I asked my girlfriends to share a few of their embarrassing smear test stories, but promised them full anonymity to get the real scoop!
“This actually happened to my mum. She’d taken a fresh pair of knickers to wear in the smear test(!), so went to change in the loos at the doctors. When she was lying on the couch, her doctor came in and she got into position, so far, so normal. That’s when the doctor started laughing and said, “That’s an interesting place to keep them…”. Somehow she’d managed to transfer a loose postage stamp into her fresh pants and then onto herself! Luckily she saw the funny side and burst out laughing too! I genuinely don’t know how she did it, but if you’d seen her handbag, that might explain a lot.”
“It was about three smear tests ago, and there I was, lying down on the couch and the nurse said that I had a shy cervix, well, my mate had been told that she had one too a few weeks earlier, so I just laughed. Then the nurse changed her mind, “Oh, no,” she said, “Sorry – it’s not shy, it’s just huge!” and she went and got the biggest speculum there was. I was mortified,
“Er, do you mean I’ve basically got my own echo chamber up there?” I asked, and she just laughed.
So I had this massive cervix! All my mates were doing, ‘does your cervix look big in this?’ jokes! The next test I had, I told the nurse that she’s need to super-size the speculum but she tried the regular one and said no. Everything was completely regular-sized. That was when I learned that your cervix changes. I was so fascinated that I bought a book, I mean, do you even know what an os looks like? I do!”
“I was laying on the couch, legs akimbo, everything on show, with the nurse chatting away to me. All of a sudden, the window cleaner appeared at the window! The nurse had forgotten to shut the blinds! The window cleaner nearly fell off his ladder, although he did stand there open-mouthed for a while, our eyes did meet in one horrible, embarrassing moment, until he had the good grace to hurriedly get down and save my blushes! I nearly died.”
“Many years ago, when I was a student having my first-ever smear test, the young nurse grumbled, ‘You probably know that you have an unusual amount of cervical mucus’.
Er, I didn’t know! Why on earth would I know that? Who would I have been comparing myself with? I spent the next UMPTEEN years feeling embarrassed about my weirdo insides – until, that is, I started trying to conceive in my thirties, when I found out that the amounts of discharge you have vary according to your cycle – sometimes it’s light, sometimes it’s heavy – and that’s QUITE NORMAL. Lesson learned? Don’t want to be embarrassed? Get informed… ”
If you have a more embarrassing story than a postage stamp on your mum’s, er, lu-lu then, A) I don’t believe it and B) tell me now! Post anonymously if you like, but please post!
The gals went on the record (different ones!) about their top tips for smear tests.
Also – get the low-down on exactly what happens in a test.