Warning: this post may be TMI. After all, it’s talking about using a Diva Cup. If you’re not familiar with the Diva Cup, it’s a menstrual cup made of silicone. That means it’s going to be discussing vaginas, menstruation, and all manner of things related to one’s lady parts.
Not disturbed? Then read on!
So, as the title states, I tried a Diva Cup last night. I’ve been making an effort to have a greener period ever since my beloved Cozy Bums started carrying Bummis Fabulous Flo pads. (No worries, a review will be coming up on those later.) Since my period has decided that it should be here all the time to make up for all of the years when I’d have it quarterly or less, I’m getting a lot of use out of “feminine hygiene products.” And that’s when I discovered that single use, disposable products do not agree with my lady parts.
I sent my husband out to the drug store last night to buy a Diva Cup. (And he, being the awesome, wonderful husband that he is, went out with a complaint.) He came back with this.
I was sure that there would be some trial and error, but it shouldn’t take more than five minutes to put my brand new Diva Cup in place and move on with life.
Nope, my husband ended up putting Norton to bed because I was in the bathroom long enough that it would have generated comments from an individual less understanding of my foibles than my husband. My dearly departed mother would have knocked on the door and asked, “Did you fall in?” I fought the good fight with the Diva Cup for 40 minutes.
I sat down on the toilet and read the instructions. This doesn’t sound so hard, I thought. Fold, insert, turn to make sure it’s all open, and you’re done. I was confident.
I tried the “u” fold. For the uninitiated, that’s when you press the edges of the Diva Cup together, and then fold in half. Then comes the fun of trying to insert it. If you’re a skillful cup user who is comfortable with handling her own lady parts, it’s a simple process that takes about as much time as using a tampon. I, however, am not a skillful cup user, and I don’t spend much time handling my lady parts. But still, I dutifully tried.
I winced as I scratched the labia with my short but perpetually sharp fingernails. Still, though, I found the vaginal opening and guided the Diva Cup into place. Okay, this is working… I pushed back, keeping the cup at a horizontal angle as per the instructions. Of course, as the cup went in, it started to unfold.
Actually, “unfold” is not a good choice of words. That implies something gentle, like a flower coming into bloom. I’d say “explode” works better. I felt a pop as the Diva Cup started to go back into its normal cup shape like it’s supposed to… and lady parts are delicate. That “pop” felt more like a really hard thump… only in was a vaginal wall instead of knocking a knee into a table.
I gasped, fished that sucker out by the stem, and found that pulling that cruel little torture device wasn’t completely open. Nope, the Pear of Anguish opened up even more on the way out.
This was no environmentally friendly menstrual collection system. Nope. It was clearly a modern day twist on a medieval torture device. I wasn’t going to be defeated, though. The Pear of Anguish would not beat me down. So I tried again. And again. And again. I tried for 40 minutes. I tried sitting. I tried standing. I did deep breathing to relax. I even tried in the shower so that I could attempt whatever methods of contortionism I would require for proper fit. Of course, I tried a different fold, like one where one lip of the cup is pressed down (and looks kind of like an iris) for a smaller surface area during insertion.
Either way, though, I had the same result: it would hurt when starting to unfold, I couldn’t get it in enough, and I couldn’t turn it.
In the end, I decided that I was too frustrated and too sore to give the Pear of Anguish another go.
I crawled into bed, feeling a burning and discomfort internally, and more than a small amount of irritation that something so “simple” could be such an utter disaster.
Obviously, I can’t return the cup because of where it’s been. I’ll give it another go when I’m over my humiliating defeat. And I’ll also look around and see if I can find some kind of an after-market Diva Cup applicator or something to help me get that sucker up where it goes.
Have you used a menstrual cup? How long did it take you to get comfortable with using it?