I'm always a bit astonished and saddened at the myriad ways in which women will feel bad about themselves and their bodies. Women seem to hate everything from their "cankles" to their wrinkly knees. But I was completely surprised when a woman wrote about her feelings of insecurity about her "long labia," -- the folds of skin surrounding the clitoris. Wrote Amelia McDonnell-Parry in The Frisky:
I’ve always felt distinctly aware that my long labia were not an asset ... I had to go to great lengths (sorry, pun) to become comfortable with my vagina. I still feel a little stressed every time I introduce it to someone new.
Wow. This is tragic!
I happen to know Amelia, who is a very attractive woman (which she acknowleges). To think she's actually wandering around worried about introducing her "long labia" to someone new.
More from The Stir: 5 Things You Don't Know About Your Vagina
Nor is she alone. Amelia mentioned a Tumblr blog called Large Labia Project, which is dedicated to, well, large labias. So I checked it out, despite looking at other women's vaginas not exactly being high on my list of things I'd like to do in the afternoon (or ever).
Women submit pictures of their "long labias" to the site. Many of them said how horrible they felt about them. And one was on the fence about spending $5000 to have her labia shortened. Seriously?? This goes on?? What is next, your kidney looks different from someone else's kidney? Your eyeball? The inside of your nostrils?
Not surprisingly, much of this insecurity starts with porn. I don't watch much of it, and the little bits I've seen, I guess I wasn't paying attention to the women's labia. But apparently women in porn have nice tight labias that don't dribble out of their lady muffs. I mean, are we comparing ourselves to porn stars, now? Really?
Even Amelia admits that the guys she's dated -- except for one who teased her about it -- don't seem to care. Honestly, ladies, do you think if a guy gets a chance to be near a vagina he's going to complain about it?
Anyway, since when is bigger not better? Big boobs good; big labia bad? Who makes these rules? Porn??!!
And why would anyone mess around with their lady parts? You really want a knife near it? Perhaps my labia is gigantic (did I really just type that?), because the pics all looked like regular ol' vayjays to me. Maybe I don't watch enough porn or leaf through enough Playboy to know what a labia is "supposed" to look like. Thank goodness, because I'm so tired of women finding new places on their bodies to be insecure about.
But at least the blog clears one thing up: A long labia is perfectly normal.
Do you ever wonder about your labia?
Image via Flower's.Lover/Flickr