Tightened vaginas to elongated necks: so much for men's pleasure
Things we do for beauty! Tsk. Tsk.
You know the feeling when after a day of wearing those skinny jeans, you slip into your comfy pajamas and just chill in life? Now imagine what would happen if you were to stay in those skin-tight jeans for the rest of your life. Sounds terribly uncomfortable, right?
But as you read this sitting comfortably in your pyajamas, there are some women out there who are living with some excruciatingly painful brass coils around their necks in a bid to carry forward their 1000-year long legacy and look beautiful.
We are talking about the Kayani women from the Padaung tribe of the mountain region between Burma and northwest Thailand. Still can't figure out who they are? Well, they are commonly referred to as the 'giraffe women' with elongated necks. Now you get it?
But Where Did This Weird Custom Come From?
When those beauty bloggers pouting away to glory on the Internet can make some women want to get a lip job done and when some actresses flaunting washboard abs, can make many others want to run and get a tummy tuck, then what makes you think that women in the old times couldn't get inspired by a giraffe and aspire to get long necks?
Yes, according to one of the several theories about why this weird practice came into existence in the 11th century is that the elongated necks and well--the brass coils--seemed attractive to the men of the Padaung tribe. So, all this torture, just to please men and attract a better husband.
On the other hand, some say that these coils were worn in order to look unappealing to the slave traders so as to avoid catching their fancy and being sold off. And wait for this--another theory states that wearing coils was just a way for the Padaung women to indicate that they can be taken only by the men of their tribes and that outsiders needed to back the hell off.
While the majority of these theories make this practice sound like it's all for and about men, there are also stories about how these coils represent the power of a dragon fostering the legend that Padaung women are descendants of Mother Dragon. In fact, some say that the coils were introduced to protect women from tiger bites. As if the tiger couldn't have bitten them on the uncoiled parts of their bodies.
How Is It Done?
Don't get us wrong here, but these guys start young. They first bind a single brass coil around a young girl's neck because that's when her bones are small and flexible. Her age is directly proportional to the number of coils around her neck because as she grows, the smartass elders keep adding more coils in a bid to turn her into a full-fledged human-giraffe in life.
The target is to wear a full set of 25 brass rings around the neck. This set consists of a wide coil at the base (near the shoulders) with a small coil wrapped around it at 90 degrees followed by the remaining rings that reach up to the earlobes--thankfully sparing their ears, mouths, noses, and eyes to hear, speak, breathe, and see with respectively.
But Hello! Here's a Much-Needed Reality Check
If the Padaung peeps think those that those heavy-duty coils actually give them the super-long neck of their dreams, they are highly mistaken because all that neck piece gives them are super-drooped shoulders and nothing else.
Yes, you read that right. The neck never stretches in the first place. The weight of the rings simply pushes their collarbones and upper ribs almost 45 degrees down from their normal positions. The result? The neck looks longer and they feel happier.
Damn! This Tradition is Mind Boggling To Say The Least
It's bizarre how people blindly go against nature and intentionally deform their bodies in a bid to carry out certain traditions that have no logic except for, well--being traditions.
Not only does this sound like a custom made to please men, it is upsetting to see women endure so much pain that too willingly since they are conditioned to live with it and look at it as a pride-worthy part of life regardless of the torture.
That's not it. Having never experienced the comfort of living a life minus those rings, these women have no idea what freedom from those shackles feels like. We so wish that someday, logic will win over customs and these women will be free, at least of the heavy loops, just like all of us.