We have an appointment almost by candlelight with Anaïs and Lisa from the “Les Invisibles” project to talk to you about endometriosis and its impact on intimate and sexual life. Endometriosis is everyone's business and '"Les Invisibles" make it their business on a daily basis but also here on our blog for a moment to help you understand what is going on in the microcosm of endometriosis Endometriosis can concern your mother, sister, girlfriend, wife, colleague, neighbor or even that woman sitting right there next to you…

The most difficult effect: pain, representative of the disease but not only because it is accompanied by a myriad of other enemies invisible and fiercely difficult to fight. Fatigue, pain, anxiety, insomnia, questions, brief treatments, it 's a whole environment that is under attack. Endometriosis sets in , imposes itself and takes a place that it should not. What to do when it slyly besieges with its tissue similar to that of the endometrium, the surrounding organs? This same tissue that will also cause pain but also implant a whole devastating ecosystem on the body? This same body that over time will seem somewhat foreign and at the same time so familiar. If endometriosis puts everything in the background, professional life and personal life, how can you think about recomposing your sex life? A complete mutation of one body by the presence of another, endometriosis affects the lives of all these women on many levels and in particular their sexuality. This disease requires on a daily basis to face often heavy treatments to fight it and these give rise to other battles: vaginal dryness, anxiety, loss of libido, loss of self-confidence... What about the revival of a sexual life that is sometimes difficult to adopt?

Going to conquer a body and a heart is always an arduous journey but conquering one's own is in no way "simpler", rediscovering oneself, flourishing as best as possible with endometriosis is certainly a difficult task. but not impossible.



In recent years, you may have noticed that there has been more and more media coverage of endometriosis . At YESforLOV and @lesinvisibles_, we asked ourselves the question: How to have a fulfilling sex life when you have endometriosis?

What is endometriosis? Endometriosis is a disease characterized by the presence, outside the uterine cavity, of tissue similar to that of the endometrium, the mucous membrane that lines the uterus. This is implanted outside the genital organs such as the ovaries, the LUS, the torus, the fallopian tubes, the bladder, the urethra, etc. Other organs can be affected such as the thorax, the diaphragm, the rectum, the intestines, the navel, the liver... A veritable invasive pest, endometriosis has the unfortunate tendency of sticking the organs together to leave a hostile ground. . The adage says “Alone we go faster, together we go further”, endometriosis has understood this well because it is sometimes accompanied by adenomyosis, a sister judged too quickly as a twin of this one. Outside, the two are to be dissociated even if they tend to associate. They don't necessarily match.

Adenomyosis refers to a series of changes occurring strictly inside the uterus, which lead to the presence of the uterine lining (endometrium) inside the uterus (myometrium).

For both, the symptoms are diverse and can change depending on the person affected, hence the complexity of the diagnosis: chronic pain (also outside of menstruation) menorrhagia, dyspareunia, chronic fatigue, violent pain, nausea, vomiting, constipation/ chronic diarrhoea, food intolerance and allergies, sleep disorders… There is not endometriosis BUT endometriosis.

To be diagnosed, first of all you have to feel confident with the practitioners (gynecologists, midwives, radiologists). The famous "It's normal to have pain during your period" , "you're a sissy" and other "have a child, it will pass!" “: all these clichés are to be destroyed. A climate of trust is essential . A questionnaire and examinations such as ultrasound, MRI and scanner can confirm the diagnosis! Attention, it is very important that the exams are interpreted by a professional who can analyze them. It is possible that endometriosis is present without manifesting itself, hence the importance of being accompanied by practitioners who know the disease very well. Today, NO medical treatment has emerged to treat these diseases, however it is " admissible " to prescribe an incalculable number of treatments to even try to slow the progression of the disease. Between pill 1, pill 2, pill 3, injections and other artificial menopauses, hell is not always paved with good intentions. A real multidisciplinary care must be put in place to counter all these effects (harms) related to the treatments but also to relieve the multiple pains of the patients. The question of your sex life will arise sooner or later in your career, a question too often neglected or even brushed aside by doctors.

The tips of the @Invisibles for a fulfilling sexuality and intimate life with endometriosis

  • Try to boost your self-confidence by taking care of your body and your well-being. Unwinding, relaxing and reconnecting with your body is clearly the way to go.
  • Don't hesitate to get help and surround yourself with specialists . Some physiotherapists offer adapted massages, respiratory, postural or perineal rehabilitation to reduce pain and stretch the lesions due to endometriosis. Nutritionists-dieticians can also fly to your rescue and sexologists are also on hand to offer you effective tips to deal with your problems.
  • Communicate about your illness, you can tell others about it! Your partner (of a night or a life) could understand your situation. In an intimate relationship, respect for the body of the other, communication and mutual consent are essential.
  • Rethink your vision of eroticism to explore a new one , alone or in pairs, and the one that suits you, such as slow sex , masturbation or massages.
The impact of treatments on sexuality: sexual healing?

The impact of treatments on sexuality: sexual healing?

To each woman her own endometriosis. It is well known (we hope so at least), there is not only one but endometriosis . If the origin of the evil is now easier to recognize (dyspareunia due to lesions), some data still escape us as to the well-being of women with endometriosis. Sexuality can be impacted or machine-gunned by treatments that are most often heavy and intended to put the disease to sleep . The libido will take great pleasure in rushing off, we don't know where, in order to take time off for, let's say it, an indefinite period!

The cause: the multiple treatments offered , including the hormonal approach (pills & injections) has a direct impact on the libido . All our impulses sometimes called "animal" are relegated not to the background but at least to the fifth. No more peak in ovulation, esteem and self-love at half mast, vaginal dryness... In short, estrogens are completely turned upside down and the treatment in its passage strikes down the production of testosterone responsible for the hormone of desire . A real surprise basket! We are now on point, we hope for hormone therapy .

To go further, do not hesitate to consult the book by Marie-Rose Galès Endo & Sexo : Having a fulfilling sexuality with endometriosis . Real source of knowledge about the disease.

Sex & pain: two words that have nothing to do together under the duvet

Sex & pain: two words that have nothing to do together under the duvet

Apart from the joys mentioned above, we still have another to discuss. Tackling dyspareunia, a vast subject. Let's get to know her. Dyspareunia, pain on penetration, whether intromission or deep, corresponds to a reflex contraction of the pelvic muscles, which makes penetration painful and/or impossible.

50 to 80% of patients with endometriosis suffer from deep dyspareunia.

Source @women_endoandco.

How to explain pain? Several reasons for this:

  • Damage to the LUS (uterosacral ligaments) which are the first in the line of sight
  • The back-and-forth movement
  • The effect of pressure or intromission of any object, which reaches the LUS

Endometriomas, adenomyosis or other lesions cause pain. It's like pressing a bruise: already, it's not a good idea and moreover it's painful. All this therefore causes pain due to a loss of mobility in this region. Although the battle against these pains is fierce, it makes it possible to rethink the pre-established model of eroticism of yesterday and today but not that of tomorrow because it will be written by you.

Our weapons in this fight: physiotherapy, sex therapy, sophrology, acupuncture, balneotherapy, EFT, an approach with nutritional monitoring, sport, hypnosis and without forgetting our "everyday" objects (yes, they will now have to be part of your routine): lubricating gels , sex toys , erotic books and podcasts , massage oils ...

Last essential point: we know that endometriosis is backbreaking work. Always put your health before everything else, including your sexual health, too often neglected by doctors. A so-called self-care routine will be your best ally whether it is closely related to your sexuality or simply watching your favorite series.

Les Invisibles, an artistic project that denounces and fights against endometriosis.

Martin Straub, photographer @martinstbphotography and Anaïs Morisset Desmond, collagist and artistic director @utbarley created "Les Invisibles" in 2019, the title of an immersive independent exhibition to free the words of women with endometriosis and adenomyosis but also to denounce not only the medical wanderings but also the psychological, physical and gynecological violence they suffer, the ignorance of the teaching body and the professional complications among others. Their goal of this artistic project is to bear witness to the pain of endometriosis and the reality that people with endometriosis and or adenomyosis live , far from statistics that do not reflect reality. They went to meet 64 women between the ages of 17 and 54 who revealed themselves confidently on their path strewn with pitfalls. You can follow their news on @lesinvibles_ and their projects here .
Lisa Guilleton @lisaguilleton , founder of KETCHUP @ketchupperiodd , an e-shop dedicated to PMS and menstrual well-being, is joining the @Les Invisibles project on Instagram to offer a “Well-being and Endosexo” capsule. She is the shadow editor on this vast subject and this article full of common sense and seriousness. First photographed for the project, she gradually joined the project to help the brave invisible in their approach.

To go further on the subject

Endo & Sex by Marie-Rose Galès

Endometriosis, what other countries have to teach us from Marie-Rose Galès
Endometriosis, a path to balance by Peggy Favez
Roommate with Fanny Robin's endometriosis
Just an endometriosis from Fanny Robin
Anti-endometriosis food by Fabien Pasco
Naturopathy, Marine Le Gouvello's complete daily guide
Essential woman - Aude Maillard's guide to essential oils for women

At Les Invisibles, we were able to test YESforLOV products to help us in our exploration of self-love and self-love . We had the pleasure of trying the following products:

  • The Lov'Touch , a truly soft and light erogenous stimulator with a particularly chic design. It allows those who have not yet tested the help-toys to become familiar with the vibrations on the clitoris , or for those who are looking for a non-intrusive help-toy with light vibrations. This is the ideal toy if you are looking for gentle pleasure; it perfectly fits the size of the vulva.
  • Our big favorite is the Water-Based Moisturizing Lubricant . This natural and moisturizing intimate gel provides a pleasant and serene sensation of softness and comfort. Odorless, this unisex intimate lubricant does not dry out. This product is also compatible with condoms and sex toys.
  • The heating effect of the orgasmic gel for the clitoris to be placed on the clitoris soothes and stimulates it .
  • The intimate hide-and-seek kit , a sensual accessory for writing the most mischievous and unpronounceable words.
  • CBD Concentrate , an additive to add to any of your intimate and erotic cosmetics, has analgesic properties; it relieves pain by containing it and inhibiting the receptors responsible for this sensation. It is important to mention that CBD does not cure endometriosis . Cannabidiol has only one function: to relieve and soothe the deleterious effects of endometriosis .

“Make love, not war” of course, but we, above all, want to wage war on love, the love we give to ourselves, for ourselves and by ourselves. Reducing to dust the prism through which we see this imaginary sexual life and ultimately imagined by false convictions, it is the fight of all but also ours.

Sexuality and endometriosis are not incompatible, your new sexuality is just as legitimate as a so-called "normal" sexuality based on penetration, a devouring appetite or even unbeatable lubrication. Getting back in shape, redefining your sexuality will be the best way to reconnect with the integrity of your body. Because sexuality is the expression of love and the desire for you to create your own, your territory of pleasure.