Sunday, June 19, 2011

Virginity

Talli Rosenbaum sent me an awesome booklet that dispels all sorts of myths on virginity. It also has clear diagrams. It's really great.

You can download the English version here (just scroll down). I think everyone should read it.

The packet begins with the following words:
    Known by the established term "hymen," the vaginal corona is the subject of many myths and misunderstandings. The most important of these is the notion that a woman's vaginal opening is covered by a membrane that ruptures on penetration. This is incorrect. There is no such membrane. RFSU wishes to dispel the myths and promote knowledge of the true facts. In this booklet, we aim to give you a more accurate idea of what you will find just inside the vaginal opening of every woman.
If a whole packet has to be written to dispel these myths, I am far from being the only person who thought them. Other myths include the idea that you shouldn't ride a bike or a horse because that might "break the hymen"- per this packet, untrue, because "the vaginal corona isn't a brittle membrane, physical exercise doesn't affect it."

2 comments:

plonit said...

When I first started research about sex, I ran into a lot of interesting ways different cultures display virginity. For example, the white wedding dress indicates purity, which is why many Christian women don't wear white if they get married a second time. One of the oddest was a culture (I forget where, I think Eastern Europe) where the new wife would hang the couple's just-used bedsheets out on the clothesline the morning after the wedding. It was assumed that if the woman was a virgin, there would be a bloodstain, because *obviously* simply *everyone* bleeds when their hymen is "broken". Many women would simply stain the sheets afterward with animal blood because they did not want to be thought to have been 'impure'. So yeah, there are tons of misconceptions about the hymen and virginity. I got confused the first time because in the diagrams in many books, they draw lines or arrows to indicate the location of the organ, and they only use one line, which points to only one point on the vaginal corona. This gives the impression that it is a specific piece of skin as opposed to the entire vaginal corona (which is officially my favorite phrase today <3).

Commenter Abbi said...

Actually, a stained sheet was once part of some Jewish wedding rituals as well. Remember in Yentl after the wedding between Yentl and the daughter? They are both very drunk and she pours wine on the sheets while giggling and distracting her, to avoid actual sex.