Hello there; my girlfriend and I have been experiencing problems with sex. As the title indicates, her hymen does not seem to want to break; she is 23 years old, and I am her first partner. She is my third sexual partner, so I know we're doing things right, mechanically speaking, and I believe I am applying enough pressure to break the hymen. It is very difficult to try and penetrate her, though, because when I try and push my erect penis into her, there is like a wall that keeps me from getting in, and to push harder hurts both my partner and my own penis (I am afraid it might snap if I push too hard). We have tried using a vibrator with lubricant instead, but that also hurts her too much, and she doesn't like the vibrator anyway.
I don't want to hurt her, and I thought something was wrong, so I suggested she visit a gynecologist (she has also never had an actual check-up before, which also worried me). I wasn't actually in the room, of course, but apparently the gynecologist stuck a metal rod into her to take some readings, and she said the pain was so severe that she screamed. The gynecologist, however, told her that everything was normal, that the hymen was still there and intact, that nothing was too tight or malformed or otherwise abnormal, and that she refused to perform a hymenotomy. She said to just keep trying normally, and prescribed an estriol salve called Oe-Kolp that my girlfriend is supposed to inject into her vagina every evening for three weeks, though we were not told what the effects of this salve are (painkiller? hymen loosening or thinning? relaxant?).
My girlfriend is very upset about this whole thing, and she wants to visit a different gynecologist to get a second opinion; she is very keen on getting a hymenotomy done, because she says the pain of inserting objects in her is too extreme. She also says that she has never inserted her own fingers into her vagina without it causing pain, and that she has never successfully used a tampon. She thinks that both her hymen is unusually solid and that she is extremely sensitive to pain in her genital area. With all this in mind, we basically want to know this:
1) What could be wrong, keeping in mind that the gynecologist said everything was all right?
2) How much pressure should be necessary to break the hymen, and at what point should we decide that we're definately pushing hard enough, and that there must be some kind of problem?
3) What is the point of this estriol salve? What does it actually do - what effects should she notice?
4) Would painkillers of any kind help relieve the pain of first-time intercourse? Would any other substance or technique?
5) Given the circumstances, what sex position would be most comfortable and best lend to penetration? Neither of us are at all fond of the missionary position, as it seems to make penetration all the more difficult, but if it must be, then it must be.
6) If the hymen is the problem, why can't she have a hymenotomy?
7) Is it possibly some problem that has nothing to do with the hymen, and if so, then what could it be and how could we overcome it?
I thank you all for any advice you can give. Please - we have heard and read a million and one times that she has to "relax" and to "really want it," but both she and I believe there is something abnormal here, so we would like more specific and concrete advice. I do my best to make sure she is relaxed, and she is generally the one who initiates sexual activity. Her vagina lubricates quite easily, so that can't be the problem. I'm not ruling out that she might be scared and anxious, though she hasn't told me anything of the sort (she is always very open with me, so I assume that there is nothing more than she is telling); if she is scared, what relaxation techniques might help her relax during intercourse?
Again, I thank you for any advice you can give, and for taking the time to read this and help us out. Cheers!