My Swollen Vagina and Other Things Nobody Told Me About Pregnancy


When I was going through my first trimester blues, I was noticing all these changes happening to my body, particularly, to my vagina. I keep thinking, “Great, not only I’m do I have one random stretch mark on my growing ass, but now I have a labia that has swollen past my panties.” Not a great visual, sorry for that.

I casually dropped my swollen vagina, or technically, labia, into a conversation after my mama friends kept encouraging me to wear leggings since I outgrew every thigh hole in my closet. There was no freaking way I was going to rock a Mariah Carey-like camel toe, not with my mild case of vulval vericose veins.

Then came the second trimester and the pee problem. I was clueless and slightly ashamed of this development. Not only was I pissing 20 times a day, but then I had to wear thick panty liners to catch additional wetness that evidently wasn’t making its way into the toilet. I’m convinced god was introducing me to my 75-year-old self.

Now that I’ve entered my third trimester, I have experienced the spinal/leg phenomenon called sciatica or psychotica as I like to refer to it because it sent me into a tailspin of nerve-shattering pain when I walked on concrete. Side effects include snapping at your awesome husband, wincing like a baby, and hitting yourself repeatedly in the ass for a 3-second cure. The real cure? Don’t walk. But is that really a good thing? Probably not.

So ladies, speak up! Tell your pregnant sisters the real raw deal. I know we have the Internet to answer every ridiculous question imaginable, but there’s nothing like hearing the truth from a fellow mama who’s been through it. I’m due in December, so feel free to share all the ugly details surrounding that final few weeks and the weeks after birth. I kinda hate surprises.

Steph’s new book, The Mama and Baby Love Guide to a Conscious Childbearing  Year has been super helpful in giving me straight up, no BS information on pregnancy and post partum.  If you want your own copy, just sign up for the MBL newsletter and get your free copy!


About the Author

Becky is a LA-based tv + web producer + cooker + laugher + urban farmer + fashion wearer + make it happener. She's currently obsessed with taking ridiculous pics of her hilariously photogenic baby Vida on Instagram.

Comments

  1. Hi there,
    I’m due Dec too – but this is my third. With my first, I bled a lot for WEEKS after the baby was born. My advice now to new moms is to pack several pairs of black underwear in your hospital bag. Nothing but black. And a couple plastic bags to send the washing home, just in case you end up bleeding lots like me. My second delivery, hardly any bleeding at all. So maybe it was a prima-partia thing… But anyways, something I hadn’t thought of. Good luck!

    • Definitely going to load up on black underwear. Guess I won’t be returning to my regular hiking routine for a few weeks unless I’m wearing depends and a large skirt, which isn’t so fashionable on the trails.

  2. Kayla Danelle says:

    Ok. Here was a shocker that I found out about (luckily!) 3 days before my first arrived… Be prepared to drop blood clots right after birth. Lots of them. Can be the size of a lemon. Don’t mistake it for your liver like I would’ve done, had I not read that priceless tidbit of info that apparently everyone else in the world forgot to mention to me. I dropped about 5 of them probably. Feels weird coming out, looks just as weird laying on the bathroom floor. Be nice like me and let your midwife/nurse clean them up for you. ;) Also, you do bleed for WEEKS. At least I did. About 6 weeks. I wore Depends underwear (not the crappy mesh stuff they give you) and was eternally grateful for that spark of random ingeniousness that came to me one day. My husband told me he could barely look at me (sexually) for the 2 weeks that I wore them. I counted that as a bonus, because I was in NO mood to be touched or “be” sexy. :)

  3. Yes, ladies! Please tell the truth! I’m always interested in hearing REAL advice, because I truly do not want to be surprised by things like this when I get pregnant.

  4. PottyMouthMommy says:

    Get a cover for your sheets. No matter how much protection I used in my pants, I ALWAYS bled through at night while sleeping and would wake up mortified at the massacre. My mattress was protected by the hypoallergenic cover we use, but my amazing $200 bamboo sheets were ruined. Those pads they use in most hospitals to cover the bed work great, the disposable bed mats from Huggies work even better and have an adhesive so they don’t move around.

    Another tidbit- invest in the hemorrhoid cream with a numbing agent in it. Trust me, you will be very glad you did.

  5. I’ll jump on the TMI train and say nobody told me about the wet dreams. Boy was that a pleasant surprise. Except from about 30-36 weeks when the orgasms were painful. I guess also that orgasms can be painful.

    I’ll second the insane blood clots postpartum. I passed one bigger than my fist and felt a bit of pride, like I had birthed another baby. Actually left it sitting in the sink because it was so big I wasn’t sure I could flush it and then my mother found it. My midwife laughed when I told her. Well gee, you didn’t tell me that would happpen, don’t laugh at me about it now.

    • oh my, we are twins! the wet dreams!!

      i will say though, my orgasms didnt hurt. i actually think they helped with delivery! ;)

      yes, the clots are huge. i actually wanted to name mine! after i freaked out and paged the nurse… no one told me!! (i had a lot of problems with my hospital birth, misinformation/ heck no information was one of them!) my doula came to check on me later that day at home and laughed at me too. she then proceeded to inform me of all the other things to come!

      get nursing bras, especially if you plan on nursing! and WOOL nursing pads. LIFESAVER! i leaked EVERYWHERE. all the time!

      i shoot milk still… Eden will be 1 next week! i make alot of milk. your boobs get porn-star-ish. ;) nice and not so nice! i still havent been able to go to bed without a nursing bra on! i still dont wear underwires… and im a big chested mama!

      and the poop.
      i kid you not this is how my experience went.

      i was told it would be scary… it is. i applied my birthing mantras to pooping, and did until about 6 months after!
      my husband walked by the bathroom and started laughing at me.

      me on potty… swaying back and forth, eyes closed. repeating/sing-songy “open sphincter. open sphincter. ahhh ohhhh. open open OPEN…” i did that over and over… :) you can do it! i actually came out of the room and said, i think we have to name that!
      needless to say those were some funny names we came up with!

      good luck mama, we are here for you!

  6. How about the headaches? I know they’re not as much fun as the swollen labia or peeing yourself (both of which have attacked me with this second pregnancy), but for at least two months of my second trimester I had the most annoying, wouldn’t go away for anything in the world, headaches. And I got the “drink a cup of coffee” or “take some Tylenol” routine, yeah, because Tylenol really works on pain, right? Ha. Right.

    But honestly, the WORST part about pregnancy to me was the jerk pregnant women that swoon around you and tell you how beautiful and wonderful it is. When I was venting to a friend about peeing my pants after sneezing three times she told me she wouldn’t have to worry about that with her second pregnancy because “she had strong vag muscles.” Yeah, because mine are weak and brittle? UGH. Pregnancy IS wonderful and life-changing and amazing, but with all it’s swollen bits and wet pieces it can sometimes be ANYTHING but beautiful!

    • Buhahahaha…”strong vag muscles.” I’m not sure how I would have reacted. Speaking of headaches…that just started with me at week 32. It doesn’t matter how much I drink, I get these strange dehydration-like headaches that only a nap can relieve.

      • I had the same terrible headaches. I found relief with acupuncture. Although, I must say that even though I hated being needled it really helped. For dehydration like headaches, I drank coconut water or would put pink Himalayan salt in my water. It seemed to help with improving my hydration.

  7. How much is too much info? Because I have things going on that make me feel like a freak show! It’s not so much the things that happened while I was pregnant, it’s the after. First… I’ll go through spells every now and then of the “noisey air” that comes from your vagina (I can’t bring myself to say the actual word). And it’s when I get up in the morning… I have only been sleeping! I don’t get it… I’ll get up and quietly try to go get the kids in the morning without waking my husband up, and it comes out like a truck horn! (I am such a quiet person in real life that I can’t even believe I am typing these words for other people to read! haha)

    The second thing is…. tampons just do NOT, I repeat-do NOT fit right anymore. It makes me sob every time. It is SO annoying!!

    • Never too much info Casey!! You are doing a service to ladies like me who have no freaking clue what I’m about to go through. Ha! Thanks for sharing.

    • Oh yes the tampon thing is depressing.

    • If you’re struggling with tampons or wondering about another option, I HIGHLY suggest the Mooncup! You can read my post about why I love it HERE. :)

    • My friends have warned me about the vaginal sounds that make the hills quake. I teach yoga and am stressing this one as I hear down dog because the nemesis of a quiet vagina.

      No one warned me about the tampons. Thank you!

    • Tampons fit again after about 2 years for me, keep kegeling and have faith. I’m pregnant now after 8 years off (I forgot). 32 weeks, my labia/perineum look like the pre-crowning shots of the birthing videos all the time. My back is F-ed because of loose tendons, my right leg looks like a purple vein nightmare, and right ankle is horribly swollen because of it, my pubic bone hurts from separating, and people keep telling me “you look like you’re going to pop” or “two months, not long now” It’s long people, it’s so long now. I have RLS, it’s horrible pregnant, I take iron before bed to help with that, but not with my prenatal because it keeps me up… I drink coconut juice to try to keep ahead of the cramps and dehydration, my boobs are already sagging and leaky, being pregnant old is a LEETLE different from 8 months ago (I’ll be 40 the month after he arrives). My most annoying pregnant person is the woman who spoils her kids and lets them be a nuisance to anyone, who is due at the same time, and looks adorable with her skinny little legs and fashionable pregnancy clothes… My butt has grown nearly as much as my belly, and my belly is big. She looks like she’s wearing one of those fake pregnancy bellies. She doesn’t even look tired, probably for lack of ever running after her hellion children while they annoy the heck out of everyone around them.

      Also, I want to have sex all the time, but I have a lot less sensation because of all THAT down there. On the up side, my last baby was 9.5#, popped out in one push without stitches… so perhaps all that swelling and action is doing something for me…

  8. My 2nd child was over 10lbs, and he taught me that not only could I get more stretch marks, but I could get them both vertically and horizontally. On a positive note he also taught me that I could vaginally birth a 10lb baby in 4 hours without needing a single stitch. Apparently the skin on my abdomen has zero elasticity because it was all stolen by my vagina.

    • thecandiedmango says:

      That is one sneaky vagina.

    • You know, it’s a tough choice, but based on what my very limited stitches from my first (not to mention the rectocele and cystocele) did to my vagina, I’d maybe choose stretch marks over stitches. Stretch marks fade eventually, stitches… I mean ladies, do they ever get the edges together just right?

  9. My advice is to take your stool softeners after leaving the hospital!!!!! I thought I was fine — has gone a few times without issues here and there…..and then, I didn’t go. And then I tried to go…. and then the stitches…..and the ouchie…..and it was like I was giving birth again but not the right way……it was terrible. I can’t explain what came out of me and how my ladyparts felt……and this was like 6 weeks post-partum. Don’t let a day go without going potty!!!!

    • I got Vital Lifeforce’s Intestinal Cleanse on standby!

      • Be prepared with the stool softener but be careful too. I had a friend warn me about how painful pooping can be post birth so i went to the hospital prepared with a bottle of stool softener, which was good because they put me on iron supplements and I 3 lovely set of stitches in my hoo-ha. I was taking them daily and a couple days before Christmas (about a week and a half postpartum) I got a little backed up so I doubled up on the softeners….. not a good Idea, I pretty much thought I was going to let out a silent fart and crapped my pants in the middle of Christmas dinner at my in laws, without a change of clothes….
        I also recommend pad-cicles for the stitches. take a maxi pad and soak it in witch hazel and pop it in the freezer for about an hour, or longer. then stick it in your depends, feels amazing on stitches and post birth hemorrhoids. if you dont have depends then make sure you sit on a towel or chux pad. and if you tear your stitches (which a permanent split in my labia) for heavens sake find a Dr. that will give you lidocaine gel, i couldnt walk without it.

    • I could not agree more. I was fine for the first couple days and then OMG nothing for days. I have never been so miserable… also in agreement about the hemorrhoid cream w numbing agent… it is your friend.

      also regarding the peeing while sneezing… yeah, my baby is 3 – it still happens. It will never end no matter how many kegels I do each day. sadness. :(

      • Read my uterus posts!! That will help the peeing while sneezing. :)

      • My Physical therapist for my pregnancy aches and pains is also pelvic floor certified. I’m a little mortified to be switching to a more personal relationship with her, but not as mortified as I am peeing. There are a lot more exercises that you can do than kegels, and some people are over kegeled and under… other things, so she says that she can assess strength of the different muscles and tell you how to stretgthen correctly, I’m going to try it if I’m still peeing after I don’t have a head on my bladder. I’m very hopeful I’ll get my vagina back someday without surgery after talking to her.

  10. The breast feeding contractions, they seemed worse with my 2nd. Oh and my boobs never went back to their normal size. I told my husband i will need a reduction if we have anymore kids.

    • Michelle Lubbers says:

      Oh my, the breast feeding contractions. I so agree. I could totally handle it with my first, but add exhaustion from having a 2 1/2 yr old around a newborn and a apparently a uterus that had much more healing to do since it was the second time around… OUCH! I was able to endure the pain of a natural delivery both times, but those contractions were over the top and Motrin made everything better at least for a couple days. I am pregnant with my third now… and I can only imagine the pain might be a little worse this time around.

  11. mary faybik says:

    Ok, so I heard all the horrific bloody details that would follow a normal delivery– but was vastly unprepared when I ended up having a c-section with my first. I got ingrown hairs from where they shaved me, and one got really infected because I had no feeling down there. Wasn’t until the red from the infection spread up my tummy that I noticed. TMI, right? Also, I learned to blow dry my incision before getting dressed to keep it extra dry and promote fealing. So I guess my best piece of advice is just go ahead and get that Brazilian before going in, just in case! With my second I had a homebirth– and I also recommend the Depends. What a life saver!

    • I welcome TMI!!!! As a half-latin chick with unruly wavy hair…I definitely don’t want to be shaved down there for fear of what you just described. I hear many hospitals have stopped that practice, but I’ll consider myself warned just in case.

  12. Throughout my whole pregnancy, I would have what I refer to as the tingles (think about when you get a mild electrical shock (like when you were a kid and put your tongue on the 9-volt battery). I would get them randomly in different parts of my body. For example, one day my left check, my right hand, and my buttcheeks had this feeling for like 2 hours. It wasn’t painful just weird and something I have never really experienced before that. Now, 2 years later, I will still randomly get them. My doctors believe it was a hormone thing.

    Also, I thought once I was done being pregnant that I could sneeze without peeing. Yea, it doesn’t go away. No matter how many kegals I do, I still have to stop and hold my legs together before sneezing. No one ever mentioned this didn’t go away after birth.

  13. LOL! I second the above comment about the ladies who walk around loving being pregnant! If you love being preggo that’s great, but don’t tell me about it!! Ha! All my symptoms were all pretty common (I love the depends idea!) except that, now for my second pregnancy, I am getting really awful stomach aches, like heartburn and indigestion combined on steroids. I am learning how to manage, but I definately had never, ever heard of that pregnancy symptom! I suppose all’s far in love and war…and pregnancy!

    • I had the same kind of digestion issues going on. Turns out I developed an intolerance to gluten. Maybe keeping a food diary might help you identify if it’s a food issue. But seriously, I think there are symptoms we get that are truly for no good reason.

  14. Do those kegals ladies…..My daughter is 7 months old and I still pee when I cough or sneeze. And yes I agree with all the above that no one told me how much I would bleed afterwards and for how long. And pain…for weeks after, worse than labor to me. Ice cubes in a newborn diaper was my best friend.

  15. Nice to know all this before hand!! We have been trying to concieve for a year and a half and it’s awesome that you are so open with all of this!!

  16. I just had my third child 6 weeks ago and no one told me about Dermaplast until this time around. It’s a numbing spray that works waaaay better than the hemorrhoid cream. Here’s one for you. My labia always swells during pregnacy but that’s nothing compared to what it looks like 24-36 hours post delivery. If you can avoid looking I’d advise it. Also if you get an epidural, they’ll want you to pee while you’re still fairly numb. It’s hard! My mom told me to blow bubbles into a cup of water using a straw. Even though I couldn’t feel a thing, it totally worked! Successful peeing and pooping between you and your baby will be the highlights of your life for several weeks :)

  17. My friends and i continue to be in awe at the fact that no one told ANY of us that Vicodin (regularly prescribed after delivery) causes constipation. BAD COMBO!!! As if i need to strain to push out anything else!! That leads me right into hemorrhoids…i was largely uneducated as to what they were…where they actually came out & about how itchy miserable they are! I made it through my first pregnancy without them…until after the pushing. They started near the first trimester of my 2nd pregnancy. My baby is 20 mos old & i still have one. Went to the doctor last week and avoided eye contact while asking when the hemorrhoid would go away. His answer?????? Never!! Sexy stuff!

  18. ….and pooping while pushing! Shouldn’t have had Mexican food the night before. :(

    • Most people poop while pushing =) It’s the same muscles and the same area. Nothing to be embarrassed about.

      The sweating and hair loss, I don’t think have been mentioned yet. I sleep on a towel anyway because my boobs leak all over at night, but I soak the towel and sheets with sweat for a couple of months postpartum. Very icky. And you know how you didn’t lose any hair while you’re pregnant? Time for it to come out! I actually appreciated it because I have very thick hair, but if you have thin hair, you may be afraid you’re going bald! But you won’t =)

      And kellymom.com is the best resource for GOOD nursing information. Don’t take the formula samples!

  19. 1). Constipation = stopped up toilets. Asking your hubby to snake the toilet for you is always romantic. ;) Also, I started stalking the public restroom stalls that had plungers.
    2). If planning to wear maternity underwear with a dress and no stockings, walk around your house a lot before you wear them in public the first time. Otherwise, you may end up like me, wearing your coat all day at work so you can walk around with your hands in your cost pockets holding up your panties. ;)
    3). Energetic sex in the third trimester can irritate your cervix and cause bleeding which really kills the mood, freaks out your partner, and lands you in the ER to get baby checked out. Happy first Mothers Day to me. ;)
    4). Your baby can give you hickies on your nipples the first few weeks, especially if you don’t get them latched well the first few times they nurse. Lanolin and cold packs help the pain and learn how to use your finger to break their latch if it is bad. Pain from nursing usually goes away after a few weeks, but let down tingles and hurts some women.
    5). Get a cheap exercise ball if you don’t have one already. Great for sitting on those last few weeks and helps stretch those muscles a bit. Also great for gently bouncing a fussy infant.

    • Good to know about sex during the third trimester. This makes me not feel so bad about being totally weirded out about it because now I’ll use your experience as an excuse. : ) No really, watching my baby move while getting it on feels like she’s walking in on us already!
      Also, didn’t know about maternity panties..I’m going to look into this!

      • Ok, so I’ve been extremely interested in sex since becoming pregnant… weird, I know. But after a great round at 34 weeks I ended up with major contractions and several days of bed rest. I was aware that sex could help you go into labor later on, but no one warned me that one night in the sheets had the potential to land me on bed rest. Thankfully I am mobile once again, but seriously being cautious and totally cut off from sex until it is time to birth. Pretty sure the libido will be dead at that point.

  20. That’s hilarious. I had the very same conversation about the swollen vagina last night with a bunch of female friends over a glass of champagne. Oh, the loss of dignity! Kellie xx

  21. A few things surprised me after delivery. ( the good)1) I didn’t bleed as much as I expected which was awesome! 2) I felt pretty great and energetic afterwards..for days! (the bad) 3) I peed, and I mean I didn’t know I was going. This lasted a few days after birth. Its a good thing I had those huge pads on cause by the time I thought I had to go to the bathroom and got there was already peeing and didn’t even now it! 4) Nipple cream will be your best friend, my baby is 6 weeks and my nipples are still cracking and bleeding, which no one warned me about. For sure use the stool softener, it will be scary when you get the urge but afterwards you will realize it wasn’t that bad and you are really going to have to push VERY hard to rip a stitch, so don’t worry. The contractions from nursing hurt for a few days but then they go away. Everyone is different, I expected to feel like crap ,bleed a lot and be tired. I didn’t have any of that, I was taking the baby on walks right after we left the hospital. I hope you feel this good too, and hopefully have a easy delivery. Good Luck Becky:)

    • Thaaaaank you so much :) I’m in week 24, started worrying about delivery, then found this article and read all the comments that scared the hell out of me but you comment at the end softened it, a little, for now.

  22. Expect hemorrhoids. If you don’t get them you are lucky. I got them with my first pregnancy but I got relief from just keeping them clean when I had the occasional flare up. I used baby wipes every time I #2 and tucks if I needed and if it was bad a little hemorrhoid gel did the trick. Second pregnancy wasn’t near as easy! I had a flare up around 32 weeks and they never went down again. I even tried prescription steroid creams. The doc said it was the added pressure of the growing baby, paired with the fact that it was my second pregnancy. He would always remind me that this pregnancy would be harder but labor would be easier. It was, except when I had to push my hemorrhoids just got ginormous! Good thing though, the do reduce and “seem” to be gone as long as the area is kept very clean. Baby wipes every #2, but NEVER flush your wipes.

  23. Girls, thanks for the open talk! Appreciate it a lot. Especially the tips for the hospital bag.

  24. Where to start? My worst pregnancy symptom was carpal tunnel in both hands. It was not gradual–I woke up one morning and literally could not move my hands, my wrists felt broken and the pain was unbearable. In recovery, I only passed one clot and it was so big I thought my uterus fell out. My nurse inspected it to make sure there were no pieces of the placenta. After that, my internal pains lessened. Stool softeners and/or fiber helped but the first few times you go will still be hell. My nurse used Tucks pads on my pads and sprayed me with Dermoplast–the Tucks pads were really soothing. She also gave me a bowl to sit in (can’t remember the name but you can buy in hemmorhoid section of drug store)– she recommended sitting in the warm water to soothe my stitches, but I also found that it helped “clean” me better than the spray bottle. My hospital was great–they let me take home anything–extra ice pads, extra mesh panties, the tucks and dermoplast, and the chuks pads. I would recommend learning how to use a breast pump before you need it. My milk came in the day after I went home and I thought my boobs were going to explode

    • My carpal tunnel was induced by the severe edema I had from preeclampsia… I felt like I could not grip anything, and was afraid I’d drop the baby. If you get a C-Sect, ask for a stomach binder! This will help your shape, and also help you not feel like your insides were going to burst out of the stitches. Also, the tape they sometimes use over stitches, can be really irritating. I got blisters, and didn’t realize it until it was time to check out of hospital. I had a lot of localized pain and Percocet was my pal. Take the pain meds if prescribed, and don’t wait too long between, it takes a long time for it to re-kick in and by that time you will be hurty again. The ice in the hospital is awesome, good crushed kind for chewing on. And for sure lots of fiber, or stool softeners, poop=2nd baby.

  25. What I was most unprepared for following the births of my two babies was how painful sex is. And I am not only talking about the first time at 6 weeks postpartum. I am talking months! Apparently it doesn’t have to do with the delivery, but with the breastfeeding, which lowers your estrogen levels. My friend had c-sections and experienced the same thing. Use LOTS of lube and maybe a glass of wine! I started feeling back to normal after about four or five months…

  26. Since we’re sharing… The pain I felt while pushing out my baby had very little to do with my vagina (until the end when I think my doctor ripped me open… yea, I’m pretty sure it was a two-handed stretch open… like when porky pig or whoever tries to peep through the black hole at the end of cartoons…). The pain was from my bum and what I was convinced was my intestines leaving my body while I pushed. Seriously, the pain there was way worse. As it turns out, my intestines did not leave my body, but it was the hemorrhoids which I rapidly grew as I pushed for all I was worth. I agree that the 6 weeks post-delivery were much worse than anything I went through during my 24 hours of labor. Between the hemorrhoids (which I’d never had before and hope to never have again) and the stitches, oh, and the baby crying every time I tried to go to the bathroom, I was pretty miserable.

  27. Be prepared for the first poop after giving birth. I’ve had two babies so far and it was horrible for each, but at least I was prepared for the second time around! The first time, I kept trying to go, but it hurt too much to push out a poop. It finally turned into a grapefruit at my butthole. I was on the toilet for at least half an hour trying to get this painful poop out when it only took me 18 minutes to push out my baby. It really was like giving birth all over again. My doctor was coming to check on me right when I started pushing, came back when I was almost done, and was yelling into the bathroom, “Are you okay in there?” I was thinking, “No I’m not okay, you could have told me about this part!”

  28. Thanks everyone for writing things down. My pregnancy was pretty uneventful as far as I can remember. Delivery was uneventful too. Afterwards though was something different. This was my first baby so I wasn’t expecting all of the blood. My mom never even mentioned that. I passed some of those clots that everyone was talking about. I never had a hemorrhoid which after reading all these comments I’m glad. I remember one day while taking a shower I was cleaning my lady parts and I felt down there just to see. I was shocked that it was still wide open. I knew that it would take a while to go back to normal but it was just weird. I also ended up with tailbone issues. We think that my daughter pushed on my tailbone while I was delivering and she hurt it. I was in PT for 2 months to help heal it. It will never be the same. I still have issues when I sit too long or sit on a certain chair. I’m hoping the next child doesn’t hurt it again because that was probably the most painful out of everything.

  29. Maybe it was just me, because I don’t see any other mention of this, but I was VERY emotional after I had the baby. I look back now and laugh at the things I was crying about. Even reading children’s books got me all teary-eyed. It was about a month before the emotions balanced back out. Also, I ended up with a non-planned (but non-emergency C-section) and I didn’t know that I would be vigorously shaking for a while afterward. It scared me because it was so uncontrollable, but I was told by the nurse that this is very normal. Good luck to you! Just remember, keep all of what everyone else tells you in mind, but know that everyone is different and you have to do what is best for you and your baby. You will do great!

  30. Two words… carpal tunnel! Had for both pregnancies from 36 weeks, 1st time in one hand, 2nd time in both hands! So annoying! Couldn’t hold onto anything- knife, forks, pens, the phone!! gripping steering wheel when driving was painful and the worst thing was hands were numb so when it came to learning to breastfeed couldn’t hold baby’s head properly because hands tingled so much it was painful. Also no-one told me about the bleeding and massive clots either and oh boy if anyone offers you cabbage leaves for engorged boobs- use them! They helped a lot! But the best thing of all is that holding your beautiful, precious new baby makes up for all the ugly, annoying, messy, painful bits!

  31. Stephanie says:

    My pregnancy was great but I had planned a homebirth and ended up in the hospital because my water broke and I wasn’t even in labor at all yet. I would say just be emotionally prepared if the birth doesn’t happen exactly how you want it to. Also, I took castor oil on the advice of my midwives to get labor started in hopes that I could go ahead and have the baby at home as planned. Horrible idea!! I will NEVER do that again. It is a laxative and did start me into labor, but I was pooping liquid the entire time I was in labor. I was on the toilet the whole time. It was horrible because I couldn’t keep anything in my stomach and had no energy. Then my labor stalled out and I was 9 cm walking into the hospital not having any contractions at all and they were freaking out. I had like 5 different pushing sessions at home and the hospital, bad hemorrhoids and pooping constantly. The effects of the castor oil lasted many days. Castor oil = very very bad!

  32. My big issue was late in pregnancy when the joints started to soften so my pelvis could open for delivery, my pelvis would move esp when I tried to get out of bed and pinch…hurt so bad. Once I hit 30weeks I always had to get up on my hands and knees and crawl backwards off the bed. It went away pretty quickly after my first pregnancy, but it didn’t go away completely after my second pregnancy until I went to a chiropractor 14m after giving birth. I’ll be using a chiropractor during my next pregnancy without a doubt.

    I didn’t so much have trouble with pee leakage as I had TONS of clear/whitish discharge, I wear mini pads during my whole pregnancy (actually one of my early signs of pregnancy) or I either have to change my undies all the time or get a rash from the constant icky wetness (I’ve very rash prone anyway).

    There is so much pressure on your lungs that once you give birth and your lungs are suddenly released it feels a little scary, like your lungs are gonna drop into your abdomen…but don’t worry you have a great diaphragm to keep them in line.

    • Glad to hear you went to a chiropractor, pelvic movement and misalignment due to pregnancy and birth is very common. And getting and adjustment about 6 to 8 weeks post partum will quickly elevate any issues (from a good chiro that is). You want to wait till then to get the adjustment so that your hormones have leveled off a bit and your pelvis is not as loose and will actually hold the adjustment.

  33. I wish I had known abaut the carpal tunnel syndrome. I have suffered it twice and just wondered what that all was. NOW I found the explanation, HERE! I’ve also experienced severe arm pain while brestfeeding (2 kids, brestfed both for 1yr 3 months). My mother was told 35 years ago that the sleeplessness and general fatigue of taking cake of a baby may cause odd pains.

    As for delivery I suggest you don’t plan too much. It can go so fast you don’t have time for anything of you might be in such a bad shape that the healthcare professionals make all the decisions for you. Go with the flow!

    Breast feeding contractions were a total schocker, no-one had told me about them and they seem to get more severe with second- third… child. Ask for enough painkillers for them! For me the hot treatments just weren’t enouhg and I got worried that I couldn’t hold my baby on breast during them.

    Your tail might go misaligned or break during the birth and might or might not get back in place later. Mine is now knobbyer – though it did’t break during delivery- than before, making for example biking ar sitting on hard surfaces a struggle. It might get better in the next delivery. A reason to have a third one? ;)

  34. This is the most candid, funny and informative blog post (with the commentary, of course). I just have to say how much I have appreciated it. I’ve been sharing it with all my mom and mom to be friends.

  35. Okay, I’m at 32 weeks with my second and you all have me laughing so hard I wet myself twice! Thanks for the stress relief- I’m an emotional TERROR of a pregnant lady- my husband is so sweet about it, but I know it’s pretty unlivable at times. Unfortunately, I have to agree that post partum was the hardest part of all. How discouraging is that after 9 months of body chaos? My big “look out” advice is to not assume you’re being weak abot something. I tried to tough it out through very painful nursing/ overproductive milk making boobs and ended up with mastitis. If something really hurts- go get it checked out- don’t try to be heroic like yours truly…

    • Oh man! Breastfeeding hurt sooooo bad for the first few weeks. Not even a whole cabbage patch could quell those melons. So happy you enjoyed the post and thanks for the advice!

  36. I’m 35w along and my vag looks and feels like a horror story!! My discharge has been GREEN the last two weeks and after all the tests and swabs came back negative for infections or cultures, my doctor just figured it’s another weird normal symptom. My lips areso swollen too! I just went to the bathroom and when I stood up to pull up my pants I caught a glimps of them in the mirror and my jaw dropped!! Oh and as someone with next to no discharge before pregnancy, I haven’t had the need to wear liners in years. So nobody warned me that I could develope diaper rash from them!! I change them every time I pee and I still feel the itch and burn! NowI’m fully committed to cloth diapers for my little guy, I never want my baby to experience diaper rash!!
    I want him out!

    • Hahahaha! Yeah, after 3 months postpartum I think my vag is finally getting back to normal. Now if I can just stop asking my husband if it feels “looser” down there. As for diapers – try the Bumgenius all-in-1 elemental diapers. They’re soooo easy and awesome. No inserts, no snaps. : )

  37. Well!!! My tummy hurts from laughing! Congrats on your successful delivery Becky. There were some things i didn’t know here and some I was reminded of but I think Ive been successfully scared for a SECOND time (thanks to my genius idea of joining my mother in the delivery room as a kid) into waiting as long as possible for children!!! I was laughing and cringing at the same time!! But it sure helps to know what you may be in for before being scared “shitless (literally lol)” later!!!! Im already to pick out which problems ill likely run in to based on existing conditions. But the adorable face of my newborn will be worth it….right?! Right!

  38. I’m experiencing itching, could be a vaginal infection or could be a uthreal infection however I’m leaning toward infection of Uterus due to the fact that it is relieved when I pee. So I am trying not to hold it and go when I need to go, but that is usually 10 minutes apart, and I am 3 weeks pregnant…this is crazy! But at least it is good that I’m not alone.

    Sticky vibes to everyone!

  39. I have just been on a babycentre website trying to look up a few things which normally others don’t like to talk about saying its too crude, but not just only is this a complete different generation its also one that midwives or docs or any other pros don’t tell you enough about pregnancy, i’ve had all different minor problems which i have never heard anyone say before, naming a couple as i cannot remember all of them on my last pregnancy, but for this pregnancy i have had my vagina area not just horribly swollen but (sorry) my bits have been getting bigger and wider my partner says “its getting ready for when the baby comes out” well i no that i have never had a wide hole its always been just below average not to small not to wide but now i feel like sometimes i could swallow a bus up there and its not a nice feeling, my legs have been cramped and when i stretch at nights they hurt so bad, my discharge has thickened and sometimes if i haven’t got a pantyliner in it leaves not a very nice sight especially when your in the bath at nights and your knickers are laying on the floor, your partner picks them up while your in the bath, looks at you and looks back at your knickers thinking what did i get myself into haha, one other thing i wake in the morning and as a need the toilet badly but my back is acheing soo bad all down my lower back where your bladder sits, not nice, you go to the toilet and ahhh lovely, back to normal.

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  41. Oh, how I have enjoyed these comments! You ladies are so witty and forthcoming, it is much appreciated entertainment/information. I am on my second pregnancy, and with a 9 year gap between them, things have definitely been harder; pregnancy at 30 is much different than at 21! I was one of those “I love being pregnant” gals the first time around, oh my feet were swollen and I was nauseated, but it was all easily relieved by the usual advice. This time? Not so much. I have been unusually sick through the first trimester, sex drive only recently came back at 22weeks (husband was grateful for that one!) I had horrible leg cramps at one point, that kept me from sleeping and caused many tears, numb hips from having to sleep on my side (I’m a stomach sleeper, usually) and a lot of discharge-husband actually told me once during sex it was too slippery-gee, thanks babe, let me just mop that up for ya. My first birth was pretty uneventful, except that it was fast and hard. No one told me that laboring quickly could be a bad thing. My water broke naturally and I went into labor at 12:30, my son was born just before 8:00. The pain was intense, and I DO remember it, so after about 5 1/2 hours I requested an epidural. Thankfully, this did not slow me down and I was able to deliver him vaginally after 30 minutes of pushing, no other intervention necessary. Now, my postpartum difficulties-swollen beyond recognition labia? Check. Getting the shakes? Check. Clots so large you think you’ve passed your uterus? Double check. On the other hand, I retained so much water during my pregnancy that I literally lost 20lbs the day I gave birth, thankful for that! Breastfeeding was no easy task. Oh, I produced plenty of milk; had to get creative with my son’s positioning so he didn’t choke. It was my poor nipples, I had consultants and various nurses help out, he was latching properly and was a real champ; it was just my sensitive skin that was doing me in. I was chapped, cracked and in tears every time I fed him. I cried real, snot slinging, hyperventilating tears feeding my boy. I remember calling my mother at one point to tell her it felt like a rabid raccoon had latched onto my nips and was hanging on as though his life depended on it. This lasted a full 3 months. It is NOT usual, do not let that deter you. I still stuck it out, I cried, for a short while I replaced one feeding a day with formula. I think of formula as an emergency supplement and, for me, this was an emergency. Anyhow, after that 3 months we did great and I nursed until he was 13 months. I plan on trying to ‘toughen’ my nipples with a toothbrush before this one gets here, in the hopes it will stave off some pain. Thanks for letting me share my story, with all of you strong women!

  42. Oh my God you guys are spot on! Carpal tunnel has been absolutely horrible. Feels like my hands are on fire for at least 45 minutes after I get up out of bed every morning. I’m 29 weeks pregnant and I have never had my hands hurt so bad in my life. I am so happy that I found this website. You ladies are absolutely fantastic. It’s so nice to know the things that nobody will tell you. I also agree with a few of you that I cannot stand the “OMG, it’s so wonderful being pregnant” girls! Are you on drugs? I just wish I could come home from work and be able to see that my calves are not as large as my thighs. The other weird thing is that my heels are so sore that if someone touches them I holler in pain and being a mild asthmatic, every time I lay down I gurgle when I breathe. Fine when I am standing – wish I could sleep that way. Lol.

  43. where to begin?! i’ve experienced almost everything already mentioned… the carpal tunnel only with my first (i have three), the clots and bleeding after, the constipation in pregnancy and hemorrhoids, the swollen vag (when i worked in an office, it would sometimes go numb from sitting), the tampons not fitting after. i also had some other crazy things… insane ice cravings in all three (third trimester only), i would eat it all day every day and needed it like i needed air. i also had AWFUL AWFUL restless leg syndrome in the evenings and sleeping. the only things that helped were cutting back on sugar and caffeine, or putting my feet up on an exercise ball and bouncing them. i wasn’t prepared for how much letdown would hurt, and for how long (about 2 months every time). i also had terrible sacro-illium joint pain (a lot of people think it’s sciatic) in my back/butt and the chiro helped with that, but i didn’t go to her until my third pregnancy.

    things that didn’t happen to me? sex wasn’t painful after (better than before, actually!), pooping was ok after, i rarely got leaky boobs after the first few weeks, and i don’t pee when i sneeze! thankful for a a few things i can be grateful for :)

  44. Thanks, for all of the awesome stories!!! I am now on my second pregnancy. This one has been just as lovely as the first. I went into preterm labor again. Had to get a cerclage(cervix stitched shut) at 14weeks. Which means No picking up my baby, No sex, and worst of all NO baths. As bad as my back hurts all I want is to sit in a warm bath. Enough complaining about that. I would say I wasn’t prepared for the emotions after delivery and my husband for sure wasn’t! Especially after going home. The first night was a roller coaster. I was crying because I wanted my baby’s bassinet next to my side of the bed but I couldn’t express that clearly through the blubbering mess. My husband kept asking what was wrong and then he started yelling because he didn’t know why I was crying, which made it worse. Needless to say, it is very important that your husband is prepared for all of the emotions. Oh and breastfeeding was a painful mess too!

    It is all just Beautiful, Magical, Rainbows, and freaking Unicorns of course!!!! Lol

  45. Thank you so much for all wonderful moms out there for sharing your expericiences and tips. I am 18 weeks pregnant and going through an emotional roller coaster. I was just looking for some information on swollen vag when I came across this website. I am laughing and crying at the same reading about all your experiences and I must say, I am freaking out now.

  46. I knew the day before I was supposed to start my period that I was pregnant. I had a dream and knew she was a little girl…plus I had tons of gooey discharge and was extra horny! My husband didn’t mind that part! then came the awful nausea…I hate throwing up so I cry about it every time i’m nauseous. plus the hormones made me extra moody and I cried over everything. the answer for me was peppermints, ginger ale, and vinegar and sea salt chips. the peppermints ended up giving me oral thrush so the thought of that made me throw up. my sense of smell and taste was crazy. I tasted dish soap in taco mayo food and all of a sudden my hubby smelled like a dirty dish towel and sweat. ugh!! I was so so sick for 12 weeks and lost weight from it. week 12 was definitely the worst for sickness. week 13 brought on the hip cramps. not cramps in muscles I mean my bones would ache and pop out of place when I walked. they literally got stuck! my husband would have to pull my leg straight out until it popped back into place. I tried some hip stretches that also helped, so I got the bright idea to try pregnancy yoga. I did it one day and pulled an ab muscle. it burned! omg it burned and hurt to breathe for about a week there. im in the 3rd trimester and that muscle is still sticking out farther than the others and my hip cramps haven’t stopped yet.
    did I mention the spider web stretch marks all over my boobs, hips and thighs…yes thighs! all the way down to my knees! I have chicken legs too. I guess when my hips started popping and spreading (10 inches in first trimester) the sm followed suit. I mean they are brown and purple and red and they itch like hell! I have two really deep ones right in my booty crack that itch along with the stupid hemorrhoid.
    i have eczema on top of this itchy stretched skin, so i get rashes from every stretch mark cream out there. i finally gave up and scratched till i felt relief. oatmeal baths don’t help either! oh! and i got yeast infections for about two months in the summer. and the nasty odor from sweat and swollen vulva…gross! and no one else can smell it but me! it literally makes me gag. i have to wash myself 2 or 3 times a day to keep the odor down. i tried baby powder too, but it just masks the stench.
    then…when i started getting used to all this mess, i fell in a hole and sprained my ankle. that put me in a wheelchair because i get dizzy spells and couldn’t balance on crutches. this is the exact moment i got my first hemorrhoid! all the pressure on my butt made it go numb and my vulva swelled up like a krabby patty candy :) gross looking. my husband and i had a few good laughs about my krabby krotch! the dr put me in a boot and a walker so i looked like an idiot pregnant woman hobbling around with an old lady walker with tennis balls on the bottom! about the time my foot healed enough for me to just walk in a boot (last week actually) i started having Braxton hicks and pressure in my tailbone. i went to the dr and had high blood pressure and protein in my urine so now im on bedrest to monitor for preeclampsia. im 35.5 weeks so hopefully this mess passes quickly! pregnancy is hilariously sucky!
    oh! and my mom and her sisters like to compare my huge belly to my cousin who had had no pregnancy symptoms and has a tiny little basketball belly-shes a month farther than me btw-at our baby showers they talked about our bellies and my mom told everyone my weight! much to my horror also posted it on facebook with an awful picture of me. at my baby shower they made us stand side by side to compare our bellies. i have a double chin swollen hands and arms like a huge cow and shes all glowing and petite. im ready to rip everyones faces off…hormones? :) i guess we can blame it on that!
    sorry for typos. i have blurry vision with this preeclampsia stuff.

    • omg I’m wiping away tears from laughing so hard at this post… hahah “krabby patty candy / krabby krotch” hahah I don’t even know what that is but it’s hilarious! I think I might have that right now. And “tennis balls on the bottom of your walker”! ugh, hahha, I can just imagine that. I’m 20 weeks and looking forward to some of these types of issues over the coming months :| Hope all is better for you now and your delivery went ok. Thanks for the full out belly laughs!@

  47. All the stories and advise above is awesome! Experienced a lot of it myself! My advice is don’t be afraid to spread that lanolin on your nipples every 2 seconds if you need to and even though they say to nurse at least 10 minutes each side I would switch every few minutes from boob to boob to spread more lanolin on it because once your nipple cracks and bleeds it takes a lot longer to heal! I only had to do the constant switching of boobs the first week and then my nipples were fine and my baby still fattened up no problem. Oh and for 2 weeks after the birth I had a squirt bottle of warm water to just rinse and dab after peeing and I used wet wipes and squirt bottle after going #2. I also used something called sitz? spray to help in healing my vagina. If you get hemorrhoids I was told that while showering if you can push them in with your finger and do kiegles(?) at the same time to help restregthen(?) those muscles and reduce the the rhoids.

    • Oh and thank you so much Becky for this blog post. I really hope it hits some major news sight because all the good stuff mentioned here!

  48. AanijahMom says:

    You ladies have made me so thankful… For a very uneventful pregnancy I am now 33 and a half weeks with my 1st child and I’m officially scared of labor and delivery. I have been very emotional though… My poor fiancee..I have been the angry pregnant woman. I have a list of things that I’m definitely going to be getting depends lanolin & hemorrhoid cream are at the top of my list. thank you wonderful ladies for all the advice and enlightenment you provide!

  49. Oh I have gotten quite a few belly laughs here. Thank you ladies! Found this post when looking for evidence online that it’s ok that my vagina is ridiculously swollen. I’m 23 weeks pregnant with my second child and it’s been almost a completely different experience this time around. The biggest issues are the swollen nether-regions that sometimes make it painful to walk – or sit!! And I’m exhausted all the time. Running after my 15 month old is taking a big toll on me. I disliked being pregnant the first time around and I pretty much hate it now – we’re closing up shop after this one!!! My biggest surprise with my first pregnancy was the 6 weeks after delivery. Silly me, I thought that since I had a natural birth my heeling process would be only a few weeks long. Ha!! I felt like such a wreck and they don’t prepare you AT ALL in the hospital. Everything is about the baby, not about your poor, wrecked body. Did you know it’s almost impossible to find unscented panty liners? After a week or so of using scented ones (even “organic” brands) my vagina was on fire and it hurt to pee/touch. So miserable. Plus I had left the special bottle to squeeze water onto yourself in the hospital bathroom. I was in so much pain. Get a sitz bath and use it every day!!! Oh my, so many things. But really, thanks for reassuring me that I’m not the only pregnant woman out there with freakishly swollen labia. :)

  50. mum of many says:

    Oh wow I am so grateful to find this site! Was casually googling to find if I am the only one with a vagina that feels like its swollen to my knees and stumble across all you fantastically open mumma’s! I feel SOOO much better after reading this and now feel relatively “normal” (whatever that is?). I am 26weeks with number 6, I have experienced EVERY SINGLE one of the symptoms and side effects on this site, The most horrific (if I had to chose one) being the after pains when breastfeeding. Never had them till #3, they hurt a bit, then #4 I actually would have preffered to give birth every 3 hours than get those after pains while feeding, #5 was just freaking ridiculous! Really not looking forward to them this time, the only reassurance I can give myself is that Im pretty sure a worse pain does not exist than what I have already been through… – I hope. Had total drug free VERY FAST (longest from start to finish was 3 hours total) deliveries with them all then was begging for drugs for the after pains.
    The one thing that Ive never asked anyone about, or noticed anyone mention is that after my second Ive never had much feeling down there… sex has never been enjoyable again, there is pretty much no sensation – I mean I can feel whats going on but no more than if someone touched my arm. Its really difficult because that means I have no desire for sex because I get nothing out of it so purely do it for the husbands benefit. Whats more it actually hurts alot, feels like my skins made of tissue paper down there (not just when Im pregnant this has been since the birth of 2nd child almost 10years ago) and for a day or two after sex the skin burns like crazy. I really hope someone else out there has advice or has experienced something similar, makes me feel really alone.
    Thanks so much for being open with all your pregnancy woes ladies, Ive had a good laugh while laying here in the early hours of the morning in too much hip-pain to sleep.
    Oh and chiropractor is the most amazing thing ever – fixed the headaches 100%, I had been getting them daily since about 6 weeks preg this time and they just didnt go away. Also relieved back and neck pain that Ive been putting up with for years, if only I had known what an easy fix it was.
    Blood clots – urgh, so not looking forward to that again. Poo-ing – the very thought of it freaks me out now as my vulva is so swollen its like Im giving birth out both openings when I push. After the birth (of the baby) it was like the biggest accomplishment ever to have gotten through the first poo let alone the next 4 weeks of them.
    Those pains down the arms someone talked about, I get them really bad midwife said your milk let down actually starts alot higher than you think and can send the pains down your arms. I had mastitis SO MANY times with all my kids that I have scar tissue all through the inside tubes where milk flows which has left me getting those arm pains permanently.
    I get so much milk that I have to sleep on towels, along with breastpads and bras and STILL manage to wake up with milk all over the sheets. Same as the bleeding for the first 6 weeks, I use the BIGGEST and LONGEST pads I can get my hands on and then still wrap an old towel between the legs. (Its an extremely sexy look – the double towel wrap :) ).
    Oh and whats even better is when your milk comes in and you have a shower the hot water makes milk spray EVERYwhere and then the bleeding down below, it is acutally a marathon effort to get all pads in place both on boobs and between legs before dripping liquids all over the bathroom floor. (I have become quite an expert at this over the years, it takes alot of strategy planning :) ).
    Best of luck to all of you out there, Mother hood is a beautiful, wonderful thing :)

  51. Okay I will say I never experienced the clots, the swollen labia, urinary incontinence, or a lot of the other symptoms. I actually looked this up to find out how common the swollen vagina was that I hear so much about – haven’t had it with either pregnancy!

    But what I lack in breadth, I made up for with my post partum constipation complication. I found it was easier to wait a day or two until there was enough force in their to expel it without having to push. Worked fine the first few times. Then days came and went. Next thing I know it was coming to a week without a BM. I started to get worried, called the nurse. Prune juice, stool softeners, more liquid. I tried it all. Finally went to the doctor. Turned out it was impacted – Google it – basically impossible to get out at that point. I was begging them to do some type of surgery or suck it out of me somehow. Unfortunately I was told I would need an enema. My husband had to give it to me. Let me tell you – WORSE THAN BIRTH. I was screaming bloody murder. I got an anal fissure from it all. I damn near had PTSD from it and was scared before taking a crap for months.

    Please learn from my story – drink prune juice, eat a high fiber diet, drink TONS of water and all the preventative things BEFORE and AFTER you give birth. 2 years post partum and the bleeding with bowel movement only recently stopped.

    Also, don’t put Aquaphor or vaseline on your nipples if you are breastfeeding!!! I put a tiny bit on there after lanolin wasn’t working. My poor baby nursed and it left a residue in his mouth!

  52. With my first pregnancy I kind of had it easy. Except with the pooping part. I went after 3 days and had my mum with me in the loo while I cried the entire time! So I really thought pregnancy would be a breeze the second time. Boy, was I wrong. Have the swollen and itchy vag, the excess discharge(have to wear a panty liner everyday!) the heartburn, the nausea(especially the bile that comes up in the morning), the restless leg syndrome, the sleepless nights, the swollen ankles, the back pains. But thank god I skipped the hemarrhoids! Except for the heartburn and nausea, I never experienced any of these with my first pregnancy. And I have’nt felt the urge for sex in over 6 months. I feel really sorry for my hubby. I also keep worrying about breastfeeding. My first one couldnt latch on so hoping the second time will work out. I’m also an emotional wreck. I keep crying when I watch tv and at other times my family says that I am an absolute bear to be around. I am especially afraid of pooping afterwards and my stitches not healing. With my first my stitches turned septic(although it was regularly kept clean and dry) and I ended up on antibiotics when it finally healed. My perineum is still sensitive after five years(more so after sex) so it worries me what will become of it after this birth. I just hope everything is not as bad after delivery!

  53. So I’m going to admit that I am not and never have been pregnant. After reading this I’m not sure whether I will be super prepared or just too damn scared to even try and get pregnant! My vagina hurts reading this :-/ but thanks for your honesty ladies. :)

  54. I get terrible thrombis hemorrhoids when I’m pregnant (I’ve had surgery in the past and they just refill in a matter of hours, I usually have to go on bed rest for a bit too because they get so bad and bleed and make it excruciating to sit or walk) and they are all inside too. Birth messes me up. I can only poop in a hot sitz bath for a full month after ( a little before too) I give birth. I can’t wipe either. So, I use a squirter thing with hot water to clean myself, then I spray with pain reliever, then I line my pad with Tucks. I’m a big fan of prescription grade hemerroid cream, a foam cushion for my bum (wherever I sit) and when it’s really painful, I take a bum bath with lots of epsom salts in water as hot as I can stand, several times a day (it shrinks em down). I’m also a big fan of diapers with the stuffing ripped out, stuffed with tiny ice cubes instead of pads for a week after birth.

  55. The diaper with ice, it soothes your stitches and hemorrhoids. Also, stool softeners/Metamucil/prunes/fiber are your friends!

  56. I had severe HG my entire first pregnancy and even with suppliment, lots of fluids and stool softeners always had “butt babies” when i pooped and nearly always had to unclog the toilet after delivering one. The first time i made hubs go to the local sex shop and buy a numbing anal cream a friend had told me about trying a few times, so that i could push it out without it hurting so freaking much, unfortunately it was too late and i already had tiny tears in my butt so it didnt really help except maybe to lube me up some. Oh, i pee’d strait forward not down/at an angle into the toilet for several months postpartum and it took 4+ weeks to realize hubby wasn’t missing the bowl and leaving pee puddles and it wasn’t the dog doing it, it was me!!! Had to buy hubs an “im sorry for blaming you for the pee even if its still sort of your fault for helping get me pregnant” gift and he nearly dropped the baby laughing at me for being the pee bandit the whole time

  57. And after a tiny tear that i was told AFTER i was given a stitch didnt really need one they were just being cautious, i now have this ugly easily irritated flappy scar coming down from the bottom of my vag. Durring my first pregnancy sex felt like an ice pick to my cervix and my libido disappeared and nearly 4 years later has yet to be located. Since first delivery i have little sensation down there so sex is pretty much all for him and mildly painful during and moderately to very painful for days afterward. I get nothing from sex unless i take a vibrator to my nub which just makes me sad and has put un needed strain on our marriage.

  58. Oh my goodness, I remember this problem with my youngest son. It actually felt like my baby was going to fall out. The SPD was terrible too. I had a stretch mark just above my lady parts this past pregnancy too. The things we sacrifice for our children. All of the stretching, pain, and suffering during my pregnancies was worth it.

  59. Lanette says:

    Oh, I relate to so much of this! I’m now 35 weeks with my third and just have a couple of things to add. First of all, after a horribly painful post-partum with my first, I assumed that was the norm. I was happily surprised to find that, after not needing to actively push with my second, my recovery “down there” went much quicker! I had pushed for an hour and a half with my first because he had his arm up behind his neck, the little stinker. But the difference was amazing! Instead of sitting on ice packs for days and wondering if I would ever be able to sit normally again, I was up and full of energy and had very little swelling/pain after day 1 with number two! Now I’m going into number three with full understanding of how what I’m doing during that delivery will affect my recovery.
    I’m definitely NOT looking forward to the after pains during feeding this time around, which I’m hearing from everyone jut continue to get worse. I was in tears many times while feeding number two those first few weeks. However, I want to say that nipple cream is not the only answer to painful, cracked nipples! You have to try LilyPadz, people!! You can get them on Amazon and Target used to carry some in store. They run about $20, but one set will last you 3-6 months. They are soft, silicone pads that stick to your breasts and actually hold your nipple depressed so that it doesn’t leak, even during those unplanned let-downs in the middle of church or the grocery store (although, I will say that they are not as effective over night or when I’m super engorged and my let-downs are like a flood gate opening!). HOWEVER, the biggest benefit I get from using them is, after a feeding, they actually lock in the leftover moisture from your breast milk which keeps those nipples soft and supple! I did still have some tenderness in the first few days with number two while using them, but nothing like the weeks of cracking with my first.

  60. All these comments and story’s have made me laugh so much the inevitable pee has soaked yet another pair of pants. No one prepares you for all of this, and I sit here at 36 weeks awaiting a new phase of disgustingness, pain and embarrassing bodily leaks. After the birth of my first beautiful daughter, I stood up to walk to the shower in the hospital and I can only describe as a waterfall of blood and guts came pouring out of me. My poor husband in shock thought I was dying so pushed the alarm and the nurses ran in only to dismiss this as totally normal, I was told to shove a towel between my legs and waddle to the shower room. I also had the delight go a blood clot which I saved in a sandwhich box to show my midwife in the event I was dying again!! I was not, this is normal apparently (the sandwhich box was thrown away along with the offending blood clot). My boobs bleed after breastfeeding, all those lying women at the breastfeeding talks told me how beautiful the whole breastfeeding experience is, didn’t tell me about painful, cracked bleeding nipples did ya. I could go on, but I won’t, I will say I am doing it all again because the love I have for my little girl is overwhelming, I have never been as happy and I’ll take all the above twice as bad to have another beautiful and healthy little girl. Good luck all. We are strong women that can handle anything.

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  1. […] sick way I think misery loves company. Or at least I kinda felt better when I read this particular blog post (My Swollen Vagina and Other Things Nobody Told Me About Pregnancy) and especially it’s comments section where fellow mummies shared some interesting […]

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