69 answers

Sorry to Ask This But, Was Your Vagina Ever the Same After Vag. Birth?

I'm seriously just a few weeks away from my scheduled repeat C-section. My dr. said if I change my mind at any time I can try for the VBAC. I scheduled a C for many reasons, but one reason was that the words of one Dr. struck a cord with me "why ruin a perfectly good vagina?". Of the few woman I'm comfortable asking this question, most say it was never the same down there; from painful sex, to just being looser, to not being able to run without pain, I'm not getting a great picture. I've made a little deal with God that I'll try VBAC it I go into natural labor prior to my scheduled C at 39 weeks. But now my head is spinning, there are more reasons besides ruining my vagina that I'm struggling with this, but for now I just want to know, where you the same down there or different?

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

wow, thanks for the responses. I'm more encouraged to try VB AC. I was a little vague, but it was not my OB who said "why ruin a perfectly good vagina". Though when I told my Dr. what I'd heard, she said there's some truth to it, but a Dr. should never say it! My Dr. is Kaiser, they are salaried and not procedure driven. She encouraged me to get the section on the calender because it is quite a coordination factor (requires 3 docs to be present). With summer and vacations and all she encouraged me to just get it on the calender, as she was on vacation on my actual due date. But she assured me it doesn't mean I can't change my mind at any point, just that she likely wouldn't be there to deliver. Thanks again.

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After 3 kids: 8 pounds 12 oz, 10 pounds 4oz with a compound nuchal hand, and 8 pounds 6 oz, I am actually tighter after each birth.

Here's the catch: no epidual. I never pushed harder than I felt was comfortable and since I could feel everything, I would just stop pushing if things got too intense....and therefore I never tore....not to mention, I never birthed on my back - all home waterbirths.

2 moms found this helpful

My vagina is exactly the same as it was prebirth. Neither tore, nor had an episiotomy... so that may make a difference. Took a few months (to not pee while sneezing kind of thing)

My stomach on the other hand...

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My first was a vaginal delivery , I tore from one end to the other It was a very long recovery. No I have never gone back to the same. My second was an attempt at a vaginal delivery and ended in an emergency c section when my son got stuck. I was up and walking to the NICU every two hrs that night. Recovery was 10 times faster than the first. With the first I couldn't walk.

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Okay, I know you are nervous and this is a legitimate concern but...OMG!!! "Why ruin a perfectly good vagina?" - that is the most asinine thing I have ever heard. Get a new doctor! Your vagina is 'built' to give birth. Mine went back to normal, in fact, I even had an extra long episiotomy. My husband has said it may even be better!

I have never heard of not being able to run without pain, but that is not to say it doesn't happen. I think being looser is a myth, for the most part - once a guy sees it stretched out I think he gets it in his head it is automatically looser.

You could say the same thing about your stomach. Why have a C-section and ruin a perfectly good stomach? Talk about something that will most likely never go back to the way it was. Or you could even say, why get pregnant and ruin a perfectly good stomach & hips & boobs & skin - the list could go on!

Women wouldn't keep getting pregnant if it was ruined - from both points of view, the man's or the woman's.

I was also worried about this same thing and I talked it over with my husband. He told me not to worry at all. This was a natural part of life and he loved me NO MATTER WHAT. Plus, he's the one that got me that way!!!!

Go right now to your doctor and punch him in the face! :)~

Then relax, give birth and enjoy your new baby. Congratulations!

9 moms found this helpful

I am all for women having the ability to make educated choices about their own medical care...but it disgusts me to hear that a doctor would say such a thing. It diminishes the very possible risks associated with abdominal surgery. Yes, childbirth itself has risks, but there is little that man can actually consistently do better than nature. Not making any comment on your C-section, of course...I don't know you or your medical history...but I find the comment horrifying all the same.

I like to think of it as a new model. Like I got something new and I need to figure out how it works. Its not EXACTLY the same...but it isn't necessarily a bad thing.

There are no guarantees in life. Your vagina can change with age and hormones and weight gain. It was made for bringing a baby into the world...therefore it becomes what it should be.

5 moms found this helpful

Well, every woman is different. I don't think that either nursing nor vaginal birth have done any damage to my body. Maybe I am just lucky, maybe it's genetics, maybe I just don't care enough about appearances? I don't know.
I had a vaginal birth with my daughter almost 3 years ago. I had a small labial tear, that left a little scar (which personally I think is pretty cool) but other than that my V is still the same. I still use regular tampons (NO they are not falling out:)) and I did ask my husband, who said he didn't notice an difference after the first 6 months or so (it did take some time to go back to it's old shape).
My boobs aren't deflated balloons and the rest of my body is ONLY out of shape for lack of exercise and too much sugar (I have a sweet tooth).
I personally count the birth of my daughter as probably the most awesome, inspiring experience I have ever had and I would choose to do it again any day!
Whatever you decide... good luck.

4 moms found this helpful

Do you know how much your Dr. makes on a C-Section vs a VBAC?
The person to ask about changes after vaginal birth are your mom, or grandma if she's accessible (sometimes grandmothers can be more honest about the sex stuff - they didn't give birth to you)

I've had 4, all vag and I have been told repeatedly how lucky I am by my OBGYN. He's a funny guy, always joking about how I keep him in business, calls me the Kegel Queen!

I do have friends with some unhappy after birth symptoms, one of my friends who has 3 kiddos nearly wets herself if you get her laughing hard enough. But her mom had the same issue so it really comes down to your genes.

4 moms found this helpful

Ack! No offense, but that doctor must have been nothing short of an idiot! What a horrible thing to say when child birth is exactly what the vagina was designed for...and because that is what it's designed for, yes, it all goes back the way it is supposed to be. And just to let you know, I had a C-section with my first and VBAC with my second. Vaginal birth is definitely the way to go! Recovery is sooooo much easier and you can jump right into enjoying your new little one without the pain or meds. Good luck and congratulations!

4 moms found this helpful

I was never terribly close friends with my vagina, but aside from the obvious recovery, we managed to wait 4 1/2 weeks to resume intercourse after my first vaginal delivery and I think closer to 5 weeks after my second. I've read that the vagina is elastic and does resume its general shape. I think the opening is a little different, but again I never paid close personal attention to those details--my husband does that for me. :) Things are still tight when they should be, we have a wonderful sex life, I run (my BELLY is still loose, even if there is plenty of muscle underneath) and I cannot imagine an elective c-section. No offense to moms who choose that, but vaginal recovery is generally a lot easier than a surgery. So yes, maybe a bit different, but I have not noticed that it has affected anything because of that. However you deliver, I hope everything goes smoothly! :)

(And I agree with other comments that your doctor's comments were awful! So sorry you had to hear that from someone--vaginas have two purposes, and childbirth is the natural result of the first one.)

4 moms found this helpful

This is a good question because I was worried about it, too, before my first baby. I took longer than the usual 6 weeks to heal, because I had 3rd-degree tearing when my son was born, but eventually, I was as good as new. There was no long-term damage at all. Sex isn't painful now, I certainly don't think I was any looser (but if I was, there are exercises to fix that), and running and walking wasn't painful at all. I have spoken to several of my friends about this issue, and NONE of them had the long-term effects you describe. And if it didn't happen to me, after my severe tearing, I can't imagine it happening to most women. Perhaps your friends need to get new doctors? Because it sounds like the ones they've had weren't very good...

On just a side note, "why ruin a perfectly good vagina" is a very strange thing for a doctor to say. First of all, that is the purpose of a perfectly good vagina - to give birth. It can handle it. Really. Secondly, a C-section is actually much riskier than a vaginal birth - which is one reason why the U.S. has one of the worst maternal mortality rates in the first world, much worse than all of the Scandinavian countries and much of Europe. A good, well-informed doctor would know this. Sometimes, C-sections are unavoidable because of risk to mother and baby, and they are a necessary and useful technology, but "why ruin a perfectly good vagina" doesn't seem like a reason that makes it worth the risk!

There are risks to VBACs as well, of course. You need to inform yourself about your options, and you might want to talk to someone (your current doctor may be a good starting-point) about ALL the risks of EACH of your options. At least make sure that whatever decision you make, it is educated. Good luck.

3 moms found this helpful

You're doctor sounds like a jerk. My recovery from vaginal childbirth was quick and complete. In fact, at my 6-week checkup my midwife said she couldn't even tell I'd had a child. Just disregard his comment and make your decision based on your medical history and your gut feeling.

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