I know a there is a large percentage of people who are not aware of what FGM actually is. FGM stands for Female Genital Mutilation and it is something that is happening throughout the world and more people need to become of aware of it and help females from becoming a victim. I have learnt about FGM a few years ago when completing some training at work and it was only recently I was watching an episode of ‘The Good Doctor’ and it is the first time I have ever seen Female Genital Mutilation be featured on a TV series.
What is Female Genital Mutilation?
Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is a procedure where the female genitals are deliberately cut, injured or changed, but where there is no medical reason for this to be done. It is also know as ‘female circumcision’ or ‘cutting’ and is usually carried out on young girls between infancy and the age of 15 and is most commonly before puberty starts.
FGM is illegal in the UK and is a form of child abuse. It is a very painful procedure and can seriously harm the health of females, it can cause long-term problems with sex, childbirth and mental help. (more details can be found here).
Why is it carried out?
There are many reasons on why FGM is carried out this can vary from one region to another and it can also change over time. Some believe that it is a necessary part of raising a girl and to prepare her for adulthood and marriage. Others believe that it is motivation by different beliefs about what is acceptable sexual behaviour and ensures premarital virginity and marital fidelity.
FGM is considered to reduce a women’s libido and helps her to resist sexual acts. Some associate FGM as a cultural ideal of femininity and modesty and includes the notion that once body parts are removed that are considered unclean or unfeminine the body is now clean and beautiful.
What are the risks?
As soon as the procedures are carried out the complications can include: severe pain, excessive bleeding, fever, infections, urinary products, shock, death and many more.
The long-term consequences can include: urinary problems, vaginal problems, scare tissue, sexual problems, childbirth complications, psychological problems and many more.
Why are we talking about FGM?
I decided that I wanted to do this post because even if only a small handful of people read this then they are a small handful of people that are more aware of some of the issues young girls (an estimated 200 million) are going through.
These young girls do not understand what is happening to their bodies and are being made to believe that women should not enjoy sexual acts and have any type of sexual pleasure taken away from them. Not only are they having their pleasure taken away but they are being put at risk of infections and death from infancy.
These young girls are not being given a choice of what happens to their own bodies and there are many countries and some religions that allow this procedure to be practiced and are taking away something very important from these girls.
Just look at the percentages below to help you get an understanding of what young girls throughout the world are going through and how this is seen as ‘normal’.
Theses percentages and more information on FGM can be found here!