By RUTH STYLES
Living in a state of permanent sexual arousal might not sound like such a bad deal for many of us, but for Amanda Gryce, 22, it's no laughing matter. The 22-year-old says her life is being ruined by constant multiple orgasms which can be triggered by just about anything imaginable, including loud music, car journeys and even ringing mobile phones. And it can happen absolutely anywhere - when she's with her friends and even while she's at work as a sales associate in a baby products shop.
The reason for the daily onslaught of orgasms is a rare condition known as Persistent Sexual Arousal Syndrome or PSAS, which first manifested when Gryce was just eight years old. And although PSAS is rare, it can have a devastating effect on the handful of people who suffer from the condition. Last year, 39-year-old Gretchen Molannen, from Florida, committed suicide after battling the condition for 16 years.
The news was particularly difficult to take for Amanda, also from Florida, who sometimes has to masturbate up to 15 times in one day to get relief. She said: 'It is not pleasurable: you could say it has become a torture. This condition controls your life completely and it is like living a nightmare.' 'I can have 50 orgasms in one day and five or ten within an hour of each other. It happens when I'm with my friends or out in public and it's very embarrassing.
'It kills me inside. I just have to put on a smile and pretend that nothing's wrong. 'Orgasms are supposed to be a good feeling but I've had them every day for so long now that I'm living with constant fear and shame.' She added: 'At my lowest points, I have thought about suicide but I had to reassure myself that I would never resort to something like that and that it wasn't going to happen to me.' Amanda first began suffering from the condition when she was just eight and by the age of 13 she was battling the intense feelings as she sat in her classroom during lessons.
But, raised Catholic and told in Sunday school that sexual thoughts and masturbation was a sin, she was too scared to confide in anyone. She said: 'As a child I had no idea what was happening to me - I thought I was just sex-obsessed. I had to masturbate to relieve my condition and I felt guilty every time I did it.' It wasn't until 2008 that she heard about PSAS while listening to the radio but despite contacting four different doctors for help, found that none had ever heard of the condition.
Since then she has tried to move on with her life and, at 20, even lost her virginity after years of fearing sex would make her condition worse. But she admits she has not been able to have a steady relationship - because men either take advantage or are intimidated. She said: 'When I lost my virginity I was left emotional and disappointed. It didn't make me feel better. The guy that I was with seemed sympathetic at first but then used my condition to get more sex.
'I've been with a few guys since but it's difficult- I've found some guys are even intimidated. 'Thankfully I've had the courage to tell my family and they have all been very understand and supportive.' She added: 'I get people say I'm making it up and that I'm really a nymphomaniac but I don't let it faze me.
'I just now hope that there will one day be more understanding of this condition and my story will give just one other person the courage to get support.'