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"The vaginal corona is a permanent part of a woman's body throughout her life. It doesn't disappear after she first has sexual intercourse, and most women don't bleed the first time."
October 11, 2012 9:16 AM   Subscribe

My Corona: The Anatomy Formerly Known As The Hymen & The Myths That Surround It is Scarleteen's reprint of a booklet (PDF) produced by the Swedish Association for Sexuality Education (Time for more accurate terminology: Hymen renamed "vaginal corona"). More mythbusting: You can't pop your cherry: Hymen 101 (NSFW-ish video, less than 4 min.); SBTB's Where is the hymen? and Virginity clichés in romance; and 20 Questions About Virginity: Scarleteen interviews Hanne Blank.
posted by flex (41 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite

 
Things the phrase "vaginal corona" brings to mind:

- vaginas in tiaras (are coming down the stairs, vaginas in tiaras, are coming down in pairs)
- total eclipse of the vagina
- ow don't stick a lime wedge in there


ok brb R'ingTFA
posted by elizardbits at 9:21 AM on October 11, 2012 [30 favorites]


I somehow misread the first line and cannot get The Knack song out of my head, yeah, that one, which I won't name for fear of inducing it on others.

On second thought it is perhaps appropriate for the topic.
posted by oshburghor at 9:24 AM on October 11, 2012 [7 favorites]


So persistent are these myths that I once had a girlfriend who thought that, because she didn't bleed the first time, we must not have done it right.
posted by asnider at 9:29 AM on October 11, 2012


Presuming it is similar to the previous Swedish handbook on vaginas I believe I found via MeFi, it is a pertty great booklet. I'd check, but IIRC, the images, while tasteful, weren't really work-safe.

Also, thanks, elizardbits, "Vaginas In Tiaras" will be stuck in my damn head all damn day long now.
posted by maryr at 9:30 AM on October 11, 2012


Ok, it's impossible to read "My Corona" without mentally singing "M-m-m-my Corona!"

I'm uncertain if that's a good thing or not.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 9:32 AM on October 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


Oshburghor: I somehow misread the first line and cannot get The Knack song out of my head, yeah, that one, which I won't name for fear of inducing it on others.
Ooh, my little pretty one, my pretty one
When you gonna give me some time, corona
Ooh, you make my motor run, my motor run
Got it coming off o' the line, corona

Never gonna stop, give it up, such a dirty mind
I always get it up, for the touch of the younger kind
My, my, my, aye-aye, whoa!
M-m-m-my corona

Come a little closer, huh, a-will ya, huh?
Close enough to look in my eyes, corona
Keeping it a mystery, it gets to me
Running down the length of my thigh, corona

Never gonna stop, give it up, such a dirty mind
I always get it up, for the touch of the younger kind
My, my, my, aye-aye, whoa!
M-m-m-my corona
M-m-m-my corona

When you gonna give to me, a gift to me
Is it just a matter of time, corona?
Is it d-d-destiny, d-destiny
Or is it just a game in my mind, corona?

Never gonna stop, give it up, such a dirty mind
I always get it up, for the touch of the younger kind
My, my, my, aye-aye, whoa!
M-m-m-m-m-m-m-my, my, my, aye-aye, whoa!
M-m-m-my corona
M-m-m-my corona
M-m-m-my corona
M-m-m-my corona

Ooooooo-ohhh, my corona
Ooooooo-ohhh, my corona
Ooooooo-ohhh, my corona

posted by BrandonW at 9:33 AM on October 11, 2012 [7 favorites]


The coronic tilda?
posted by iotic at 9:33 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I see all the Knack references have been made.
posted by Curious Artificer at 9:34 AM on October 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


"Vaginas in Tiaras" is, of course, a great band name.

So, I went right to the cherry-popping video and I thought it was great except, now I think not only did I have my own hymen misconceptions but maybe I don't know the definition of a vagina? Like, why would there be a sharp sensation "outside" my vagina. Hmph. But, interesting to note that those ladies who were championing the concept of reclaiming your virginity were on to something with the possibility of hymen, uh, re-emergence? Re-animation? Interesting!

And the booklet looks great. It's awesome that there seems to be as many sex and body-positive resources out there as there are. It's important to combat all the crap that masquerades as information but really only serves to shame and confuse.
posted by amanda at 9:36 AM on October 11, 2012


(and can we stop with the "to the hilt" nonsense? I get it, he could… go… all… the … way. But enough with the hilt)

This reached the very core of my being, and elicited a deep, inmost quiver of a laugh.
posted by Danf at 9:48 AM on October 11, 2012 [8 favorites]


maybe I don't know the definition of a vagina? Like, why would there be a sharp sensation "outside" my vagina. Hmph.

The vagina is only the specific cavity that leads from the outside of your body in towards the cervix. What you are thinking of is the vulva, which is the proper name for the whole area which includes the vaginal opening, the inner and outer labia and the clitoris. The vagina is part of the vulva, but there's more to the vulva than just the vagina.

A lot of people say "vagina" when they mean "vulva," which is kind of like saying "nose" when you mean "face" ("I took this big bite of cheesesteak sandwich and the gravy squirted all down my nose").
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 9:48 AM on October 11, 2012 [16 favorites]


Thank you, EmpressCallipygos, I think I have found the source of my confusion. Which is that the hymen is located a few centimeters inside the vagina or, to a different person, right at the opening itself. Thus my confusion. Since there's no line of demarcation, a real DMZ, between the vagina and the vulva, it's hard to say whether it's "inside" or "outside."

I haven't thought about the hymen in a long time and I think I assumed it was somewhere way up hanging out with the cervix because I never noticed it, saw it or felt it. But, I really do think this idea of men coming in and breaking the hymen, popping the cherry, deflowering is kind of damaging to first sex and all sex, so it's good to have this out there.

The more you know.... [falling star]
posted by amanda at 9:55 AM on October 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


Since there's no line of demarcation, a real DMZ, between the vagina and the vulva, it's hard to say whether it's "inside" or "outside."

Wait, what do you mean by this? The "line of demarcation" between the vagina and the vulva is "anything that's part of the vulva that isn't part of the vagina....is outside the vagina." You know? That's like saying "there's no line of demarcation between the nose and the face, so it's hard to say whether something is inside your nose or outside."

I mean, I think you get the general point; I'm just honestly baffled what you mean by this phrase.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:01 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well, Scarlateen is describing it this way:
Where is the vaginal corona located and what does it look like?

The vaginal corona is located 1–2 centimeters just inside the vaginal opening, not deep inside the vagina. Every woman’s corona looks different – just like ear lobes, noses and labia – and differs in size, color and shape. It consists of thin folds of mucous tissue, which may be tightly or more loosely folded. It is slightly pink, almost transparent, but if it’s thicker it may look a little paler or whitish. It may resemble the petals of a rose or other flower, it may be carnation-shaped, or it may look like a jigsaw piece or a half-moon. In the vast majority of cases, it is elastic and stretchy.
I'm pretty sure mine looked like Tom Waits but... I don't have a photo. And in terms of where the opening starts, I'll say that there's a margin of error plus or minus 3/16th of an inch in terms of where anyone might draw that line, but I'm no vagina scientist so make of that what you will.
posted by amanda at 10:09 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


But enough with the hilt

I do share your dislike of cliche, but there's a little more to it in this case. Vagina is Latin for 'scabbard', which would normally be filled up to the hilt.

The Romans, bless them, weren't particularly politically correct in such matters.
posted by Devonian at 10:10 AM on October 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


- ow don't stick a lime wedge in there

Wasn't that an ancient and not particularly effective means of contraception?
posted by acb at 10:14 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


where exactly is the line between 'blade' and 'hilt' though? I mean, is it the pelvic bone or is it like, the base of the scrotum??? I need to know because if I'm going to fill my lady's scabbard I do not want to be gipping her out of a few millimeters of blade.
posted by spicynuts at 10:17 AM on October 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


posted by spicynuts at 18:17 on October 11 [+] [!]

Eponysterical.
posted by acb at 10:26 AM on October 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


I get all my female anatomy lessons from Alan Moore, thank you very much.
posted by sarastro at 10:40 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh, I see what you're asking - you weren't asking "what's the difference between the vagina and the vulva," you were asking "where does the opening actually begin." Okay, now I get it. I mean, not that I have any more definitive answer other than you have, but I at least know what question you were actually asking.

I was up late because of reasons. Don't mind me.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:46 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


But "corona stretching daddies" just doesn't have the snap you need for a band name...

http://www.daddies.com/
posted by bert2368 at 10:55 AM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Maybe Coronal Mass Ejection then?
posted by Kabanos at 10:59 AM on October 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


This tiny, useless(?) bit of tissue has had a disproportionate impact on human society, and has probably wrecked more lives than the atomic bomb.
posted by Slothrup at 11:09 AM on October 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


"Vaginas in Tiaras" to the tune of "Bananas in Pajamas"? Thanks MetaFilter, now I'm socially unfit for the rest of the day.
posted by autoclavicle at 11:21 AM on October 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


I don't think they could possibly be homologous tissues, but psychologically, isn't there an odd yet compelling parallelism between the hymen and the foreskin?

That would make circumcision, which traditionally took place at puberty, the ritual correspondent for boys of what losing virginity is for girls, and make it fit rather neatly into the Bettelheimian paradigm of 'symbolic wounds.'
posted by jamjam at 11:22 AM on October 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


"Vaginas in Tiaras" to the tune of "Bananas in Pajamas"? Thanks MetaFilter, now I'm socially unfit for the rest of the day.


Not as imagining the lyrics to "My Corona" and bending the Knack song in a way that might make it fit, even though the original does just fine. (Hint: there's no way the singer wouldn't be a creep of the highest/lowest level.) That made me unfit for life. Fortunately, I was already there.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:38 AM on October 11, 2012


Thanks MetaFilter, now I'm socially unfit for the rest of the day.

hi, welcome to my entire life
posted by elizardbits at 12:21 PM on October 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


I somehow misread the first line and cannot get The Knack song out of my head, yeah, that one, which I won't name for fear of inducing it on others.


I couldn't find video of my friend Bernie the Trailer Park Queen performing My Vagina so you will just have to imagine. She had a chart.


And yes, she was wearing a tiara.



And no, there was no "hymen." I tried to figure out for years what it even might positive I had "lost" or "broken" mine in a nasty childhood accident involving an LP tank, a sharp piece of metal, and a veryveryVERY freaked out babysitter.
posted by louche mustachio at 12:31 PM on October 11, 2012


Vaginas, in tiaras, are coming down the stairs...
Vaginas, in tiaras, are shaving off their hairs..

here this won't help at all

posted by louche mustachio at 12:39 PM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Scarleteen is awesome in oh so many ways. More people should give them money; they receive no government funding, help tens of thousands of teens and young adults, and run on fumes and private donations.
posted by DarlingBri at 12:48 PM on October 11, 2012


Hymen/Vaginal Corona.

Thanks. That helps a lot. I was worried about that bicycle thing, but this sounds a little more like sunrises, or eclipses or something.
posted by mule98J at 12:53 PM on October 11, 2012


Vaginas, in tiaras, are shaving off their hairs..

Vaginas have no hair. Vulvas do, though.
posted by ocherdraco at 1:32 PM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Don't forget the Dr. Demento favorite Nine Coronas.
posted by Melismata at 1:43 PM on October 11, 2012


- ow don't stick a lime wedge in there

Wasn't that an ancient and not particularly effective means of contraception?


Limecat FTW.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 1:44 PM on October 11, 2012


Vagina is Latin for 'scabbard'

Previously.
posted by GeorgeBickham at 3:08 PM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


A lot of good and useful info, but I found the Virginity Cliches thing kind of irritating. A lot of girls are nervous about bleeding and pain their first time. The reason for the whole "You're a virgin? I wish you'd told me, so I could have been a little more gentle" thing is because the guy is worried he was too rough with a girl who perhaps wanted to be treated more gently but didn't say so. Maybe it's a cliche in trashy books (I don't know, I don't read a lot of trashy books) but it happens in real life for a reason. If a guy says that to a girl, he's trying to be considerate. If the girl was fine with him "pounding like a poundy thing," she can say so. But the fact that he asked is not a bad thing. I know that article was mostly a goof, but I think it kind of encourages teenagers to communicate less and assume more when they're having sex.

Everything about Bananas in Pajamas always seemed totally perverted to me, and the song was the worst part. They're coming down the stairs, and chasing teddy bears, to catch them unawares... It sounds like prison slang or something.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 4:42 PM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


I like the original phrasing of "a woman penetrating her vagina for the first time, either by herself or by having sex with a partner". The Scarletteen version changes this to "a woman having her vagina entered for the first time, either by herself or by having sex with a partner".

The passive case makes a subtle but huge difference.
posted by Iteki at 9:35 PM on October 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


"Vagina vagina vagina vagina vagina" - Stephen Colbert
posted by polymath at 10:44 PM on October 11, 2012


Rosie? The queen of corona?
posted by dr_dank at 5:55 AM on October 12, 2012


Wow. I'm way more suprised by this information than I should be. I feel like I've been an idiot here for not seeing the hymen breaking myth for what it is.
posted by humanfont at 6:34 PM on October 12, 2012 [1 favorite]


Humanfont, I think that your perception of the hymen-breaking thing may be because it's so often reinforced by what actually happens - even though there technically isn't a full-on cover for the vagina, there are still a lot of cases where first sex for a girl is a little painful and there is a little bleeding, which no doubt re-emphasizes for a lot of us "oh, yeah, I heard this would happen." It's harder to see the misconceptions when you maybe had first-hand experience of "but wait, Jane Doe did bleed her first time, so...I dunno."

I mean, I was also a little surprised by what I learned in that video and I'm a woman who has been sexually active for 20+ years. But the first time did smart, and I did bleed, so...that just made it easier to have a blind spot to the bits about the myth that didn't make sense.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:15 AM on October 13, 2012 [1 favorite]


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