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pulling out hair

For some reason I haven't been able to get something out of my head these last few days....

I attended a hen's party on the weekend for an old friend. I didn't know many of the other women in attendance. At some point there were discussions about children, childbirth, fertility and the like. One woman there was telling the story about how one of her kids was born a few weeks earlier than the due date. Even though this kid is like, 2 years old now I think, she recalled how she was mortified that she had "run out of time to get a wax"... So... she was saying that she was planning to get a brazilian wax prior to the birth... ok, so that was baffling enough to me personally... but this then spawned on a discussion about how awkward some women find it when they find their male obstetrician to be physically attractive and that this increases their self consciousness about the state of their pubic hair...

SERIOUSLY? 

I really could not believe what I was hearing. And yet I was sort of alone there for not agreeing that it would be important to keep your pubes a particular way, to look your best for a doctor who looks up vaginas for a living. I didn't want to shame anyone out for what they choose to do to their body, but I pointed out that I'm pretty sure the doctor isn't thinking about the appearance of the pubic region (and really, I'd be more worried if they were consciously taking particular note of their patients' grooming habits rather than focusing on getting the job done).

I don't know... Conversations like this make me despondent at the state of feminism these days. 

On the topic of hair removal in the vulva region... here's my take... I don't know the precise history of pubic hair grooming practices, but as far as I was aware, no one used to care about removing almost all of it, Brazilian style, as far as I could tell anyway... but I've noticed such a rise in popularity of this practice over the years. So it's just another fashion. And I mean, I get that we have control of our body. We can really groom ourselves and dress ourselves and follow fashions however we like... and still be a feminist. Maybe for some people it's just an aesthetic preference, in the same way that I might dye my (head) hair, shave my legs (occasionally), and wear a bit of makeup,  I just like the way that this looks on me. But still... I dunno... I really do struggle to see how a preference for waxing there is a genuine preference, given how bloody painful it is, and not influenced by social expectation or by wondering what a man would prefer... I guess the whole thing is... it's yet another beauty scam to shame women into feeling like something is wrong about their body and convincing them that you should fork out some money to get it all good again... and I know that happens in so many ways in society it's not funny... but it's just that to me, the idea of regularly paying quite good money to a stranger, to remove hair from your private parts, in a rather painful way, is a *particularly* absurd and brutal beauty scam I think... (although, when you think about it, a pretty impressive marketing ploy).. 

So, then add in to that the notion that someone really felt the need to do all this for their obstetrician at childbirth... and it just... boggles me to another level. 

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