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ginger_timelady
Hi everyone,

I'm a first time user of the cup, so sorry about the length of this post!
I had some friends who kept raving about menstrual cups, so I decided to try it out. I purchased the Diva Cup (Model 1) and am using it for the first time this week. I'm 23, have had sex before, and have never had kids. I'm on Day 2 of using it, and the problem I'm having right now is rotating the cup to open completely and prevent leakage.

First time I put it in, I forgot to rotate it. But it didn't have any problem going in when I used the punch down fold (in fact, it just sort of kept going to the point where I had to stick my whole finger in before I could reach the stem; it might have been because I masturbated briefly to relax my muscles). My period also hadn't "officially" started yet, but I wanted to put it in to prevent any spotting. When I took it out 10 hours later, I luckily didn't have any problems or leakage, and the cup was only filled a tiny bit (my first day is usually not very heavy).

Second time putting it in was more difficult. I tried holding onto the base to rotate it, but I had to let the cup go in a bit more under my pelvic bone, otherwise it got kind of painful letting it sit there while I tried to position it. Because I let it go in more, I couldn't rotate it. The stem was also only 1/2 an inch in, but sitting or lying down, I could feel it kind of protrude against my opening. I think my cervix lowered a bit since that morning, because the cup was sitting low. I tried removing it and inserting it a couple more times, but eventually my vagina became too sore, so I decided to call it a night and leave it as is. Overnight, it did leak, but the cup was only a little bit full. When I removed it, the only sound I heard was the "pop" right before it left my vagina; I'm not too sure what the sound of the "seal" breaking would make, or if that was it.

Third time putting it in, I tried again to pinch the base more and rotate it, but I still couldn't do it (not only is it hard to maneuver the cup so, but I can't find a comfortable position for my hand to do that). So instead, I just continued to push it in. I tried checking the sides to see if it was open, but even that was kind of hard (I couldn't quite get my finger between the cup and my vaginal wall). It's been about three hours now, and I've noticed some minor leaking. I don't feel it as much as I did last night, but walking around still gives me a weird feeling, like when you have a leaky tampon.

Is rotating the only way to get the cup to open fully? Are there other ways to do this? I thought one way could be if I pinched the base and tried wiggling it around as it moved up. The punch down fold works best for me, and I insert it with the folded tip pointing up. Also, will your vagina gradually get used having a cup be inserted into it and stop being sore? Mine isn't painful; I'm just a little tender down there, especially when I pee--it slightly burns. I haven't had sex in 2 years, so it's been a while since I've had to put anything bigger than my fingers up there.
Let me know if you need more info from me, and thanks in advance! So far I like the Diva Cup, but I can definitely see where it takes some getting used to.
 
elle2013elle2013 on June 12th, 2013 06:13 pm (UTC)
I'm new here, but I'll give you my two cents.

You definitely don't have to rotate your cup to get it open. In fact, I've never been able to rotate mine at all. I do try to swipe my finger around the edge of the cup as much as I can (I think this is what's called "stirring") to see if the parts I can feel have opened.

You mentioned that you first tried inserting it before your period started. I have a really hard time with "dry runs" like that. For whatever reason, my cup is much easier to insert and pop open when it's that time of the month. If you want to practice, I'd definitely use a water-based lube of some sort.

You also mentioned your fold. I LOVE the half-diamond fold, with the opening pointed down/back. I have never used a Diva (way too long for me), but I imagine it could be difficult to make sure the punched-down part had popped up when using a cup that long. I'd encourage you to give the half-diamond a try, or at least experiment with some other folds.

I hear/feel that little "thunk" or "pop" when mine opens, so I am guessing maybe yours isn't opening fully till you pull it down. If you can insert it, pull it down a bit to get it to open, and then finesse it back into place, that might work too.

Hang in there, and good luck!
ginger_timeladyginger_timelady on June 12th, 2013 06:33 pm (UTC)
I've heard about the diamond fold! I'll have to look into that and see how insertion goes. How did you know the Diva was too long for you (or did you assume it might be too big?). I'm learning more about the different cups and trying to see if the Diva is right for me.

Thanks for the feedback!
elle2013elle2013 on June 12th, 2013 06:42 pm (UTC)
Well, I use a LadyCup and a Fleurcup, both of which sit right at the edge of my opening - even with trimmed stems - on my heavy days. Comparing those to the length of the Diva on http://sizecharts.livejournal.com/ there's no way I could use the Diva, sadly.
ginny587ginny587 on June 12th, 2013 06:22 pm (UTC)
I'm still pretty new to this myself, so I wouldn't consider myself any variety of expert/seasoned cup enthusiast. But, I haven't rotated mine to get it to open-definitely can't get my hand on the base firmly enough to do that. It might work better to insert folded side down; there seems to be more space for the cup to unfold that way, and the pubic bone isn't in the way (so it's all stretchy muscle there). The punchdown has been my go-to fold as well, but from what I've read the more complicated the fold the easier it pops open (half diamond and origami are pretty complex). I just keep pushing it in and wiggling it around, and once it gets to a certain point it opens on its own.
All I do to make sure it's open is run a finger around the base to make sure it's round and not collapsed, and if I can run one up the side (can't always get enough space to do this).
Things should get less sore as your body gets used to everything.
You'll get past the learning curve! It's just a matter of finding the perfect fold and perfect position-keep experimenting, something will work!
ginger_timeladyginger_timelady on June 12th, 2013 06:35 pm (UTC)
I thought about turning the fold down so the folded part was pointing down. In that case, it would be pointing in the direction where my canal goes under my pubic bone. I'll give it a shot! :)
teacupcake89 on June 12th, 2013 06:50 pm (UTC)
ok: IGNORE the rubbishy DivaCup instructions that tell you to twist/turn/rotate the cup! If it helps you to get the cup into position or open up, keep doing but, as that doesn't seem to be the case for you: don't stress about it. It's only one way to get the cup into position or help it to open up, you don't 'need' to do it.

Make sure you are aiming the rim of the cup towards your cervix so it sits right underneath it to prevent leakage. This may mean the cup slants to one side but that's fine. Again ignore the instructions that show the cup right at the bottom of the vagina with tons of space between the rim and the cervix. Whether your cup sits 'high' or 'low' depends on how high/low your cervix is on your period and how long/short a cup you have.

have a read of this FAQ post on getting cups to pop open for some tips to try out: http://menstrual-cups.livejournal.com/2618390.html#comments
ginger_timeladyginger_timelady on June 12th, 2013 07:18 pm (UTC)
All right, good to know. I've been assuming my cervix lies low during my cycle, because pushing it too far is sometimes met with resistance. I've been wondering if the Diva might be too big for me. I think I'll hold onto it for a few more cycles and see if there's any change before I go drop more money on a different one. I checked myself after 5 hours, and I haven't continued spotting (at least no more than when I was spotting after changing it out, which could've been some residual menses?)

Thanks for the link as well!