Do lots of people get Bartholin's abscess or cyst, or is it unusual?

Not lots. A bartholin cyst or abscess occurs in up to 2% of women. They are easy to treat with simple drainage, but the more effective treatment is a marsupialization procedure. A bartholin cyst is usually not very painful, but once it becomes infected and develops into an abscess, it can be exquisitely painful. Better to have it taken care of before it becomes an abscess.