Health Care Health

A woman discovers she has two vaginas—but why did it take her doctors 25 years to realize it?

Vulvasations is a Tempest Love exclusive series dedicated to spreading awareness about the female reproductive system, debunking myths about periods and dissecting everything vajayjay related. Let’s talk about vaginas!

I was today years old when I discovered a person could be born with two vaginas.

It was a typical Thursday night for me. I was swiftly approaching too many hours spent scrolling on TikTok when I stumbled upon a now-viral video posted by TikTok user @britsburg, Brittany Jacobs. Like most stitched TikToks, the video started with a prompt: What is something a doctor completely ignored you about when clearly there was something wrong? Jacobs immediately claims, “I’m about to own this!”

And own it she does. Jacobs goes on to reveal she was born with two vaginas. This is actually a rare genetic condition known as double uterus or uterus didelphys, which means a person is born with two uteri and potentially two cervixes as well. Typically, a baby’s uterus originates from two small tubes called Mullerian ducts that eventually fuse together while the baby is still in its mother’s womb. With uterus didelphys, however, the tubes never fuse and instead remain divided by a thin membrane.

Pretty cool, right? Well, not exactly.

Jacobs explains that every month, she experiences two painful periods, heavy bleeding, and painful sex. When she was pregnant with her son, she only carried on one side. The only reason she found out about her condition is because a nurse noticed it when she was giving birth to her son.


#stitch with @omqgabbi HOW DO YOU NOT NOTICE THAT LIKE WHAT. #UD #BiggerIsBetter #ShowerWithMoxie #uterusowner #womenempowerment #momsoftiktok

♬ original sound – Britsburg

My first thought after watching this TikTok a few more times was how did the doctors not catch this earlier? As a 25-year-old woman, Jacobs has technically been going to the doctors for 25 years, including gynecologist and obstetrician-gynecologist (OBGYN) visits. The side effects she listed should have clued her doctors into her condition long before she delivered her son.

But this isn’t actually all that shocking when we take into account how modern medicine often fails minority communities.

Historically, medical institutions have long upheld racism and sexism. This deadly combination has culminated for hundreds of years and put many BIPOC in danger. Black women especially are often taken advantage of and dismissed by practicing doctors to this day, with many Black women going on TikTok to discuss why doctors need to do better.


#stitch with @omqgabbi consistently failed by doctors #fyp #doctorfail #listentoblackwomen

♬ original sound – Meikoshi

In fact, doctors’ implicit race- and gender-based bias has put many Black women in jeopardy. The medical industry’s malpractice has contributed to horrible statistics like 40% of Black women being more likely to die from breast cancer compared to white women and Black women being three times more likely to suffer from severe complications from childbirth than white women—both of which could be lower if proper care had been provided by medical professionals.

While egregious facts like these have roots tracing back throughout U.S. history, it’s important to note that “history” doesn’t always mean very long ago.

In the 20th century alone, federally-funded programs included forced sterilizations of immigrants, people of color, including 70,000 Native American women, poor people, unmarried mothers, people with disabilities, and the mentally ill. And, like most of American racism, this practice carried over into the 21st century. Between 2006 and 2010, California prisons authorized the sterilization of 144 female inmates, a majority of whom were Black or Latina.

Let’s say Jacobs did share her ailments with her doctors prior to her pregnancy. Even then there is still the possibility that her doctors dismissed her pain because she’s a woman.

In the 19th century, “hysteria” was often used to “diagnose” women and force them into mental institutions. At the time, it was perfectly okay for husbands to admit their wives to these institutions without the women’s consent. Postpartum depression, infertility, masturbation, and homosexuality were also reasons women were placed in mental institutions.

It’s important to know this history, wrought with the trauma and pain of racism and sexism because we need to be better about holding the medical industry accountable.

I think one of the reasons why we as a society have failed at this is because of doctor dramas like Grey’s Anatomy, Scrubs, The Good Doctor, House, and more—all of which can be viewed as the medical equivalent of Brooklyn Nine-Nine cop propaganda.

Doctor dramas often show medical professionals going the extra mile to deliver care to their patients. For example, Meredith Grey has been suspended, fired, arrested, and jailed throughout her story’s 17 seasons. She usually faces these consequences because she broke rules in order to help save her patients.

But doctors outside of dramas are not always known for having this same level of dedication. Many of my friends and coworkers struggle with chronic illness and have shared stories about having to convince their doctors to take them seriously and administer a diagnosis.

In addition, people with disabilities reportedly receive inferior health care because less than 20 percent of medical schools teach their students how to talk to patients with disabilities. Furthermore, patients with disabilities are often otherized, which adds a psychological toll for these patients who are already having to advocate for and even explain their medical care to their doctors.

Though we’re told to trust our doctors, this is often easier said than done for many communities. Women of color, especially Black and Native American women, and people with disabilities face discrimination in the medical industry every day, with many people struggling for years to demand proper medical treatment. If our doctors don’t see anything wrong with that, then they are part of the problem.

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Love + Sex Love Advice

8 things I wish I knew before I had sex for the first time

If you’re reading this, you’re probably thinking about or ready to have sex for the first time – and that’s amazing! You might be feeling nervous and anxious about your first time – first off, this is absolutely normal, you’re not alone in feeling like this.

There’s no right or wrong way when it comes to having sex for the first time, but I wanted to put this list together so you can feel comfortable and relaxed the best you can.

I’d like to state that I’m writing from the perspective of a straight woman having sex for the first time with a man – these points are more related to my experience as a straight woman.

Having said that, I do feel that these points can be applicable to everyone.

So here goes – grab a beverage, get cozy and get ready to learn the things I wished I knew before I had sex for the first time. Enjoy the ride 😉

1. Forget what TV and film taught you about your first time

It’s fair to say that TV and teen movies have given us some pretty unrealistic expectations when it comes to sex and the magical ‘first-time’. Sex is meant to look good on camera – you have steamy make-out sessions under dim lighting as the couple (usually a straight couple) simultaneously take each other’s clothes off and dive into penetrative sex quickly (um, foreplay anyone?) that they miraculously both have orgasms at the same time. I’ll let you in on a secret….this doesn’t happen in real life. 

Sex for the first time can feel nerve-wracking, awkward, and messy – and that’s completely normal! Don’t get me wrong, it’s a lot of fun, but don’t use first-time sex scenes from TV and film as a model for how your first time should go.

2. Having sex doesn’t change you – virginity is a social construct!

You are the same person before and after you’ve had sex for the first time, you won’t ‘change’ as a person. We’re led to believe that sex will make us different and we’ll ‘lose our purity’ – remember, virginity is a social construct! As the School of Sexuality Education puts it, “the pressures, myths and expectations surrounding the traditional idea of ‘virginity’ are very much the product of norms and ideas created by us humans”.

Have sex when you’re ready, it’s no one else’s business what you’re doing with your vagina

3. Don’t worry about your appearance

It’s disheartening to say, but the Instagram selfie-obsessed world we live in has caused many of us to hold negative thoughts about our own self-image (I can attest to this), which can hamper us from having a fulfilling sex life. Focus on what you’re feeling rather than how you’re looking – if it helps, close your eyes, and enjoy the sensations and explore what feels good and pleasurable to you and your partner.

But believe me when I say this, you’ll look sexy in the eyes of your partner when you’re all hot and bothered!

4. Communicate with your partner – especially when it comes to contraception

Communication is a must when it comes to sex. As sex and intimacy expert, Gigi Engle, puts it, “In order to have good sex, you need to communicate your wants, needs, and desires to your partner.” This includes sharing any concerns or expectations you may have when it comes to sex, the contraception you want to use (the last thing you want to do is worry about STIs and pregnancy during sex!), if this is a casual or serious relationship, or if either of you are seeing other people.

Open up on what’s important to you!

5. Have lots and lots of foreplay to feel comfortable

Foreplay helps to lubricate the vagina, which can make sex more enjoyable – this includes making out, talking dirty, listening to some sexy tunes or podcasts, massaging, dry humping, oral sex…anything that arouses you and your partner. Don’t just consider foreplay as pre-sex activities, but make foreplay part of the whole sexual experience.

When it comes to having penetrative sex, feeling aroused and lubricated can help you feel relaxed, making vaginal intercourse feel more comfortable and less tense.

6. Take the pressure off having an orgasm and enjoy the whole ride

We all know orgasms feel good (I thank my showerhead for that), but climaxing during penile-vaginal sex can be difficult for women to reach, and this is relatively common if you have a vagina. In a 2018 study, 10 to 40% of women reported having difficulty or an inability to reach orgasm

There are other things you can enjoy about sex that takes the pressure off having an orgasm – the close intimacy you have with your partner, exploring each other’s body, enjoying the pleasurable experience, and connecting on a deeper level. 

As you become more comfortable with your partner, you can communicate with each other on how you can reach a climax, with clitoral stimulation for example (whatever you do, DON’T fake your orgasms), but use this time initially to enjoy the pleasurable experience.  

Here’s another way of putting it: An orgasm is the dinner mint at the end of a five-course meal. Pleasure is the whole damn meal — from breadbasket to entree to dinner mint.

7. You might bleed or you might not – and it’s got nothing to do with the ‘hymen’

I was expecting to bleed profusely when I had sex for the first time after I ‘broke my hymen’, and I was pretty surprised that I didn’t. After some research, I found that a vast majority of women don’t bleed the first time they have penetrative sex – some do and some don’t, either is normal. RFSU, a Swedish sex education charity that refrains from the term ‘hymen’ and prefers ‘vaginal corona’ – in order to dispel the myth that a woman’s vaginal opening is covered by a membrane that ruptures on penetration – said that of those that do bleed, few do so because the vaginal corona was tight, but there are other reasons why.

RFSU explains that “if you were not sexually aroused, but rather tense, nervous and too dry, minor ruptures may develop in the vaginal corona and may bleed.” 

8. Don’t ignore your clit!

I really mean it! The clitoris plays a huge part in the sexual arousal and enjoyment of women. The clitoral glans contains 6,000–8,000 sensory nerve endings, more than any other part of the human body (hallelujah!). This sensitivity explains why women enjoy clitoral stimulation – so, to enjoy sensual pleasure with your partner, make sure you both play with your clit!    

So there we have it! I hope you’ve learned something new today and it’s put you at ease when it comes to your first-time.

Do you still want more? I thought you’d never ask!

Check out these other articles from our team:

Five reasons why masturbating is good for women

Let’s dissect the misogynistic arrogance surrounding the clitoris

I found my femininity through masturbation

Here’s how to have sex with trans women

I feel like a feminist failure because I fake my orgasms

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Health Care Health Wellness

7 menstruating myths we need to debunk

As an Indian woman from Texas, I remember how big of a deal it was to get your period, especially amongst the older women. It was an achievement, a sign that you were grown up and ready to take on more responsibilities. Unfortunately, the importance placed on periods by older generations of women meant that there were lots of “old-wives tales” surrounding it that were based in social and scientific inaccuracy. Here are some of the myths that I frequently heard during growing up:

1. Using tampons would ruin my reproductive system

I’m convinced that being conditioned to believe that tampons are dangerous is a universal brown womxn experience at this point. Like all of my friends, I was not allowed to use tampons because my mother was convinced that they would get stuck if the string broke. Her fears were not without merit; she had met a woman who contracted Toxic Shock Syndrome because of a broken tampon and had to have it surgically removed. However, this was before tampons were as well-researched as they are now. In reality, Toxic Shock Syndrome is rare and tampons are generally safe to use!

2. Starting my period meant that I was finally a real woman

When I first got my period, it was a moment of pride for my mother. Her first daughter was finally a “real” woman! Elderly women would gush over me when she would tell them, but I never understood why. Menstruating didn’t make me feel anymore feminine; I was the exact same person. If anything, I wanted to stop menstruating the second that I started. The cramps, nausea, dizziness, mood swings, and acne didn’t seem worth the validation I received for meeting patriarchal standards of femininity. In reality, menstruation has nothing to do with being a woman; transgender men menstruate as well, yet they are not women. Associating menstruation with feminity is an outdated concept that overlooks the sociological and scientific distinctions between sex and gender. 

3. I should avoid exercising during my period

In Indian culture, menstruating women are asked to “quarantine” themselves in one room, far away from the rest of the family. My family is more progressive, so I never had to do that. However, I was advised to not exercise during my periods. As a dancer, I realistically cannot miss a week of rehearsal every month, so I always go to rehearsal anyway. Exercising during your period is actually good for your reproductive system. It can reduce period cramps, combat mood swings, and generally decrease PMS symptoms. 

4. Everybody experiences PMS (premenstrual syndrome

While most women experience PMS symptoms, not all of them feel like their insides are being shredded apart because of their period. I was so used to hearing that “cramps are completely normal”, I suffered through extreme cramps for years before seeking out treatment. My cramps were so debilitating, I often couldn’t go to school or work when I was on my period, which is abnormal. Extreme uterine cramping is a symptom of endometriosis, polycystic ovarian syndrome, and uterine fibroids, yet doctors still write it off as “normal”. Women are much more likely to suffer from chronic pain than men because doctors are known to have an implicit bias against women for having “psychological” pain. 

5. There is no way to stop your period other than pregnancy

During our sexual education seminar at school, I remember asking if there was a way for me to stop menstruating or reduce my blood flow. This seminar was taught by a Catholic woman who didn’t believe in birth control, so I was told that other than pregnancy, there is no way to stop menstruation. However, birth control can be used to completely stop periods. In fact, I am doing that right now with a hormonal IUD as a way of controlling my extreme PMS symptoms. 

6. Unnaturally stopping your period is unsafe and can affect future fertility 

As an IUD-user, I was often advised by people with no medical education that using birth control would make it more difficult for me to get pregnant in the future. However, my doctor confirmed that this is completely false and that my fertility would be back to normal a few weeks after removing my IUD. There is no evidence that using birth control can affect long-term fertility. Pregnancy rates in women who previously used hormonal contraceptives are similar to pregnancy rates in women who have never used hormonal contraceptives. In reality, using birth control can actually have a long-term positive effect on the body by decreasing the risk for certain reproductive cancers. 

7. Menstrual blood is the “bad” blood that our bodies need to get rid of 

Shaming the female body began at a young age in my community as young girls were often taught that menstrual blood is the toxic blood that our bodies get rid of to maintain hygiene. In reality, menstrual blood is a mixture of regular blood and tissue (endometrium) from the uterus that contains nutrients to sustain a fetus. There is nothing “toxic” about the blood; it is just like the rest of the blood that flows through the human body. 

Menstruating is a normal part of the human body, so it should be treated in a manner that reflects that. By spreading false information about menstruation, we are disadvantaging younger generations of people who menstruate. Regardless of religious beliefs, it is imperative that we start spreading accurate information about our bodies as a way to destigmatize them.

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Feel-Good Sexuality The Vulvasation Love + Sex Love Advice

Five reasons why masturbating is good for women

Vulvasations is a Tempest Love exclusive series dedicated to spreading awareness about the female reproductive system, debunking myths about periods and dissecting everything vajayjay related. Let’s talk about vaginas!

When most of us think of masturbating, we usually think about a hormonal teenage boy watching a sleazy porno that is probably degrading to women in some way. This stereotype has some truth to it as about 70% of teenage males masturbate.

On the other hand, only about 50% of teenage females report masturbating. Besides the obvious benefit of masturbating (orgasms), there are many benefits to masturbating, especially for women. 

1. It strengthens the pelvic floor muscles

Women are encouraged to do Kegels to strengthen their pelvic floor muscles by keeping the pelvic floor muscles active. Similarly, masturbating strengthens the pelvic floor by keeping the deep muscles working and in shape. It also activates the body’s orgasmic functions i.e. vaginal lubrication to ensure that your body is capable of having sex later on. 

2. It’s good for your mental health

Orgasms increase blood flow throughout the body and cause an influx of endorphins throughout the body. Endorphins are feel-good chemicals that our body naturally produces in small quantities. They are natural painkillers and can produce a euphoric effect, which is why orgasms feel so good. Hence, masturbating is known to be a stress-reliever and a reboot for our minds. 

3. It will boost your libido

Masturbating is known to boost libido and make people more confident in their bodies and sexuality. Because masturbating is (usually) a solo activity, you are in complete control over your own body and can easily figure out what you like and don’t like. This can lead to a much better sex life and more bodily autonomy during sex. 

4. It’s safe during COVID-19 

Without a doubt, COVID-19 has completely changed the way we interact with other people, which includes sex. Because it is generally better to avoid having sex right now (unless it is with a partner you are quarantining with), masturbating is a good alternative to maintain a healthy sex life. Because it is a solo activity, there is no risk for contracting COVID-19 through it. It’s also impossible to get pregnant through it, so you don’t need to worry about birth control when masturbating!

5. It can help you sleep better

If you struggle with insomnia (the inability to fall asleep at night), masturbating might help. Because orgasms release natural “feel-good” chemicals such as oxytocin and endorphins, they can make one more sleepy and relaxed. It’s more difficult to sleep now than ever due to our immense dependence on electronic devices that emit blue light

While women masturbating is not as well-established or socially accepted as men masturbating, it is a completely valid and natural form of sexual expression. Women have been taught for centuries that sexual desire is “unnatural” because sex should only be procreative.

In fact, the vibrator was invented by a doctor in the 18th century as a way of curing “hysteria”, a disease that women were known to experience.

We now refer to “hysteria” as sexual frustration and “cure” it by orgasming. 

Each and every one of us is entitled to our own body’s integrity, and sexual pleasure falls underneath that umbrella.

So don’t be ashamed to love your body a little bit more while we’re in quarantine (and after)! 

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Sexuality The Vulvasation Love + Sex Love

I can’t have sex. Here’s what it’s like

Vulvasations is a Tempest Love exclusive series dedicated to spreading awareness about the female reproductive system, debunking myths about periods and dissecting everything vajayjay related. Let’s talk about vaginas!

I was twelve when I first heard the word “hymen” in a sexual education class. It was advertised as a “vaginal cloak” that would be broken the first time a girl would have sex.

I’m from Texas and therefore received abstinence-only sex education. Virginity was a woman’s virtue and a ~prized possession~. 

Personally, I never bought into the idealization of virginity because sex was always irrelevant to me. I wasn’t waiting until marriage, but I wasn’t planning on doing it in high school either. Little did I know that not only did I not want to have sex, I biologically couldn’t have it.

I was confident in my decision to not have sex until I found out that it was never my decision; my body had already decided for me. 

I realized that my body was averse to any form of penetration.

I could never use a tampon or handle any form of penetration without excruciating pain. It was almost as if my vaginal muscles would slam shut at the thought of it. I chalked it up to being nervous and spoke to my doctor about it.

For years, she told me that I was probably just nervous and should opt for thinner tampons. Despite using the thinnest tampons on the market, I still couldn’t get them in. 

Eventually, I realized that my body was averse to any form of penetration, not just tampons, so there had to be another reason for my pain. Finally, my doctor confirmed that this was abnormal and referred me to a gynecologist this summer.

When I first realized how severe my problem was, I thought it was vaginismus (an involuntary spasming of the vaginal muscles in response to a fear of penetration).

I refused to leave my room for three days and mentally spiraled while trying to figure out how I was going to cope with the idea of never being able to have pain-free sex.

Going to a gynecologist at a young age only exacerbated this as I did not like being poked and prodded by a doctor, especially vaginally. After a painful gynecological exam, I was diagnosed with a hymenal abnormality (microperforate hymen).

I had a lot of abnormally thick tissue covering my vaginal opening with an opening about the size of a sesame seed for menstrual blood to come out of (nothing could go in). Surgery (hymenectomy) was my only option to remove the tissue.  

Eventually, I underwent the surgery and was fortunate enough to receive a hormonal IUD at the same time. While my recovery was gruesome, I was optimistic about finally being able to use tampons and have a normal sex life. Unfortunately, I was in over my head. I felt like I was being cut in half during my gynecological follow-up appointment.

The severed nerve endings from the incision site were angered by the surgery, so penetration was still unbearably painful. She suggested that I start vaginal dilator therapy to condition my vagina to relax and habituate to the sensation of penetration. While dilators are tube-shaped medical devices that increase in size, my body perceives them as giant wooden stakes.

The only thing more painful than having to undergo vaginal surgery and dilator therapy was having to explain all of it to my conservative, Indian mother.

Sexual health is still taboo in India, especially for unmarried women. Often, society treats the vagina as a holy space that should not be entered until marriage by a woman’s husband.

My mother had never heard of a dilator and was traumatized after hearing about what she interpreted as “medically-prescribed masturbation”. Thankfully, she is more progressive than most Indian mothers and was somewhat supportive of my surgery because it was medically-necessitated.

Currently, I am three months post-operation and I am still working on dilation. While I cannot have painless sex yet, I have worked my way to the 4th dilator out of 8. This is tremendous progress for my body considering that I couldn’t handle a finger 2 months ago.

I have been able to use marijuana extract (CBD) formulated for sexual use to subdue my vaginal and vulvar nerve endings into relaxing enough to allow for certain forms of penetration, or as my friends like to say, I get my vagina high with vagina weed

While my vaginal journey has been traumatizing, it’s also forced me to confront a culturally tabooed part of my body. Prior to surgery, I couldn’t even say the word “vagina” without blushing.

Here I am now, telling the whole world how I get mine stoned every night. 

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Sexuality Love + Sex Love

Does not having a hymen mean that I’m not a virgin?

When I say the phrase “losing your virginity”, most people think of a virtuous woman having penetrative sex with a man to get her “cherry popped”. It’s painful and there’s blood on the sheets from her hymen breaking because she has now lost her innocence and is somehow impure. By breaking a thin piece of tissue in her vagina, a woman’s whole life is changed and now she’s a completely different, “dirtier” human being. Per these standards, a sexually active lesbian is a virgin because her hymen is ~untouched~. All of these aforementioned statements are just a few of the examples of ways in which virginity is a social construct imposed upon society to uphold patriarchal values. It also assumes that everyone with a vagina is a woman and that a man has to be involved for sex to be considered legitimate. 

The idea of virginity reduces a person’s worth to the integrity of a piece of tissue in their vagina. Often, the hymen is used as a pseudoscientific justification for virginity being a biological concept. If it breaks during sex and every vagina has it, there has to be a biological reason for the tissue to be intact. This “biological” reason disappears after that person is married because they are suddenly all clear to have sex. 

Per these standards, a sexually active lesbian is a virgin because her hymen is ~untouched~

In reality, the hymen is a thin, fleshy tissue that covers part of the opening to the vagina. It isn’t a magical cloak that is only broken when a vagina is penetrated for the first time. By the time an individual that is assigned-female-at-birth reaches puberty, their hymen is usually already broken to allow for menstrual blood to come out. Using tampons, playing sports, and riding a bike also cause the hymen to break throughout childhood. 

Some people are born without a hymen or with little amounts of hymenal tissue. Other people (like me), are born with abnormally thick hymenal tissue and have to get their hymen surgically removed as I did.

It assumes that everyone with a vagina is a woman and that a man has to be involved for sex to be considered legitimate. 

Does not having a hymen mean that I am not a virgin? Absolutely not. My virginity is not defined by the presence of a piece of tissue because virginity is an idea that was created in an era when women were legally defined and treated as property. 

The bizarre societal obsession with hymen has led to the legitimization of “virginity tests”, a form of violence, as a medical procedure. Gynecologists are often asked by parents and in-laws to perform the “two-finger” test on their patients to prove their virginity. This form of testing has no scientific or medical merit to it, yet it is still performed. 

In fact, the idolization of virginity has led to a market for fake hymens. HymenShop, a company that sells fake hymens, has sold thousands of units of artificial hymens that ooze out fake blood (red medical food dye) when penetrated. The fake blood staining the sheets is then used as proof of virginity being lost. 

Virginity is an idea that was created in an era when women were treated as property. 

In addition to insertable fake hymens, the idolization of virginity has also led to an increased amount of requests for hymenoplasties i.e. hymen restoration surgeries. This procedure is usually performed for religious or cultural reasons.

It can also be formed as a form of therapy after sexual assault. A surgeon will suture the hymen back together or will graft tissue over the opening of the vagina by taking tissue from another part of the vagina.

The social pressure to remain a virgin until marriage, especially in traditionally conservative countries, has forced people to go under the knife to conform to such outdated gender roles.  

Delegitimizing virginity starts by understanding it for what it is, a concept that varies from person to person. Definitions of virginity can vary across people of different genders and sexual orientations. A lesbian may consider engaging in foreplay to be losing their virginity while a straight woman may consider penetrative sex with a man to be losing her virginity.

In any case, it is best not to define what does and doesn’t count towards virginity on a societal level to be more inclusive of differences in background and experience. 

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Health Care Science Advice Wellness Now + Beyond

Here’s why your gyno wishes you’d leave your pubic hair alone

A recent study in JAMA Dermatology surveyed 3372 women in the U.S. on their pubic hair grooming practices. 83% reported some measure of “grooming” (defined as anywhere from trimming the hair to taking all of it off). 63% said they opted for complete removal at least once. “Grooming” was highest in both the 18-34 group and in white women.

The most common reason women reported for pubic hair removal? 59% cited “hygiene” as the leading factor in this decision.

But the perception that having pubic hair is somehow “dirty” is wrong.

Pubic hair is thought to have an evolutionary purpose.

According to Dr. Jennifer Gunter, a gynecologist, it functions as a protective cushion for a sensitive-skinned area and, like eyebrows, traps microbes and foreign invaders from getting into that sensitive area.

The vagina also has a self-cleaning mechanism, which is why vaginal douching is no longer recommended: it can destroy the natural balance of healthy bacteria and normal acidity of the vagina, leading to irritation and yeast infections.

Some cite that shaving and waxing can increase the risk of infection because these practices essentially make little cuts on the skin.

This allows a direct passageway to blood for vulvar bacteria, outside of the defense system of vaginal mucus. Group A streptococcus, Staphylococcus aureus, and Staph’s resistant form MRSA all are common causes of skin infections.

Dr. Tami Rowen, an assistant professor at UCSF School of Medicine, has reported seeing grooming-related cases of folliculitis (inflammation of the hair follicle), abscesses, lacerations, and allergic reactions to waxing burns.

And a study in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology found that 60% of women who removed their hair experienced some of these complications.

Complications were twice as likely for overweight and obese women, and three times more if they removed all their pubic hair.

[Image description: Private grooming habits between men and women.] via
[Image description: Private grooming habits between men and women.] via
Now, is this to say women shouldn’t remove their hair if they choose? No.

Human eyebrows also had an evolutionary purpose, but we can totally shave them off if we damn well please. And just because something may carry minor health risks does not mean we lack the right to do it.

We do all kinds of things to our bodies by choice that may involve some minor health risks, like waxing/shaving elsewhere, piercings, or tattoos.

But a YouGov poll showed that while only 56% of women ages 18-29 feel that they should remove their pubic hair, 72% do it anyway. We must get rid of false narratives perpetuated by society that dictate the choices we make.

“Hygiene” is only one of the reasons women give for removing pubic hair, but it is a harmful reason. It perpetuates a false stereotype that women who do not remove pubic hair are unclean. The argument that pubic hair is unhygienic is the patriarchy acting under the guise of science.

Your vagina is not dirty for existing in its natural form.

Do what you please with your body because you like it, and for no other reason.

Love + Sex Love Science Advice

I slept with a guy who thought he knew me better than myself

A few years ago, I was with a partner in bed.

Pillow talk? Forget it.

He whispered in my ear, after I asked for more clit action, that it wasn’t necessary for him to stimulate my clitoris for me to climax.

Sexy, right? I laughed and told him that I definitely needed the clit. Did he listen? No, he just insisted I was wrong.

I was stunned. Why did he think he knew my orgasms better than I did?

Excuse Me What GIF by Big Little Lies
[Image Description: Two girls turn confused to someone, holding ice cream.] Via GIPHY

The origins of the vaginal orgasm 

Sex can be one of life’s greatest pleasures. For some of us, it informs what we wear, do and watch. Unfortunately, women were dealt a sly hand by a Mr. Sigmund Freud back in 1905. 

The ‘Vaginal Orgasm’ was made famous by philosopher Sigmund Freud in his ‘Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality.

According to Freud, once a girl grew into a woman, she also outgrew the infantile clitoris orgasm. She should be able to experience an orgasm from vaginal penetration alone. 

meghan markle usa GIF by Suits
[Image Description: A woman in a white shirt asks someone if they ‘Want to try that again?’] GIF by Suits via Giphy

References in popular culture 

Well, I’m sure we all really wanted that little opinion of yours, Mr. Freud. But, instead of fading into irrelevancy, your theory stuck. It trickled down into popular culture before anyone could look at the science. 

In fact, the theory gained traction. Self-help doctor and author Frank S Caprio latched onto Freud’s theory in the mid 1900s and wrote in his book, ‘The Sexually Adequate Female’: 

“…whenever a woman is incapable of achieving an orgasm via coitus…and prefers clitoral stimulation to any other form of sexual activity, she can be regarded as suffering from frigidity and requires psychiatric assistance.”

What a lovely and alarming diagnosis.

When authors and doctors perpetuate an idea, it’s not even just bad sex that is the consequence. People have been diagnosed with sexual disorders because of the widespread nature of this theory.

And supporting all of this? Porn.

Reams of the videos we’re shown on platforms Brazzers and PornHub depict women screaming in passion and writhing with pleasure from just penetration! No clitoris stimulation in sight.

People who watch porn without a pinch of salt might wonder if they’re somehow to blame when their partner doesn’t orgasm. 

eartha kitt laughing GIF
[Image Description: A woman wearing a brown sweater laughs] Via GIPHY

The science

What is the difference between the clitoris and vaginal orgasm? My female mates were equally confused when I brought it up… Isn’t the clitoris a part of the vagina?

I tried to research ‘How to Have a Vaginal Orgasm’ and lo and behold the ever-present clitoris was right there listed as one of the tips

In reality, the clitoris is much bigger than the little nub we see. It’s an iceberg of pleasure that stretches back around the vaginal wall. 

The head of the clitoris is also composed of erectile tissue, and it possesses a very sensitive epithelium or surface covering, supplied with special nerve endings called genital corpuscles, which are peculiarly adapted for sensory stimulation… No other part of the female generative tract has such corpuscles.”

[Bold my own]

How has the idea that the clitoris has an optional role in the orgasm persisted?

If we look further at the science of the vagina, we find that the wall of the vagina is incredibly insensitive: “Among the women who were tested in our gynecologic sample, less than 14% were at all conscious that they had been touched.” (Kinsey, p. 580.)

So if it’s the only part of the female organ that possesses such spine tingling abilities, what was Freud talking about?

What was his obsession with leaving the clitoris, as wonderful as it is, behind? 

pop tv idk GIF by Schitt's Creek
[Image Description: A woman holds her hands open, confused] GIF by Schitt’s Creek via GIPHY

Feminist theories! Men have had their fun, so now it’s time to psychoanalyze them…

There are a few theories that have bubbled up to explain why a distinction arose between a clitoris ‘vaginal’ orgasm. Anne Koedt, a New York feminist wrote in 1970 a fabulous theory of her own. She wrote in her book, “The myth of the vaginal orgasm”:

Since the clitoris is almost identical to the penis, one finds a great deal of evidence of men in various societies trying to either ignore the clitoris and emphasize the vagina (as did Freud)…It should be noted also that a big clitoris is considered ugly and masculine.

Some cultures engage in the practice of pouring a chemical on the clitoris to make it shrivel up into “proper” size.”


A black woman picks up a doughnut and turns around to leave.
[Image Description: A woman picks up a doughnut and turns around to leave.] Via GIPHY

What we can do?

We need to speak up. We love our clitorises and they sure love us. Some may claim to be able to climax with just penetration alone – which is great!

But for the rest of us, vocalization in the bedroom is gonna have to be our method to the Garden of Orgasm.


Take responsibility for your orgasm by telling partners what to do, because they’ve been learning wrong.

as she pleases mtv GIF by Madison Beer
[Image Description: A girl sits on a red couch with jeans and a yellow and black crop top.] Via GIPHY
Gender Inequality

The orgasm gap is real, and boycotting Durex won’t bridge it

The year is 2019; all movies are franchises, the planet is a dumpster fire, and brands that are the flag-bearers of capitalism are profiting off being woke. Durex is the latest in a long list of brands to attempt this. It recently released a statement on how nearly 70% of women in India never get to finish.

Now, we’re not as naive as to believe brands actually have the greater good in mind. However, Durex does bring up an important point surrounding the orgasm gap between men and women. Yet some men have felt that this tweet is enough of a reason to boycott Durex. It seems as though the patriarchy has once again lost its collective mind.

On the face of it, the anger at Durex seems to stem from their mostly male audience feeling personally attacked. Most ads tend to stroke the male ego. Instead, Durex is neither catering to the male ego nor to the male gaze. The company has a documented history of not going with ads that objectify women to sell condoms. Further, a brand that primarily centers on the pleasure experienced by men is now also talking about that of women. Focusing on female pleasure? Calling men out on their bullshit? Some men feel this is cause for a boycott.

In the midst of this ironic display of toxic masculinity, what is missing is the truth that the orgasm gap is real – and it’s not just in India. That is the point Durex is trying to make.

A study conducted across the US revealed that only 65% of straight women orgasm during sex. This is far behind straight men, who stand tall at 95%. It is also far behind the LGBTQ community. Gay men are 89% likely and lesbian women are 86% likely to orgasm.

Similar statistics have been reported in Australia. It’s important to note that these are countries where sex is not a taboo and women feel more comfortable talking about it. Safe to say, women are worse off in some of the more conservative parts of the world. Places where even the mention of sex education would cause riots and talk about female pleasure could earn you a trip to the house of worship of your family’s choice.

While we have enough research to determine that the orgasm gap exists, it is not nearly enough to determine the extent of its prevalence worldwide. We also do not yet have enough information regarding what causes this gap and how we may overcome it.

Research into the female body – including female pleasure – has consistently been sidelined, unlike what we see for the male body and its pleasure. Dr. Cindy Meston from the University of Texas at Austin believes it is also hard to get funding because the female orgasm is not considered a “significant enough social problem”. After all, cishet sex begins and ends with male pleasure. It is visible throughout the activity and is also visible in its culmination. Women do not have this luxury. Their pleasure seems complicated for various reasons, and many of them have not yet been identified. This is mainly because the vagina is an organ we still understand poorly at best.

Instead of men acknowledging this gap staring us in the face, Durex is facing a boycott for bringing it up.

The patriarchy is strong, and it still rules over us. Heterosexuality rules over us. Masculinity rules over us. And those that rule over us seem uncomfortable with any overt signs of dismantling the status quo. Durex is asking men in India to unlearn decades of believing that women do not enjoy or want sex. It’s these same lessons that judge a woman who enjoys sex as being promiscuous.

If we want to change how we understand female pleasure, then we need sex education (for both men and women,) and research. The more we talk about female pleasure, the less taboo it becomes and the more funding it receives. None of this is possible in a world where toxic displays of masculinity attempt to squelch any attempts at starting important conversations about women.

We need safe spaces where women actually feel comfortable discussing their bodies without shame. For this to be a reality one day, this toxicity and vitriol have to be channeled out for good. #BoycottDurex is a misdirection in anger; we should be angry at those who attempt to derail these important conversations before they truly begin. For all we know, opening up a conversation about female pleasure might be what it takes to bridge the orgasm gap. Boycotting Durex certainly won’t.

Health Care The Vulvasation Love + Sex Love

Things that everyone with a vag should definitely know

Vulvasations is a Tempest Love exclusive series dedicated to spreading awareness about the female reproductive system, debunking myths about periods and dissecting everything vajayjay related. Let’s talk about vaginas!

I recently came across a series of paintings done by a brilliant artist named Jacqueline Secor. The pictures made me do a double take because what looked like floral textures at first, were in fact, vaginas. It was a series of work depicting floral renderings of female genitalia.

What was intriguing about these pictures wasn’t that they were female genitals painted in flowery patterns, but how different they looked from each other. It didn’t look like the same thing done in different styles. There was a noticeable difference between them.

image description: A series of nine artworks in a grid showing floral depictions of vulvas
[Image description: A series of nine artworks in a grid showing floral depictions of vulvas] via Jacquelinesecorart on Instagram
I previously believed that vaginas looked all the same. In hindsight, I’m surprised at my naivete.

Now, we already know women should explore themselves more, and I truly believe that. The statement that the vagina is the most talked about and least understood part of the body, doesn’t just apply to men.

In theory, you know what a vulva is, but would you be able to pick yours out of a line-up? If you can’t, then maybe you should work on that. Why don’t you grab a mirror and take a good look?

I’m not saying you should start researching vagina pictures (unless that helps you).

However, a first good step would be to remove the preconceived notion of what a vagina should look like, and instead, recognize how different each one can be.

Why is it important to appreciate and understand the variety in vaginas? Because the more you appreciate the beauty of your body, the less likely you are of looking for that validation from someone else. Self-love and acceptance are incredibly empowering.

The failure to recognize, embrace and love yourself the right way, can have greater consequences than just misrepresentation and unawareness. It can lead to psychological distress and at times, even a severe condition known as body dysmorphia or Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD).

Body dysmorphia is a mental disorder which causes individuals to obsess over an aspect of their appearance relentlessly, even if the perceived flaw is non-existent or insignificant. Falling for a media-based view of the perfect vulva can cause people to feel genital dysmorphia. They could find themselves making the desperate leap to cosmetic surgery, an industry which is more than happy to sell you the idea of perfection by going under the knife.

Plastic surgeons currently perform two kinds of corrective surgeries on genitals:

1. Vaginoplasty: A procedure to make your vagina tighter. It may also include the removal of some external skin for a more aesthetic appearance.

2. Labiaplasty: The surgical modification of the labia. The clitoral hood, the lips at the entrance of the vagina, and pubic lifts or reductions.

These surgeries can have serious side effects and might not treat the actual source of the problem: that there was nothing wrong with the appearance of your vagina in the first place, it was deeper rooted than that.

Plastic surgeons claim they’re going to make a patient’s genitalia “more appealing.” But to who? Are they trying to meet other people’s expectations, or is the media feeding you the idea of what a vagina should look like – without you even knowing?

If you need some realistic insight into this, please understand the porn industry is definitely NOT going to help you. Neither are pictures of genitals represented as neat little fruits and flowers.

image description: sliced fruit on purple silk
[Image description: sliced fruit on purple silk] via Charles on Unsplash
There are some amazing artists who have done alluring pieces of work similar to this that are worth looking up. There is also a captivating and thought-provoking documentary called 100 Vaginas.

The film is a very up close and personal look at vulvas and people with vulvas openly talking about them and their experiences. If you get a chance to watch this, do it, and understand that it will change you in some significant way by the end.

At least to a point where you won’t feel like you want to run and hide every time there’s a full-blown vulva on your screen.

image description: a woman is smiling while holding a camera between an open pair of legs
[image description: a woman is smiling while holding a camera between an open pair of legs] via IMDB
In the documentary, one woman said “It’s [the vulva’s] physical appearance and makeup is rarely discussed. And while we are taught endlessly about the blood, birth, and pain it will bring to us, its potential for pleasure is only ever really noted in relation to others. We live in a society that treats women entirely like a cock pocket.”

There are many diverse types of vulvas, and all of them are beautiful.

And if your V doesn’t look the way you thought she should, trust me, she’s still lovely, and you’re still a goddess.

If this is an explorative journey you have yet to take, I highly encourage you to try. It’s empowering, and you can never have too much of that.

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Health Care Love Wellness

Unlock the secrets of your body with these 5 podcasts

There is so much information on the internet about health, however, it can be hard to find sources that are reputable, and easy to understand. Podcasts are a super helpful and an effortless way to learn more while on the go.  Some health professionals are using podcasts to educate a greater number of people across the globe. All you need to start learning is an Internet connection and maybe a pair of earphones.

If you’re interested in learning about how your body works or looking for ideas on self-care, look no further! Below are some of the most exciting, informative, and easy to listen to podcasts that will keep you updated on the latest health news.

1. The V-Word

The V-Word is revolutionary for people who haven’t had a proper sexual education or for those who are just curious about lady bits. This podcast is hosted by two gynecologists who talk about all things vaginas. With episodes between 20 – 40 minutes long, these two women cover a lot of ground tackling topics ranging from birth plans to human trafficking.  This is a great place to go if you want to become more acquainted with women’s health and the stigmas around it.

2. Birthday Skin

Image result for birthday skin podcast

Birthday Skin is a podcast that is dedicated to your largest organ, your skin! Two friends with a passion for skincare have teamed up to create a podcast that answers all your skincare queries. They discuss the latest fads, everyday skin care as well as skin conditions such as rosacea. The podcast feels like an informative, yet light and casual conversation between friends.

3.  It’s Not About the Food

Image result for it's not about the food podcast

A lot of people have succumbed to diet culture and have a strained relationship with food. This podcast on intuitive eating will get real about the dangers of societal expectations on human bodies. The host, Dr. Stefani Reinold, is charismatic and is a certified psychiatrist and eating disorders specialist. She talks about how our bodies are smart and know their needs better than the nutritionists, sports gurus or magazines. This podcast is great for anyone who has a problem with food and body image.

4. Body Kindness

Image result for body kindness podcast

Want to start loving and being kind to your body, Rebecca Scritchfield can help with that! Her podcast Body Kindness focuses on loving yourself in the form you are in at the moment and pursuing health instead of unattainable body standards. Bernie Salazar, a former Biggest Loser “winner”, is a regular guest on the show and he shares why he’s happier and healthier as a fat man.

5. Ali on the Run

Image result for ali on the run podcast

Ali Feller interviews influential fitness figures and delves into their psyches on her podcast “Ali on the Run “. Sometimes the conversation turns away from fitness, but nonetheless, the conversation remains inspirational. Maybe you can stretch, meditate, or run while listening to this podcast? The conversation is always professional and easy to keep up with. This podcast may motivate you to begin moving more!

This list is not exhaustive, however, it’s a starting point for those of you who want to learn more about your bodies, health, and fitness. Delve into these podcasts to discover the biological miracle that is the human body.

Love + Sex Love Wellness

15 snarky comebacks for people trying to police our bodies and our periods

Presented in partnership with  Lunapads.

We get it – we’re sick of it, too.

It’s a statement of fact that nearly 50% of the world’s population is currently menstruating, has menstruated, or will menstruate at some point in their lives. Despite the fact that periods are a part of our human biology, others frequently try to invalidate our experiences by resorting to old wives’ tales or patriarchal notions.

This is for those who are tired of the mansplainers, the naive apologists, and the “just take a Tylenol and move on-ers”. So here are some of the ridiculous things people have ever said about us, our bodies, and our periods – and how we’re striking back.

1. “Suck it up, this is just part of being a woman.”


This is the classic “I don’t have a single empathetic bone in my body, and you should just deal with it” statement. Not to mention the fact that it leaves out a major group of human beings: people who menstruate, period.

While menstruation isn’t a one-size-fits all process, some of the most widely-experienced physical symptoms include bloating, cramps, head and back aches, acne, and swollen breasts. Aside from that, there are emotional effects as well, and this has to do with the levels of estrogen in our bodies. Right before a period begins, estrogen levels spike drastically (during ovulation) and then drop again once the egg is released. This disruption can trigger a change in mood – which can often lead to depression and anxiety.

Periods are part of being a menstruating person, but no one experiences their period the same way. There are physical and emotional changes that come with the process, and guess what – they’re real.  Yes, we’re amazing, and we can handle all of these things while carrying on about our days normally.

But understanding exactly what goes on during Aunt Flo’s visit will keep you from saying bullsh*t statements like this.

2. “We should talk about this later because you’re on your period right now. “

It’s a common misconception held by men (and some women, I kid you not) that a person is incapable of making important decisions or holding level conversations while menstruating. While it’s true that some may experience anxiety or depression before or during their periods, it’s erroneous to equate that with competence.

Look around you – some of the most influential badasses on this earth are people that have periods, and – surprise! – they probably menstruate once a month too! The difficult aspects of periods are a measure of strength, because not only can we deal with all of that – we can also get on with running the world.

3. “Your period isn’t something to be proud of. Stop talking so much about it!”


Okay, first off, when was the last time I heard a guy refrain from an inappropriate dick joke? If I have the patience to bear through countless “that’s what she said” jokes anytime there’s something even slightly close to a sex reference, I’m pretty sure you can get through what she actually says.

Also, for the record, I’m going to be PROUD AND LOUD AND PRANCE AND DO WHATEVER THE HELL I WANT.

Even if that means wearing ridiculous white jeans during my period like they show in most sanitary product ads. Except for this time, when I’m going to have a killer secret weapon in the equation (and no, it’s not my blood before you start getting all grossed out).

I’m talking about leak-proof underwear, like this one.

4. “Yikes, girl, you be lookin’ hella bloated in those jeans. Maybe you should give them up this week.”


Bloating is just the name of the game when it comes to our week with Aunt Flo, and choosing what to wear is a calculated risk, no matter what it is. Jeans, dresses, sweats – all are susceptible to The Stain.

So why not wear what I want anyway? I look fabulous, and I’ll wear what makes me comfortable, thank you very much.

One thing that I’ve found particularly effective to minimize bloating is to take a Midol and some hot green tea with honey. It’s soothing, forces you to slow down for at least five minutes in the day, and tastes good (duh). Bloating is real – and it’s one heck of a nuisance – but no one should be shaming you for it, ever.

You know how the saying goes: if you can’t handle my bloat at its worst, you don’t deserve it at its best. 

5. “I don’t get it. Only women can get periods. Why are you making this a social justice thing?”



Why do we take a leap back after every leap forward? Just because you grew up with preconceived notions about what gender, sex, and biology are “supposed” to be, doesn’t mean you have to impose that on everyone else. Especially not on people who already have to deal with that once-a-month friend. It’s complex enough for non-binary and trans individuals to navigate the world without a helping of your bullshit, thanks.

Besides, gender has always been an incredibly complex and fluid spectrum. If you’re here to give me a lecture rife with stereotypes, toxic masculinity, and a dose of fragility, I don’t have time for it. You’re really not helping anyone except for yourself.

6. “Ugh, you got it on the bed…that’s disgusting.”


We run the risk of ruining our underwear, pajama bottoms, pants, sheets, towels, and seat cushions – but you know what? That doesn’t stop the flow.

Did you know that the average person who menstruates will pass between 10-35 ml (that’s anywhere between two teaspoons to two to three tablespoons) of blood per period, and experience that about 450 times in a lifetime?

That’s a lot of blood.

And a lot of periods.

Sorry, I’m not capable of controlling my natural blood-flow while I’m unconscious and sleeping. There’s a lot coming out of me – and a lot more to come – so I’ll just try to sleep soundly and keep an extra bottle of Tide handy in the meantime.

7. “Reusable pads aren’t legit, there’s no way they can hold all that blood.”


Before I tried them for myself, I was told (and believed) that reusable pads were disgusting, and something I should avoid. Let me tell you, y’all – reusable pads revolutionized the way I experienced my period. And yes – it holds all the blood you pass during the day! There are even different sizes (from mini to maxi), and even special liners for the thong-wearers among us.

Although, I’ll be honest: my flow is way too crazy for thongs, but you do you.

In addition to being chemical-free, period panties and reusable pads are carefully engineered to be as absorbent as possible. Plus, many of these options, including Performa Lunapads, are machine washable (!!!) and can be soaked before you toss them in the machine, in case you’re really worried about them getting clean.

P.S. They come in super cute prints too, including this adorable llama one that I’m quite partial to.

Bottom line (yes, pun intended): give reusable pads a chance.

8. “Don’t get anywhere near me. You smell awful.”


Okay, I know how I smell like. That extra fragrance in the room didn’t just come out of nowhere, it’s damn expensive perfume, thanks to the paranoia I already have. It’s a paranoia that people like you spent years telling me that I have, and I’m not too interested in hearing it again from ya.

But that smell in the room of your overuse of Axe cologne is totally something we need to discuss. Because we’re not in elementary school anymore, and someone seems to have missed the memo.

How about you take care of your personal hygiene before you talk about mine? And yes, I’m talking about you, mister. The guys out of the basketball or gym, smelling like everything under the sun, telling me I smell bad?

Miss me with that bullshit.

9. “Here, take this pad, but smuggle it on your way out. Don’t let anybody know you’re on your period!”


What am I, some expensive art thief out of the Ocean’s Eleven series? There’s no need for me to carry out some sort of secret-agent sequence to get to the bathroom and change my pad.

To be honest, though, changing your pad several times a day can be a pain. Sometimes the daily hustle keeps us from getting a much-needed 5-minute refresher. That’s why reusable pads are so useful. You snap it in once – bam – and forget it’s even there all day. Comfort? Check. Safe from “embarrassment?” Check. We both win here.

I don’t have to smuggle my pad, and I have one that lasts me the entire day.

10. “You can hold out until the end of the hour to get up and use the restroom.”


Sometimes we can’t go to the bathroom because our schedules are that demanding (see: point 5). But does anyone remember the awful classroom rules that had you waiting until the end of the hour to relieve yourself?

Those things were brutal.

I’m going to venture where most won’t: the land of Period Poop. It’s true: being on your period will inevitably mean you will poop more. This due to a  fun little chemical called prostaglandin – it tells your uterus when to contract and release its lining. If there’s enough prostaglandin in your body, your bowels may pick up on the signals too, and interpret that as a call to release “The Poop”.

Are you really trying to make me fight that? Nah. I’m gonna use the bathroom now.

11. “We could never have a female president! Think about what she’d do when she’s on her period!”


Oh dear. If she can negotiate a ceasefire, negotiate a top sanction, help families that need healthcare, and stand up for LGBTQ+ rights, and be an all-around badass, is there anything she can’t do? Let’s be clear here for a second. You’ve got a male president who seems like he’s getting worse cramps than I ever had.


Next time you want to smear dirt on a politician, let’s move gender out of the equation. It’s 2017. We should be over the female anatomy already, geez.

12. “Tampons and period cups stretch you out too much down there, don’t use ’em.”

Vaginas are extremely elastic – capable of expanding 200% when sexually aroused, and even more so when giving birth. This means that it returns to its usual “tightness” no matter what goes in or out of it.  Tampons and menstrual cups are designed to fit comfortably in women’s bodies: menstrual cups are made of medically-approved silicone or TPE (thermoplastic elastomer) and fold during insertion, so they’ll expand as necessary once they’re under your cervix. Tampons are made of soft cotton, shaped into a cylinder – this is designed for easy insertion into (and up) the vaginal canal.

What’s most important is using what makes you most comfortable on your period.

13. “You should never use reusable pads while on your period, that’s gross.” 


Some people aren’t comfortable using tampons or menstrual cups and prefer alternatives that don’t require inserting anything. Other options include pads – but they can be costly or a hassle to maintain. Another alternative is reusable pads. Not only are they super comfortable and convenient, they’re  cost-effective and environmentally friendly, to boot.

Lunapads are reusable cotton pads that can be washed and used over and over again. I personally used the Performa Mini Pad for my most recent period, and it was so damn comfortable, I forgot I was even wearing it. The easy snap-on feature prevented it from slipping and sliding, and it wasn’t gross at all.

Lunapads are tried and true – so nobody should be knocking your choice of menstrual product.

14. “If you can’t even get your period, does that even make you a woman?”


No, you’re right, it probably doesn’t.

Because I forgot the right to my gender was in your hands, and you get to decide what I am and what I’m not. No, I totally don’t smell ignorance or misogyny or transphobia for that matter. Nope, nada, nothing to see here. Just your average idiotic individual who’s trying to explain to me the science of my own body, and who probably will call women going through menopause that they’re not women either.

Yup, every elder woman is secretly pretending to be a woman. She’s not REALLY a woman because I totally forgot that any proof of her bodily functions was lost when her period stopped.

Doesn’t make sense?

Go read that first sentence, and compare? *Grins with smugness*

15. “Don’t let anyone know you’re on your period this week.”


People like to pretend this isn’t something that roughly 50% of the world’s population has, is, or will go through at some point in their life. Why spare them the truth? I’m menstruating.

Boo! Secret’s out.