Hitting below the belt: vulva shaming

In the past year, we’ve learned about vulva shaming… as well as labiaplasty. These were both such foreign concepts that both K & I had to post a byte or two.

We’ve heard about fat shaming before – and most of us know about this first hand malheuresment– but never vulva shaming.
A good jumping off point is Wrenna Robertson’s blog post “Starting the conversation“. Vulva shaming is when 1 person chastises another female’s vulva for the way it looks. Typically the complaints are: tissue is too big, too flappy or just plain misshapen.

Let’s all take a moment to pause to really absorb this concept.

I can’t imagine saying to anyone, “Hey girl, you gotta do something about that snaggly-looking vulva.”

With the world we live in, can we not give each other a break? We’re now searching for fodder below the belt? How ludicrous to fault the look of something that’s not in our control.

Okay then how do you know what it’s supposed to look like?

Firstly, let’s get anatomical terms in order.
Vagina = the internal parts of female gentalia.
Vulva = umbrella term for external genitalia including both sets of labia & mons. Most of us have used the term vag or vagina when we were actually referring to the vulva.

The Vision of the V

Lo and behold, there is a wide variety colours, sizes and shapes of vulvas. There is no right and wrong.
Check out the variety at the informational website Australia’s Labia Library
Since you are likely not in adult entertainment², comparing your A,B,Vs (or someone else’s) to that of a pornographic star’s is unfair. A lot of stars alter the way their bodies look: piercings, labiaplasty, skin bleaching, skin fillers, skin tighteners, etc. The playing field is not level. In fact, there’s nothing playful about this nonsense.

But really I think something is awry with my V

Just like other bodily tissue, vulvas can also get troubled or… start off troubled. If you feel or see something funny, feel or see a change or you’re just not sure, then get checked under the proverbial hood by a trusted gynecologist.

If you have been vulva (or ­body) shamed

please speak with a licensed health professional such as through the Canadian Psychology Association or American Psychology Association. And speak out against this inappropriate, unhelpful behaviour.

If you have engaged in vulva (body) shaming

then you need to get your issues sorted toute fg suite. The vulvas around you will look different from yours. You are probably not an expert³ on vulvar anatomy so please don’t embody one.

For more info on vulvar issues:
The V Book
National Vulvodynia Association
Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
The National Women’s Health Information Center
International Vulval Society
¹Wow a Labia Library? Yes N&Kers, those Aussies go down under to get the real goods on the goods.
²If you are in the adult entertainment field, consider the emo impact of how your body looks to others. Consider about non-intrusive methods to enhance body parts. Or better yet, go au naturel.
³And if you are an expert, vulva shaming is neither considered good bedside manner nor is it helpful.

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