- Tee Bartlett, from Hunter Valley, New South Wales, was born with two vaginas
- She thought it was ‘normal’ to use two tampons every month before diagnosis
- Tee told her mum about having two ‘holes’, prompting an urgent doctor’s visit
- At the age of 16, Tee was finally diagnosed with a vaginal septum
A young woman who was born with two vaginas revealed how she thought it was ‘normal’ to use two tampons every month before her diagnosis.
As a teenager, Tee Bartlett, from the Hunter Valley in New South Wales, said she had absolutely no idea that it was unusual to use two tampons at the same time, as she assumed all women had two vaginal openings.
But she only discovered something wasn’t right after she asked her mother ‘which hole’ a tampon needed to be inserted, which prompted an urgent doctor’s visit.
At the age of 16, Tee was finally diagnosed with a vaginal septum – a condition that happens when the female reproductive system doesn’t fully develop, leaving a dividing wall of tissue in the vagina.
Before her diagnosis, the now 24-year-old said she remembered the look on her mum’s face when she plucked up the courage to ask her about how to use a tampon.
‘I didn’t really communicate with mum about awkward topics back then,’ Tee said.
‘One day, I was having a conversation with my best friend and mum, and I finally asked which hole a tampon was supposed to go in, the left or the right.
‘Mum looked at me like “what?”. At first, she said that there wasn’t two holes and we argued for a little bit, and I was being really defensive.
‘She then suggested that we go to the doctors. That’s when I realised, she was being serious and that there really is not supposed to be two openings down there.’
When they met with doctors, Tee said they made her ‘feel crazy’ as they ‘disregarded’ everything she was telling them.
‘The second doctor looked at it, then looked back at me and said, ‘nah it’s normal’ and she sort of pushed us out the door,’ she said.
‘I left there somewhat flabbergasted. I was nuts thinking that I had two vaginas. I was starting to feel like I was going crazy. I was second guessing myself.’
Not wanting to give up on finding answers, Tee decided to get a third opinion from a different doctor that referred her to a gynaecologist, who confirmed she did have two vaginal openings.