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Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:29 pm UTC
by Enuja
I saw a link on facebook to a new, gender-neurtral menstruation app. Since people have been talking about menstruation apps, here's the announcement and the website.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 3:20 am UTC
by Plasmic-Turtle
Little anecdote I thought some of you may enjoy:
My niece, now 9, and I were both staying at my mother's the other night and sharing a double-bed. If her height's anything to go by she's rapidly approaching puberty already, and I remember as a kid always being a bit embarrassed to ask questions no matter how open and honest Mum tried to be, and figured that as an aunt more similar in age I might be less intimidating. She's not really much like I was though, she's much more outgoing, more willing to admit what she doesn't know and ask about it, and has a more open and sophisticated (at times) sense of humour. So while we were sitting side-by-side reading that night something related came up in conversation and I said "hey, do you have any questions or concerns about puberty or periods or anything like that? Anything you're worried about?" Without hesitating or even lifting her nose out of her book, she replied "...well, with periods... Vampires".

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:55 pm UTC
by existential_squirrrel
ugh. stupid cramps are making me feel horrible

Plasmic-Turtle wrote:" Without hesitating or even lifting her nose out of her book, she replied "...well, with periods... Vampires".
-- best quote of the day :)

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 08, 2013 1:30 am UTC
by Shro
Shit... I just had the thought....



Vampire Sharks.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 7:16 am UTC
by existential_squirrrel
Shro wrote:Shit... I just had the thought....



Vampire Sharks.


that just sounds terrifying!

stupid shark week is driving me apeshit and the pain involved is scaring the crap out of me
Spoiler:
I'm having a lot of pain in my right lower abdomen that gets so much worse when it is shark week, which is scaring me. I don't think I should be in this much pain, but I am. I'm scared to have a flare up like I did over the summer. I need to see the doctor, but I don't want to go. so scared

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 11:55 pm UTC
by Sungura
existential_squirrrel wrote:stupid shark week is driving me apeshit and the pain involved is scaring the crap out of me
Spoiler:
I'm having a lot of pain in my right lower abdomen that gets so much worse when it is shark week, which is scaring me. I don't think I should be in this much pain, but I am. I'm scared to have a flare up like I did over the summer. I need to see the doctor, but I don't want to go. so scared


**offers hugs**

Spoiler:
Anyone who can go with you to the doc? That helps me feel better. and if you think you shouldn't be in that much pain, you shouldn't be, plain and simple. Pain should never have to be justified. If it hurts too much, it hurts too much!

I alternate left and right side pain every month, left side hurts way more than the right. I assume it's an ovary thing. I mean, my whole abdomen hurts, but the stabbing knife-being-jammed-into-me-and-twisted pain will be on one side vs the other. And uh...if you find anything that helps let me know 'cause I'd like to know too.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Thu Oct 10, 2013 8:02 pm UTC
by Plasmic-Turtle
Shro wrote:Shit... I just had the thought....



Vampire Sharks.
Eeeee... I had to google them just to make sure there's no such thing.Though in the water I don't see how they'd be worse than any other shark encounter. But flying into your bedroom at night complete with black cape something like this: http://xkcd.com/585/ ...now that would be scary. Not sure how it'd get through the window though, be a bit bigger than a vampire bat.
I went to a talk a couple of weeks back where they had some experts discussing New Zealand shark populations (the talks were organised by a group who want to get shark finning banned in NZ waters, I'm shocked it's not already banned!) and a huge portion of the first talk was on tagging, and every time he talked about it and tags floating to the surface I was imagining this comic.

e_s, that sucks so much. What Sungura said - hugs and friends?
Spoiler:
I know it's scary, but surely getting help for it has got to be less scary than not knowing what's going on and worrying about it? Any supportive friend or acquaintance who can go with you might help make it a bit less scary?

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 11:46 pm UTC
by Becani
I don't know where else to post this.

Today I became a victim of domestic violence.

It hurts.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 12:04 am UTC
by poxic
I'm so sorry, Becani. Are you safe?

{{hugs}}

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 12:11 am UTC
by GraphiteGirl
Becca, *every hug under the sun*. What can we do to help, if anything?

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 12:42 am UTC
by Becani
I'm safe at home. He's in jail, for how long I don't know.

After four years of a loving intimate relationship - this happens. I don't know what to think. I don't know what to do. I don't know what I want. I just.... is everything over? just like that? can I be okay with that? and if I'm not and get back with him, when is this going to happen again? because it's not an if, it's a when. I don't know what to do with myself.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 2:37 am UTC
by poxic
I don't think there are any simple answers. Can you get a counseling session or few? A trained therapist might be able to help you sort through your options.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 2:43 am UTC
by Becani
I have a therapist. I see her tomorrow morning. This is all so baffling, and sudden. I don't know what to make of things. I feel lost.

Hopefully I'll be able to talk stuff out tomorrow.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 4:32 am UTC
by ObsessoMom
Dear Becani,

I am so, so sorry that you are in this heartbreaking, soul-crushing situation. A close friend of mine--she was maid of honor at my wedding, 20 years ago--went through something similar last year, out of the blue, with her husband of 15 years (also the father of their two young children). Things are much better for all four of them now.

A few tips, if you're open to hearing advice at this point. You may not be, and that's fine. Perhaps you'll find some of this helpful later.

Spoiler:
1.) Please don't let anyone make you feel bad for not doing what they say you should do. They are not in your situation. You are. And if they were in your situation, they would still be themselves in that situation, which is not you in that situation. Your personal strengths and vulnerabilities are different from theirs. What's right for them may not be right for you. You have the right to make your own decisions, and to expect support and love from your friends and family, even if you don't follow all their well-meaning advice. Their job is not to solve all your problems for you. It's to love and validate and support you just the way you are, and whatever you decide. (Granted, not everyone knows this.)

2.) Some elements of society--for example, the ethnic culture that my friend grew up in--instinctively blame the victim in these situations: she must have done something to bring this on; she should have tried harder to keep him calm and happy; she should have seen the warning signs sooner and taken steps to diffuse the tension before he lost control, etc. Bullshit. A grown man's inability to deal appropriately with his anger and/or substance abuse is never his partner's fault. (And if mental illness is involved, it may be neither party's fault.)

3.) Saying "Battered partners who go back to their abusers are just in denial" is another way of blaming the victim...i.e., it's the victim's fault for not having left permanently. Again, bullshit. It is never the victim's fault. Leaving permanently is, indeed, almost always the best available option; but deciding to work things out with professional guidance (and with carefully-set boundaries and benchmarks) can sometimes be a realistic plan of action. It is working (so far) for my friend and her children. She is certainly not in denial about the seriousness of his problem and the need for a concrete, consequence-filled plan of action if he is to remain in their lives. (Speaking of denial, I think that the prevailing attitude that we should be able to just flip a switch and stop loving someone, and henceforth approach the situation in a completely logical fashion--now, that is denial. Cold, hard reality says that human emotions are significantly messier than that.)

4.) Everybody's different, and your friends and supporters--I'm sorry to say--may not instinctively know the particular kind of support you need or expect. You may not know, either, until they get it wrong...in which case, do speak up and tell them what you would find more helpful, e.g.: "Right now I'm not ready to hear advice about what to do--I just need someone to really hear me when I say how hurt and confused I'm feeling." They will probably be grateful for this guidance, because often when we don't know what to do or say, we have to fall back on stereotypes and clich├ęs that we know are inadequate for the job.

5.) Some of your supporters may be too emotionally invested to give things an impartial hearing. My friend confided in her sister and in one other close friend, both of whom didn't seem to know how to handle this upsetting news, so they responded by immediately dumping hatred on the man she still loved very much. I know both these women, and I know that they love her fiercely, and am sure that they thought they were being 100% supportive and loyal to her in her time of need; but their expression of self-righteousness and hatred toward her husband made my friend feel a lot worse--particularly when she told them that she still loved him, still wanted him in their sons' lives to the extent it was safe, and intended to try couples counseling (while living apart for safety's sake) in order to help him work through his substance abuse, anger issues, etc. They responded by telling her she was utterly stupid and crazy not to sever all ties with him...which, needless to say, was not very therapeutic for her already stomped-on ego. Sometimes our very best friends are more harmful than helpful in crises like these. I hope this is not the case for you, but if it is, a professional counselor might be very helpful for the professional distance alone.

6.) That said, don't assume that all of your supporters will be equally useful (or useless). I mention this because it took my friend a year to work up the courage to confide in me. She had assumed that I would respond in the same unhelpful way as her sister and the one other close friend she'd confided in...and therefore she thought that telling me would just be inviting yet another person to burden her with their anger and dismay, instead of helping her with her emotional needs. I think the most helpful thing I did was just listen, and tell her that no matter what she decided to do, I would be there for her.

7.) Not all professional counselors are equally helpful, either, by the way. If you don't feel comfortable with the first one, you can't assume that they're all duds. Just sayin'. I hope that you will be able to find someone to help you map out a coping strategy, with or without your partner. (Edited to say--I'm delighted to hear that you already have a therapist, and don't have to be forging a brand-new relationship with one in the middle of all this. Yay!)


I've spoiler-tagged the advice, just in case Becani isn't comfortable reading it. --Shivahn

Perfect! Thanks, Shivahn. And Becani--sending you love and hugs and prayers and comfort and my complete confidence in you.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 9:28 pm UTC
by Becani
The story got posted on the front page of the local newspaper.

He's being charged with three misdemeanors and a felony. He's going to have jail time. He's not going to be allowed to contact me. I know I just need to move on. Doesn't make it hurt any less. I don't think he deserves this. He's sick and made a mistake, and he needs help, not to be locked away...

The saddest thing to me right now are the last things I will probably ever hear him say to me: Screaming out my name while crying and sobbing as the cops dragged him away.

It's haunting.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 10:36 pm UTC
by ObsessoMom
I admire your courage and compassion, Becani. You may not feel heroic at the moment, but you are. Sending you every good wish.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 2:00 am UTC
by Aaeriele
*offers hugs for Becani*

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 2:02 am UTC
by Enuja
I am so sorry to hear all of that. My sympathies are with you, the sadness you feel, and the terrible situation you just experienced. You have all my wishes for recovery now and strength and happiness later.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 2:40 am UTC
by Sungura
(((hugs)))

If you want to vent, talk about ideas, or just chat about the weather, feel free to PM me. ((hugs again))

**hugs only if you want them.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 23, 2013 8:08 am UTC
by Plasmic-Turtle
Hugs, if wanted. I wish I could do more.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 11:50 am UTC
by Becani
The overwhelming feeling that I'm feeling right now is grief. I just lost a loved one, in one of the worst possible ways. If he had died, there would at least be closure, but with the way it is, there is none.

I'm doing my best to manage and I think I'm going to be okay. Eventually, at least.

Thank yous. <3

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sun Oct 27, 2013 8:41 pm UTC
by ObsessoMom
Thanks for letting us know how you're doing. We care.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 2:48 pm UTC
by Fractal_Tangent
*hugs*

I hope you can be safe and eventually feel as good as is possible in your situation. *all the hugs*

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 6:48 pm UTC
by poxic
Fractal! Hi!

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 2:01 am UTC
by Becani
I think I'm going to be ok. I'm making sure that safety is a priority. What's most likely going to happen is that I'm going to move to the UK to be with a very special someone. Looking forward to that.

*Thanks for the *HUGS**

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 10:08 pm UTC
by Sungura
Spoiler:
So...could I ask something? I'm really thinking seriously of a hystorectomy and have some personal-type questions I'd like to ask via PM if anyone here has had one and willing to answer? I mean I know it's still a "ymmv" answer but I think firsthand experience for these particular questions I have would be better than a doc can answer...if that makes sense. Anyway...if you're willing...could you PM me? thanks =)

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sat Nov 16, 2013 9:31 pm UTC
by sophyturtle
Lately more people have been commenting on my armpit hair.
Last year I wore a strapless dress for Halloween.
Spoiler:
halloween at claires.JPG
With my arm down you could see some of the hair poking through.
This year I wore something similarly revealing of my armpits and 2 people actually commented on it. Normally, people don't comment on my body hair unless that is the topic in general or I bring it up. One guy asked if I did it for the costume, which was a nature spirit. When I told him 'nope, I trimmed' he was all 'cool'. A woman at another party actually put her hand on my elbow to lower it and offered to put up my hair for me because she was so offended by my armpit hair (she had before been all 'your pretty').
I am not sure if this is a result of something specific or not. I mean, I have not shaved my armpits regularly for 4 years and this is the most people have commented on it. I think it is the type of people I was around. The guy was at an accountant work party, and the lady was a doctor. Both somewhat less hippie filled than my friends who go to Burning Man or play roller derby.
I am also working with the idea that I am more confident now, and put my arms up more but that is not likely.

Other hairy ladies have experiences with people talking about your body hair? I am trying to figure out if it is like having people talk about the hair on your head. 'Oh it is getting so long you must love not having to cut it so much but do you have to wash it more now it is so shiny!'

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2013 6:59 am UTC
by poxic
I think some people assume that you don't know it's wrong to have underarm hair. (Because, you know, you're a girl.) So they think it's their job to educate you about this so that you start feeling the proper amount of shame. Because that's what will motivate you to shave properly. Like a proper girl.

*deep breath*

Peace. Peace. I am at peace. I'm going to to read another thread now, and stop thinking about people who insist on shaming rather than accepting.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2013 7:29 am UTC
by addams
I have had weird experiences with other woman deciding I should shave.
So, weird.

Once upon a time, my friend was having conflict with her father, because she did not shave.
He said, "It's dirty."

That is so weird. Is it dirty for a man? No.

She and I lived in a place where women did not shave, much.
I did not think of it, until I moved to work in a city.

Those women I worked with wanted me to shave.
We had an event that was mandatory.

They set up a dress code. Dress or skirt. Not longer then covering the knee. No tights or leggings; Stockings required.
I really did not care, much. I did not shave for the same reasons most men don't. "Why?"

For the event, I shaved. I did not know how to do it.
I knew the basics. I got a razor. I needed several.

I stood in the bath, wet my legs and shaved.
It was cold. It was so funny.

It was cold. My body made goose-bumps.
I shaved the top of the goose-bumps off.

Little tiny scabs under sheer stockings.
There is a look for ya'.

Ech. What do you want to wear? Wear that.
We wore uniforms with pants most of the time. (shrug)

I have had women tell me that shaving is Required.
Like being dressed. Naked under clothes?

Some women shave everything except the hair on their heads.
Some women shave the hair on their heads and nothing else.

Shaving an acre of territory seems like a lot of bother to me.
It Grows Back! What a thankless chore.

Oh! Oh! After that event, I learned a fun indulgence.
I would shave and then get between clean sheets and rub my legs around on the fresh sheets.

It was fun. My neighbor would come over to play.
We would have five children, two dogs three women; Everyone feeling the sheets.

The sheets don't stay fresh with everyone feeling them.

That may not have been helpful.
I may not understand the topic.

There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept.
Ansel Adams

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2013 1:22 pm UTC
by Enuja
I have been keeping my pits hairy for, ummm, I really don't know how long now. I do know it was hard for me to stop shaving them, because in the shower it was such a habit that, long after I didn't want to shave them, I still shaved them fairly regularly. But once I stopped having a razor in my hands on a regular basis in the shower, I definitely stopped shaving my pits, so it's been at least as long as I've been not shaving the dark hair between my breasts. So at least four years. I feel a lot more people notice my unshaved leg hair than notice my underarms. Even when I'm wearing long pants and socks, a little bit of my ankles sometimes peeks out when my legs are crossed on the bus, and I see people noticing. They don't say anything to me, though. And I don't go sleeveless very often. I do wear sleeveless tank tops almost all of the time, but when I'm outside in the summer I put something else on to protect my arms, and when I'm outside the rest of the time I have something else on to keep warm. The people I see at home are the type who support hairiness.

I don't even think about strangers shaming me for my underarm hair. I think about strangers shaming me for the patch of dark, long, terminal hair between my breasts, and I make shirt layering decisions to hide it. That was definitely the last hair I let grow out. Even now that I'm fairly comfortable with my almost-invisible mustache, I worry about my chest hair. And I sometimes get nervous about my ankles. But my underarms just seem less offensive to strangers than my chest hair, and, as a pale person who wears clothes instead of sunscreen, something strangers don't see often.

It does sound like the people who you are hanging out with are probably the changing variable. And they are probably mentioning it because you are straddling cultural groups, between the hippy/hairy set and a more conventional, fashionable group. I'm guessing that these new people are telling you to shave because they like you, and they want you to be more like them, to endorse their own choice to shave and to be a useful person to talk fashion and appearance and femininity with. Maybe a little speech about how this is your choice, but you value other people's choices and can judge and enjoy fashion and appearance from a variety of perspectives, will resolve this conflict with your new social circle.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2013 1:42 pm UTC
by Angua
Most people seem to ignore it - when I was in Ecuador the others always talked loudly about how ugly hairy women were, but only ever asked me if people in the Caribbean didn't shave their legs (to which I answered, quite truthfully, that it varies). I am dark haired and of Indian descent, which seems to make me pretty hirsute. I do shave my underarms though, but mainly because I sweat a lot and it feels like it helps (not sure if it really does or not though, but psychologically it helps). No one has really mentioned my faint moustache, and I generally wear long pants anyway (I don't like my legs much as a feature, mainly because I have such weird feet, so long pants go best with the shoes that I wear).

In an unrelated subject:
Spoiler:
Does anyone else find that it's hard to poop when wearing a tampon?

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 6:37 am UTC
by Aaeriele
I got through various phases with regards to armpit hair - often I won't shave it for a bit either due to just not caring or being rushed in the mornings; then I'll get annoyed at it and shave it, then keep it shaved for a bit, then the cycle begins again.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 8:19 am UTC
by bluebambue
@Angua
Spoiler:
It's not hard, but it does feel really odd and I don't like doing it.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 8:46 pm UTC
by ShortChelsea
I've stopped shaving for winter and I don't know if I want to start again when it gets warmer.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 8:54 pm UTC
by poxic
Not shaving is awesome. Public disapproval is not. I will shave for special occasions, otherwise it's trousers and long skirts (with socks, because I'm old) all summer.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Sat Nov 23, 2013 10:16 pm UTC
by existential_squirrrel
I have officially said F--- You! to shaving once and for all (unless it's my knees for easier application/removal of pain patches)

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Mon Nov 25, 2013 3:44 am UTC
by PAstrychef
Haven't shaved legs, pits or pubes for decades. I do have a fairly heavy beard, so I shave that. Can't be arsed to go through the time, pain and expense of electrolysis.
Rarely wear sleeveless tops, and shorts only when it's way too hot. If other people want to have an opinion, I just let them. They aren't part of my life, after all.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Fri Nov 29, 2013 7:52 pm UTC
by Apparently Anonymous
Maaan.

I'm so goddamn tired of my irregular periods. Got Shark Week last week on monday iirc (= 1,5 weeks ago), and thought that my body for once had gotten the timing right since I'm visiting a special friend this week (usually Shark Week does everything in its power to cockblock me or otherwise inconvenience me), and I thought I can't possibly have Shark Week twice within the span of two weeks, but surprise, surprise...I'm bleeding again.

Anyone else have the same problem or know what could be behind it? I only ever took the pill for a short while (a month or two) more than a year ago, so that can't be it.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Fri Nov 29, 2013 8:10 pm UTC
by poxic
I've had an irregular cycle all my life, ranging from ~28 to 40+ days between bleeds. Doctors like to look for cysts on the ovaries and other possible causes, but sometimes it's just the way it is. If your mother had irregular cycles, chances are pretty good that you will, too.

When bleeds come a couple of weeks apart, it's usually breakthrough bleeding. I get that a lot lately, probably because I'm ramping up to go through menopause and my estrogen levels are starting to fluctuate. Other times it's triggered by health issues -- a course of antibiotics, a cold or flu, physical stress, and so forth. Not usually a big issue (except for "oh god not again") unless it happens constantly or becomes a real problem to deal with.

In short: if it's bothering you, ask a doctor. If it isn't, don't bother.

Re: [SAFESPACE] Woman Thread - All Things Women. Period.

Posted: Fri Nov 29, 2013 10:39 pm UTC
by existential_elevator
Can only echo what Poxic just said, but throw into the mix that when I asked my GP I basically got told "go on the pill or stop complaining". Your mileage may vary.