Disclaimer: I'd hate to start a feud or hurt anyone's feelings (which is why I'm not naming names), but something has been nagging at me lately and I need to say something about it.
This is what my blog is all about, after all, having a space where I can vent my feelings about a particular subject. And today? I am taking full advantage of this forum. Even as I write, though, I feel badly. Like I'm being a spoil sport. Like I just can't take a joke.
But I'm gonna keep on writing, because this is important to me. Because some things just aren't funny. And I know funny.
Imagine there is a website that you love. You love it because it is liberal and talks about The Sex. You read it religiously, because its columnists are some of your fave bloggers and because it makes you laugh. It is total awesome sauce, which, admittedly, is one of your favorite things.
But one day, said website posts a column poking fun of smelly vaginas and calling slutty women "fishcunts" and "cum dumpsters," and if you sleep around, "you’re gonna smell like the dirty girl you are."
And while this was genuinely not meant to hurt, but be funny, you can't help but feel hurt. Like the butt of a joke you're not in on.
So what to do? My plan was just ignore it. It doesn't affect me. It's a site and I don't have to visit. And I still don't, I guess. But that makes me sad, because I do love that site. But this gnawed at me and gnawed at me. I had to tell my side of the story, dammit!
I get the joke. I do. It's funny to make fun of such things. I get the comedian crossing the line to make the joke. I get it. And I'm not faulting the author of the article. I'm faulting the concept that sluts are somehow excluded from acceptable sex dialogue.
Is talking about sex somehow okay only for the monogamous? And the rest of us are, what, "cum dumpsters"?
Vaginas smell. Sometimes good. Sometimes bad. But I'm reminded of the Vagina Monologues here. Why don't we love all vaginas? Why are some vaginas good and some disgusting? Some too gross for proper society? Why is it that we have a class system of vaginas?
These cum dumpsters, women who sleep around, clearly their vaginas are disgusting. Our vaginas are disgusting. What I truly don't get is the connection between these lower class, smelly vaginas (because we've already established that's disgusting) and sluthood.
I'm really trying to understand. Sex is awesome, but only if you do it with one person?
So what does that have to do with vaginal hygiene? I see my gyno. I get tested. I pee after sex (no infections for me, thanks). I wear my cotton panties. I drink plenty of the agua. I don't "scrub" my hooha, because the skin is sensitive down there and my gyno said don't scrub, but rinse gently with plain old water.
And still? Sometimes, because of hormones and body chemistry, my vajayjay smells. Yup. It does. Better fucking believe it. And I'd bet a good bunch of money that plenty of monogamous women out there practice the same hygiene and still have smelly vaginas sometimes.
I'm going to channel my inner Eve Ensler and declare that we should love our vaginas. We should revere our vaginas. Our vaginas smell. And they're hairy. And they're delicate. And they're amazing and beautiful and unique.
But beyond the fishcunt moniker which just gets under my skin (because I think there is a line between something funny and something derogatory), my issue comes back to the derision of "loose" women. This is a bigger problem, beyond sex websites. Beyond what Summer's Eve tells you (read this article by Lissa Rankin, btw!). This is about sexual revolution.
Somewhere along the way, sex became more acceptable. But not for everyone. Somewhere along the way, it was decided that you, as a woman, can like sex, but ultimately must want it only with one person. If you have sex with multiple partners, you're a slut, a whore, a ho, a cum dumpster. Somewhere along the way, a woman who has lots of sex with different partners became equal to a sex worker, one who gets paid for sex acts, a prostitute.
And even as we take back the word slut, even as we reclaim our sexuality as empowering and important and vital and a source of pride, we're nowhere close to achieving the goal. Because sluts are still funny. That stupid cum dumpster smells like the dirty girl she is.
Because having lots of sex is clearly poor hygiene for your vagina. Or something. And that's funny I guess.
The problem with that is that it's only funny if everyone agrees it's clearly sarcastic and wholly untrue. But people still buy that. They buy that lots of sex is bad. For women anyway.
But I see it as derisive, not funny. Where does the joke end and the harmful archetype begin? When we poke fun at women who are "sluts," it doesn't feel like fun to those of us living a lifestyle that might characterize us as sluts.
I was told, in a sense, to lighten up. That it's all in good fun.
Some jokes are only funny to the comedian and those in a select circle who aren't the butt of the joke. Some jokes are passe or in poor taste because the societal mores have dictated that it's no longer appropriate to joke about.
If I heard a joke today about a lynching, I'd cringe. I could never be forgiven for blogging about racism "all in good fun," so why is this any different? Why are women who aren't monogamous or who have multiple sex partners still below society's esteem? Why?
I can't tell you how much that angers me.
So what would you do?
I'd love to challenge everyone to (first) love your vaginas!
Do you have a vagina? What do you love about it?
If you don't have a vagina, go love a vagina today. It will thank you for it.
Sex writers and people who read about sex, hell, people who have the sex: let's value all vaginas equally.
I totes want this vagina pillow
who wants to buy it for me?
hug a vagina today!