I have written a children’s book called Girls Love to Fart, which is part of a new series of stories all beginning with Girls Love to...that are designed to help empower girls and give them more confidence about their bodies.
From the moment we’re born we are gendered and this often has an impact upon how we are expected to behave. It is far more socially acceptable for boys to fart than girls.
I have heard so many people say it’s not ladylike to fart but have yet to hear a single person tell me it’s not gentleman like. What does this message teach our children? Why is it that girls are taught that their natural bodily functions are wrong and something to feel ashamed of when in reality they are normal and natural?
I understand that we don’t want everyone farting all the time because the combined smell would be rather disgusting but when someone needs to let one rip it shouldn’t be something that makes them feel ashamed.
I grew up in a family where farting was normal but I understood that in certain situations it wasn’t appropriate. Even this hasn’t protected me from feelings of shame and discomfort if I dare to accidentally fart in public.
I won’t attend a yoga class just in case I fart and everyone else hears, which is really quite ludicrous because we all know that people often fart whilst transitioning from one move to the other. I mean, no one would give two hoots if I farted whilst doing a downward dog, apart from me of course!
Another reason why I want this book to be read by adults and children is that my own daughter Florence, when aged three told me girls don’t fart and refused to let me read it to her. She would go into a complete meltdown if I dared even mention the title. I was outraged because she was already feeling that what her body did was wrong because of what someone else had said. Would that same person have said boys don’t fart? I seriously doubt it! Fortunately Florence has since made friends with a little girl who loves farting and jokes about it a lot, making everyone around her laugh.
I also know plenty of women who won’t fart in front of their partner but the latter has no qualms in doing so themselves. I personally believe the humiliation women and girls experience has a direct impact upon their mental, emotional and physical health due to the assumption that farting is not feminine. This is another form of controlling women’s bodies which needs to be addressed and rectified. So, go ahead and fart in a yoga class or whilst on a first date, fart with your friends, and become a farting advocate!