genital self esteem

rabbitwhite's picture

Shaving and Genital Self Esteem

When I was 12, it seemed like I was the last of all 12 year olds still not shaving her legs. I had found scrappy ways around other rites of passage. There was one bra that came from my cousin in a garbage bag of hand-me-downs. There was the was the body spray I found at home labeled “deodorizing” which I started wearing under my arm-pits. Yet I couldn’t bring myself to steal a razor to shave. Just asking my mom for a bra, deodorant or a razor was out of the question. I felt way too embarrassed but also fearful of what her answer would be. So instead I felt silent shame over the light hair on my legs and took my fashion cues  from the Pentecostal girls at school with their waist length hair and ankle-sweeping denim skirts.

While my experience of entering puberty might say volumes more about the family and self than it does the experience of shaving, it also predicts my feelings about body-hair. That shame was cemented and body hair meant ridicule. I also think I am not alone in this emotionally delicate history.

When it comes to the ubiquity of shaving/waxing genitals, I aesthetically don’t have much of an opinion. I think that smooth and shaved can be very hot, so can fastidiously trimmed or soft and furry. I have no moral or feminist qualms with the bald look, but in the past few years I have began to question it. Personally, I think anytime something becomes so de rigeur (especially something purely cosmetic) it is worth questioning.

LaPrincipessa's picture

Links about Sex and Women

Because the media topic de l'annee seems to be "women and sex".

For the most part, these "studies" and articles just perpetuate deeply ingrained stereotypes about women, sex and that role in American culture. However, I did find some decent, and kind of obvious, tid-bits here and there; this is what I'm trying to highlight.

From CNN.COM : Love, pleasure, duty.

Nice start CNN.

Buss said he found it surprising how dramatically and variably sexual experience seemed to influence women's feelings of self-esteem.

"Some sexual experiences that women in our study reported just had devastating effects and long-lasting negative effects on their feelings of self-worth," he said. "But then for others, their sexual experiences provided the soaring height of euphoria and made them feel alive and vibrant."

Yeah so it took a "study" and a book deal to reveal women who have lived through traumatic sexual encounters (ie: rape) have self esteem issues. The cynic in me wants to blog about sensationalizing rape for a buck; the [tiny] positive side of my personality will point out that drawing attention to sexual trauma is important because we can't keep sweeping that issue under the rug.

Maybe I can just really relate with the author’s point.

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