WOMEN AND THE FREEDOM TO POOP AT WORK
I can’t believe I just wrote that but thanks to the journalist Jessica Bennett, I have the opportunity to weigh in on this taboo topic, or as she coins it, the “poo-triarchy.”
Her spot-on New York Times article (in the Style section no less!) nails a larger, oppressive picture where women are conditioned to hide and be ashamed of their bodies, period. But beyond periods, which is another natural bodily function many women have been taught to fear or loathe, this P word might just be the most unspeakable and undoable of them all.
What great lengths have you gone to in order to hide your poop? How many times did you go out of your way, or hold on for dear life, before, well, going? Did you go to another floor in the office? Refuse to go in the office at all? How long was it before you did it in front of your partners?
I chuckle at thinking about the great lengths I went to in order to keep up a poopless facade from my husband when we went on our first holiday together as a couple—to what was then a remote rather than New York-ified Tulum where bathrooms were limited—and toilet paper wasn’t even allowed! I laugh even more when I witness the sheer glee my son has at announcing, every day, “Mommy, I pooped!” or how nearly impossible it was to poop without interruption when he was a baby. So while I don’t think we need to go around announcing our bodily disposals, we do need to give ourselves permission to live in our real bodies rather than some fantasized, sanitized, ideal that dominant poo-triatchal narratives would have us believe.
Happy Pooping, Mamas!