My kids are teenagers, and after listening to them fight over razors and finding those razors in the bathroom filled with pubic hair, I asked them all what the hell was going on.
They informed me that everyone shaves their pubic hair (don’t forget the taint) because pubic hair is gross.
“So, this is something you talk about with your friends?” I asked.
Apparently, yes. And according to them, having pubic hair is as dirty as eating your boogers.
I remember in my high school days, if a person with a penis had a foreskin, everyone knew about it even though there were no such things as dick pics and they didn’t spend their free time flashing everyone.
I’m not saying it was right — it was horrible actually — I’m just reminding us all of the way it was.
It sounds like that’s how it is now if you have pubic hair, which absolutely makes my blood boil. When a thirteen-year-old feels like they have to shave or wax their private parts bald because everyone else is doing it, it’s cause for concern.
I believe if you want hair there, you should have hair there without thinking you are a wild boar who doesn’t know how to take care of themselves. And if you like the way you look better when you are all sleek and trim, well that’s how you should style yourself.
It wasn’t until I divorced and got back into the dating world that I realized no one had pubic hair any longer. I heard it from the men I dated, and I heard it from my single girlfriends.
However, I kept my bush because it didn’t bother me, and I wanted to spend my time doing other things. If the men I was having sex with didn’t like it, I didn’t care — my body, my choice. I also hadn’t seen my naked vagina since I was about eleven and I didn’t really want to see how she’d aged.
Then something happened about a year ago: My landing strip started turning gray, and it really bothered me. After asking my mother about it, she said if I followed in her footsteps, it would all start falling out soon anyway. WTF.
So, I decided to fire my pubic hair before it quit me. I took my pink razor to it one morning in the shower while my deep conditioner was taming my frizzy locks.
I didn’t do this to fit in. I didn’t do it because my friends told me my orgasms would be more intense. (Well, not fully anyway, but that might have crossed my mind while lathering up my bearded clam.)
I did it because frankly, I didn’t want bald patches between my legs. There are enough things about my body I’m not in love with, so why add another to the list? Again, my body, my choice.
Anyway, my point is we need to normalize doing what we want with our pubic hair. Women shouldn’t be made to feel like they aren’t beautiful or clean because they don’t want to shave their lips and assholes.
As Sandhya Ganesh notes in Medium, body hair — just like every other thing about women’s looks — goes through style phases that have changed throughout the years. These days, “With the advent of easily available porn, where women expose body hair-free bodies, men were misguided into thinking this is the sign of beauty and sex appeal. Playboy magazines are also popular, displaying nude, hairless women promoting negative body image.”
Is this where our teens are getting the idea that shaving your pubic hair is a must? From porn? God, I hope not, but let’s be real — it probably is, and we need to fix it.
In listening to my kids talk, it seems to be highly associated with how you feel about, and how you take care of, yourself.
I’ve told them a few times that pubic hair should be just like everything else in your life: you don’t follow a crowd when it comes to this kind of hygiene. You do what you want with your private area, and it’s your business, and that needs to come before other people’s opinions of you. Even a sexual partner.
The idea that women have to get rid of all their hair and always walk around bare is old news. It’s 2020 and we should do what we want with our bodies and if someone doesn’t like it, they don’t have to, period. If your partner has an objection, maybe it’s time to remind them that there are other people out there who don’t mind a garden with a little more greenery.
The fact that our teenagers feel like they have to shave in order to be cool, or clean, or whatever, is just another sign we need to normalize pubic hair in the same way we need to normalize wearing whatever you want, or being proud of your size even if it falls outside the “conventionally attractive” norm.
We need to remind them, and ourselves, that just because “everyone else is doing it” is not a good enough reason.
We have to be happy with how we are treating our bodies. After all, we’re the ones who have to live in them. And whether we prefer a plush carpet, or a hardwood floor, is up to us.