From the Motherland March 17, 2011Posted by FCM in feminisms, health, international, news you can use, PIV, trans.
Tags: oral sex, PIV, STDs
i visited my mother recently, and since i havent finished reading “right wing women” yet…i thought i would report on my visit instead. although i have to say that RWW is really freaking relevant. to everything. including my visit with my mother. for example…i just finished reading the part about elderly women, and what becomes of them (us) when they are no longer functional (to men, obvs) as wives, caretakers, impregnable persons, or fucktoys. my mother isnt elderly (yet) but her list of “useful female functions under the P” is getting pretty damn short.
anyway, i have written about my mother before, and she is no feminist. that of course hasnt changed, but interestingly, her perception of my feminism seems to have changed, alot. in actuality, my feminism has changed drastically over the last 2 years to include the righteous radicalism i spew out here approximately every 7 days…and we were actually able to find some common ground and talk about “my feminism”, for the first time, ever. the last time we tried was over dinner in college, and i told her in the middle of the discussion that if it werent fucking dark out, i would get up and walk home alone right now, i was so aggravated. i dont even remember what we were discussing exactly, but i remember telling her to read a fucking book, and that it wasnt my job to teach her everything i had learned in the last 4 years of college, right here, over dinner.
did i mention i was a gender studies major? BAHAHAHAHA! YES! i was! BUT it wasnt THAT BAD back then, i swear it wasnt. this trans-business wasnt nearly as prom-ulent back then, and i took many of my classes when the program was still known as “womens studies.” whatever they were teaching me though, (and i am seriously wondering about that at the moment) it made no damn sense to my mom, at all. for her part, she made very cruel fun of my favorite empowerfulized music, saying that it reminded her of “smelly cat” from friends. come on, mom, thats low. especially considering that SHE listened to fucking yani and john tesh! she just couldnt leave it alone. but i digress.
so while i was visiting her this past week, i told her about this blogging stuff, (she wanted to know what ive been up to, HA!) and being there a week, i couldnt just offer generalizations. a week is a damn long time to not have a real conversation with someone you care about, about a topic that actually matters. so i got specific. i told her about the PIV-criticism thats made its way under the doors and into most of the corners of the feminist blogosphere this past year…and she wasnt confused by this, at all. she didnt fight with me about it, at all. she asked a few questions about it, and i told her what i thought, and what radical feminists have been saying about it since pre-WWI.
and you know what she said? she said she took PIV off the table recently too, because of post-menopausal vaginal atrophy that made PIV painful. (so much for my offering “to discuss PIV again after menopause.” sorry, nigel!)
she also told me, and this is the first i was hearing about it, that she had told her husband a couple of years ago that she didnt want him touching her genitally with his fingers or his mouth either, because she had become prone to urinary tract infections post-menopause, and “your fingers and mouth have way more germs than your dick.” ABSOLUTELY! (oh, and besides being post-menopausal and UTI-prone, my moms a nurse). then, she told me that she was struck by my pregnancy-fear, when UTIs and other infections are so prominent, and are even more easily caused by digital and/or oral genital contact than by PIV. she remarked that in the midst of all this PIV-criticism, that UTIs and other side effects of genital contact seem to be just swept under the rug like they are nothing. indeed.
so after we had been discussing this stuff on and off for a few days, she eventually asked me, in all seriousness, what the hell was wrong with men that they want to constantly stick their dicks into women, even when the women arent clean. especially women in other countries, where cleanliness isnt prized. (okay did i mention my moms not a feminist? shes not.) she asked me, in all seriousness, what the hell this was about: why men HAVE TO stick their dicks into WOMEN, SPECIFICALLY. why THAT was so much better than the men just “taking care of it themselves.” when i told her that PIV can be read as an act of domination and aggression, because it causes pregnancy and disease, she got it. immediately. when i said that pregnancy can kill you, especially in “underdeveloped” countries, and that therefore PIV could actually be read as an act of murderous violence, especially there, where “cleanliness isnt prized” (or western-style “cleanliness” isnt available, and medical care isnt either) the penny dropped. she knew this was true, and that it was self-evident, at that.
she also remarked, upon hearing about the trans-stuff, that she doesnt want men in womens restrooms either.
so…believe it or dont, this was a lot of information and sex-talk to take, from my mother, in a weeks time. and…its got me thinking.
the first thing is that some things *are* just fucking self-evident. and it doesnt take a feminist to see it, either. womens experiences are so universal, because we are surviving as women under global or near-global patriarchy, that what we know as “radical feminist” observations are simply womens reality. it has another name, because “reality” is mens reality, and doesnt include what women know, and what we have learned about all of this. “feminism” only has a name in the first fucking place, because women are so marginalized. i mean really. it couldnt be more obvious.
another thing is this: i initially offered to “do other things” with nigel when i took PIV off the table, but the truth of it is that i am prone to UTIs myself. i used to get them with some frequency, or feel like i was getting them, and have to “get right on” some home-remedy with a quickness, usually with some atheist-praying thrown in. now that we are having no genital contact at all, i have not had even a hint of one. not a twitch, not a tingle. nothing. no yeast infections either. not a fucking one. i feel…great. its kinda weird.
i will just note for the record though, that i wouldnt say that “infections” of any kind are female-specific harms…even though women are actually more prone to both STDs and UTIs due to our female plumbing. they arent female-specific harms because men get infections tooooo!!11!!1! thats how serious i am about the female-specific harm of PIV, (unwanted pregnancy) actually BEING female-specific. it is. and even though my mom makes an excellent point about genital contact and infections generally, thats probably better placed in the “news you can use” category than the PIV category. it might not even be particularly feminist. not sure about that yet. thats one.
another thing i will note is that because PIV always fucking follows “other stuff too!!11!11” the effect of PIV is to drive ALL bacteria, including hand-and-mouth bacteria even further up the urethra than it would normally go, if it were “merely” digital or oral contact, without all the thrusting. so… genital-contact-having lesbians* are still safer, assuming they arent using strap-ons (or even mildly dirty strap-ons, which would approximate average naturally-occuring dick-germs) along with their other stuff too, even when it comes to UTIs. “other stuff” for lesbians, meaning, sex. obviously!
that is all.
* i would throw in a hat-tip to the genital-contact-having PIV-abstinent het couples out there too…if i actually believed there were any.