I can’t remember the first time I heard the word “vagina,” but I am sure like most girls I made a face, felt uncomfortable and didn’t even want to think that I had one. I do remember sitting at the lunch table in 6th grade and the boys talking about how vaginas (although I don’t think they used that appropriate of a term) smelled like tuna fish, and would throw tuna fish from their sandwiches at each other, and say you “You smell like a vagina.” So that was not a great beginning for any of us girls to think about our vaginas in a positive way. There are in depth feminist and philosophical articles and books written on how and why this negative idea of the vagina exists in our society, and please read them if you have time, but it would just be really nice if more women liked their vaginas. Loving your vagina might be a bit too much to ask if you feel detached from it, embarrassed or ashamed of it. But learning not to hate it and accepting your vagina as a healthy normal part of your body would be a huge step in having a healthy body image, feeling more comfortable in your own sexuality, and enjoying sex. I hear from so many women who say they are “detached” from their vaginas, and don’t want to touch it, yet want to enjoy sex and have an orgasm. Well, that is going to be pretty hard. There is a great quote by, Eve Ensler, the author of the play “The Vagina Monologues,” that I find inspiring in learning to connect with your vagina. It reads “When you bring consciousness to anything, things begin to shift.” Starting to be aware of how you think about your vagina is a good place to start if the thought of touching it disgusts or frightens you. Bringing a consciousness and an awareness of the connection between your own sexuality and your vagina could be a great start to a shift in patterns of negative thinking about your vagina and could also bring about physical and pleasurable sexual shifts that can happen once you bring consciousness to an area you spent years trying to deny existed.
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