I didn’t like the Vagina Monologues. I sat through it, crunching polos and squirming in embarrassment. My vagina is not a flower. My vagina is not a raging tornado of lust and longing. Just like my knee, my vagina is a functional part of my perfectly OK body.
My vagina does not need special treatment. And it certainly does not need special punishment. There is no other part of the human body as mistreated, misrepresented and misused as the vagina. My vagina does not need to be painfully and expensively waxed. Like the hair on my head, it is nice if my pubic hair does not trail inconveniently along the floor. Like my hands, it is practical for my vagina to be regularly washed. My vagina does not need to smell ‘fresh’.
I don’t even know what ‘fresh’ smells like, but I’m pretty sure I do not want any Persil-like whiffs emanating from my vagina. Or any other part of my body, for that matter. I take great care to keep any packaged ‘mountain or floral fragrances’ as far away from me as possible. I am not Heidi. How I smell naturally, after I have hurled myself into the shower and thrown some soap over my bits, is perfectly fine. I do not need to mask, disguise, ‘freshen’ or deodorise myself throughout the day. I am a perfectly normal human being. I do not need to smell like a synthetic mix of ‘feminine fragrances’. I do not need an ‘intimate wipe’. Femfresh have released a ‘handy handbag sized pack’ of feminine freshness wipes. I imagine this must taste and smell like a more sickly version of giving head to a Lynx sprayed penis.
My vagina does not need to be artificially coloured, inside or out. (No, really. There are special vagina ‘hair dyes’ and the kind folks at Pink Button have created a ‘genital cosmetic colourant’). You know, just in case your vagina suffers from the fate of looking like a vagina.
My vagina is not a frightening and mysterious appendage to the rest of my pleasant and comfortable body. It does not, for instance, need ‘staycool’ underwear. It is not a foreign, dangerous place. It does not have its own climate. My vagina is a perfectly unremarkable, healthy part of my unremarkable, healthy body. And, apart from the time I welcome visitors, I would very much like you to leave my vagina alone.
- Lucy Karsten