For many women, failure to reach orgasm is among the biggest complaints in reference to sexual activity. For Cara Anaya-Carlis, however, the situation is the complete opposite: The 30-year-old mother experiences up to six straight hours of sexual arousal every day.
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Carlis suffers from a condition called persistent genital arousal disorder (PGAD), which is characterized by long periods of sexual arousal and subsequent orgasm not associated with sexual desire.
Basically, people who suffer from the syndrome are subject to random, unrelenting orgasms: In Carlis’ case, that can mean up to 180 in a two hour period.
Carlis developed the condition seemingly spontaneously three years ago when she suffered her first attack in the supermarket, during which she had several recurring orgasms.
According to the mother of one, during that attack, everything the saw smelt, or touched turned her on.
She has visited several doctors, including a neurologist and a vulva specialist, but none has been able to offer a cure for PGAD, which also leaves her dehydrated, sleep deprived, and with weak knees and ankle joints.
Carlis has been left “frightened and confused,” almost completely housebound and unable to work a job.
You can’t say to your future boss, ‘I may not be able to come in today because I suffer from orgasms,’ he would think you were making it up.
Carlis also says that the condition makes her feel like a pervert, especially when she’s around her 10-year old son, Merrick. She explains,
It has devastated my involvement in my son’s life because I feel too dirty to be a part of it. We want him to be a normal kid but at the same time he can’t have friends around because mom has this condition. The worst thing is I can’t explain it to him because he’s too young.
During the times she’s in public, Carlis struggles to maintain her composure.
I have had to learn to control showing my arousal, remaining straight-faced, learning to breathe through it. It will build and build and build inside me and its overwhelming.
Doctors are uncertain exactly how common the recently discovered condition is. While incurable, there are ways to manage the symptoms, including medication and specific exercises targeted towards strengthening the pelvic muscles.
Even then, Carlis suffers immensely.
[The illness] leaves me feeling incredibly lonely because nobody understands and there is so little awareness of the condition… I just want it to stop.
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