Skin tags and scarring on anus and perineum (Anonymous)

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.

Prolapse (Anonymous)

Note from admin: I make a point to not edit anyone’s post for a variety of reasons, one of which is that your words are YOURS and we need a safe place to express ourselves, no matter how hard the things we have to say are. I do, though, want to mention that bodies are just bodies, and genitals are just genitals. Sometimes they won’t work properly, but that doesn’t make anyone, as a mama, a woman, or a person in any way gross. You are all beautiful no matter what. You might feel gross, but I am here to hug you and tell you that you aren’t. You are lovely. I promise. (And this message isn’t specifically for the mama who posted here, but for any mama who needs it.)

Ok so this is super super gross ladies I’ve had 3 natural births, last one 11 months ago. My vagina looks like it’s falling out to me. what do you think? Do you also look like this after children? Is this completely normal? I had a slight prolapse on my second and it got worse on my third. Sometimes I’m more “closed” and tighter then others. It depends on cycle. Please help. Do I need to see a doctor in your opinion?

Due to the intimate nature of the photos, I am linking them. Click here and here.

Getting Better (Alice)

Age: 34
Pregnancies: 1
Births: 2
Age of children: 14 months

I posted an entry five months ago when I was feeling pretty bad about my body and health post-partum. I gave birth to twins last summer and suffered a prolapse not long after, and was feeling despondent about that and about how much my body had altered. I wanted to post a follow-up to say thank you for all the lovely supportive comments that other women left; they cheered me up immensely! This is a wonderful forum which made me feel much less alone.

I am in such a better place now, both physically and mentally. The girls are sleeping through the night (huge. just huge. I had no idea how much sleep deprivation would kill me), and I’m slowly losing the baby weight. I have about 8-10 lbs to go, I breast fed so have been very careful not to diet as I didn’t want it to affect my supply what with feeding two babies at once.

I know that my body will never look the same. BUT the thing that has really changed is the way I feel about that. Some of it is having had time to get used to my new body. I see the stretched, saggy and wrinkled skin on the front of my belly (an area about the size of my splayed hand placed on my stomach) as a scar. Being alive and truly living in the world means that we’re all going to get scars, one way or another. Now when I look at that skin I can see it as a symbol of how hard I worked for my girls because I love them so much, and wanted them so much. I worked to eat plenty of healthy food so they would gain weight and have everything they needed to grow. I worked to carry them and nurture them for 36 weeks and then I worked to birth them naturally because I felt like it was the best way for them to get here. I’ve worked, worked, WORKED every day since then to keep them warm and safe and fed and loved, and it’s been worth every single blemish and scar and 3am moment of desperation.

My prolapse situation now at 14 months after the birth is much improved. I found a fantastic Pilates teacher who’s been working with me for about four months now and most of the time I don’t think about the prolapse at all. The diastasis has got smaller but is still there. My stomach is a little flatter which I like. I still don’t know whether I’ll need surgery for the prolapse in the future but I do feel much more hopeful about it all. I would really, really encourage everyone out there who is dealing with similar issues to keep trying different things – Pilates, Mutu System, Hab It Pelvic Floor, I’m sure there’s lots of others. There’s a ton of help out there once you start looking.

I honestly never thought I would feel this way, and I’m ashamed to say that I used to think that other mothers who said they did were just saying it to make themselves feel better about how much their bodies had changed. I get it now. I’m not ashamed of my body in the least little bit, and I am absolutely going to wear a bikini whenever I feel like it! I was diagnosed a few months ago with Lichen Sclerosis, a skin condition of the labia which is sometimes brought on by pregnancy. Although I was very upset about it for a while I’ve since realized that all of the health challenges I’ve been faced with are just that – challenges to live better and more healthily. I’ve given up sugar and wheat to help manage the Lichen Sclerosis, and I’m committed to what basically amounts to a lifetime of Pilates to help deal with the prolapse. I used to push myself very hard physically; now I’m kinder to myself and am trying to take a more balanced approach. I’ve always been quite an extreme person and I think this has been a very valuable lesson for me.

Love doesn’t work without intimacy; a lonely life is all I’ll have. (Anonymous)

Age- 23
Number of Pregnancies- 2

Ive came acrossed this site before, after I had my first son. I thought the stories on here were very emotional and touching.. Never did I think that one day I would be posting on here. I need to get it off of my chest, talk about it, maybe someone else is going through the same thing that I am currently going through..

I have 2 beautiful healthy little boys that brighten my life up in everyway possible. I gave up so much to make sure they had a great life, I wanted to be a loving mother. I never felt bitter about having children so young because I enjoy living my life for other people.

My first labor went quick and fast, had a 6lb baby boy born 3 weeks early at this time i was 20 . the father of this child skipped out on us when I found out I was pregnant and at that time m ex boyfriend and I became friends again.. fast track to a couple years later me and my ex boyfriend who takes care of me and my other son , we were living together and we found out shortly after i sons 1st birthday we were expecting…

I was not happy at all but he was.. all he wanted was to be a father and he was so beyond excited to have a child of his own.. We were both hoping for a girl but found out we would be blessed with another little boy. During my pregnancy I developed PUPPS I gained about 50lbs which put me over 200lbs when I delivered, I also had high blood pressure. they decided they wanted to induce me at 39 weeks because I had been 4cm dialated for about 2 weeks walking around and he didnt budge. –

Day of induction they popped my water and labor progressed. I had a midwife at the time so I began to push when it was time but the baby didn’t want to come out. I pushed for about 45 minutes. pushed veryyyyy hard and my boyfriend told me that the entire time I was pushing I was constantly pooping (gross but whatever). after a while the midwife said they needed the resident doctor because they might need to use vacume forceps or csection. I was scared I didnt want a c section. In came in the doctor, he was an older gray haired man. he didn’t seem to like me to well, idk if it was because I was 22 about to have my 2nd child. But i felt the harshness from him, he said we would try forceps… I was afraid but not too afraid. then he pulled out what could have been the jaws of life and ramed them into my vagina without any warning. the left side of my body shot out a huge twitch and my leg (which was numb) fell off the bed. I felt the pain, I felt something but didnt know what. he moved them around in order to turn the baby and he pulled the baby out…. I was so happy to finally see him. he was a beautiful 8lb baby…

but the happiness went away shortly after when I realized the doctor was giving me stitches inside of me without even telling me what was going on. he told me afterwards I tore a little bit inside, acted like it wasnt a big deal. then told me “if you hadn’t of gotten an epidural i still would of had to of done it this way”. I was upset. after the epidural wore off I was in so much pain, i cried and cried and cried. i felt like i had been ripped apart and put back together.

I couldnt get out of bed the entire time i was in the hospital. they had to cath me to empty my bladder which gave me a uti…

I struggled for months afterwards with incontinence issues, leaking urine, bowls it was a mess…. then when I was able to become sexually active again I did, and that’s when it all set in… My vagina will never be the same again…

I felt no sensation what so ever…. and neither did my boyfriend.. this man who I loved would soon realize this problem was not going away… I feel less and less like a woman everyday. I expected the stretch marks but never did I think my vagina would turn into such a ….. gaping hole…. as my boyfriend calls it now…. I eventually talked to my doctor about it but they didnt want to help me. they all said it would go back to normal and to do kegals. so I did. I eventually saw a specialist and they sent me to physical theraphy. but even the specialist looked at me like I had been promiscuos and I deserved it.

Im 23 years old, I have 2 children. my son is now a year old and after being a year PP my vagina is still not the same and it will not get better without surgery..

I am 23 years old and I can’t be intimate with the man that I love. is causing problems in our relationship and pretty soon I don’t think we will have one .. this issue has given me such low selfesteem. who would want me now? I am a mother. I gave my children life and everyday I just want to die…. some people might think Im crazy but I literally cry about this all the time. Just knowing he doesnt want to be close to me, knowing that I have nothing to offer to him, the simple things a woman and man do we cant do. and there is no way I will ever be comfortable enough to have sex with someone else . I don’t feel like a woman anymore and I feel numb going through life…. I can’t even keep a super plus tampon in…..
I’ll never get better without a surgery and when I told my boyfriend he said it would be cheaper for him to swap me in….. he never used to be this way, but I dont blame him. sex used to be fun but it’s sad now. he loses his erection Im dry and I can’t mentally try to enjoy myself I just want to cry every time because I know it doesnt feel good to him.

I feel helpless, all I will ever be now is a mom. no ones wife, no ones girlfriend, no man is ever going to want to be with me again…

Building self-esteem after husband’s affairs (Joelle)

Age: 23
Number of Pregnancies and Births: 2 pregnancies, 1 birth, 1 baby in heaven
Age of child and how far post-partum: Isabella 6 months and four days old. I am 6 months and four days post- partum

I found this site from a woman who posted this site on the Birth Without Fear facebook page. I thought how wonderful it was to see other women of all ages post up their pictures of post-partum bodies and share their story on how they felt, whether feeling upset or comfortable in their own skin. Pregnancy has done a lot to our bodies, including mine. I miscarried with my first pregnancy at the age of 18 at 8 weeks along. It took me a while to accept the miscarriage and move forward. After my second pregnancy, if you saw me walking in a tank top and jeans, you’d never guessed I gave birth. I’ve been blessed to lose all the weight; I gained 36 pounds and lost the majority of it when my daughter was born. She weighed 9.7 pounds and 21 inches long. I am only 5’1 and was 95 pounds pre-pregnancy. With her being so big, my belly was stretched to its limit and my body bloated really badly: in my face, my thighs, butt, and legs. By week nine in pregnancy, I could no longer wear my jeans. I automatically knew I was having a girl by week nine since all my friends who had boys could wear their jeans throughout their entire pregnancy and it was my instincts saying “girl.” Not going to lie, that devastated me to not fit in my jeans, so I stuck to dresses and skirts since I had room to stretch those out (did not want to see me go up in pants and it was cheaper). At my 21 week scan, the technician asked me if the midwife got my due date right since my baby was measuring almost 2 weeks ahead of her age and I said yeah, that I even tracked my fertility and ovulation for TTC. Turned out she was just a good size baby because she came four days after her due date, no interventions.

My body went through hell and back with my pregnancy and child birth. I had fallen on my tailbone. I went to the ER over that to make sure my daughter was fine, could care less about my body. My daughter was just fine. The fall caused me to have major back pain for the rest of the pregnancy and especially when she would kick my back or body slammed against it. I had a huge cyst right below my urethra, so sex was impossible as it hurt too much. The doctors refused to remove the cyst for me and it did not even burst while birthing her. I had sciatic nerve problems and bruised like feeling on my skin and muscles all up my ribs from her pushing out my ribs to make room in the last trimester. I started getting stretch marks in early 2nd trimester and by my due date, my butt and thighs looked as if a cat used me as a clawing post. I got a 2nd degree tear during child birth from being told to push with all my might since my daughter’s left shoulder got stuck. Two nurses were doing pelvic pressure on me along with my husband, very crazy experience so I tore horribly from all the hard pushing to get her out. The midwife who delivered my baby at the Naval Hospital (military hospital) stitched me back up but I have some insides kind of on the outside and my vagina just looks bad… Though I loved being able to have her naturally, I’m upset with how my vagina turned out. I asked my husband’s honest opinion on it, he said I’m little bit looser (I’m okay with that) and that it’s even prettier to him. Kind of hard to believe but I try to trust him on that. However, he cheated on me a month after I birthed my daughter and once while I was pregnant, so it’s very hard to trust him on his compliments to me. The only reason I stayed is because he went to rehab over his alcoholism (he cheated while wasted, still not a good excuse) and I want our family to be together. My self- esteem is shot to hell because he cheated on me with an overweight woman with large breasts. I’m opposite; I’m petite with A cup size breasts… I know I’m not ugly, I get other Marines (my husband is a Marine) staring and calling out to me even while I’m carrying my daughter. I just can’t help but feel my body is not good enough for my husband, that I’m not enough.

We’re in marriage counseling, we’ve been working on the marriage. I just can’t help but feel my pregnant body and PP body is not satisfying to him. I’m so terrified to get pregnant again after his affairs. Being able to share this to strangers kind of makes me feel better. Maybe some other women have been in a similar position or not… Just feels good to get it off my chest that I don’t feel good enough for the man I married.

The fat I hate, not the stripes. (Aly)

22 yrs old.
2 pregnancies, 1 birth.
Five month old daughter, pp.

My story may be everywhere, sorry.

I was pregnant before at 18, but never kept the baby. My personal choices led me to having an abortion. I am willing to share my reasons why, but if asked through email. I’m not ready to publicly announce why nor am I proud for what I have done. I battled depression, and so much more before I got to where I am at today. I just wanted to share that I was pregnant before, and to be honest with my choices.

I was 21 when I found out I was pregnant the second time, same guy. We have been together since we were 16. In April/2011 I found out I was pregnant with my little angel. I cried with joy never thinking I could get pregnant again. After the abortion I had a small fear that I may have ruined my chances of being pregnant again. Beside the point I had a wonderful pregnancy, nothing medically wrong with us. I did gain my warrior marks which I expected. My maternal grandmother, and mother have stretch marks so I knew I would get them. Funny thing is I’m actually okay with these marks. They will fade, and there are creams to help diminish them some. Bad thing, I gained more than the recommend amount of weight yet it never worried my doctors. I weighed 115 pregnancy, and before birth I weighed 167. On December 8, 2011 I gave birth to my beautiful daughter…. My greatest joy in life.

Five months later, I weigh 143-45 lbs. I hate it with a passion. I do, and can’t really sit down to talk to anyone about this. I tell my mother, or express it to my husband…. I do it with light humor to hide my hurt. I look five months pregnant, and try to do the right thing. Exercise, walk, drink water, and I’m also breastfeeding too. I have a wider girth, and haven’t worn jeans since I was 20 wks pregnant. I tried on jeans one time when I was three months pp, most emotional day of my life. I wanted to cry because I couldn’t fit a certain size. It has been pajama bottoms, and sweats for me. Another thing I hate is down there. My daughter turned her head when she was crowning, and ripped the left side of my upper vaginal area. So my clitoris… Or I mean the small lips whatever they are called part of the clit is forever seperated in half on the left side. I hate when my husband touches me there because I know it is ripped so there is another confidence downer for me. I sag, look pregnant, and have a ripped clit.

Never, never have I ever had to wear a girdle. Now I do, and its so depressing. Like wow, really? I wear a girdle to give the illusion that I lost SOME of my belly. Even then it still doesn’t work making me look pregnant still, but holds me in place. I blew up, and I hate it. I battle with the thought of this. I wish I had a tummy tuck I can deal with a scar. I try… I have the privilege of staying at home with my daughter to raise her… She helps me forget everything when she smiles at me. It just takes a toll on me.. everyone tells me I will get skinnier a bit in time. I hear them, but don’t take their words in stride. This hurts me… I struggle with raising my daughter while my husband works, try to care for my house, dog, and husband. At times I fail at all of those things. Where is there time for myself? I recently started exercising a bit more with the husband. I’m motivated to do that because we do it together. I’m trying. We will see, but right now I’m so down on myself it sucks. Makes me want to break down, and cry. I went from being a petite 115 lbs, five foot lady to a wide all around fatness. Yes, I went there. I’m serious too, I’m FAT! Yet I’m content with my stretch marks. I just miss the bikini days… And my confidence. If I don’t have any confidence how can I better myself at everything else? Once in a while I feel apathetic except towards my daughter. I have a real smile every morning when I wake up to see her smiling up at me with her innocent eyes. Maybe someday I will regain back at least a little confidence to push forward with more… For now I’m at a hate relationship with myself….

First picture – Pre-pregnancy,Second: Two days before induction, I was 40 wks., Third: Five months pp front view, Fourth: Side view, Fifth: How it looks when I suck my tummy in. It’s so sad… but I want to share because I can be me without wondering what someone else may say… and I don’t have to use humor.


Love your website! I too have the beautiful shape of a mother and have had an adjustment period to finally accept and embrace my new body. That is not my problem or my husband’s problem though. We are dealing with my utter lack of muscle control in the vagina and urinary incontinence. I can no longer tighten up on my husband and experience an orgasm with him. He says I am so loose that pleasure is virtually non-existent for him as well. I have done Kegels until I am all Kegeled out. Seriously, I have done them about 20 times a day for almost two years. I wouldn’t trade the ability to be intimate with my husband for my two sons, but it sure seems like a higher price than I should have to pay. I have emotional turmoil and depression surrounding this issue. Are there other women like me? Is there anything I can do? My OB/GYN told me to be patient, that it would come back, but as I have said, its been almost two years and it’s not getting any better.

I guess what I am looking for is a place where there are woman like me sharing this problem. I don’t know if this website is the place, but it is the most positive beautiful site surrounding motherhood that I have ever seen. Thank you!

Ups and Downs (Anonymous)

31 years old
kids ages 5 and 3

I am 5’2 and 125 currently.Previous to kids my weight was about 120-125.I am happy with my weight finally after 3 years! My first pregnancy I was all day sick for the first 3 months but after that things went well.Had a 7Ib 12oz baby but vaginal prolapsing after which is uncomfortable I guess you would say. Felt pretty good about myself a year after and 1 1/2 years after 1st baby got pregnant again. Second pregnancy went better but I was huge by the end and felt like I would have a bigger baby for my size.Second baby was 9Ibs 4 oz and here is where all my issues really begin.After my second I had hemorrhaging,vaginal prolapsing,internal tearing and 4th degree tearing through my rectum plus stretch marks and a sagging stomach-what a mess.I had a surgery 9 months and many embarrassing moments after the birth to repair the internal tearing and had an anal sphincter repair.I spent one year in physio therapy trying to regain vaginal and rectal muscle-let me tell you you put ALL modesty aside when you go through this.I was also booked in to have a tummy tuck because I hate how the skin hangs off my belly like pizza dough but my husband didn’t want me to go through anymore and at this point I guess I don’t either.Things are better yes but I know I will never be the same.I wonder sometimes why this all happened to me and I still get frustrated. Then I also think about how I have 2 beautiful children that I love so much and I am grateful, there are worse things because really I am healthy and I am able to do most everything still.I just really wish that there was someone else to talk to that went through the same things as me as I feel that no one understands how greatly this all has effected my life.

3 Babies in 5 Years and a New Body (Jean)

I got pregnant at 18 and got stretch marks at 5 months in. I gave birth to a healthy baby girl 7lbs 5oz, then another baby girl 2 1/2 years later weighing 7 lbs 15oz. Again 2 1/2 year later a little boy weighing 7lbs 9oz. I included their weights because they are all very average but I look like I gave birth to 10 lbers. Although I did gain a considerable amount of weight that came off FAST

The Whirlwind (Anonymous)

2 weeks after I got married, I found out I was pregnant for the first time. I was 20 years old. My husband was to be deployed for a 15 month tour with the US army in 6 months, at that time. He left for Iraq when I was just under 6 months pregnant. He thankfully got to come home for the birth. He surprised me when I was at work, on my last day before I was to go on maternity leave. I went into labor a week later. September 10th, 2008 I was in labor for 12 hours. I pushed for 2 hours and the doctor decided that the baby needed some help coming out. He used forceps to get the baby out. I ended up with fourth degree tears. Labor was extremely traumatic for me, afterwards I felt like I had been raped (I know that sounds bad, but true). I was so thankful to have my husband by my side at the time, nothing else mattered after I got over the initial shock. But he had to go back to the war in Iraq, our baby was only 12 days old.
9 weeks postpartum, I was still in pain from the birth. I got checked out and the doctor said I had a hole in my vagina! I freaked out. He “fixed” the hole the best he could and told me to give it 6 weeks to heal. 6 weeks later, any time I was on my feet for more then a half hour, it felt like I needed to push out a bowling ball from my vagina (I know! So not fun).I went to see the doctor again. The doctor gave me a look like, “your looked for drugs, aren’t you”. I did not want drugs, I just did not want my vagina to be “broken” anymore. He gave me three options, to have him re-cut me open and stich me back up (no thank you), give me a nerve-killer shot in my vagina to numb me forever (HECK no!), or to deal with. I choice to deal with it.
16 weeks postpartum, I was still in pain. I just figured this was the way it was going to be the rest of my life. I was just glad I didn’t have to deal with my husband wanting sex, since he was still in Iraq. I thought I would go into liver failure with all the Tylenol I was taking just to survive each day. I was not happy. I was in pain everyday, I was dealing with a colicky baby by myself, and I was not getting much sleep at all worrying about my husband and everything else on my plate.
18 weeks postpartum, I decided to stop breast feeding. I wasn’t making enough milk to feed the baby because I wasn’t eating enough. I was miserable. I missed my husband, and life sucked at this point.
One night I was home, putting the baby to sleep like normal. I heard voices in my head as I rocked him that told me to just knock my sons head on the wall and just get it over with. I was hearing voices that told me to kill my son. I panicked. I put him to sleep and I just cried. How could I think like that? I looked at the bottle of pills that was so familiar to me, Tylenol. I thought, I need to end my life if I was thinking about taking my childs life. I took a few pills and I knew I needed help. I called my mom and told her I needed to go to the hospital immediately. I was admitted to the psych ward of a hospital for a 5 day stay for severe postpartum depression. My husband came home from Iraq for emergency leave. I was too embarrassed to tell anyone what happened, so I told them I fell and hit my head. My husband was home for 10 days to help me back on my feet. I got support for my immediate family and they all helped me a lot.
Today, my husbands 15 month tour in Iraq ends in 3 months. I have a beautiful almost 9 month old son. I am fully recovered and not on any meds anymore. I just wanted to share my story to tell everyone that postpartum depression is real and it can be really scary. Just ask for help when you need it, with the baby or just for yourself, if you don’t you will make yourself crazy like I did. Nobody can do it alone, and nobody should.

1st photo is me 8 months pregnant
2nd photo is my husband and I getting our son baptisted when he was 11 days old the day before my husband left to go back to Iraq
3rd photo is my son now (8 1/2 months)