Menstrual Mayhem

…Because menstruation HAPPENS!
” While I’ve never felt ashamed to mention my period, or to whine and mope around in front of anyone, I am often surprised to receive more empathy and care from the bastards who weren’t born with a baby making machine, compared to those who do bleed regularly…”

Alternative Thoughts

10957990_10155178593180182_585274568_nThere is a subject that I often ponder discussing, usually around the end of each month.

While a particular friend of mine repeatedly encourages me to  go all out on the oh so (somehow) controversially taboo topic, I have remained reluctant.

It wasn’t until I was reading the legendary Lena Dunham’s ‘Not That Kind of Girl’ book, that I identified exactly what was holding me back.

The title of the book encapsulates my struggle perfectly- I could not fathom the thought of y’all perceiving me as typical female who dramatically complains about the agony that is: menstruation.

But guess what?? I am a girl. I am often dramatic. Once a month I lay an egg and it’s the fucking pits. I HATE EVERY SECOND OF IT.

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EVERY single part of the stereotype I fulfil, from the moody weeks before Aunt Flow arrives, involving hot sweats, irrational outbursts…

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Embrace the Crazy

Source: Are all women crazy?

“Admitting that there’s some level of ‘crazy’ in us isn’t a defamation of femininity or slander against women. I’m not denouncing feminism or suggesting that we pander to stereotypes. It’s just a tiny truth about being a woman…”

Winter Whining (By A White Gal)

Oh holidays.. such a dreamy period full of opportunity, experiences, travel and fun…. well thats the idealistic version I diluted myself with to get through every dry, tedious lecture, assignment and exam prep.

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The reality for the brain fried, lazy and every so stereotypical uni student that i am (particularly in winter) is slightly closer to unhealthy Netflix binges, pizza and alcohol consumption along with as much sleep as I can manage amongst shit-ly scheduled shifts.

Sometimes I surprise myself however, like last Thursday when I treated myself to a massage, intended to relieve the study induced tension that has NOTHING to do with Orange Is The New Black.

Having assessed the fat knots framing my neck, I knew a bita’ Chinese acupressure (with a side of back straddling) was in order.

When I called, I was excited to hear the owners voice; that woman does things to my ass that no physio has ever achieved. The relief and sensation is something else, and I intended to lay down and take it all in.

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Just as I was settling in however, a gross creep barged into the salon, interrupting my appointment to ask how many girls worked at ‘Nihow’, how old they are and whether or not he can receive a happy ending at 3pm on a Thursday arvo in my little civilised neighbourhood.

Not only did this fuel a rage in my feminist veins, it led to a heavy discussion on race, politics, education and of course money, which resulted in a few leg kicks and excessive arm waving (GOODBYE ZEN).

I was learning a lot, mostly about men and the typical behaviours found at varying salons across the metropolitan area. (A wine or 10 was defs required to process that shit). It wasn’t until my dear masseuse decided to intercept my opinion with a solution however, that led to my… well… annoyance.

” You know, you should go to China. You would love.”

-Of course I asked what this had to do with perverted men-

“Lots of fun, good shopping, you know, good economy, find nice husband.”

Then I realised- this woman was just being patriotic. She had built a bond and felt the need to entice me into her mother country, you know- while I was naked and hot headed, covered in vegetable oil while she whispered to her employees peeping through the door.

I then remembered that I am off to Bali in a few weeks, and took a deep inhale. I pictured myself laying by the pool, coconut in hand, soaking up the rays as I take in the un-interrupted ocean view.

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Oh wait~ except for the line of beach workers shoving sarongs in my face, begging me to look, and buy, and look, and buy.

“You! black hair, you look Indonesian! very pretty! come look, come look.”

Yes, it’s cute. More so, it’s a bloody tough gig, (from a privileged white girls point of view). They are just trying to survive, and the sarongs are ever so pretty. i don’t wanna hate, or ignore. I want to show acknowledgement and respect, and I always do.

But after that, I want to be left alone. I don’t want to hassled every time turn my head in the wrong direction, or walk along the beach.

And here we have it: the clash of the worlds. The white power guilt and ethical dilemmas.

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While I admire the owner of the massage parlour, I did not enjoy receiving a photo album of Beijing post massage.

This led me to reflect on a doco I watched recently about an American girl who had been adopted from Vietnam.

Having felt a void in her adopted family, the lady went to a lengthy effort to track down her biological relatives. As I watched with enthusiasm and emotion as the woman arrived at the airport, it was so nice to see the love and connection experienced as she embraced her mumma and papa.

It was then so disheartening to watch her face change as her brother sat her down to request financial support. Being from the west, the family had assumed the girl was in the position to support the family, as is tradition in their culture anyway.

The cultural clash had struck again, and it’s no ones fault!

I’ve always believed that humans can connect and relate on many levels, from all corners of the globe. If there was one thing that divides, it is of course- the mighty dollar bills.

One day I plan to use my ‘power’ to make differences, to be honest I already do, weekly. However, sometimes all a gal needs is a good mojito in the sun to re-boot, guilt and creep free!

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Boy- Blaming is as Stupid as Kale ‘Chips’!

After spending extensive time with man haters lately I felt this was fitting!!

Alternative Thoughts

I was not born politically correct. As hard as my parents, friends parents and teachers tried, I failed to accept the status quo, instead asking a shit-load of WHY questions (and swearing a lot). Rules are not my friend, nor are institutions or religions that demand we act and think in a particular way (particularly when used to justify disgusting behaviour).

Because we don’t really know how we will respond to a situation until we experience it first hand, I like to let the present moment determine what the hell I do.

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I am quite a conflicted cookie in my views, and while I aspire to be a special petal whose views are NEVER racist, sexist or discriminatory, selfish or materialistic,  I am a sinful sista who isn’t necessarily seeking forgiveness. Being a perfect person can be hard, defining ‘perfect’ is even harder.

On my days off spent down-ward dogging &…

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Whips, Dicks and Doctors

Fifty shades of fucking grey. Who knew a film about sex, whips, power imbalances and emotional instability could cause such a fiery debate and controversy in 2015? While some of us were underwhelmed, it seems others were deeply angered and disgusted by the apparent abusive nature of Christian and Anastasia’s ‘interactions’.

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I don’t really feel like adding another review to the exhausted list, but I do want to explore to reasons why my gal pal and I experienced a sense of appreciation for our viewing experience a few Tuesdays ago.

I can’t help but question why the construction of Mr Grey: A sexy man with the emotional intelligence of a gold-fish; a damaging/ abusive childhood and a resulting host of insecurities with women, sex and control, was so disturbing to many.

While the mans inability to court Miss Steele in the traditional way (as promised by Hollywood romcoms) was clearly lacking, he tried his best to be the guy he believed the girl he loved, deserved.

Yes it was fucked up. I could never see myself settling for a contract involving but plugs and separate bedrooms, but I wouldn’t say no to a helicopter chaperone or new computer. The wine also looked delicious.

My point however, is that being the complicated creatures that we are, with our perceptions and relationship styles so heavily imbedded in our experiences and interactions; a little bit of dysfunction, (sometimes a lot) is healthy and natural. Why? because it’s real– it means we are being ourselves.

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I liked the authenticity. I also appreciated the vulnerability shown by Anastasia, particularly as a virgin. The fact that the consenting intercourse was deemed as violent I thought was uncalled for, however regardless of our positions, the fact that FSOG sparked debate over the topic of sexual/domestic abuse is bloody grand.

In Australia, one women dies weekly at the hands of a past or present partner. From 2002 – 2012, more women were killed by DM in America that everyone killed in 9/11, Afghanistan and Iraq. This shit is horrific and real and needs to be addressed for so many reasons on different levels, including the shame victims feel.

It’s the kind of shame and inferiority that should not, but definitely does exist (on a not so illegal level) in many different forums where dominant and submissive roles are defs present.

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Power is used and abused in politics (dah) the class room (why can’t we call teachers by their first names?) and by doctors and specialists allll of the time, as experienced by many friends, and myself.

From the time my age deemed me capable of making a baby I have been invasively quizzed; with a shit load of unnecessary judgement and intimidation.

Those who know me well are aware that I’m a rather confident person, and I am not easily affected by other people’s positions. [Peas do get degrees after all!]

However I dread visiting doctors and their surgery and here’s why;

[Problem: Anything shitty]

Doctor: “Isabelle?” (my name is IsabellA. A . AAAAAA)

“Come through.” (turn their back, march in front of me, then guides me to their clinical, smelly, fluorescent white room featuring awkward dusty family photos I don’t care about).

Doctor: (without making eye contact, directs me to take a seat while they search my private file).

“Lets have a look here. When was your last pap smear Isabelle? I see here that you’ve been prescribed __ form of contraception. Are you still using that?

Me: “Nope.”

Doctor: (swiftly swivels to stare at me as though I’ve told them I am half dog.) Have you had un- protected sex? If so are you in a loving relationship? (WHY AREN’T YOU MARRIED YOU SLUT?)

Me: “Umm…”

Doctor: (provides a seriously un comforting and disapproving raised eye brow glance and waits for me to guide myself to some idealistic solution to my unruly ways).

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Doctor: “So what can I help you with today?”

Me: “well I have been feeling……..”

Doctor: “Mmm, I think you’re probably stressed and it is viral. It will go away with a lot of paracetamol.

Me: “I am allergic to that.”

Doctor: “How do you know that? I can’t find the evidence.”

Me: “Mate, I’m 23, I think I know my body by now” (said in a submissive, naughty school kid manner).

Doctor: “You need to get tested for every type of sexually contracted disease and take better responsibility of your life. Bye.” (said in a professional manner).

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11015839_10155311594580182_1632157548_nREGARDLESS of the reasons for my visit I seem to have similar experiences, no matter what surgery, no matter the age, gender or ‘niceness’ of the GP.

And it seems I’m not alone. One my good friends is a very knowledgable nurse in a committed relationship with a man she lives with. She often leaves the docs feeling humiliated and belittled, she recent left her usual doc crying.

There seems to be a major power imbalance that I can’t help associate with my given genitalia.

While I am yet to hear of similar experiences from males, I’m sure there are some negatives ones had- my own father refuses to visit the GP after all.

However, considering it is International Women’s Day today, I would like to acknowledge the power imbalance and sexism we (ladies) experience all the time.

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As much as we try to avoid the uncomfy, gross environments or men who feel permitted to touch our bodies when it’s not wanted; provide unwanted comments about our bodies (including gross wolf whistles and tooting), and be bigger than sexism, it’s still alive and kicking.

The gender pay gap its an absolute insult and needs to CHANGE. Women everywhere on this planet, regardless of what we wear, say, do or do not do, deserve to be respected and not objectified. unless we ask OR FULLY CONSENT to sex, we are NOT PERMITTED TO ENGAGE IN IT.

So, hears to my irrational, hormonal, dramatic, moody, needy, dependent, demanding, slutty, whiny, frigid, crazy, smart, caring, loving, giving, independent bitches everywhere– lets fight this shit like the warriors we are. NO ONE knows better than we do- in relation to our bodies, our intuition and our value.

That’s enough preaching for one day. I’m over this power shit. If we want chains and whips, then SnM we will do! and if we don’t, then that’s A-OK too.

Happy Sunday!

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5 Sexy Talks Worth Watching

In the spirit of valentines day… a look at how and why the porn industry needs a makeover. watch the talks!

TED Blog

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You might not think TED has anything to do with Fifty Shades of Grey. We didn’t either. Until we woke up this morning to find ourselves called out in The New Yorker’s scathing review of the movie: “You get dirtier talk in most action movies, and more genitalia in a TED talk on Renaissance sculpture.”

So just for fun, we thought we’d see how racy our talks can get. And it turns out, VERY.

Here, our favorite TED and TEDx Talks with more frank talk than the watered-down movie version of Fifty Shades of Grey:

1. What we didn’t know about penis anatomy. A scientist explains how guys get it up — biologically speaking. It’s graphic enough to make you blush, and you’ll hear two words that should never go together: penis and cross-section.

2. The birds and the bees are just the beginning. A parade…

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A Lumpy Liberation

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Breaking News Ya’ll! A lady and her lumps have graced news headlines once more, encouraging us to celebrate as if we have found a cure for cancer, and gawk over the plus sized achievement.

As suggested by previous posts, my position on the body image campaign aint’ exactly a secret.

However, while Sports Illustrated’s decision did encourage a carb-athon ,and the healthy cover girl is indeed a positive movement, I can not help but feel cynical.

I mean… REALLY? it is 2015 and we (an educated, liberated, open-minded western civilisation, apparently) are celebrating a shift from underweight, extremely hungry representations of femininity as if scientists have discovered a new gender…

HOW IS THIS EVEN A THING?

As highlighted in the clip below, it is not our body shapes that have changed over time, it’s societies ideal image of the female figure (cheers). Having spent a long summer beaching, the wonderfully wide spectrum on which our body shapes vary is as obvious and present as ever, thankfully.

 

While the rig- rating panels will probably always exist, on personal and global levels, it seems as though there is a tug of war going on.

In a nutshell; curvy ladies are skinny shaming, and many plus size women are being slammed for being ‘bigger’ and ‘larger’ than the #norm.

It is not wonder then, that the issue of [Women’s] liberation, is rather confusing.

The age old question of whether women do certain things like breathe, dress [or pose semi naked on the cover of Sports Illustrated] for themselves or men, arose while I was wrapped around a pole and humping walls on Friday night.

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One of my gal pals decided to dive through our feminist layers and release our inner sexual beasts for her birthday, and I of course I am not one to refuse such an invite!

After wrapping our minds and arses around the basic sequences, it was easy to see just how much full body strength is required to perform on a pole, and also how achievable and liberating it can be!

As we crawled around slapping each others bums and coordinated our moves to Chicago, the hysterical laughter expressed just how much feather bower fun we were having, as we focused on nothing other than ourselves for the hour.

It was not until the lap dancing lesson (two champas & hours in) that I started to question whether or not I felt liberated or objectified.

Using chairs as props, we were encouraged to visualise our lovers seated with their legs opened after we had opened and straddled them (LOL).

As I tried to execute the moves while watching my friends in all their glory, I was also debating whether I felt empowered or as if I was being trained to entertain the Hugh Heifer’s of the world.

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When the Sports Illustrated news broke, I couldn’t help but notice the mixed commentary offered by random men and women who seemed to hold very strong opinions on the models body. This just communicated more over, how warped, conflicted and damaged our societies attitudes towards #body image; #empowerment/ #liberation, #sexism and #feminism are.

(WATCH IT!)

I would like to finish with a TED talk from an incredibly inspiring AUSTRALIAN woman who was a victim of her mother’s interpretation of femininity, empowerment and human rights. While female genital mutation is on another level of seriousness than verbal/ written objectification and bullying, all of these issues allude to a gap.

There seems to be a river dividing the western idealistic equal gendered, fully liberated, non judgemental and non sexist island many of us intend to live on, and the troubled reality we are currently swimming in.

I propose that we build some poles and swing along to the other side… Maybe then we will freely embrace our animal instincts, no matter our size!

Happy Wednesday !