The first time I farted in front of my husband I was 17 years old. No, we weren’t married at that point; but we were dating. We were high school sweethearts.
On the day in question, I had no intention of passing gas in his presence. I mean, are there any young women out there who dream of farting in front of that cute guy from English class, that adorable barista in the mall, or in the arms of their brand-new boyfriend?
Yeah. Probably not.
But something I had eaten that afternoon wasn’t agreeing with my system, and I could feel the pressure building. Like it or not, the gas was rising. However, instead of sneaking to the bathroom or excusing myself for a moment, I clenched tight. I engaged my gluteus maximus muscles in a way I never had before; in fact, my buttocks were sealed so tightly they could have held a marble.
My butt cheeks could have melted M&M’s.
Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, that damn thing snuck out when my boyfriend placed his arms around my waist and his hands on my hips. When my boyfriend tickled my sides.
Thankfully, my anal exhale was relatively quiet, unobtrusive, and odor free, but my boyfriend had heard it none-the-less. My “toot” — no matter how small — had not gone unnoticed. And while he laughed and reassured me all was OK (he even passed what I can only describe as “we’re in this together” gas), I was embarrassed. I was mortified. And I felt this way about farting for years.
In fact, for most of our relationship, I refused to fart in front of my husband, even as he openly embraced his own gas without shame. Even though he continued to rip ass on me (or my bedroom pillow) most days of the week.
But the truth is, I shouldn’t have been so embarrassed, and neither should you. I mean, sure there’s a silly myth out there that women don’t fart — that gals who pass gas are uncivilized, uncouth, and disgusting — and that we should hide our farts, or apologize for our bodily functions.
Many women (and men) feel as though flatulence is offensive.
But none of us should be embarrassed by our butt trumpets, because a little rectal turbulence is normal. The calls of your sphincter siren are not out of the ordinary. Farts are natural — just another bodily function.
It may have taken me a while, but I’ve finally crossed over into a place where I can confidently say: Embracing your gas — and expelling it in front of your partner — can make your relationship stronger, your marriage healthier, and your bond more secure.
Because healthy relationships are built upon trust and acceptance; honesty and faith.
And because I honestly fart my brains out. I’d be lying if I pretended things were any other way.
Plus, I can speak from experience that “letting ‘em rip” in front of your partner is liberating, because your body is happier — and your mind is clearer — when your colon is clean.
When you can simply be yourself.
Of course, I didn’t arrive at this place of quickly, and I didn’t reach this decision lightly. For years I lied about my gas. At clubs I would walk away when my whiff went wild. When farts were being passed quicker than Jell-o shots on my 21st birthday. I always looked around at my colleagues with feigned suspicion when something slipped out at work. And once at a concert in Philadelphia, I passed what may have been the worst gas of my life, but instead of admitting the stinky bastard was mine I laughed it off, and passed the blame. In the process, I inadvertently blamed a dear friend — sorry! — because I was flustered and mortified. And because it smelled like Satan’s corpse rotting in the Florida son.
But then I got pregnant, I carried a child, I gave birth, and I stopped caring about stupid shit like shaving everything, every single day. I stopped caring about eating perfectly well-balanced meals (coffee counts as a meal, right?) and I stopped caring about the consequences of letting my farts fly — or taking ownership.
I remembered marriage is “for better or worse” and, well, he was going to start seeing me at my worst. So I started farting freely.
Soon, our home became a place of strange smells and even stranger noises.
But it also became a place of laughter, because let’s face it: farts are funny, no matter what age you are. And hopefully, in letting go a little bit myself, I’m imparting the lessons I’ve learned — that farts are natural and okay — to my daughter, too. (Just as long as you follow them up with an I’m sorry or excuse me.)
So sure, you could remain embarrassed by your butt and your bodily functions, but in my opinion life is much happier when you let in a little backyard breeze.
When you embrace the notion that yes, girls fart too.
Besides, to quote a far wiser man than I:
“Home is where the heart is, home is where the fart is.
Come let us fart in the home.
There is no art in a fart.
Still a fart may not be artless.
Let us fart and artless fart in the home.”
— Ernest Hemingway (Yes, seriously.)