We have another blog brought to you by Tiktok. I want to first start off by saying I know social media isn’t a great place to take anything seriously or believe everything I hear. I do go out and do my own research and honestly I’ve learned a ton from Tiktok. There are so many accounts where people genuinely want to teach what they know and it’s great. I stumbled across a video taking about the husband stitch and I immediately had to know more.
I had never heard of the husband stitch before seeing this particular video. I needed to know more. I quickly found out it is one of those things I wish I didn’t know about. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad I know, but I also don’t want to know. It makes me sick. When I asked my mom if she knew what it was she said yes and couldn’t believe I had never heard of it before. I quickly got to researching. I can’t believe the husband stitch is an actual thing. I can’t believe doctors of all people are the ones doing this. This is insane.
For those that don’t know what they husband stitch is, it’s an extra stitch given during the repair process after a vaginal birth, supposedly to tighten the vagina for increased pleasure of a male sexual partner. It’s meant to decrease the vaginal opening and ‘repair’ it back to it’s pre-pregnancy and delivery state. Is your stomach turning with disgust yet? Mine is.
As if the husband stitch wasn’t disgusting enough, they do it because there’s this notion that the vagina stretches out after child birth. That it can’t return to the size it was before pregnancy and child birth. The reality is, vaginas have physiologic recoil and elasticity that help it return back to normal size after birth and delivery. Vaginas are literally made to birth babies. The need to be stitched up after birth is commonly due to tearing or having an episiotomy (a cut made to the perineum). The thought that an extra stitch be thrown in to ‘tighten’ up the vagina is solely for men’s sexual pleasure.
Can you even imagine going through pregnancy and child birth, just for your body to be objectified and being violated with an extra stitch without your consent? Child birth can be traumatizing and I can’t even imagine the extra trauma brought on by your body being sexualized while you’re trying to recover and enjoy what should be such a beautiful moment with your new baby.
From what I understand, those that have been given the husband stitch have so without their knowledge or consent. They have reported pain during sex, feeling violated at such a vulnerable time, pain at incision site, leaking urine or feces, inability to use tampons, prolapse of the uterus, emotional trauma, increased or persistent bleeding, infection at the incision site, and scar tissue formation. They also have an increased risk of needing another episiotomy or their first episiotomy because of the extra stitch placed.
I will mention that it is not a normal practice for doctors to perform the husband stitch, but that there are exceptions. Doctors are also not trained on the husband stitch and there are no scientific studies to show how many women have been affected. There’s no clear method for evaluating how prevalent the husband stitch is in obstetrics. Essentially there’s no proof if it works or if it should be done and it’s up to the doctors to perform it. The proof is there though that it is unnecessary and does more harm than good.
The fact that something like this even exists is disgusting. The fact that women’s bodies are being objectified at such a vulnerable time is disgusting. Women should be able to fully trust their doctors, nurses, etc. and know that their wants and needs are being put first at all times. Although this is not commonly practiced, it’s disturbing that it even exists and scary knowing some doctors are the exception. Jokes or even saying anything about the state of a woman’s vagina after birth that pertains to it being sexualized is so wrong. The focus should be on healing and bonding with your baby. Vaginas heal themselves.