I thought I would run this by you all on the off chance I would get any bites on a problem I have been having on and off for several years now, but now has me worried as it has increased in frequency lately. (Think I will post this on several of the other boards, too). This may seem off-topic, but that ain't necessarily so. Simply put, I bleed after sex. Not every single time, but many times. Not a lot, sometimes only a few spots, other times a small trickle. It may last a few hours or up to a couple of days. Sometimes it is like a blood-tinged discharge, other times, a darker, more concentrated red. If any of you have had anything like this, please relate to me your experience.
I have been using a diaphragm for birth control and this has given me some insight to the source of the blood. I thought maybe I was scratching my vagina or cerevix in some way and drawing blood when I inserted the diaphragm (sometimes it slides in perfectly; other times I try multiple times). But this theory has been pretty much shot. I have found that as long as the diaphragm is in place, there is no bleeding. This is the case every single time I use the diaphragm, which means that the blood source is not vaginal (diaphragms fit up over the cerevix, the opening to the uterus). But, upon removal of the diaphragm, I find there is blood in the cup of the diaphragm, which isolates the source of the bleeding to either the cerevix or the uterus itself. So maybe I am scratching my cerevix with the diaphragm? Don't think so, because even when don't use it, I still bleed. But something in there is being traumatized by sex, and it ain't the vagina proper. If I were on some sort of hormonal birth control, I could attribute this to the spotting between periods that I know that can cause, but I'm not.
Do I even need to express the terror that comes upon me when I think that this abnormal bleeding could be coming from my uterus? (Late in life, my mother suddenly started bleeding heavily, turned out she had uterine cancer.) On the other hand, I bleed ONLY AFTER SEX, which certainly gives one a good shake-up (or perhaps "stirring-up" would be a better term? LOL
) If I don't have sex, I don't have this bleeding. So, why does it only happen then? If one had some uterine disorder that caused bleeding, wouldn't it stand to reason that it would bleed any old time it wanted to and not just after sex?
I have told my doctors about this, but up until now, none of them has felt that what I described to them indicated anything to worry about. But now that this seems a pretty frequent occurence, I think I am about to overrule them and insist on further exploration of this. I don't believe that my sexual practices would cause this. I cannot imagine that what I do in bed is gymnastic or rough enough to actually draw blood, unless maybe lupus or medication (steriods) has changed my membranes so that they are fragile enough to bleed with little trauma.
I am getting married April 15th, and this is throwing a wrench in my sex life! Sometimes I think men believe that we women make the sexual act too complicated just for spite. Well, that would be because IT IS MORE COMPLICATED FOR US! And you cannot be my partner in life if you do not get that! I have noticed that I hesitate a bit if I start to think "oh, I am going to bleed after this". If feel like I am going to have to smack my fiance to attention to make him "get" why this is a source of anxiety for me. And why when I have one of these episodes, I prefer to give myself at least a couple of days to "heal up" and let the source of the seepage heal before I attempt another sexual act. I have told him multiple times what is happening with me, but there seems to be some disconnect, since he continues to initiate sex even if I have just gotten the words out of my mouth. In the mind, blood means "injury" and "harm", and the afterglow evaporates rapidly when you are almost sure that when you go to the bathroom, there will be blood, even though you know he hasn't harmed you or caused you pain.
I know any number of gynecological problems could be happening here, and it may have nothing to do with lupus. But I do know that the time frame for the onset of this closely corresponds to the time when I first began having the symptoms that turned out to be lupus. Since getting this extremely weird and strange disease and discovering how it can and does have a wide effect over all organ systems all over the body, I don't put anything past it. I have been thinking.... lupus causes lesions and sores in the mucus membranes of the nose and mouth, so would it not follow that it could also cause lesions in the mucous membrane of the vagina/cerivix, that when "battered" during sex, bleed? When I had my yearly pap test in December, my doctor looked at my cerevix and said it looked healthy and fine, that it didn't bleed when the tissue sample was taken for the pap. The pap came back normal (though many years ago, I did have a pap with some abnormal cells on it, but that resolved itself long ago).
Hopefully, my doctors and I will be able to find the source of this soon. I am sorry to have rattled on so long, but I guess I have been wanting to talk about this more than I thought, but have not wanted to give breath to this on top of all the other lupus stuff. If you don't speak it, it's not real, right? Yeah, RIGHT!