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Hey guys. I'm new here. I actually only heard of menstrual cups 2 days ago and today is my first day trying too. I'm in love so far, aside from a couple of irritating things I've come across, and hope someone may be able to shed some light on my issues.

Well, I've heard countless people on here saying things like "twist/turn the cup until it pops open" and "run your finger around the rim to check to make sure it opened" and "when removing it, grab the bottom to release suction"...

All those things sound great in theory, with one problem...there is literally no room up there for anything else aside from the cup. Every time I try to reach a finger in to slide it farther up, I can't get past the stem because of all the fleshy-ness around it. I'm not sure why it's so difficult, but it really hurts when I try and get a finger in between the cup and my vaginal walls. Like the worst burning I've ever felt, along with pinching my skin against the darn cup. This also happens when I'm removing it, I cannot grab the bottom of the cup. Thank God I left some of the stem on because I would still be in the bathroom right now! I grab the stem best I can with my fingernails and try to rock it down as far as possible, all while pushing like I'm giving birth (which I never have by the way), and even then it won't go too far before being sucked right back up. I just cannot get my finger in there to break the suction without pinching the living crap out of my lady parts. :( This part is very frustrating and takes forever.

So I guess my question is, does anyone else have trouble grabbing the thing? I've read a lot on here and haven't heard anyone mention it.

Twisting it is out of the question, I can barely grab the stem much less the base to turn it. Also my fingernails are sore from grabbing the stem and pulling with them. I'm glad I do have them because I wouldn't be able to grab it if I cut them, however I'm pinching myself! My nails aren't even that long. Just barely over my fingertips.

I'm just wondering because I haven't heard anyone else mention pinching their fleshy skin in there, everyone is talking about sticking fingers up there and twisting or pulling the base or squeezing the base and I'm over here like..owie! Haha.

Some general info for reference: I'm 23, married, no kids, Diva Cup small size, no leaking or other issues once inserted.

TL;DR Pinching myself during removal, fleshy skin in the way.
Egyptologist-in-waiting: DW peekaboojsherlock on July 3rd, 2014 07:08 am (UTC)
I have the same cup, and I pinch myself all the time. I just use my finger to push those folds aside. My cup gets sucked back up too. I bear down and barely manage to get my stem (thank god I left it all) with my finger nails and wriggle it down until I can get my finger and thumb pads onto the grip rings on the base of the cup. I squeeze the bottom part of it, though it doesn't always release the suction. Half the time I drop it and up it goes! SO annoying.

I also don't have much room up there - and my cup/cervix is so high there is no way I'm getting my finger to hit the rim of the darn thing when I can barely get to the stem even when bearing down. I can usually make it around the base. Forget twisting. I can pull up and down but when I let go, up it goes. ><

I find that the folds of flesh is a positional thing for me. I do the insertion and removal in my shower most of the time and I squat. When not at home, sitting on the toilet is less pinchy and painful.
Katie Thompson on July 3rd, 2014 06:31 pm (UTC)
Yep, everything you said sounds like my experience. Except that I tried it in the shower, no good. If I could get it out quickly I probably could. But it takes so long that my legs get tired and start shaking (and I run about 6 miles/week, so it's not like my legs are weak). I have had better luck sitting on the toilet so I can concentrate on getting it in or out. This actually kind of sucks because if I ever need to do it in a public restroom I would have some serious anxiety about the public toilet. I'm a life-long hover-er and have never sat down on a public toilet, even with a seat cover.

Not to mention, I'm going camping this weekend for the 4th (the main reason I decided to try the cup in the first place!) and there is an outhouse. Literally a small wooden "room" with a hole in the floor and a giant pit under it. But at least I'll only have to do that at night. There is another campground nearby that has showers so we're going to have to sneak in in the morning to shower lol.
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on July 3rd, 2014 01:36 pm (UTC)
You're pinching yourself? Don't do that. :oP

Go to the Community FAQ and read the post about Myths, the Commonly Asked Questions (including the link to Suction) and even the Virgins Guide to Cups because that has good hints about relaxing enough to make room for your fingers. There is also good advice at the removal tags.

Since we are all built a little differently and we all insert/remove a little differently, there is nothing carved in stone. You'll eventually read a helpful hint or figure out a simple way and in a couple of cycles, you'll look back and laugh. "Of course! Why didn't I think of that right away?"
Katie Thompson on July 3rd, 2014 06:39 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the words of encouragement! I am pleased to say that this morning, I dreaded taking it out, and even avoided it for a couple of hours. But I finally got up the courage and after some fiddling, probably about 10 mins, it came out fine. I was very surprised because the time before that I tried a few times over a couple hours. I am certain that I will get better at it over time. Not to mention, it can go for a really long time before it absolutely has to come out, it's not like a tampon where it needs to be changed immediately.

Thanks everyone. :)
Kai: 2Cupskuradi8 on July 3rd, 2014 07:09 pm (UTC)
Don't dread using it in any way and best advice is DON'T RUSH! The more you rush, the more you'll panic, the harder it will be, the longer it will take and if that makes you panic more, it will just snowball out of control. (There's a thread like that going on right now.)

The more relaxed and confident you are, the faster your changes will happen. It will get to the point where remove, dump, rinse and re-insert won't add much more than a minute to your regular bathroom routine.

Sometimes when I feel rushed, I literally have to STOP, take a deep breath and tell myself to take my time. Everything goes smoothly after that. ;o)

You've got it. You just need to fine tune what you're doing.
elisamba on July 4th, 2014 05:36 am (UTC)
This sometimes happens to me, ouch. Try inserting your thumb first. And (barring saying the obvious) make sure your nails are short when you have your period :)
glasswing_x on November 29th, 2014 10:24 pm (UTC)
This is an older post but I was searching for solutions with issues I'm having myself.

I was going to suggest the thumb too. :) I wish I could say having a baby will solve all the issues, but I've had one and I still can't manage to fit anything other than the cup in there most times because I feel what feels like BONE on either side (??? am I a freak?? lol). I've found the trick that works for me is to use my thumb (with the nail facing the cup, not your skin) to sort of poke the bottom of the cup til the suction breaks, sometimes takes a wiggle or two. It can be a bit messy but works for me. Then reinsert with your thumb facing the cup, bear down while pressing the bottom of the cup with your thumb til it gets a bit further down then quickly pinch the bottom between your finger and thumb and gradually fold it out.

Sometimes I still have the issue where it comes unfolded just at the wrong moment and ouuuch because I have the apparently iron rimmed Ladycup lol. But I think not rushing is the key. I don't know if I explained my theory right but I hope so!