Got a comment this morning with a little bit about how douchebag is not a term the commenter has ever heard a woman use, only men, and that it is an anti-woman term.

OMG, y’all, I could not disagree more!

And my reasoning is even related to body politics though not specifically fat. *grin* I’m so excited to get to explicate this.

A douche is a device that, in theory, cleanses a woman’s vagina via a nozzle that is inserted. The douche bag portion of this program holds whatever liquid is being used, whether it is water or some water/vinegar/perfume mix or, historically, an antiseptic like Lysol.

But what a douche really does is wash away the natural secretions of the vagina and totally fuck up the ph of, if you’ll excuse the term, your pussy. The vagina has a self-cleaning process and messing with that opens you up (no pun intended) to everything from yeast infections to bacterial vaginosis.

The “benefit” of using a douche product regularly is that you can perfume the general area and, during your period, prevent a certain amount of the mess that happens if you’re going for some penetrative action.

I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather just clean up than risk bacterial infection. Because omg, no, thank you no.

So, douches are bad for you. Douches themselves are cloaked in this concept of health but are, in reality, kind of dangerous.

And that’s why, as a general rule, it strikes me as a feminist term when used as an insult or warning.

I don’t call people bitches. That is an anti-woman term in my opinion. I don’t call people pussies or cunts or any other common term based on women’s genitals. Because there’s nothing inherently bad about genitals, yo.

But I will surely use “douchebag” if there is something going down that purports to be harmless or even good for you and is instead, in fact, kind of dangerous.

As a final note, while there are always exceptions, I’d just like to say: Let’s keep douchebags away from our vaginas, in every sense of the word.


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59 Comments

  1. KarenElhyam
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    I got into quite a row with another woman once about this term. I use it for pretty much the exact reasons you list here, plus it’s just so darn satisfying.

    But when I used it around this woman, she was incredibly upset, and I explained my logic that it’s a device that hurts women in exchange for preserving the delicate sensibilities of men who don’t want to deal with our grodiness, and she seemed to imply that even if that’s true, it’s still an object only women use, so using it as an insult makes you anti-woman.

    Still don’t quite get how that logic holds up, but there it is.

    • TR
      Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

      she seemed to imply that even if that’s true, it’s still an object only women use, so using it as an insult makes you anti-woman.

      That is such an interesting take on it. Huh. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to me since it was invented by men and marketed by men to women and… Yeah. Badness all ’round. I think the woman-only nautre of it actually makes it an EVEN MORE AWESOME term for women to use.

    • LilahMorgan
      Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

      The argument I’ve heard that makes the most sense is that most people hear the term and think “that has to do with women’s genitals! Icky!” So regardless of the intent it reinforces women = icky. I’m sympathetic to that point of view, that’s just not my experience as to how people tend to view it.

      • TR
        Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

        I can appreciate that argument. Maybe this really does depend on a person’s circle? The usage I know is that douches are gross – not so much as a commentary on women=icky. Interesting.

      • Travis
        Posted October 24, 2009 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

        Yes, exactly. I think the majority of people who use it (especially guys) are unaware that douching is bad for you.

  2. Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    Douchebag is my second favorite pejorative term right after Bill Murray’s glorious exclamation ‘mother pus bucket!’

    • TR
      Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

      Oh, man, that’s a good one, too.

  3. Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    Oh my god! Last month, when I blogged about the problematic double-meaning we’ve granted the word “fuck” in our society, I TOTALLY quoted someone on “douchebag” (in what was the world’s longest post).

    Here’s my post.

    Here’s what I quoted from.

    And here’s the quote [it's long!]:

    All of us here know what a douchebag represents. Yes, it’s a tool of the patriarchy in every sense of the word. But getting comfortable with the douche insult and its derivatives in the feminist sphere inevitably results in comfort with it in the non-feminist world, and people generally aren’t privy to the whole feminist take on the term. Calling an Australian politician a douchebag in the comments of IBTP is one thing, but out-feminists calling people douchebags in the company of folks who haven’t come around yet isn’t exactly going to do anything to bring the world closer to treating women as the human beings that we are.

    I would bet that it makes those folks think that, holy crap, even feminists don’t have a problem with insulting someone by connecting them to a soiled vagina. Unless the feminist name-caller can fully stop and explain the douchebag-tool connection and why other feminists have embraced it – which is, let’s face it, not typically an appropriate turn to a conversation – then she has only further contributed, perhaps even more significantly, to the mysgony [sic] that we battle against.

    I basically agree with this.

    • Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

      Also, I should point out: I have been known to use ‘douchebag’. But I tend to be pretty conscious of who I use it ~around~.

    • TR
      Posted October 24, 2009 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

      Thanks for the links! I look forward to reading both your post and the larger piece this quote was taken from.

      Some of that is why I thought it was important, even though it isn’t really the main thrust of this blog, which IS a feminist space even though I don’t usually unleash the feminist polemic, to explain why “douchebag” works for me.

      I absolutely stand by my right – and, honestly, by the responsibility we all have to call out bullshit – to have pointed out that post as a bad example but I definitely am willing to have a conversation about the douchebag terminology that isn’t framed as “omg, your meanness erases your point!” So I am heading over to read your links. :)

      • Posted October 24, 2009 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

        Why thank you! I always love when people Read My Stuff.

        Yeah, douchebag isn’t one that bothers me *so so* much. I mean, I try and be careful about when I use it (and it’s especially fraught given that I present as and roughly identify as male, so I really do avoid it in most instances). But I very much understand the reasoning behind finding it an OK/effective word.

  4. Posted October 24, 2009 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Re: Douching is only for vaginas.

    Not true. The much “beloved” Dan Savage says he always thinks of “Anal Douching” when he uses the term Douche. Which is gross in a whole other way.

    So yeah, you can apparently douche your ass, so lets not make this all about the pussy ladies.

    • TR
      Posted October 24, 2009 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

      AN EXCELLENT POINT.

    • Posted October 25, 2009 at 1:12 am | Permalink

      Interesting that “douchebag” is a known insult and “enema bag” isn’t, eh?

      • Posted August 30, 2010 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        Sometimes it just comes down to plain on linquistic aesthetics. Enema Bag doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, wouldn’t you agree?

  5. Posted October 24, 2009 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    I love your closing line! Great explanation–I’m going to bookmark this to reference to anybody who gets on me about calling something a douchebag.

    Also, I’ve been behind on my reading so haven’t been here in a bit–I love the new layout!

    • TR
      Posted October 24, 2009 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

      I’m glad it made sense. *grin* Welcome back!

  6. Posted October 24, 2009 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    I have always avoided the term because I subscribed to the “douchebag only for women therefore women are intrinsically dirty and icky” school of thought. Your interpretation sheds a whole new light on things, though personally, I’m not going to start using the word. At least, now I can see it from another angle, though.

    As for the “anal douche”, wouldn’t that be an “enema”? I think I prefer “enema bag” as an insult but it just doesn’t have the same ring to it!

    • TR
      Posted October 24, 2009 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

      I think, though I have only just now begun to ponder the intricacies of this question, that an enema would be more involved than an anal douche? I’m really reluctant to google this one, though that’s my usual strategy in these situations. *grin*

      • ChloeMireille
        Posted October 26, 2009 at 10:11 am | Permalink

        Maybe, just maybe, you can turn on the SafeSearch and it’ll hide most of the OhDearGodNo! from you.

    • Posted October 28, 2009 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

      It is my understanding that an enema is intended to be used to clean out the colon in a constipation situation, rather than just for sprucing up the place for more pleasant sex play. There are situations where an enema might be medically indicated, and of course, there are people who dig that as part of sex, but I think that’s the distinction between an enema and an anal douche.

  7. Posted October 24, 2009 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

    I think of “douchebag” and “douchenozzle” for people who piss me off to the point of chapping my vagina. Now, thanks to this blog, I’m aware that it can chap other parts as well. THE MORE YOU KNOW!

  8. O.C.
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know that we can assume that douching was invented by men, because we don’t really know when it began. Certainly hundreds of years ago, perhaps thousands.

    But possibly more important than the cleansing use of a douche, was that women would use it for birth control, attempting to flush away semen. It didn’t really work, unless you figure that causing pelvic infections would damage your fertility, so that’s effectiveness in a way. Lysol was often marketed with advertisements that made coded references to this use. If I recall correctly, “germs” in a Lysol ad were assumed to really be spermatazoa.

    So, that’s just my interesting historical footnote. But I’ll agree with the commenters who suggest that for most people the “douchebag” insult is too easily read as an insult to women’s genetalia, even if that’s not what’s intended.

  9. Carolyn
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

    Let’s keep douchebags away from our vaginas, in every sense of the word.

    I want this on a t-shirt, bumper sticker & flag please!!

    Second – Douchebag just rolls of the tongue a whole lot easier than say “You giant colostomy bag!”

    Lastly – I think there is a little bit of irony in the thought of not making myself look bad while I slander someone else.

    • Keyper
      Posted October 25, 2009 at 3:10 pm | Permalink

      Haha! I totally second the call for a shirt!

  10. Posted October 24, 2009 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    But a colostomy bag is a medical necessity. A douche is just… douchy.

  11. Lady Lately
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

    I never really considered the meaning behind the term– I just thought it was something popular to use as an insult within a particular feminist subgroup (because all my favorite fat-bloggers know each other), this really helps.

    Also, Sniper- LOL.

  12. joojooluv
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    I don’t like the term douchebag. I do say “fucking douchebag” a lot though, but I am a native of Brooklyn.

  13. Posted October 24, 2009 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    I bought some (disposable) douche a couple of years ago. I had a yeast infection and needed to hose out my innards so I could insert the Giant Antifungal Suppository of Doom. I used it one time only. So it’s not that douches serve no purpose at all, it’s more that they aren’t nearly as important as they think they are.

    • Carolyn
      Posted October 25, 2009 at 6:14 am | Permalink

      Oh Meowser what a perfect point!

      “they’re just not as important as they think they are.”

      That’s more what I think of when I think of a person being a “douche”

  14. Angela
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

    Awesome! Thank you, douche or douche-bag is my favorite insult to call someone, for all the same reasons you so wonderfully explained!

  15. Posted October 24, 2009 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

    My husband and I both joyfully call people “douches” – which sadly, resulted in my son calling my husband one a while back. Totally within context and used appropriately though so, bonus!

    Sadly, I think there are so many ignorant men (& women) out there who still go all “ewww!” over anything vagina-related (and still put down the feminine a lot) that I kind of think calling someone a “douche” for them, is just more lady-slammin’. So although I want to use it, I also think it’s a little misogynistic in many hands (or mouths, or blogs).

    Does that make sense?

  16. Me
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

    Like MaMa always said;

    “Hot water and the shower head set on”jet” ”

    For Your Health.

  17. JupiterPluvius
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    I love “douchebag” as an insult, and to be honest, I could not give one sparrowfuck whether some men use it as a misogynist insult or not. I don’t talk to those men, so I don’t care what they do.

    Also, I guess the ZC have accomplished their mission, which was to get attention. I don’t get their strategery at all–first they’re all “Oo oo we have to get on the Fatosphere Feed” and then the blog is all “DIETS ARE AWESOME Y’ALL BOYS ARE COOL AND FAT GIRLS ARE SEXXAY BUT NOT TOO FAT BECAUSE DIETS ARE AWESOME” and now they’re all “OH BOO HOO THE HUMORLESS FEMINISTS HOW MEAN THEY ARE THE MEAN GIRLS” as if that means they win.

    They do not win.

  18. Posted October 24, 2009 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    I have almost the exact same post at my blog lol

  19. Posted October 24, 2009 at 11:49 pm | Permalink

    I use the word “douchebag” quite a bit, actually, for much of the same reason that you do. It’s basically a noun for “you ruin the natural order of things.” “Douchenozzle” is popular in my vocabulary too.

    Then again, I’m also known to do hybrids of words too when I’m especially impassioned. So I end up calling people “doucheheads” and “assbags.” I guess an “assbag” could refer to what Dan Savage was talking about.

  20. Posted October 25, 2009 at 6:04 am | Permalink

    “Douche,” “douchebag,” “doucheweasel,” “douchemonkey,” and “douchenozzle” are all common words around this house.

    Some of the people here have made some interesting arguments in favor of not using it. I personally won’t stop using it because I agree with you, TR, on its being a generally feminist-friendly insult.

    A douche: an irritating thing that is never coming near me or my cunt and which we are all, by and large, better off without (occasional medical necessity aside).

  21. Carolyn
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 6:19 am | Permalink

    I wonder if its regional at all in usage? When I was growing up, you were 100% not allowed to ever say butthole. None of the neighbor kids said it, it just wasn’t allowed. As an adult, I use the term asshole quite frequently, yet somehow butthole still seems to be the raunchiest and foulest word to me. (it’s even hard to type).

    So maybe it depends somewhat on who you hear using the word douche, and how it is being used.

  22. Sydera
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 8:35 am | Permalink

    I have to respectfully disagree with you.

    As background, I work at a college, so I hear 18 and 19-year-olds talking to each other every day.

    People of both genders use “douchebag,” but it is overwhelmingly a term used by men to taunt other men. It’s the same people who call each other “fag” who call each other “douchebag.”

    It is my opinion that douche, or douchebag, is an insult because of the perceived “dirtiness” of women’s genitalia. Now, I’ve seen a douche, combination nozzle, hose, and bag, and used one for a medical trouble I’d rather not talk about.

    Here’s my feeling on the metaphor. It’s the same as calling someone a tool, just more gendered and more sexual. You see, a “tool” is something that has no agency of its own, that rather is a prop for something else. A “douchebag” similarly lacks originality or agency. The person who is a “douchebag” is seen as a small-minded prop of some unpleasant ideology. It’s the same as jerk–but instead of talking about male masturbation, we get our unattractive image from a tool associated with the female body.

    Now, most women know that douching is not good practice, but not all men are aware of that fact. If you look at, say, surveys of high school students in sex ed, many say that they would ask their girlfriends to douche “for cleanliness.” For the life of me I can’t remember where I saw this information, but I think it was in some sort of women and gender studies talk.

    If you think back about 15 years to the Summer’s Eve and Massengill commercials that are now no longer on tv, you might remember the tag line “For that Not-So-Fresh Feeling.” Commercial vinegar and water douches used to (and to some extent) trade on the idea that women’s genitalia are dirty. These commercials were considered risible at the time. I remember in elementary school that little boys used to parrot the “Have you ever felt not-so-fresh” line from the commercials. Now, at that age I had no idea what a douche or douching was. I can only think that these boys parroted a joke from their fathers. There’s nothing intrinsically funny about the commercials, but they got parodied on Saturday Night Live, I know, and I believe that the explosion of “douche” as an insult dates from that era.

    The South Park episode about the Bush/Gore election, btw, represented it as a contest between a Giant Douche and a Turd Sandwich. Now, I thought this was really funny, but I will observe that the form of the giant douche looked like a boxed Massengill/Summer’s Eve squeezy douche and not like the more medically sanctioned nozzle/hoze/bag apparatus. I think the funny is still descending from those 80s and 90s commercials.

    In any case, I maintain that douchebag has just as many bad implications as bitch. Calling someone either thing is an insult, but they both contain negative ideas about women’s bodies that are tangential to the insult itself. A lot of insults engage in negative thought about women’s bodies.

    Bitch: women are animals. Incapable of rational thought, they exist to breed more puppies.

    Douche: women’s genitalia are dirty and risible.

    Pussy: see “women are animals”

    Even compliments can do so:

    Baby: women are perpetual children. I hear men being called this now too, so it’s being “reclaimed.”

    Chick: being reclaimed, but see “women are animals” and “women are perpetual children”

    There are some insults, like jerk, that look negatively on men’s bodily functions. A “jerk” would be someone who masturbates too much (and is thus impaired in brain function according to old scare stories about the harmfulness of masturbation. When women masturbate we don’t “jerk” anything, so this insult is gendered male).

    My question is why do we need insults, however colorful they may seem. When I criticize someone, I try to do so in the most accurate words possible. Now, I don’t blog anymore, so I can’t say what I’d do if I had a feminist blog, but I can tell you I don’t walk around my ordinary life using any of this language. For me, the only “safe” curse words are the ones that apply evenly to all human beings–I’m basically down to fucking and pooping as my metaphors. I am ok with this. I don’t consider “douchebag,” “lame,” “retarded,” “jerk” and “bitch” as any kind of significant loss from my vocabulary.

    • Posted October 26, 2009 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

      …I have never heard any context in which it’s equatable to an intended-to-emasculate term such as “fag” or “pussy.” I’ve only ever heard it equatable to “jerk” or “pompous ass” or similar. And yes, this includes when I heard the word used in high school and college (which wasn’t that long ago, if you’re curious).

      Not saying your assessment is wrong or that you’re misunderstanding the intent of those around you, but I am saying that your context might be a cultural one, and might not be for American culture as a whole, and certainly not for English-speaking culture.

  23. wriggles
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    I suppose in the end it’s a case of personal allusions/associations, it might also be specific to the US experience somewhat.

    I don’t like the term and I cannot free it from the reasons for women douching. It doesn’t offend me enough to object to others using it, I just wouldn’t myself.

    Funnily enough though, I don’t mind bitch, which I think speaks of women being anything less than the compliant supplicants.

    Whenever I hear a woman being called bitch by a man, that’s all I can hear. When women use it, it takes on a different meaning-being unnecessarily objectionable!

    I have to confess to calling someone that the other day, after she tried to run me over.

    I could never mind cunt though, I just can’t feel offended by it anymore, no matter what the intent, similar to the way I feel about being called fat.

  24. Posted October 25, 2009 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    Because there’s nothing inherently bad about genitals, yo.

    Just out of curiosity, does that mean you wouldn’t use “dick” or “prick” to refer to a man who is a jerk?

    • Posted October 25, 2009 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

      I know you were asking Marianne but I thought I’d throw in my response. I am still in the process of removing ‘dick’ and ‘prick’ from my vocabulary, as well as ‘cunt’ — unless I’m referring to an actual cunt — for that very reason.

  25. Susan
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

    I couldn’t agree more! My definition of a douchebag is “something/someone that presents itself/theirself as something without which women are inadequate, but which is actually harmful to women.”

  26. lola
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    I hate the erasure around this ‘insult’ — douche bags (syringes, bottles, etc) were used by women to prevent pregnancy and deadly STDs — and now (just because a clutch of Mad Ave asshats made it all about sweet-smelling vaginas) the erasure is being perpetuated via insults. (It also disappears part of the struggle for birth control in the last century; women who used douching as a means of BC were given cover for using the product by pretending it was about ‘hygiene’).

    I’m not so muzzy-minded that I think it will ever become the height of praise(“Hillary: A hard-ass, rockin’ douchebag!”) but really, it *should* be a compliment. Women used the practice to try and free themselves of diseases and unwanted pregnancies — yet now, most people think it’s about bullshit like Summer’s Eve, precisely because the beauty industrial complex rendered the real history of the practice invisible (which makes for a perfect circle of being erased — argghgh).

    • JupiterPluvius
      Posted October 28, 2009 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

      The problem with this is that douching DID NOTHING to prevent pregnancy or STDs, any more than it does anything to prevent vaginas smelling like vaginas.

      What you’re talking about as an “erasure” of some mythical self-empowerment is actually an incorporation of an earlier (19th century) patriarchal command. Douching does not prevent pregnancy at all. Douching does not prevent STDs at all. What does help prevent both of those things is condoms, but since that’s inconvenient to teh menz, women were instructed to fuck up their vaginas by douching.

      Douching was always, ALWAYS a tool of the patriarchy. The fact that some female doctors and midwives and health advocates believed the hype doesn’t change that douching has zero health benefits for almost everyone and zero contraceptive benefits for everyone.

  27. Jennyrose
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

    @ sydera – You said with far greater eloquence and feminist theory anything I could ever have said. Can you just write posts like that off the top of your head? You are an amazing writer and have an incredible way of weaving in feminist theory and pop culture. Even if I didn’t agree with you I would still admire your writing and articulateness (if such a word exists).

    I do remember the SNL parodies. I remember one in particular which was also a spoof that there was no commercial endorsement Michael Jordan would turn down. Victoria Jackson and Michael were walking on the beach and she said, “Mr. Jordan, do you ever get that not-so-fresh feeling?”

    TR may be referring to something I said but I don’t know if I said it was said exclusively by men or not. Either way I think this is something worth discussing. I do hear women saying it but my mind goes to the men because they are criticizing other men for having womanly qualities. We all know it is the ultimate hetero insult for a man to compare another man to a woman, no less the thing that gets the not-so-fresh stuff out.

    Douche means shower in French. Americans all seem to titter and tee hee when they hear it used in French.

  28. Posted October 26, 2009 at 1:14 am | Permalink

    I’m risking censure for not reading a single damned comment (it’s late, I’m tired), but I can’t help but throw in that douchebag doesn’t mean bag of douche to me anymore. It’s one of those words that’s been so overused it’s lost connection with it’s original meaning for me.

    The only controversy to me is between me and my brother-in-law over whether it’s one word or two.

    Clearly, it’s one.

    Peace,
    Shannon

  29. Posted October 26, 2009 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    i totally agree with you, marianne. my pal lynn harris — formerly of N.O.W.! card-carrying feminist! — did a piece for Radar about using the word, and quoted me (another feminist, tho currently cardless) saying: “Douching itself offends me, and is part of a patriarchal marketing conspiracy to make women think they smell bad down there.” so to me, “douchebag” mocks cynical marketing of a hateful product, not the awesome (and self-cleaning) vagina.

    as i told lynn, douchebag is also extremely fun to say. “You get the pursed lips of the ‘dou’ sound and then the squished face and long tail of ‘chhhhhe,’” says Marjorie. “Delicious.”

    i understand those who are uncomfortable with the word, tho, because they feel that OTHERS think it’s about disparaging the vagina. to you i suggest TOOL. i like that this is a penis word that doesn’t imply “big, swinging.” there’s no hint of power or masculinity to it, as there is with, say, “dick.” it just EXUDES loserdom. (i think “weenus” does too, so you could go with that as an alternate.)

  30. silentbeep
    Posted October 26, 2009 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    The thing is, I always thought of a douchebag, in fact it’s very existance and what it’s used for, as being totally anti-woman in itself.

  31. Posted October 26, 2009 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    this pretty much sums up how i feel about variations of “douche” and wielding them as insults.

    there’s really nothing good about douching! it’s disguised as hygiene (one of my biggest pet peeves as a feminist is that tampons/pads and other vag products are always in the “hygiene” sections of stores, because bleeding, UTIs, and vaginal dryness are just so unclean), but really douching is just hosing off a naturally clean area with what’ll end up being a world of hurt.

    i hate douchebags.

  32. Posted October 28, 2009 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

    I just remembered something…when I was in high school, a local gal got suspended from school for wearing a t-shirt that said “The vagina is a self-cleansing organ.” It was technically and medically correct, as was the vocabulary, but still, she was booted for a week.

  33. Posted October 29, 2009 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    Great post! I say douchebag CONSTANTLY. Mainly because the consonant-to-vowel recipe of the word makes it absolutely luscious to say. Forgetting about what the word means for a sec, just say it, it’s like a damn slice of velvet cake with a slam of cold milk at the end. Now I feel even better about it with a good pro-woman argument for it’s usage.

  34. Umala
    Posted October 29, 2009 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    I have a lot of exposure to this term — I work at a college, have 2 sons in their early 20s, a boyfriend in his early 20s, and a lot of World of Warcraft guildmates in their early 20s.

    I rarely curse or use “earthy” language and I am offended by terms like “bitch,” but I love “douchebag” and use it frequently. I especially love it for the connections to women.

    A douchebag is a tool that can be used or ignored by a woman as she chooses, and after use is discarded. It’s something that imitates a penis in its action (insertion into vagina, expulsion of liquid), yet fails to perform any desirable function of a penis, neither giving pleasure nor helping to create life. It claims to promote hygiene, yet does the opposite by promoting infections.

    A “douchebag” is thus one who is useless, made to be discarded, undesirable, impotent, hypocritical — all talk and no action. Someone to be scorned, especially by women.

    Plus, as others have mentioned, fun to say! A great insult!

    PS I am 50 years old and have never used a douche in my life. I have educated my WoW guildmates on the harm of actual douching, and it seemed to make them like the term all the more.

  35. Posted October 30, 2009 at 12:24 am | Permalink

    Perhaps it is a giant coincidence that one of my friends linked to this Youtube video this morning, but I feel compelled to link it anyway.

  36. Melinda
    Posted November 8, 2009 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    Here’s the thing. Douches aren’t always evil. They’re not ALWAYS used for “cleaning” the vagina so that it’s nice and acceptable per whatever ridiculous standards promulgated by companies looking to make a profit. They can also be used with vinegar, for example, as a home treatment for conditions like yeast infections or BV, with the intention of restoring the natural pH of the vagina by getting rid of whatever is causing the problem.

  37. Kate
    Posted November 11, 2009 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    As a gen Y from Australia I had never come across the term douche other then a mythical contraceptive used sometime last century, until an episode of Dr Oz on Oprah.

    A woman from Russia had written asking Dr Oz why women in the US didn’t douche as much as Russian women even though it was clean and good for you.

    They very thought that some where in the world women still did this angered me so much. The thought that women were still being told that bullshit story instead of the facts about their bodies makes me so angry.

    I don’t use the term for that reason. Insult = yucky vagina = acceptance that vagina’s are icky = need for douching

  38. Emily
    Posted December 31, 2009 at 11:30 pm | Permalink

    I must say, my favorite insult is ‘scumbag’, which is supposedly evocative of a used condom. Of course, at a church-run summer camp I worked at as a teenager this term was forbidden, so we came up with ‘scumbucket’, which implies a whole new level of dislikability and is much more fun to say. And it’s definitely most fitting for those dislikable men (although it carries more of a sleazy connotation and less of a ‘frat boy wearing two polos with popped collars’ connotation)

  39. Posted July 10, 2013 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    I love that you took the time to breakdown the meaning of ‘douchebag’! And I do tend to use the term quite a bit, however, I always think of the kind of douche gay men would use… so I guess it can be homo-derogatory as well “P

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  1. By douchebag « on October 29, 2009 at 12:37 pm

    [...] is my absolute FAVORITE word.  The Rotund posted a nice little rant on how awesome the word is: http://www.therotund.com/?p=682. Leave a Comment No Comments Yet so far Leave a comment RSS feed for comments on this post. [...]

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