Medical Cis-female CSA survivors, how do you cope with gyn exams?


I am cisgender female (although I do have co-occurring DID as well as CPTSD) and a csa survivor…I have complete visual amnesia for everything csa related that happened before age 17, but I struggle a LOT with body memories, both external and internal in my lower body. Discomfort, unexplained internal pain, literal physical csa assault flashbacks with no visual where it literally feels like I’m being raped.

A few weeks ago I was having constant/near-constant body memories at the moderate-discomfort level internally for about a week, when I woke up one morning and they had become questionable medically. I actually gave in and went to the gynecologist (actually the gynecological nurse practitioner), which I had been using COVID as a very “valid, non-personal excuse” for NOT getting my yearly exam for about 2 years. I’m not quite middle age but close (I’ll be 38 in less than a month). I said on the phone that I thought I might have a yeast infection or something lovely like that, because I haven’t had actual intercourse or anything even close in about 7 years, so I wanted them to definitely check for that. They said I was overdue for my annual so I said ok can they just get it all over with in one go, I’m a csa survivor and I need to have a female NP and a female nurse in the room at all times during the exam. They said OK sure, and your “chosen/safe mom” can be on the phone with you but she can’t come in because of COVID regulations. They were as good as their word.

Anyway I did not have a definitive DID diagnosis yet but I did and still do have a definitive (C)PTSD diagnosis and all that. But the exam was a complete (pardon my language) sh*tshow. I asked her to please tell me exactly what she was going to do before she did it, and she did. I made it through the top half with little to no problem and the nurse was really nice and stayed as far away as the tiny room would allow. I told her NOT to touch me no matter what. But then the NP said I was coming due for my Pap and she said she could get it over with too.

At that point I totally panicked and dissociated and wouldn’t let her do ANYTHING and they got my phone for me (my safe mom was on standby on speakerphone and I had just enough presence of mind to put her on regular audio) and I talked to her. They all (all 3 of them) tried to talk to me and I still physically refused to allow anything more. The NP said the Pap could wait another year and she didn’t even have to do the yeast/bacterial culture if I wasn’t ok with it.
I kinda was like “just do the culture and skip the Pap and get me out of here!” (There was a lot of DID type dissociation but this isn’t the right forum so I’m editing that out based on what I actually remember of it.)

So eventually I allowed her to do just the culture, just barely, after I started to feel really guilty about how much of their time I was taking up. Of course I went through the whole thing for NOTHING because every test came back negative like a week later. The Universe has a sick sense of humor, idk.

I was severely dissociative and distressed and had flashbacks and nausea at times from then until bedtime. I have to go back for my Pap in September 2022. I also I have an IUD for medical reasons that I *have* to get changed or at least taken out in 2024.

It’s still September 2021 but I’m already worried about it. How do you all cope with necessary but NON-consensual touch?



I'm replying here to a post you made in a different thread, because it is connected to this thread.
You're a new member, and as Admin, I believe it's worthwhile to clarify a few things.

You said:

No. This forum is not meant to be 'safe space'.

Our intentions are clearly spelled out in the Community Constitution:

Peer-to-peer support.

Your thread title is: Cis-female CSA survivors, how do you cope with gyn exams?. That's fine. It means exactly what it says. Members will respect that peer-to-peer request, and they'll weigh in if they have something to say.

@Muttly's thread is talking about wand ultrasounds, and Muttly specifically asked to not be referred to your thread...And yet, here you are - referring them to your thread.

Your feelings about them being welcome to your thread aren't relevant - Muttly's feelings were made quite clear, and its good forum etiquette to respect an OP's boundaries.

/(end of) ADMIN POST.

Posting now as a member...the Community Constitution also says:

Support doesn't always look like validation. That's what a 'safe space' would be. Sometimes - and for some people - being challenged is a really helpful kind of support.

Respect doesn't always look like agreement. Sometimes, it's agreeing to disagree.
Fair call-out. Thank you for pointing that out. 👍I was not intending to exclude anyone by saying cisfemale, but I DO see how @Muttly felt excluded. Actually if many other parts had seen the title to my post likely there would have been immediate chaos internally…I guess me as a straight-identified cisgender female am probably an unwelcome current host for a body that has been nearly every tletter of LGBTQ+ and several other letters explicitly listed in that abbreviation for simply that reason…but that is definitely an issue to take up on a DID forum…which I did find btw but I’m not sure I feel safe there.

As for that article that you cited, I read it (or at least I tried to read it all, my fairly old phone is being a total jerk lately, skipping around and such, so I think I actually read it all, I really just need to deal with it and get a new one!) I feel hella called out ha! In a useful way—I didn’t realize that was such an issue for me—guess it is. And I’ll work on that. Good call/call-out. 👍

And this is my honest assessment, not a fawn response: you and the other admins and mods I’ve interacted with on this site are seriously excellent. When you correct me or call me out you’re still kind and compassionate. And when it was applicable (like this time) you referred me to a *very* helpful resource…it’s appreciated. Truly.
I heard this quite a while back I know it's resurfaced and/or stood out more in the news lately but what Jeannette McCurdy went through with not receiving all that money for doing that Nickelodeon show plus her mom giving her gynecological exams is awful, I know I received a orchimetry exam by a female doctor in front of my mother and that wasn't any fun.
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