The Day Everything Changed
The first thing I recall as the anesthesia began to wear off was the blurred soft pink and pale yellows as my eyelids parted. Gaining focus, the fluorescent lights and pink walls of the recovery room became more defined and other senses started to filter in. As if a switch had suddenly turned on, in came the immense pain. I knew I was going to experience pain post-op, but something just didn’t feel right. I had no clue as to how much my world was about to change.
When Insecurity Takes The Wheel
The week of my 33rd birthday, I was working a busy shift at a bar. I started to feel an escalating discomfort in my vulva. I rushed to the restroom and went to remove my underwear, realizing to my horror that my labia minora had somehow become caught in the lace of my underwear. Twisting into a tight knot around the skin, it constricted blood flow so there was a bluish taut bubble of labia being strangled by the lace. I panicked and had to rip my panties apart to free my poor labia. Then stumble back to work, wondering if I had severely injured my vulva.
After that, an entirely new train of thought took over in regards to my labia. Was it too big? I had gone so long without ever even thinking about it and now it seemed everyone was talking about large, unsightly labia. I became so insecure about it that I started to become uncomfortable during sex and then I stopped dating. I couldn’t get over the insecurities.
One day while in my car, I heard an advertisement about labiaplasty. I went home and looked into it further. Surgeons referred to it as a simple, quick surgery and women said how their life has completely changed for the better. I was sold!
My gynecologist was the one who I selected to perform the surgery. I naively figured he would be the safest bet to perform the procedure. Had I researched a bit further, I would have discovered that most botched labiaplasty are performed by women’s trusted gynecologists. After the surgery, he admitted that he had trimmed more than we agreed. I was upset but trusted his decision.
As it healed, I realized he had trimmed a lot more than expected. I wasn’t happy with how it looked, I was in pain most of the time, I was getting a lot of yeast infections and had lost the ability to enjoy sex. I felt so careless for gouging my savings for something that gave me so much grief. I became extremely depressed and blamed myself for being insecure enough to do the surgery in the first place.
Over a year later, I started looking into surgeons who help fix botched surgeries. This time around, I was very thorough in my research. When looking for a surgeon, I treated it as an interview. I asked a lot of questions about their technique, how many similar surgeries they had performed in the past and looked into reviews outside of their website. It took a while but I finally found a surgeon I trusted completely who was able to fix the botched labiaplasty.
Many women don’t realize that the average labia minora extends about 2 cm past the labia majora. The highly sought after Barbie, in which the labia minora is completely concealed by the labia majora is the least common type of vulva. My labia was normal and it never caused me grief until the lace panty incident. The fact that it didn’t occur to me that maybe I just shouldn’t wear lace panties seems so silly to me now. I wasn’t experiencing any other discomfort.
If I had the choice I probably wouldn’t do it again. I would save the money I had to spend on multiple surgeries and prevent myself from experiencing so much grief. However, for women who have a labia that interferes with daily comfort or they really can’t love the one they have, do your research! Ask questions, educate yourself on the different techniques and seek reviews that aren’t on the surgeons’ websites. It can be a simple surgery when done correctly.