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The Menstrual Cup: Part II

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“Last week’s column was the first of a two-part feature on the Diva Cup, where I outlined my reasons for switching from tampons to a menstrual cup. This week, I’ll be sharing my personal observations since making the switch two years ago.”

For my thoughts on the menstrual cup check out the original article in The Link! sexandpancakesweb_800_1782.jpg This article was originally published October 21st, 2013.

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The Menstrual Cup: Part I

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“I used to see and experience my period the same way I still see many women around me do: as an inconvenience, as waste, as something gross or unnatural that my body did. But this all started to change after a column I wrote two years ago.”

For my thoughts on the menstrual cup check out the original article in The Link! sexandpancakesweb_800_1782.jpg This article was originally published October 15th, 2013.

“Everyone Thinks Robin Thicke’s ‘Blurred Lines’ Is ‘Rapey'”

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And it is. It’s also degrading, chauvinistic, disgusting, and many other things…
This is an article that will likely upset you, but Buzzfeed breaks down the issues with Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” pretty damn well.

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I don’t even know what to say in response to this song and it’s video aside from that this is probably the most disgusting music video I’ve ever seen. I even feel a little uncomfortable sharing it and knowing someone may watch the video after reading the article because it’s just so awful.

I can’t believe this is even a thing, and even worse that Robin Thicke seems to think that being happily married with children somehow makes it okay to degrade women?

“We tried to do everything that was taboo. Bestiality, drug injections, and everything that is completely derogatory towards women. Because all three of us are happily married with children, we were like, “We’re the perfect guys to make fun of this.”

People say, “Hey, do you think this is degrading to women?” I’m like, “Of course it is. What a pleasure it is to degrade a woman. I’ve never gotten to do that before. I’ve always respected women.” So we just wanted to turn it over on its head and make people go, “Women and their bodies are beautiful. Men are always gonna want to follow them around.”“

I just threw up a little in my mouth.

A good friend said it best when she sent this buzzfeed article to me:
“I’m sad for humans.”

Centrefold: Labiaplasty and the women who get it

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How do you feel about your labia? In the animated short doc Centrefold, 3 women share their experiences and reasons for getting labiaplasty – a procedure to alter the labia minora and/or labia majora.

Many women grow up feeling shame when it comes to their genitals and anything associated with them (menstruation, masturbation, etc.) so it’s no surprise that labiaplasty exists and is growing in popularity.

Like with many elective surgeries it can be easy to dismiss labiaplasty as another way for people to change whatever they dislike about themselves, but as expressed in Centrefold, women have different reasons for desiring the surgery and they don’t all come down to wanting a “perfect” vagina. Some do have the procedure for cosmetic purposes, while others do it to relieve physical discomfort when their labia are naturally long and can make activities like sexual activity, exercise, and even wearing certain every day clothing painful. 

Whatever the reasons, Centrefold doesn’t aim to take a stance but rather to explore and help women make the decisions that are best and healthiest for them.

What do you think about labiaplasty? Is there a “right” or “wrong” reason to have the procedure?

Centrefold from Ellie Land on Vimeo.

via Centrefold on Vimeo.

Academic Men Explain Things to Me

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I recently came across this tumblr “Academic Men Explain Things to me,” a collection of women’s stories of times they were mansplained.

According to the tumblr “mansplaining doesn’t mean explaining while male; it means explaining while assuming you know more because you’re male.” An article from The Atlantic called “A cultural history of mansplaining” also describes it as “explaining without regard to the fact that the explainee knows more than the explainer, often done by a man to a woman.”

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What I especially like about this tumblr is that it encourages women to share their experiences of times they felt someone mansplained them, putting emphasis on personal lived experiences:

“this site does not exist to determine what counts as mansplaining but rather to give women a forum to recount their experiences. Rather than trying to predetermine the line between sexism in general and mansplaining in particular, we prefer to include the range of posts we receive and let readers consider the demarcations themselves. ”

Awesome.

There are some ridiculous stories posted by women about experiences in all kinds of life situations, including my personal favourite in which two men try to explain to two women how tampons work and get it completely wrong.

Have you ever mansplained someone or had it done to you? Sometimes it’s easier and more effective to call someone out on it when they’re not doing it to you so start paying attention and trying to acknowledge if you see it happening.

Be sure to also check out Rebecca Solnit’s essay “Men Explain things to me” for more information on mansplaining!

Disney’s “The Story of Menstruation” Video

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I’m a sucker for old sexual education videos so of course I would love this one from the 40s created by Disney and Kotex to explain menstruation to young girls. The really great – meaning sexist, dated but still hilarious – theories about menstruation start around 4:58. I  like how it’s now okay to shower as long as the water isn’t too hot or too cold.

I found this video through a post on Thought Catalog where Ted Pillow talks about why the video makes him feel weird while trying not to be what he calls “a stereotypical male regarding menstruation.” I think he does a good job so check it out too!