I Am a Woman Who Grows Hair

My stomach. My lips. My lower back.

All three of these are areas on my body where I grow hair, areas I want to hide (yet somehow embrace) the most, areas that I am most insecure about.

Several recent events, including finding out my other female co-workers don’t have hair on their stomachs and realizing I’m entering my twenty-third year of life without being kissed, have led to me finally sharing an aspect of my outer beauty I am consistently at war over.

The bumps, lines, fluctuation, and varying skin complexions don’t make it any better.

Most women focus on getting vaginal hair together when it comes time to have sex. I, on the other hand, would also have to think about the hair on my stomach and how to make it appealing and smooth. Sex is already awkward, and I don’t want to make it more awkward by confusing the gentleman with the hair growing in an unconventional place on my body.

My upper lip hair is absolutely ruthless and part of me regrets beginning the process of shaving it at such a young age. I feel like I’ll never experience my first kiss because I’m a human with hair on my face. Often, I feel like a complete failure because I’m at the cusp of twenty-three and have no idea what a first kiss is like.

As I get older, I get a teeny tiny bit more confident with wearing a bikini set or super crop top during the summer season. However, I am never fully comfortable because when I feel the sun beating on my back, I get hyper aware of how dark my back is compared to the rest of my body, made even darker by the curly hairs growing back there. I have no idea how to get rid of them without overpaying to get my body waxed.

I am heavily contemplating starting the process of laser hair removal next month because I hate being insecure, though I know the hair will never go away.

Is it bad that I remember Frida Kahlo in the moments when I’m feeling most insecure?

Slowly, I am becoming the kind of woman who shaves every day, if not every other day, and I hate it. Considering I am mostly comfortable walking around with body hair (no shave November is at least 4.5 months), it almost feels like I would shave to please a man.

I try hard to not let the desires of a man and the pressures of social media convince me that I am not worthy of love, affection, or intimacy because I grow body hair like every other human on the planet.

To whichever men are in my life and will come into my life, I am a woman who grows hair.

about the author

Jamilah is a college graduate in her early twenties who wants to live and learn and love herself while fighting the anxiety fight.

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