Lady bits, vagina, hoo-hoo, vajayjay – whatever you call it, it’s a mystery to most people. The key to sexual health and satisfaction is knowing your bits and pieces as well, if not better than, your partners.
And by the looks of it, our male counterparts are lost.
I’ll be honest with you. I didn’t decide to get up close and personal with my own lady bits until I was in my 30s – freshly divorced and “unable” to orgasm. The reality is that the body was willing but the mind was freaking out.
Cue the self-exploration and self-love. Mmmm, even all these years later, I look back on that time and get a big smile on my face.
What are Lady Bits?
Okay, first of all, that part of our anatomy is the vulva, although most of us commonly think of it as our vagina. “Lady bits” is more for your comfort than my own (and I’m comfortable with very crude language when discussing the female sexual anatomy, including both the “p” and “c” word). Choose the term you prefer, but it’s best to know what it is you’re discussing.
Outer Lips/Labia Majora
This is the actual fleshy part of your vaginal area. It’s the skin covered (usually) in pubic hair and connected to your thighs. Most of us would say this is our vagina. That’s not quite correct. There’s more to it than that.
Inner Lips/Labia Minora
The inner lips aren’t always so inner. For many, the labia minora is what we think of as the actual “lips” of the vagina. They can be tucked into your body or large and noticeable. Every person’s vagina – labia minora included – looks different. Sadly, there is a cosmetic procedure called labiaplasty that can give a woman the “perfect” looking vagina. Body shaming has reached a whole new level.
When I’m feeling immature, I refer to this part of my body as the magic button. The clitoris is a pleasure center (for most of us). With 7000 nerve-endings, it’s the hot zone for many women when it comes to orgasms. If you do not know this part of your vagina, introduce yourself immediately. You’ll thank me for it.
The clitoral hood, also called the prepuce, is a piece of skin that covers the clitoris. When the clitoris is stimulated and swells (similar to a penis), the hood is typically pushed back. Its purpose is to protect the sensitive (and absolutely wonderful) clitoris.
This is the opening within your body for urination. Pee comes out of this opening. No, it’s not where you have sex. It is a completely separate pathway.
Now the vaginal opening is the money shot – whether you’re inserting a penis, dildo, finger, or tongue. I don’t recommend vegetables, although that’s common. On the less exciting side, this is also where menstrual blood is released and babies come from (although babies can be exciting, too – just in a different way).
There is no such thing as a “good” vagina or a “perfect” vagina.
Having too much sex will not make you “loose.” The vagina is designed to stretch and contract again. Hello, y’all, if you could become “loose” no one would ever have sex after their first baby.
The inner labia doesn’t come in standard size, shape, or color. Every woman is unique. Our inner labia swells when we’re aroused. It changes color during sexual pleasure or simply as we become older.
There’s no “right” way to have a vagina.
Why You Need to Get to Know Your Lady Bits
The most fun way to get to know your body is through masturbation. It’s also good for your health. There are some who advocate getting a mirror and looking at your vagina – and it does have its place. Seeing yourself while aroused and while at rest is a great way to learn your body. For those of you who are blushing and ready to walk away, relax, I’m not telling you to start with a mirror.
Start with masturbation.
Touch yourself. Let your hands explore. If you’re anything like me, once you learn how to make yourself feel good, you’ll feel less embarrassed to take a peek with a mirror.
Your exploration doesn’t have to end with an orgasm. This is about learning your body, understanding your anatomy, and finding out what feels good to you.
Why should you masturbate?
There are a few reasons, and they’re backed by medical science. This isn’t just me advocating self-pleasure that will make you curl your toes, scream bloody murder and cause you to spend more time naked. Although, those are all good reasons, too.
How about these 5 reasons instead?
1. Relieve stress
2. Sleep better
3. Improve your self-image and self-esteem
4. Become better able to express your needs and desires sexually
5. Learn what brings you sexual pleasure
Those sound like good reasons to me.
Keep a few things in mind as you begin to explore.
You’re not doing this with an audience. You can learn about your body and teach yourself how to achieve sexual pleasure (in a new way or for the first time) by yourself. This isn’t something you have to do with a partner unless you want to.
You don’t have to orgasm every time. But if you find you have trouble with your orgasm, start with the clitoris. For many of us, this is the best and easiest way to achieve a climax. Remember, it’s mental just as much as it’s physical. Let yourself relax and loosen those inhibitions. You’re doing this alone at first, remember? No one is watching.
There’s no one right way to explore your body. Get a hand down there or buy a toy. Do it in the shower, bed, under the covers or in total darkness (which is how I started out).
Whatever your body looks like is natural and beautiful. Short of a medical condition or an illness, your body (including your vagina) is “normal.” But if anything hurts, burns, turns weird colors, or does anything unusual – and not in a good way – see your doctor.
Whether you’re in a post-divorce life and trying to find your sexual self, or you’re in a marriage that needs some help, learning how your body works and figuring out how to give yourself pleasure are two healthy ways to embrace your sexuality. No shame, ladies. Feel free to love yourself. You deserve it.
All images via Google Images
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