If you think that once you have Gender Confirmation Surgery you are done… take it from me, you’ve just begun!
Don’t get me wrong … at least in my opinion, its worth every second but, you should know what the aftercare involves.
Dilation Process (This one is a biggie!👱♀️)
At rest, the vaginal walls of all women, cis and trans, lie exposed to one another. Dilation is a necessary process for trans women who lack the constant sloughing and lubrication that accompanies a natal vagina and keeps it from annealing together when at rest. 🛌🏼There is also a tendency of the neovaginal graft to contract. Dilation allows the depth and diameter of the neovagina to remain adequate. 📈
The frequency of dilation recommended is once 3 times daily, with each of the first 3 sizes, for 15 minutes🕛 at a time for 3 months, then twice daily for 9 months, then once daily thereafter. 🗓
Soooo…..lets do the math, that’s 45 minutes per session, 3x a day…not counting prep time and clean up!🤥 It actually takes me about an hour for each of the three daily sessions. Oh did I mention, it can hurt like hell,😥 bleed and if you don’t do it your vagina will eventually close up. Since its a wound…it will actually heal closed and you will end up with a pee hole🔍that is unsuitable for ANY sexual activity involving penetration🚫
Intercourse is a suitable but imperfect replacement for dilation. Thus, regardless of sexual activity, dilation is recommended. It is also true that after one year, dilation becomes slightly less necessary and many—but not all—patients are able to go to a frequency of less than once per day without losing depth or diameter. Once you have established depth as a recent post-op, mark the dilator and use that permanent marking as a reference point. The dilators also have dots that equate to ½ inch increments up to 9 inches in length (please don’t faint–most depth averages about 6 inches). Girth of the dilators range from 1 ⅛ to 1 ½ in size from small (#1) to large (#4) . In future sessions, these dots can be used as references to assure that depth is maintained.
Dilation continues as a part of your health care regime for the rest of your life along with your estrogen and daily dosages of testosterone*
(The reason post op trans women take a small amount of testosterone is that without it, you can lose your libido and your energy level can decrease dramatically. CIS women produce a small amount of T naturally…we don’t )
The frequency may lesson for the dilation, as time goes by, but the estrogen and T supplement remain a constant. 💉💊🤹🏼♀️
Commitment, patience and a strong desire are the prerequisites for successful dilation and healthy healing!
Toni Grace 👱♀️
P.S. – The pic of me holding the clear dilator labeled #5 was taken in my surgeons office. There is no size #5 (THANK GOD) … she keeps it as a joke!🦋