So I don't know if it's normal practice for a mother to take her daughter to her first pap smear. I'm not even sure if it's normal practice for a mother to sit her daughter down and explain the who what when where whys and hows of a pap smear. I suppose it all depends on the reason and the age a girl starts these exams. My mother and I still have not had that talk, but it seems like a moot point now and I'd probably shut that conversation down pretty fast if she ever brought it up. It's too late for that discussion.
I had heard that you're supposed to start them at 18 if you hadn't already for whatever reason, so I got all the preparation fear stories from my friend. That should have been enough to put it off for awhile, but I have closet hypochondria for cancer, and I figured it can't be found if you don't let them search for it so I bit the bullet and went. I did however make an appointment with a female doctor who basically told me she wouldn't do them in the future if I stayed over with my other doctor for everything else. I don't blame her really because I bet as a female general practitioner, she got stuck with an exorbitant amount of pap smears, especially from first timers. So I obliged since all I needed her for was to continue writing prescriptions for my would be pizza face that my other doctor had been successfully treating.
Let me just say I have always always always preferred going to the dentist over the doctor because you don't have to strip at the dentist. Unless you have one of those creepy dentists that knocks you out and feels you up while you're out. But at least you're unconscious for that and you don't necessarily know it happened. (not that it makes it right) I'm just saying that stripping at the doctor was always what I feared most about going, and I could count on not having to do so at the dentist since we didn't have pervy dentists, that we knew of. So you can imagine the shear horror I felt not only having to strip, but having cold, metal salad tongs go where cold salad tongs where never intended to go. Well I suppose this might be someone's idea of a good time but it's not mine.
This is a complete violation of my privacy and dignity not to forget comfort. But this is all in the name of prevention right? So we should continue the practice of letting doctors violate us in this manner right? I still can't get used to it and dread it every time I go. I sure wish they'd find a better way to check us ladies out.
I've always wondered what the doctors that perform them are thinking. I always kind of thought when they look at the chart when they enter the room the thought runs through their head "dammit not another pap smear today, I've seen more vaginas than I care to see in my life time?" Or something along those lines. That's why had I become a doctor, I would have specialized in an area far from the hootie not requiring the nekkedivity of any of my patients.
I know guy's don't have it all good at the doctor, but at least they don't have salad tongs stuck in any of their orifices on a regular basis and at such a young age. So not only do we have to pop out babies through a tiny canal, we have to get violated on a regular basis, and a period every month (I don't know any woman that loves it, but if they do they are nutso crazy and I absolutely can't relate to them on any level). I suppose men have to put up with the mood swings and hormonal crazies that many women take out on them. Maybe that's punishment enough. I don't know though because that's a lot for a woman to tolerate. I suppose we can be a lot for them to tolerate.
Maybe this is a topic not meant to be discussed by mothers and daughters. Maybe you don't fully appreciate the horror that is a pap smear if your mother is involved. Or perhaps the horror is exemplified by the preparation and presence of your mother. So maybe my experience could have been much worse. I choose to believe this, for me anyways.