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Vaginal appearance after childbirth - my new "normal"

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Posted 01/16/2011
Just went to my 6 week follow-up appointment in tears because I thought something was horribly wrong with my vagina. I vaginally delivered an 8 lb, 11 oz baby girl on 12/2/10. It's 6 weeks later, and I finally got up the courage to angle a mirror and look *inside* and it appeared (to me) as if there was some sort of hernia or prolapse coming out of my vaginal canal. Basically, a large, organ-like bulge of flesh protruding from the inside, where there wasn't one before. Also, there was a separate thick piece of stringy flesh poking out.

The nurse who did my exam told me that this is normal! I had no idea to expect such a vast change in the appearance of my vagina. Apparently, the bulging protrusion is just my vagina itself, which has changed shape as a result of pushing out a large baby. I'm hoping that kegels will help to "shape" it a little better, but the nurse said that it will never look the same as it used to. The strange string of skin is apparently a skin tag or a piece of hymenal tissue, which the doctor can tie off and remove at my next visit if I choose (I do, it's pretty gross).

I haven't seen discussion of these "normal" changes anywhere, so I wanted to create a post to warn others. I really thought something was terribly wrong with me and I was awfully upset. This change in appearance has a psychological impact too - I'm worried about how my husband is going to react to the "new normal" of my sex organs. If I was so horrified that I was in tears, I can't imagine he's going to find it very attractive. Even though I've been given the green light to have sex again, I think it will be quite some time before I will.
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Last edited 01/16/2011

    8Theresa Gould
    I agree things change down there but I really never thought much about what I looked like and neither did my husband. Other than the episiotomy I had with my first, birth has not affected our love life.