The world’s double standards are never as profound as it is when it comes to gender disparity. The issue is not merely related to the macro-level discussions like the wage gap, security, and crime, but it also plays out at the micro-scale when it comes to the differences between bodily functions as well.
Men are always more comfortable in their bodies as society allows them much more freedom when it comes to how they move about. Whether it be things like spitting or repulsive fart jokes, there is a more forgiving atmosphere about things pertaining to bodily functions of men.
However, all hell breaks loose when it comes to the female body. Everything is supposed to be a secret, all the natural bodily functions that were hilarious when it came to men, are now to be a source of shame. As a result, women get embarrassed about even the most natural things about their body. This has a grave impact on their wellbeing then. Some common problems that women are made to feel embarrassed about include:
Periods are natural
All rational thinking fails when women are made to feel embarrassed about having periods. They have to hide it like some cardinal sin. So much so, some women might not even visit their gynecologist in Lahore for help because of the shame associated with periods.
There are other spheres as well in which period shame accompanies women. Shopping for the period paraphernalia is considered super embarrassing, and something that needs to be done with utmost secrecy.
Since PMS is often ridiculed and used in derogatory terms, women have to then battle their period symptoms with a brave face at work, or otherwise, they have to hear insensitive jabs. It also means that they have to stop listening to their body, pretend the period cramps are non-existent and soldier on.
Body hair are natural
Body hair is not exclusive to women, but the shame that is associated with them certainly is. Even celebrities who have tried to embrace them have been met with extreme critique; Madonna’s armpit hair are disgusting but what about Liam Hemsworth’s?
It is high time the society realizes that women don’t commission their hair follicles to grow hair, they are only natural. The struggle to remove them is not only costly, but it takes a lot of time, energy and not to mention the pain associated with certain ways.
Whether you like to keep body hair or not is your own prerogative, but women should not be shamed for having them!
Body odor is natural
Sweat doesn’t bother most men, in fact, it is often romanticized, whereas even the slightest appearance of sweat patch is supposed to throw women into a frenzy.
Why is sweat considered musk in men, and shame in women, when it is serving same purpose in both, and smells in either case? Both should invest in a deodorant!
Vaginal odor is natural
The shame that women are made to feel about the natural odor of their genitals can only be hailed as callous. Since having talks about their genital health is a taboo, and it doesn’t matter if men make jokes about theirs, they cannot even have healthy discussions about what their nether regions should smell like.
To add on to the shame is the corporate greed; many companies claim to make products that clean your genitals and gives it a fresh scent, as if it was dirty and stinky before.
Notwithstanding the obvious issues with the premise of putting women through shame about natural odor, the use of these products also has consequences for their health.
Vaginas are hailed as self-cleaning ovens. There is a fine balance of flora in the genitals, upsetting which with use of so-called hygiene products can lead to serious issues like allergies and UTIs that then merit the intervention of the best gynecologist in Karachi.