Why I got a labiaplasty

First off I’d like to say that I absolutely love this website and the fact that so many women have been able to overcome their insecurities about their labia. The majority of women and girls who are insecure and want labiaplasty are normal and there is nothing wrong with their labia, therefore shouldn’t have it done. On the subject of labiaplasty, I’d just like to say that the procedure itself, when stripped to the core, carries very low risk (asides from the risk that comes with any surgery). The labia majora is a very vascular area and, in women with labial hypertrophy (long labia) have little nerves in the ends of the labia. The risk lies in women who choose under-qualified surgeons or worse get low budget labiaplasties. These surgeons remove the labia clumsily for purely aesthetic results which can leave the vulva botched. There are some women with no diagnosable medical issues with their vulvas who’s lives are vastly improved by the surgery. I was well aware that what I had was natural and beautiful yet it just got in the way too much. Bear in mind mine were very much longer than average, in the top percentile in fact. Labia that poke out and are visible and long are fine. My point is that simply telling girls to NOT do this procedure won’t solve the problem. When young girls are told to not do something they’re desperate to do it only makes them worse. We have to educate about labia self love but we can’t censor labiaplasty. It wasn’t invented because of porn. I didn’t do it to look like a pornstar. Instead of being told that I was obviously doing it for men and porn, I had a supportive mother who listened and understood why I was considering this. I was able to have my procedure done with a brilliant surgeon who specialises in vulval, vaginal and cervical cancer. He did not operate on the sensitive tissue around my clitoris and I still have labia minora. Also, there is no stigma around men having surgery to correct excessively long foreskin. It gets in the way and causes insecurity too, yet somehow when a man gets an operation to help his sex life and comfort it’s totally fine. And yes I understand the vulva is more complex than the foreskin, but labiaplasty shouldn’t involve the complex nerves around the clitoris and should only be performed on women with excessive labia. Just because we want to change an intimate area DOES NOT mean it’s to look like pornstars, we have our reasons. It’s not a shame that I had this procedure, my labia are still valid and I’m not a pushover. Also LARGE LABIA ARE BEAUTIFUL!!! I have no problem with them!! I just think it’s inadvertently sexist to not allow women to make a choice about their bodies.

Thank you for your insightful submission.

I need to be clear about my stance on labiaplasty surgery: I am not fundamentally opposed to it in all circumstances. It has its place. It’s place is not only limited to cases where it is medically necessary. Where the labia are causing discomfort during physical activities which can’t be managed, and are affecting quality of life, it may be appropriate. Where the labia are affecting self-esteem and this can’t be addressed through counseling or a change in mind-set, labiaplasty may be something to consider.

What I am opposed to is hasty decisions to undergo the procedure where physical discomfort CAN be managed, or where self-esteem issues CAN be overcome. In this sense, my stance on labiaplasty is that it should be done for the right reasons and should be done as a last resort.

Many women, like you, who undergo labiaplasty for the right reasons, can live happier lives after the surgery. On the other hand, when done for the wrong reasons and as a quick-fix, it can lead to further insecurities and create new self-esteem problems, instead of solving perceived problems.

Many of the submissions on this site are from women who say that they considered undergoing surgery because of perceptions that their labia were abnormal, and that after educating themselves about what is normal, have reached a point where they embrace and love their labia as they are. They are relieved that they did not hastily go through with the procedure, and that they took the time to learn that their perceived abnormalities were absolutely normal.

I’m glad that your labiaplasty surgery was a positive experience and that it has improved your life. The issue is not a one-size-fits-all situation, and a decision on surgery is a personal one which nobody should be shamed for going through with.

Clare xo

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