A woman who pregnant without ever having sex has been nicknamed the Virgin Mary by her friends.
Nicole Moore, 28, didn’t have sex for the first time until five months into her pregnancy with her daughter, Tilly, who’s now eight years old.
The mum, from Portsmouth, Hampshire, suffered from vaginismus. This is a condition where the vagina tightens up when you try and insert something into it.
Nicole said she didn’t realise she had a medical condition until her later life and that doctors jut told her she was just “extremely tight”.
However, she had never been able to insert a tampon, have a pap smear or have sex.
So when she discovered she was pregnant, she was gobsmacked.
Nicole, who works as a supply teacher, said doctors called her “ridiculous” for claiming to be pregnant and a virgin.
She said: “I’d spent all my teenage life not being able to insert a tampon, so I knew something was not quite right.
“But doctors told me I was fine, so I just believed for a while that there was something wrong with me.
“When I was 18 I got into a relationship with my daughter’s dad. We began trying to have sexual intercourse, he was a few years older and more experienced.
“We tried but it was impossible. I didn’t understand why it couldn’t happen.”
Despite not being able to have intercourse, Nicole and her partner found other ways to be intimate with each other.
Although not thinking it was possible, this is how Nicole became pregnant.
The couple now understand that the fluids passed between them during sexual activity meant semen entered Nicole’s vagina.
Speaking of the moment she realised she was pregnant, Nicole said: “One day at work I started getting terrible heartburn and sore breasts.
“My boss at the time, who was a close friend and knew about my situation, said she thought I could be pregnant.
“I laughed and said there was no way, as I was still a virgin and never had penetrative sex.”
She added: “I did a pregnancy test on my lunch break that day at work and it was positive.
“But she said it was possible if there had been any fluids near my vagina, despite not actually having intercourse.”
Nicole said she was “shocked and confused”.
She added: “All I kept thinking was how on earth am I going to deliver this baby if I couldn’t even have intercourse.
“I was worried my partner would think I’d cheated on him, as it seemed so impossible.
“But thankfully he knew me and my body, and he didn’t doubt me for a second.
“So many people still tell me I’m the Virgin Mary which really makes me laugh. It was crazy.”
Nicole said it was difficult to get some medical professionals to believe her when she told them she had never had sex.
But after seeking a second opinion it was confirmed that although rare, it was possible to get pregnant without having penetrative intercourse if the sexual activity introduced fluids to the vaginal area.
She was finally diagnosed with vaginismus when she was four month pregnant, and was able to get answers.
It’s estimated approximately 0.5% of women suffer the condition.
Vaginismus can be caused by a bad first sexual experience or for those who believe sex is shameful. However, sometimes there is no reason for it to occur.
Nicole was referred to a specialist therapist after her diagnosis, and was to learn ways to overcome the condition.
This meant she was finally able lose her virginity and have penetrative sex at five months pregnant.
Nicole feared giving birth, however her daughter Tilly was born without any issues.
She is sharing her story now to help raise awareness of vaginismus, saying that seeing a therapist was the “light at the end of the tunnel”.
Nicole said: “It wasn’t easy.
“The process was frustrating, stressful and upsetting, but I kept with it and was eventually able to have sex for the first time while pregnant.
She is no longer with her daughter’s father but says he was ‘always supportive’ of her diagnosis.
Nicole still suffers from vaginismus, but says she knows how to deal wth it now as it “isn’t as bad”.
She concluded: “I still can’t do certain things, like insert a tampon, but I feel very fortunate that I am now able to have a normal sex life.
“Tilly is definitely my little miracle. We’ve got the best life together and having her was the best thing I’ve ever done.”