Labiaplasty – A Personal View
Did you know that 20% of women have elongated labia and that many of them consider labiaplasty as a solution?
I wasn’t aware of it until a few months back when I was gobsmacked at a story on Hungry Beast about the growth in this type of cosmetic surgery – if you’ve read any other posts you’ll know I’m not a big fan of cosmetic surgery! I had no idea that the labia was even a candidate for surgery, never mind that it had its own name: labiaplasty.
What is labiaplasty?
Labiaplasty is basically the removal or reduction of the labia by surgery – yes, cutting off bits of your lady lips so that they look more like the pics of other womens’ genitals. In our culture, most women see other womens’ genitals in pornography. And did you know that the regulations governing pornography say that there cannot be over-emphasis on genitals (yes I know!) – that means the female genitals you see in magazines have been Photoshopped – given a digital labiaplasty.
Now the whole porn industry – with the incredible physical damage that is done to women’s bodies – is a whole other discussion. But it’s interesting don’t you think that it’s government regulation which is essentially supporting an industry which is telling women their normal body isn’t, well, normal?
Labiaplasty – just like Phylangyplasty…
If 20% of women have elongated labia, isn’t that a variation we’d expect to call normal, like all the different sizes of feet? Imagine what would happen if someone started offering a solution to the problem of having feet that are different sizes, and all you had to do was have some of the bones of your toes shortened? Costs a motza, causes great pain, you might never have the same sensation in your toes and that might limit your ability to say play tennis or go for a run, but hey, you’d look normal, doesn’t matter that nearly everyone has different sized feet!
For a personal view of the anguish this issue causes women every day, read this post at Beautiful You, one of my favourite body image blogs, by Aussie body image activist Julie Parker. She just had a guest post written by a young woman, Kate, who has gone through just this experience. Kate writes about her experience with labiaplasty here, it’s a powerful story from a brave young woman, please do read it.
And then check out this video from Hungry Beast complete with interview with a plastic surgeon specialising in labiaplasty, and a graphic designer whose job it is to do the digial labiaplasty – it’s astonishing.