I have to have a pelvic ultrasound. I really don't want someone poking around
Next Wednesday I have to have a pelvic ultrasound of my uterus and ovaries. The doctor explained that this means inserting the thing inside me. I asked the ultrasound place for a female but I'm still so scared!!! I really don't want someone poking around "down there".
How do I get though this? My mum is no support—I can't even tell her this is the type of ultrasound i have to have and I have no friends I feel comfortable talking to about this. I really don't want to go, but know it's important to find out what's wrong with my body.
Hi there and thanks for your question. You are right: it is important to find out what's going on with your body, as scary this may be for you.
The reason why they are suggesting a vaginal ultrasound rather than a tummy one is because it will give a much clearer picture of what is going on in that area. Gynaecological issues can be really difficult to ask for help with so you are not alone with all the negative thoughts you are feeling. But, to get some support would definitely be good, particularly because you are having this done for medical reasons, so to have some support for results etc. is always a good idea. Having someone with you can be reassuring, as well as useful to help remember the information you are being told.
I am wondering why you can't tell your mum. Is this because of embarrassment? If so, it's probably okay. Your mum had you, she knows about "women's business", and she would have been poked around too, so she knows how difficult and awkward it can be. She may surprise you if you speak with her—she may want to be there for you to offer you moral support.
Or is the reason why you can't speak with mum something more significant for you, like because of cultural reasons and possibly because of a broken hymen, i.e. a loss of virginity? The ultrasound is a necessary medical procedure and should not be confused with issues around "virginity loss", as harsh as they may sound. This procedure is separate to those things. Getting your head around that so you actually believe it is often the hardest part for women who have grown up with this belief system about the preservation of virginity. Cultural issues are very real and can be huge barriers for women trying to access medical services.
I wonder if you can emphasise to the ultrasound place how you are feeling, because you sound pretty anxious. It would be good for them to have an understanding of your feelings, and the reason behind your request for a female member of staff. Most professional ultrasound places are culturally aware and sensitive to various cultural and community needs. You could also ask that you have someone with you when you are having the ultrasound. There may also be women's health advocates that you can link in with, who can attend the appointment with you. The Royal Women's Hospital Women's Health Information Centre is a good place to start to find an advocate (details below).
Remember, if you are having sex or plan to in the future, use a condom every time to protect you and your partner from STIs and unplanned pregnancy. I have given you some info below about a young person's sexual health clinic in the city you can go to for more info, advice or supplies of contraception and condoms.
I hope you get to your appointment and find out what's happening to you. Good luck and take care.