real life

What life is like when you are born with two vaginas.

As a teenager, US woman Nicci experienced periods so heavy and pain so severe that she could barely function.

“There were times when I had to wear [adult nappies] because pads [and] tampons and pads weren’t sufficient enough,” she told BBC3.

But after medical investigation at the age of 17, she finally had an answer.

It was revealed that while Nicci’s vaginal opening appeared normal from the outside, internally it branched into a ‘Y’ shape.

She had two vaginas, two uteruses and two cervixes; a rare and debilitating condition profiled in a soon to be released BBC3 documentary titled, Living Differently: The Woman With Two Vaginas.

woman with two vaginas documentary
Nicci's vagina was Y-shaped. Image: BBC3

On top of the torturous physical effects of her condition, came the psychological ones.

"I felt like a freak of nature," she told BBC3. "And then there's the other aspect of trying to explain to your partners, when you have sex, that, 'Hey, I'm a little different down there.'

“Some guys view you as a trophy and a goal when they find out, like: ‘I had sex with a girl with two vaginas'."

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But moments of embarrassment and insecurity ultimately paled in comparison to the suffering caused by her three miscarriages.

"My hardest and darkest moment was after my latest miscarriage. I'd been bleeding for six months straight. You're drained, you just want to be done. You have moments when you don't want to live but you know you have to," Nicci said.

"You put on a fake smile and do what you've got to do to get by."

woman with two vaginas documentary
Image: BBC3

Life with the condition ultimately became so unbearable, Nicci opted to undergo a double hysterectomy.

"The feeling I felt knowing I couldn't have children... I kind of felt empty, like I wasn't really a woman. I wasn't fulfilling what I wanted to do," she said.

But a few months on, she and her husband of three years resolved to adopt, to provide a loving home for a child in need. In the meantime, she hopes the documentary will serve to help other women suffering silently with reproductive anomalies.

"You're not alone," she said. "You've just got to be strong."