There is Nothing Wrong With the Word Vagina - Ellen Dolgen
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There is Nothing Wrong With the Word Vagina

How do you feel about the word “vagina”? Some women are comfortable with it, while others prefer an innocuous pet name.

The word “vagina” has been around since the early 1600s and comes from the Latin word for sheath – a close-fitting cover for the blade of a knife or sword. When I read this, my back clenched up, and I became immediately erect. Then I learned that the word clitoris could be traced back to the late Greek word kleitorís, which can be traced to kleíein, which means “to shut away.”  You don’t need to be Freud to recognize these misogynistic metaphors.  So, the female anatomy was defined in relation to the male anatomy. Oh man, this explains a lot!

Words matter. The correct terminology is crucial to ensuring our medical care providers understand our concerns and provide the best care possible. Unclear language could even lead to missed diagnoses. It’s also essential that we be able to talk about our bodies accurately and confidently. Vaginas are not something to be embarrassed about.

BTW a lot of us refer to the whole area as our vagina, but the external parts (clitoris, urethra, labia, and vaginal opening) are technically the vulva. The vagina is the canal inside that leads to the cervix and uterus. Either way, the V’s have it! Whether we call it the vagina or the vulva, these parts are the real Masters of the Universe. The power lies within us!

Proper healthcare for our vaginas (and vulvas!) is so important. These amazing parts of our bodies give us pleasure, help us menstruate, and can even deliver children. And when we speak openly about our body parts, bodily functions, and sexual health, we encourage and empower other women to do the same.

Let’s get comfortable using the word “vagina” in conversation. Together, we can break the taboo and erase the myth that vaginas are strictly accessories for swords. Say it loud… say it proud… vagina, vagina, vagina! And, by the way, can we stop ignoring the clitoris already?!?

Share your thoughts and stories in the comments. Let’s keep the conversation going!


My Motto: Suffering in silence is OUT! Reaching out is IN!

Follow me on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube or sign up for Fearless Vagina, my upcoming online course for all things pre-, peri-, and postmenopausal!

If you want to educate your staff, colleagues, or friends about menopause, book me for your next event!

* does not recommend, endorse, or make any representation about any tests, studies, practices, procedures, treatments, services, opinions, healthcare providers, physicians, or medical institutions that may be mentioned or referenced.


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