We Need To Talk About The "F" Word

Posted by Ben Stevens on

The human body is a weird and wonderful thing.  Such as witnessing the birth of your children, thinking this is the most beautifully disgusting thing I have ever seen.  The various processes that occur within the body are fascinating.  My brain contemplating my very existence, recalling random facts from thin air, calculating complex problems, making thousands of choices a day, all while not being able to figure out what I came downstairs for.  Why am I down here???  

I'm here to talk about the weird though cause we have no problems talking about the wonderful stuff openly and honestly.  It is the weird stuff that we shy away from as people, even though it is completely normal.  Farts being perhaps the greatest example of the weird and sometimes taboo.  When I was growing up fart was the "F" word and I don't mean I thought it was but rather it was not a word to be used in my house growing up.  Curse words and slang were not ok with my parents, which is probably why their curse words of choice were Jiminy Cricket for my dad and sugar tit for my mom.  

The challenge for my parents was my two best friends and I thought nothing was funnier to do and talk about than farts.  You might be thinking kids will be kids, but no, even today among us friends it is not unusual to get a random comical fart video posted in our group conversation.  I'm sure we are not the only grown men to do so, otherwise how in the world do some of these fart videos get millions of views?  

Farting is a normal human function, part of the process of turning food into energy.  Beyond just humans actually, my dog farts while we watch tv and then leaves the room cause she can't stand her own smell.  I personally like to think she snickers a little bit as she leaves, thinking to herself "Enjoy the gas bomb I left you all, hee hee hee".  Yes I can agree we don't need to talk about it all the time and find it as humorous as I do but we should at least recognize it's normal and we shouldn't be so embarrassed about doing what everyone else in the world does regularly.  

I can say that Lisa is the exact opposite of me in this way.  It really wasn't until she started having digestive issues in the last year and a half that I even heard her fart.  I'm not sure how, since holding in farts will eventually cause the gas to build and a person to blow up from the inside out, won't it?  Isn't that the spontaneous combustion source I feared as a kid?  Having written this I am now wondering how many couples fart in front of each other and if it is one sided or both? Was it always that way or changed as you got older?  Cause eventually we become the people who fart with each step through the house.  So many questions about farts and relationships.  

I think sometimes our shyness about the normal things the human body does can actually be harmful.  I think of hearing a comedian tell about going to the washroom in his girlfriend's apartment where the bathroom was right beside the living room.  When he came out she stared at him and said "Are you ok?  Do you need to go to the hospital?"  Long story short, almost his entire life he had diarrhea but just assumed that was normal.  So normal things we don't talk about end up becoming dangerous for things that aren't normal.  Having five kids we try to be open and honest with them about everything, but even then, there are times our kids have freaked out when something that is completely normal happens to them for the first time.  Think about how terrifying a hemorrhoid, period, ringing in the ears, headache must be the first time it occurs.   

I had a scary occurrence that apparently is normal and is the reason I'm writing this particular blog.  I think men around the world should know this is normal and rarely a big deal.  I'll explain it the same way I did to my older kids who had no idea why dad was at the hospital a few times.  I had blood in bodily fluid that was not vomit, urine or feces.  Hopefully you got it at this point cause in courtesy of the more reserved I'm not going to go into further detail.  Lisa and I both freaked out when it occurred one night during a bit of intimacy.  At this point if you don't know what I'm talking about I guess you'll leave confused.   After a call to 811 I was off to the E.R. where the doctor chuckled and said oh that happens.  Outside I said "Oh, that's good to know".  Inside I was screaming "SOMEONE AT SOME POINT SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME THIS!!".  Come on sex education I have never had use knowing what the vas deferens is but that little tidbit of information would have been very helpful.  They are thankfully still checking and running some tests, just to be safe, but they said over 80% of the time it's nothing and completely normal.  NOT TO ME IT WASN'T!!!!

I think overall on this topic we have come along way in being more open about the normal but less public topics of the human body.  I think we need to because it can help us realize what is normal and what is not.  My mother every summer at her cottage would look at me when I would fart throughout the entire evening of our games nights saying "Something is wrong with you, you should get checked".  We all laughed and thought it was funny but I honestly wonder now with my recent digestive issues if maybe she was correct all along.  Now, don't get me wrong I still believe in courtesy and that there are times and places for everything, including normal bodily functions.  Together though, we can make the human body more acceptable in both the beauty and weirdness of it all.  


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