When the topic of life modelling comes up, guys seem to think there’ll be way less embarrassment for women doing it because a woman won’t ever get a noticeable erection in front of everyone. And okay, yeah, a cis woman would not have that problem. But it’s a mistake to think that being naked in front of people is totally easy when you have a vagina.
Here is a brutally honest list of things I worry about sometimes while I’m up there posing.
Do people secretly think I look weird or ugly? Will they discuss it amongst themselves later? I’ll tell you a secret: I have long, pronounced labia minora. Howard Stern once saw a woman with this feature and said something like “your crotch looks like a box of Kleenex!” Yup. Pretty much. When I was a teenager and got naked in front of a guy for the first time, he stared at my crotch for a while and finally said “…I don’t understand what I’m looking at.” Another time, again in my youth, I got naked with a particular dude for the first time and he pointed and said “What is that?!?” Other guys didn’t say anything out loud but I still sensed that they were puzzled about my topography. I think these things happened back then because the internet – in all its perverted diversity – was not yet a thing, so the only pussies most teenaged guys had seen were tidy little slits in a copy of Penthouse or Playboy. Nobody’s reacted weirdly to the sight of my lady business in a long time now – not even virgins. Still, I have this conviction that I don’t look the way a woman is “supposed” to look in that area, and I wonder whether other people think so, too. Plus I have all the usual worries about my fat ass and my cellulite dimples and the way my stomach goes into rolls when I bend in certain directions. I simultaneously want the artists to think I’m attractive, and don’t want them thinking of me in that way at all because ewww.
Granted, guys who model probably have concerns about looking weird or ugly, too. But I bet they mostly worry about their dick size – not about every square inch of their skin ever. I can tell this from the kinds of naked pics potential suitors have sent me, actually. All kinds of unflattering foreshortening and weird angles, but with their dicks showcased. These guys clearly aren’t worrying about their thighs smushing outward and looking fat when they sit in a chair, y’know?
I am having an unexpectedly wet day. Will people be able to see/smell this? Some days my vag is randomly more proactive in its self-cleaning process than others. One moment, everything’s fine. The next moment: *glug*. I’ve never actually dripped fluid onto the model stand but on a few occasions I was sure I was about to. I’d be standing there clenching with all my strength, wondering: if I drip, what are the odds of someone noticing? Will they see the droplet falling down? Will they see the little wet stain on the sheet I’m standing on? Other times the situation isn’t that dire but I wonder whether my personal areas are visibly glistening. Or I’ll shift from one pose to another and suddenly catch a whiff of my own smell (crotch, armpits, or both) and be paranoid that everyone else in the room can smell it, too. Which they probably can’t, since they’re generally sitting pretty far away from me. But when I do a really long pose that has breaks in the middle, the instructor will usually come right up to me and put a tape outline around my body so I can get back into pose accurately. It is totally feasible that the instructor can smell my vagina at these times. Aaaaargh.
Do I have bits of toilet paper stuck to my labia? Did I forget to tuck in my tampon string? …Yeah. That awkward moment when you come back from a pee break, get naked in front of 10+ people who will be staring at every part of your body for the next 20 minutes, and realize you neglected to give your crotch a last-minute once-over before you left the bathroom. And remember, kids…my labia are hanging right out there. When blinding-white toilet paper scraps are stuck to them, you’ll see it from a hundred paces. Double-aaaaaargh. And a visible tampon string would just be so incredibly gauche.
And then of course there’s the predictable thing of is this pose giving people sex thoughts? But I’m sure male life models wonder that, too, sometimes.
Anyway, my point is that being naked in front of people is fraught with peril no matter what genitals you have. It would be nice if guys stopped telling me “You’re lucky! You don’t have to worry about popping a boner!” like that’s the only stressor that exists in this situation and without it, the job must be smooth sailing all the way.