It all started with a DVD selection around one month into our relationship.
It didn’t seem like a serendipitous choice at the time but it might have been the catalyst that set us up for a happier union.
A comedy. A fairly average Will Ferrell movie if I recall correctly. But we’d had Indian for dinner prior and that made all the difference.
I’d spent the first four weeks of our courtship tightly clenching and making tactical detours whenever I felt the need to, well, release. But I was caught off guard by one of the only amusing jokes in the film. As I let out an uproarious laugh something else slipped out, much to my horror.
My first fart in front of a boyfriend. What a milestone.
I tried to ignore it and pass it off as a squeaky couch spring but there was no fooling him. Despite cracking a few jokes he was, much to my surprise, not phased in the slightest.
While some might think that honesty around these kinds of bodily functions is plain bad manners or even the end of romance, I’m inclined to believe it’s just the beginning.
That casual recognition of my accidental arse acoustics has lead to a fairly open conversation around the rest of our respective expirations.
And our relationship is better, and happier, for it. I am happier for it.
Jeremy Glass from Thrillist sums it up perfectly.
“Everybody poops. Also, everybody deserves happiness. Therefore, from a logical standpoint, everybody deserves to be able to talk about poop with the person who makes them the most happy.”
As much as some people like to believe the love of their life is shitting roses and farting rainbows, the reality is that we all pee, fart, poo and burp multiple times every single day of our lives. Can you imagine not being open and honest about any other part of our life that occurs so commonly? Can you imagine being so ashamed and secretive about any other normal part of a functioning human body?
I’ve heard countless stories, mostly from women, about disastrous cases of emission avoidance because they couldn’t bare the thought of having that conversation with their date/partner/spouse.
There’s the woman I know who went on holidays with a new partner and was so concerned about pooing in the same apartment as him, she refused to go number two for a whole week. Until, out of desperation and uncomfortable constipation, she snuck out of bed in the middle of the night to unload and ending up passing out from pushing too hard.
Talking about bodily functions is not about sharing size, shape and consistency. And it’s not about denigrating into a ‘who can rip it the loudest’ competition.
It’s just taking the stress and shame out a completely normal, albiet icky, range of acts.
It’s saying, ‘I’d avoid the bathroom for a while, babe’ instead sending yourself to hospital.
It’s saying, ‘Those lentils are doing some damage’ instead of inexplicable sprints the bathroom and unleashing every perfume in your arsenal to cover it up.
There are so many hurdles to jump and challenges to face when it comes to successful relationships so why make bodily functions one of them?
Trust and intimacy happens as soon as you let go of the hang ups. And after you let go of the numerous hang ups out there you can see your partner for the complex and completely real person they are. Not the fluff-free unicorn they’re pretending to be. Successful relationships are about embracing the perceived flaws and imperfections of the one you love, farts, poos and all.
Where do you stand on this conversation? Are you for or against poo chat with your significant other?