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My daughter was born 2 years ago. I was 30 at the time. Throughout my pregnancy I had hemorrhoids, which only got worse during delivery. I was so embarassed about them that I didn’t want my husband to watch the delivery. I made him stay in a chair near the head of the bed. I know that a lot of women get hemorrhoids, but no one talks about them, and mine must have been pretty bad, because the nurses made somewhat of a fuss about them (in front of my husband, which was mortifying to me).

Additionally I tore pretty badly, both inside my vagina and through my perineum, going down towards my anus. I had an epidural, so I didn’t feel any pain when it happened, but I was aware immediately after delivery when the doctor started stitching me up. I could feel him inserting his finger into my rectum to stabilize or push forward the back wall of my vagina while he did this. I asked him how many stitches I was getting, he said he hadn’t been keeping track.

The pain afterwards, when the epidural wore off, was quite bad, and I could barely walk to the bathroom for the first two days. Nevermind actually using the restroom. I couldn’t wipe for at least 2-3 weeks; I just used that squirt bottle that the hospital provides. Even six weeks out, at my first follow up appointment with the OBGyn, one of my stitches burst back open when she inserted the speculum and I was back to bleeding again for a couple days.

Now, two years later, my perineum and anus look nothing like they did before. The whole region is just one big mess of disgusting flaps and folds of excess skin and scar tissue. My anus itself is a gross collection of skin tags and folds, which blurs together with the extruded fold of excess skin where my perineum once was…and then you arrive at the opening to my vagina.

Then just inside the entrance to my vagina, when I insert my finger I feel all this firm, lumpy scar tissue (like pea-to-blueberry sized lumps). This is NOT what the inside of my vagina used to feel like. Before childbirth it had a soft, silky, smooth texture with folds — not lumps. This region of scar tissue is still painful during sex, and I can’t imagine that it feels good to my husband either.

The whole mess down there makes me so embarassed. My husband is a visual person who like the lights on. He also likes the doggy-style position — which gives him the perfect view of it all, which I can hardly stand.

If it were just the childbirth scar, it wouldn’t be so terrible, as that is a relatively socially acceptable thing to talk about. It’s the excess skin from the hemorrhoids, which no one talks about, that is more of a problem. And even then, that in itself even wouldn’t be so bad if it were localized to my anus. But instead, as I said, the whole mess just runs together so that I feel like my anus is right up against the opening to my vagina. I am so self conscious that I cannot enjoy oral sex, and it’s actually even worse to be touched down there with fingers, because I feel like you can’t even tell what’s what.

I have heard many people here say how their husbands have helped them to feel better about their bodies. I do not have that kind of a relationship with my husband. We have sex very infrequently due to ED and other issues, and my husband’s troubles are enough that there is really no room to rely on him to heal my own emotional baggage around this issue.

Categories: Hemorrhoids/Etc., Mom over 30, No Photos (Story Only), Postpartum, Submissions, Vulva/Vaginal Damage

The Mid Drift Trailer is Here!


YOU GUYS. YOU GUYS. YOU. GUYS. This is gonna be so awesome. I wrote a little about it here, but the trailer was just released (in time for labor day! har!) so go check it out.


A few months ago, the mama in the picture above, contacted me and asked if I wanted to collaborate on this project. We talked on the phone a little bit and I loved what she had to say. Seems we share a lot of the same thoughts about mama bodies and how best to learn to love ourselves. To be clear, she and her husband are leading this project and I’ll just chip in where I can, but I’m thrilled to be even a small part of this.

From their GoFundMe page:

Mid Drift is a feature length documentary film about postpartum experience around the world. America’s obsession with “body after baby” is harmful and we want to shift the conversation to center on the incredible experiences and community surrounding motherhood.

We believe that, in order to change the conversation, we must learn from other cultures that are serving new mothers in a more positive way.

We plan to visit several countries from around the globe to discover how postpartum body image and experience varies among cultures and how it impacts their experience.

Basically, it’s going to be a documentary about mama bodies and how to learn to love yourself just as you are. I cannot wait! So go throw some money at this for me, okay? Let’s change the world together!

Categories: Mid Drift Movement, News

“Mama, You’re so Pretty” (Anonymous)

This morning.

(Wake up, 5:18, ohgodwhymyalarmisn’tforhalfanhourpleaseletmesleepjustalittle)

Making breakfast, packing lunch, getting dressed, brewing coffee, queen of multitasking. Tick tock routine next step now what.

In the kitchen, slicing cucumbers and washing grapes, eggs scrambling on the stove, cooking in my slacks and bra because today’s shirt is still hanging in the laundry room, when my son says

My son

He says “Mama, you’re so pretty.” And he strokes his tiny hands across my hanging belly, battle scars bared, and he leans in and kisses it, rests his cheek on the bulge above my belly button, and whispers,
“I was a baby in there.”

My son is 4 years old, and he doesn’t know that I’m not pretty. And he doesn’t know that nobody wants to touch stretched out wrinkled up sagging old skin. He doesn’t know that his mama isn’t beautiful, or strong, or brave or smart or perfect.

Maybe he has a lot to teach me.

Categories: No Photos (Story Only), Positive Body Image/Words of Enouragement, Submissions