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Jakarta Post

Shut tight: How trauma, misleading education cause vaginismus in women

  • Ardila Syakriah
    Ardila Syakriah

    The Jakarta Post

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Jakarta   /   Thu, November 28, 2019   /  05:09 pm
The Jakarta Post Image
Vaginismus affects between 1 and 7 percent of females worldwide.(Shutterstock/Olena Yakobchuk)

For the first five years of her marriage, Dara, not her real name, could not find joy in her sex life. She knew she wanted it, but when the time came, all she felt was pent up anger that burst into scratches, pushes and kicks against her husband. Both Dara, now 28, and her husband were in the dark about what she was going through. All she knew was that whenever penetration was attempted, her vagina would be tightly shut, or in her words, "closed by a brick".

They kept it quiet from their parents, who kept bugging them to have children and comparing them to other newlyweds with babies. Hopeless, Dara tried asking for opinions from midwives in her town of Tabalong, South Kalimantan, but to no avail. Rather than offering consolation, they instead cornered her by saying that it was sinful not to "serve" her husband.

"I was afraid of G...