5 Myths About Your Vagina You Won’t Believe

People have been talking about vaginas, yours and mine, for thousands of years. Word on the street, they’re not so good. Embracing, loving, and caring for your vagina is a relatively new idea only brought on by decades of women’s rights movements. One of the ways that society kept sexism firmly in place was by stigmatizing the vagina. Oh, and it went far beyond the belief that they “smell bad” or are “yucky”. Vaginas, for many centuries, were considered the source of women’s psychological woes and malicious behavior, a sign that we were punished by God, and used as a tool to justify rape.

These are all horrible ways to think about women and female anatomy. Although we should look at these myths as a reminder of how far we’ve come in the United States and how we think about women. Just think of how alienating it would be to be a woman living in a different time or even a different nation today. Appreciate your feminist foremothers and the women who paved the way for us today!

Vagina Dentata

There are many South American legends about “vagina dentata” or vaginas with teeth in them. Of course, this is completely untrue. These stories were told to demonize the female anatomy and were used as metaphors to worn men of “seductresses” and “promiscuous women.” I know, *eyeroll*.

Period Is Punishment

During medieval times it was believed that a woman’s period was a punishment from God for Eve’s original sin. It was also believed that if you were to have sex with a woman on her period, it would kill the semen or create deformed children if she got pregnant. Yay for science, right?!

Female Hysteria

Until the 20th century “female hysteria” was considered a legitimate medical condition found in “sexually deprived” women like virgins, nuns, spinsters, and widows. Although it was actually just a way to oppress women by citing their vaginas as a source of psychological disease. A common treatment for hysteria were “pelvic massages” conducted by physicians. Doctors would blast water or use vibrating machines causing the “hysterical woman” to orgasm. If you ever wonder why vibrators were invented, there you go. The truth behind hysteria was that women were often deeply unhappy because they were repressed in society. Eventually, hysteria was determined to be a conversion disorder, which is when the emotional difficulties of someone’s life manifests itself physically in the form of blindness, numbness, paralysis or fits. Basically, any woman who became inexplicably ill was diagnosed as hysterical.

You Can’t Get Pregnant If It’s Legitimate Rape

Although conservative politician Todd Akin’s recent statements make him a supreme douchebag, he didn’t come up with the notion that if a woman is “legitimately raped” she cannot get pregnant. This idea dates back to 13th century Britain, where legal documents stated, “If, however, the woman should have conceived at the time alleged in the appeal, it abates, for without a woman’s consent she could not conceive.” For centuries it was believed that if a woman orgasmed then it meant she gave consent and that when she was raped her body would release chemicals that would prevent her from becoming pregnant.

Sex With A Virgin Can Cure HIV/AIDS

This has been a longstanding myth in Zimbabwe, and one that continues to be fought by various organizations until today. It is believed by many misguided folks, that sleeping with a virgin girl can cleanse the blood of the infected person and cure their disease. Of course there is no scientific or factual basis to this. There is no such thing as virgin vagina with healing powers. It’s just a clear lack of education, lack of human rights for women, and idolization of virgins at play here.

What are some vagina myths that you’ve heard? Let us know in the comments!

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  • CerebralComa

    I’m surprised the hymen wasn’t in here as well, because it is also a myth. Here is a quote from my favourite sex education site:
    “The hymen as we think of it isn’t real. Most people’s hymens are just a mucus membrane that surrounds their vaginal opening. It doesn’t break or tare during penetration. For the most part virginity is a social construct and your vagina in no way changes after penetration. Gynecologists can’t even tell if you’ve had sex or not, unless you’re one of the few people whose hymens do stretch over the entire vagina or most of it. In these cases the hymen can cause problems and might need to be removed by a doctor.

    The whole “blood and pain” thing you’ve been told about sex usually is because there wasn’t enough foreplay or lubrication involved in sex. Your first time shouldn’t hurt. Sex and penetration shouldn’t hurt. If it does, there’s something wrong.”

    • enlightenedgurl

      I totally agree. If you are properly lubricated and aroused and really really moist before penetration then FIRST time sex shouldnt hurt. Of course you will feel a bit of stretching. What guys do and want is to penetrate to achieve their sexual satisfaction, without fully attending to the girls needs or making sure she is totally aroused, really really wet and lubricated, horny as hell almost to the point of losing all control and having an orgasm. Once that is ensured then there is NO PAIN. Girls have this misconception that first time sex will hurt. Yes it will, if the guy is inexperienced and doesnt know what to do and is only satisfied with his own sexual needs ie “to ejaculate into an orifice” Thank heavens my first time was with a guy who was mature, experienced and way older than me, I mean way way older. I was 13ish and I knew nothing except of course the pleasures associated with masturbation which of course like all girls I denied when he asked me. My first experiences were mind blowing. I wondered what all the fuss was about ‘first times’. To me, this was a delightful experience to be enjoyed not to be scared of. LOL. And, with an older guy too. Why was everyone making them sound so evil. It didnt make any sense. That was the most confusing part. He was gorgeous, a real man and very grounded and sweet. I loved every bit of those moments I was intimate with him.

      • Ariana

        i TOTALLY agree. older boys (like 16-18) are so maturee and the experienced ones are sweet and patient. love it.

  • Jessica

    I had heard of a myth about if you do inverted poses (like the downward dog pose in yoga) while having your period could cause your vagina to drop.

  • pinkheart

    I didnt know some of that information. Vagina with teeth and why vibrators were invented are my favorite. I am sure thee are other misconceptions about or vaginas just like their are about dicks.

  • Lisa

    In South Africa most of the rapes or harassment in poor, uneducated areas are because the men are HIV + and still believe a virgin can cure this. Also, OUR PRESIDENT said they you can cure HIV by taking… a shower. And the whole country wonders why our HIV rates are so high.

    • Dejah

      I’m sorry the one about our president saying that you can cure HIV by taking a shower is completely and utterly UNTRUE. I can’t believe someone would actually believe that. Unless you live in South Africa and we are talking about the president of South Africa whereas I’m talking about the president of the United States, BUT which ever president we’re talking about I don’t think either of them said that.

      Some rumors are not true. Actually, I think 8 of 10 percent of rumors are not true, but who knows that’s just a rumor 🙂

      • patricia

        the rumor of the south African president was true my mom is from there and she said yeah its true and there are tale about it when i am from. and everyone is different and that what make everyone believe different things. so be less judging cause when i am from you wouldn’t believe half the things i would tell you. everyone has there own beliefs. like how in america you guys don’t believe in arranged marriage but we do sometime where i am from if the guy is arranged to marry you and you cant have kids he is arranged to marry again so he has 2 wife’s some time if he want he can marry 5 girls depends on the tribe or where your from. i was raised in many parts of Africa i maybe 18 but i been arranged to go different place because of many reason but where i was born the believed that if you had sex with a girl before she was arranged to marry that you both would get sick and die or one was that if you has sex with someone other then the one you were arranged to marry you would never be able to get pregnant
        also there is a myth that my mom always to me about my fathers tribe and that was that if you got pregnant the same time the cows did that you were going to have a demon baby or that you will die giving birth.
        ppl believe anything and its just life you would believe the crazy things if that how you were raised or the tales from where you live by your tribe or mother and father

        • Candypie28

          dis is so tru and its so sad *sigh*