real, and it can be cured. I’m happier than I’ve ever been in my
Source: Magazine Features