Random - posted on 04/16/2012 ( 8 moms have responded )
For those of you who are teaching your kids the generic "girls have a vagina" lesson, you ARE teaching them that the proper term for the entire outer package is vulva and not vagina, right? I mean, you know that the words are not synonymous, don't you?
Just in case, let me give you a quick anatomy lesson.
Vagina and vulva are not the same thing. They are not interchangeable physiological terms.
The vagina is part of the inner workings, not the outer.
I asked this question on a social networking forum and got a variety of responses including this one:
"My child is too young to know the technical terms for her body parts." (Ignore the fact that the pet name we have created for her genitalia is four syllables long and she's already made up a song about it.)
And this one:
"Vulva is just a gross word." (Vulva is not a gross word. "MOIST" is a gross word.)
And also this one: "It all means the same thing."
(To say that it's all the same thing is as inaccurate as saying that your hand is a finger and your finger is a hand and that's just plain silly.)
Yes, there is a difference and the difference is huge. Vulva = clitoris, labia (2 sets) urethra, vaginal opening. Vagina = the canal that leads from the vaginal opening to the cervix.
So if you choose to shave your vulva, that's cool. Get creative. Have fun with it. However, if you choose to shave your vagina, it's not going to end well. Don't use the good towels.
Now, I know there will be someone who will get all worked up about this. Calm down. You can teach your kids whatever you want. Don't sweat it because some stranger on the internet told you that it's the wrong word. You're not breaking any law of child rearing. No member of the Vulva Brigade will show up and ticket you for referring to your lady bits as your bajingo and hand you some reading material about the inaccurately named Vagina Monologues. I'm not going to take away your euphemisms. Hell, euphemisms are fun! Tell them it's a Harvey Wallbanger or a FlufferNutter if you like.
I'm just saying that technically, it's incorrect.
The vulva is the correct term for the outside parts as a collective whole.
The vagina is the correct term for the "collective hole".
What's your favorite euphemism for the VULVA?