"What's your secret?” our new friend Jenny asks leaning across the tiny barroom table.
“Sexual compatibility,” my wife says.
“Geeze!” Jenny exclaims, choking and almost spitting in her drink. “Is that really it?” She shows shock and disappointment. “It’s just all about sex?”
Intimacy, to me, is hard to define. Sure, most people would point to sexual connection as intimacy. Others would value it as a familiarity that is found only in romantic or close platonic relationships. These definitions are true but only illustrate a small portion of the depths of this feeling. If intimacy is viewed through a lens that prioritizes physical connection and emotional closeness, what happens when those things are no longer in the picture?
Self care answers a lot of my midlife questions. How will I survive aging? What should I focus on now that I have the basics locked down? Which lessons did I miss out on while I was partying in my 20s? What's my primary responsibility in a culture dripping with guilt and codependence? What is the most daring challenge I can give myself? What have I still not learned well?
Why in 2016 is the word “vagina” still taboo? As a practicing gynecologist, I have witnessed first-hand the blushing, giggling, and complete avoidance that goes along with referring to a part of the human anatomy possessed by half of the world’s population. Popular culture has come to refer to the vagina by the following absurd names: “vajayjay”, “hoo-hah”, “down-there”, “privates”, “lady bits”, “kitty”, “bajingo”, “flower”, and the list goes on. Is vagina a shameful or explicit word?