Who says Pandora has that phobia? Maybe he/she (sorry, don't know) is simply an expert on the subject?
I'm female. Pandora is a female name (the first woman created by the gods in Greek mythology.) And I did.
May I ask you when did you got that phobia and the reasons behind it, if you're going to talk about it in national TV?
Well, when I was younger, my sexual education was kind of backwards. I had my first sex ed "class" when I was in 4th grade. They told us that girls get their periods when they hit puberty. They told us that the egg goes into the uterus and if it doesn't attach, then the woman will menstruate. That's it. They didn't tell us anything else. Not until the fifth grade when they told us that the baby does, in fact, grow in the uterus, NOT the stomach. Why they couldn't have told us in the 4th grade, I don't know. ANYWAY. We figured out that the baby has to come out of a very small opening, but basically the education was sperm+egg=baby. Baby comes out of mom. And everything is sunshiney and happy when you hold your first child, JUST DON'T DO IT WHEN YOU'RE A TEENAGER BECAUSE IT'S EXTREMELY HARD TO BE A TEEN PARENT (which it is...not faulting them on that information...). One thing no one bothered to mention was the toll it actually takes on a woman's body, aside from the obvious growth in the belly. It wasn't until I was actually in high school that I heard three words from my aunt when talking about her experience birthing her first child, "THIRD DEGREE TEARS
." Yes. TEARS
. As in she was ripped open, literally RIPPED, when giving birth. From that point on, I learned more and more about the reality of pregnancy and childbirth. The backpain, the stretch marks, the hormones, the susceptibility to gestational diabetes, the weight gain, mucous plugs
, aneurisms, lack of privacy, different kinds of injections and blood tests, and that's before the water even breaks. I learned that the only reason my aunt was ripped so badly is because the doctors couldn't cut
her fast enough. Apparently, when a woman is not a candidate for a cesarian, they just cut her vagina open wider anyway, because it causes less trauma than ripping. So, either way, the genitals get mutilated. A lot of women even give birth in piles of their own excrements because of all the pushing. Another family member of mine had been torn so badly that her body built up so much scar tissue, that the SCAR TISSUE had to be surgically removed. Cesarian is not an option for me either, because then the stomach just gets cut open instead, and I'd STILL have to deal with everything else regardless.
Now, after learning all this, I saw a picture of a woman giving birth...it made me nauseated. I tried to get through an actual birthing video, and I had to turn it off before the baby even started coming out. The woman was naked from the waist down, only wearing a flimsy hospital gown, open in the back, and there were several people hovering around her spread legs. Touching it with odd tools, setting more strange tools next to her. The sight of it made me feel uncomfortable, because it touched on one of my other fears of being raped.
And what does your fear looks like - do you fear the very thought of being pregnantI know this question might be unfitting, because phobias are per se irrational, but are there any rational explenations behind it, behind your example?
I'm afraid of being pregnant, but not because of having something else inside me, because of what it will lead to for my body. Every woman is different, yes, but that just means that I won't be able to predict what would happen to me, and that makes me even less comfortable about it. I don't like it when I'm not in control of my own body. It's my body, no one's property but my own, and I choose what happens to it, what or who touches it, and who sees what parts of it. If every woman is different with pregnancy, how will I know what will happen to my own body, what will the doctors tell me they need to do to me, etc. I think this is a perfectly rational fear. I don't like it being called irrational, because I do have legitimate reasons for not wanting it. Aside from that, I don't think that I should HAVE to do this. Pregnancy is a choice, not an obligation. I think this "phobia" shocks a lot of people because it not so much steps outside of gender role expectations, as pole-vaults over them. This has gone from an admittance of fear, to accepting it, to trying to validate my existance as a real woman, and a human being, still deserving of respect.
Fear of the very childbirth, I can partially understand, from the physical side of the act.
Why only partially?
But I think it's a very interesting case of phobia, especially considering we have tons of women who are striving to get pregnant and are choosing in-vitro method,
I'm not other women. I'm me. And just because other women do it doesn't mean that I have to. A lot of people have said, "Well, there are lots of women who want to have kids and can't, y'know."
To which I say, "So what?" That means nothing to me. What am I supposed to do, get pregnant and have kids because these women can't? Get pregnant and give my kids to them? I fail to see the reasoning behind a comment like that. Just because I CAN get pregnant, doesn't mean that I SHOULD, nor does it mean that I HAVE to.
And the woman from Good Morning America called me once, said she was going to call back, but hasn't yet. Soooo, Dante and I are preparing for it to fall through. Though, being interviewed by ABC for their report on it was pretty cool.