We spoke to the wonderful @mya_girl_labiaplasty about her Labiaplasty procedure with MYA. She wanted to share her intimate journey to help other women who are researching Labiaplasty and to encourage other women not to be embarrassed or feel shame for wanting the procedure.
I've been considering having Labiaplasty surgery since I was a teenager. For as long as I can remember I have always been self-conscious of my labia, even during my primary school swimming lessons I was aware of the shape and size of my labia. When I reached the age of 16, my Mum took me to the NHS to speak about my concerns. I was so ashamed of my labia, no one apart from my Mum knew how I felt about it.
My clitoral hood hung down low and my labia was also a lot larger, creating a large bulge which was visible through my underwear and would often hang out the sides of my knickers. I wanted to have the labiaplasty procedure to reduce the size of the bulge and to be able to wear normal underwear without my labia being so visible.
My labia affected me doing way more than it should have done. I wouldn't go swimming as I was worried about my labia falling out the sides of my swimwear and people seeing and when I went for spray tans with my friends, I would always make up an excuse and say I was on my period so that I didn't have to get changed in front of them or take my underwear off for the spray tan. Before my procedure, I could never wear tight leggings or lacy underwear due to my labia being visible and the clothing causing me discomfort.
My labia really affected my self-esteem I didn't want to see myself naked let alone anyone else see me naked, so this really affected my relationships. Sex was painful and during intercourse, the excess skin would get pulled and caused me discomfort. I was so self-conscious of the way my labia looked that I used to cover my labia with my hand during sex so that my partner couldn't see, and I've never let a partner perform oral sex on me. I was single for 2 years because I couldn't face the embarrassment of explaining my labia to another person.
When I first spoke to someone at MYA I was shy to start off with but the lady on the phone made me realise, it's actually a very common procedure and that I had nothing to be embarrassed about. This helped me to feel more confident talking about my labia and all the staff I've spoken to throughout my journey have made me feel so comfortable and at ease.
I had a male surgeon, Mr Mileto. During my consultation with the surgeon, there was a nurse present at all times and my examination took place in a very private area which made me feel a lot more comfortable. My surgeon was very professional and friendly, he did a quick examination, and didn't physically touch my labia. He showed me his very impressive portfolio of before and after photos and explained the procedure in detail. Everything he said and showed made me trust him to do an amazing job.
On the day of surgery, I wasn't nervous at all, I just think I've waited 19 years for this procedure so I was more than ready and very excited! The staff at the Welbeck hospital were amazing and made me feel special. I will remember my surgery day as one of the best days of my life.
After my procedure it took me a while to come around and I was quite sick from the anesthetic, but I had no pain in my labia at all. I was worried it would hurt when I urinated, so I asked the night nurse to help me go to the loo. You have to wear sanitary pads following your procedure in case there is some bleeding and I only had a little bit of bleeding. When I returned home from the hospital, I made sure that I really took it easy and rested, I elevated my legs and used an ice pack when necessary. The bleeding continued for 2 days and when the bleeding stopped, I took my underwear off and just wore loose pyjama bottoms. When I went to the toilet, I had a water spray on hand in case it stung and would pat dry with toilet roll.
By day 4 post-op I finally looked at my labia in the mirror and I was so happy with it. My labia looked neat and so much smaller, just as I wanted it to be. My clitoral hood was still swollen, and I had a bit of bruising and a v-shaped stitch on the clitoral hood. I finally had a shower and pat myself dry with a clean towel. On day 5 I had my post-op appointment with my MYA nurse, it was a little uncomfortable to wear underwear at this point and I didn't feel ready for the train, so my Mum drove me to the clinical hub. The nurse checked my stitches and gave one stitch a trim and said that everything was healing well. At this point, I still had no pain in my labia, which I believe was due to me keeping on top of my painkillers from the beginning.
By 3 weeks post-op I noticed the biggest change, the swelling had gone down a lot, I needed no pain relief to ease sensitivity and I am comfortable wearing underwear and jeans again. My stitches were still visible but were not itchy or catching on anything. By week 5, I had my first period since the procedure and the swelling had gone down even more and I was so happy with my result. I don't know why I waited so long to have this procedure done. It really wasn't as bad as I had built it up to be and I'm so glad that I did it!
Give yourself at least a week to rest
Don't panic about what it looks like straight after surgery and trust the process
I never stung when I urinated but have a bottle of water by the toilet to pour on your labia just in case
Take before and after photos from lots of angles to compare
Let your labia air out as much as possible
Try and time the operation just after your period
Purchase a gel ice pack for your recovery
Buy a stool softener to help you go to the toilet as you can get constipated after an anaesthetic
Wear loose baggy clothes that keep you cool and comfortable
Buy 100% cotton underwear in a bigger size for your recovery
The recovery isn't painful - you won’t regret it!
When I was researching labiaplasty surgery and looking for advice online, I found it hard to find other people's honest experiences. I would have liked to have been able to read other patient's stories and ask them questions about their experiences. So, I decided to make a MYA Instagram Journey to share my labiaplasty experience and help others. I put this procedure off for so many years due to not knowing enough and being worried about the pain of surgery, my life shouldn't have been so affected by a bit of excess skin, but it was and now I feel free and I am excited to wear a bikini and a thong without it hurting or my labia falling out of the sides.
I don't understand why labiaplasty seems to be such a taboo subject, men have their foreskin removed and that is socially acceptable and most of the time it's something they are proud of, so why are we not openly talking about women having surgery to improve the comfort and appearance of their labia's?
Oh yes! MYA has been great, they paired me with a very talented surgeon, and his work is like artwork. I'd recommend them to anyone, thank you MYA!
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