@1 You summed it up well. However I am guessing that man parts itch more than lady parts which is why people see it more.

Also it definitely doesn't fit traditional gender roles for women to be itchy.
@2 Very much so. That's a perfect time to adjust sitting position too- cross/uncross legs while tugging on garment. No need for your hand to go near the crotch in a public area.
If the itch is that bad- go to the restroom
@2 - Agreed. Equal rules for equal itch.
When I see people scratching around in their crotch areas, all I can think of is that they have vermin or bacteria crawling around down there... Ew.
Both vag-scratching and ball-scratching are inappropriate... no one wants to see it, so don't do it. And bra strap adjusting is one thing, but when people are constantly adjusting the cups, they are probably wearing the wrong size bra.
It isn't as bad as someone scratching their butt.
I say use the facilities to scratch. Unless you have crabs. Do those things ever itch!
By all mean, scratch away, ladies (and gentlemen). Then you can move on to picking your nose and cleaning the dirt out from under your toenails.
I discreetly adjust myself at least a few times a day, as the situation merits. Nothing wrong with wanting to sit comfortably. Ladies, just go for it. If you've gotta adjust the vag a little bit to make yourselves comfortable, I will not hold it against you.
Sorry, but I think adjusting or itching genitals is a private activity. Excuse yourself or be stealthy enough not to be noticed.

As far as the other comparison, breasts aren't genitals, and the U.S. is in the cultural minority within the western world in treating them as equitable. Lighten up, they're just boobs.
And just for the record, we're talking about adjustments *over* clothing, right? Because if you're repeatedly jamming your hand down your pants in public, that's a different story.
Men who itch their balls in public are rude. That's all it is.
Huh? If my arm itches, I'm gonna scratch it. If my leg itches, I'm gonna scratch it. If my crotch itches, yeah, you guessed it. Tough shit if you don't want to see it.
Oh, and as for the "lady" with the itchy vag: Go for it, babe. It doesn't bother me.
I don't care what you scratch, but "itch" is NOT a synonym for "scratch." Grrr. I'd like to say that it's not a transitive verb at all, but apparently some fools use it to mean "to cause to itch."
Scratching the V. through pants isn't going to do much unless they're yoga pants. So it's gonna have to be a hand-in-pants thing, which should not be done in public. Unless you're trying to get someone to go away. But that will probably just turn them on so you should try farting instead.
@17 Thank you so much for not making me think I was the only one to notice.
@1 ftw. ... unless it's on a bus.
@15 Was that you fixing your whale tail on the bus?
I've done it. This is Seattle. People will pretend not to notice.
So long as the hands are above the pants I really don't care. Seriously, this is one of those things that doesn't bother me. I usually do the leg crossing thing or pant adjusting thing, itchy crotch thankfully isn't too much of an issue for me, but I find public spitting far more disgusting than passing one's hands over a clothed crotch.
I suspect most straight guys will be turned on if they see a woman "adjust" herself in that area. I know I would.

But come on. You're an adult. Scratch when it itches. If people can't handle that, it's their problem.
ever since i was a young teen i always took notice of ladies (mainly cheerleaders at football games) pulling their underoos out of their behinds...and to this day as an adult, i see it happen often still. guys adjust their johnson - get over it.
Scratching makes me thing you have an infection- I don't think scratching is ever good manners. The less adjustment, the better, but there are limits on what degree of maladjusted underpants a person can withstand.

I would rank the awkwardness from least to most: bra strap, waistband, boxer legs, bra cup, tight underwear legholes, non-scratching crotch adjustment, wedgie adjustment, scratching through pants, hands-in-pants adjustment, deep ass-crack scratching through pants, hand-in-pants scratching.
Scratch away! (And the more attractive you are, the more slowly and carefully you're allowed to do it). But everyone can scratch now and again. I mean, it's just occasional, right? If it's all the time, you've got more problems than just etiquette considerations.
@7 Not always. Women with large breasts, especially if they're not configured like the world thinks they should be (read: they splay out a bit/a lot), can need some cup adjusting. Also, there's the fact that the bra needs to be supporting up and high to work. But with large breasts, gravity and extra weight does their thing, bra sags, boobs sag, adjustment needed.
@7 - If only there were the perfect sized bra. There isn't. Most women are in between. And indeed there are in-between sizes, but only if you have small boobs. Anything over a "C" and you're lucky to find the perfect bra that doesn't muffin top nor gap nor strangle nor let the girls slowly slide under the band.

And then the bastards will discontinue it.

@3 "I am guessing that man parts itch more than lady parts"

Is there a single aspect of our lives that is not ruled by random gender-role assignment? Even itchiness?

Isn't anyone else sick and tired of women being told how they feel and are (you don't like porn, you aren't visually stimulated, you don't like sex as much, you're more monogamous)? Or is that just a chick thing?
I would only do this in private; we should maintain some standards that set us apart from the pipe-swinging crowd (apologies to those who believe all gender differences are the result of society's evil influence.) Also, I can't even imagine what it would be like to walk around on a hot day with all those PARTS down there, getting all friction-burned and stuck together...I think we probably thank the little baby Jesus that they don't haul it all out and hose it down on random street corners...
@29 Bras that "muffin top" FTW. That sounds kind of hot.

As for scratching, as long as you distractedly sniff your fingers afterwards, it's ok by me.
Anyone who thinks one "itches" oneself, rather than "scratches" oneself really isn't fit to be commenting on anything, anywhere, any time.
Fuck all you scratch negative bastards out there. I'm going dancing and I'll scratch as needed. If you won't boink me for it, I'll boink your friend! Then you get to hear all about how great it was the next day!!
@ 15. Absolutely! The inside of my knee itches so I scratch it. Why people immediately think that there's some kind of disease or hygiene problem associated to your crotch itching, just like everywhere else on your body, makes no sense at all.
subtly press up against a rough post and move up and down until the itch goes away.
@30 For reals.
Rule #1: scratch discretely or when you are sure no one can see
Rule #2: remove yourself to a place with no witnesses if #1 is not possible
Rule #3: if #1 and #2 are not options, and you just have to, the create a distraction, like bend over to tie your shoes, pretend a coughing fit....whatever, so you can cover up the vag-scratching and go for it
The worst is a little bout of anal itch! I live in NYC and when it happens, I have to turn around, see if anyone's behind me and if someone is there keep walking and hope it works itself out, but if not, I scratch away! Still, if it happens I try to skulk into some apt bldg doorway or something.
Make it quick, do it through clothes, and no scratch'n'sniff. Boys AND girls AND those in between.
Adjusting and scratching are different. On the one hand, grabbing and scooting the fabric of your clothing into a comfortable position is not very distracting. In some cases - especially with bras - it can even be a way to maintain your outward appearance. I see nothing wrong with quickly adjusting underwear, bras, shorts, etc. in public. On that same note, I think chest scratching is ok for men and women. A chest is just a chest, I don't see why it would be worse than scratching your back. I have no qualms about sticking my finger into my bra for a split-second boob scratch.

Crotch/ass scratching is different. There is no graceful way to scratch an asshole, not adequately anyway, and likewise, it's basically impossible to nonchalantly reach directly for your crotch in public. If you can pass it off as an adjust, more power to you, but I fail to see how that will result in an adequate scratch. Crotch/ass scratching is just generally too awkward-looking for public. That's when you dash to the bathroom.

HOWEVER. In the case that you are not in public, and are in a casual environment with close friends, what the hell? Scratch away.
What about Raphael Nadal who is super-hot and but pulls his shorts out of his butt on every single play?
The problem here is the people who scratch themselves don't care one way or the other if people scratch themselves most of the time, the people who don't scratch themselves seem to be bothered if ANYBODY does it.

Sort of like some of those other behaviors traditionally regulated by societal mores...
I wonder how many of the people who are opposed to scratching shave that area. I'm a woman, and while I certainly wouldn't stick my hand down my pants in public, I definitely have to scratch a bit over my pants on days when I haven't had time to trim a bit.
I also tend to itch more when shaving is due - I am totally cool with the 3-5 second adjustment (guys or girls), but anything beyond that should be taken into at least semi-privacy.

Also, sometimes the combination of the wrong thong and tight pants can just make things uncomfortable. Usually if I am sitting, a little strategic wiggling can get that itch scratched, hands free!
Ladies, have none of you used the sit on your foot technique in public? Then gradually move your foot out so it's half cross-legged. It's subtle and works better than a hand outside of clothing. More vigorous scratching can be better achieved when you move around a little, like reaching for your purse or backpack, etc.
There's a biiiiig difference between a quick ball-scratch and a VAGINA scratch. The latter involves, like, penetration of a bodily cavity. Can we get confirmation that the writer and you really meant to say "vulva," Dan? Because jesus god would I be horrified to catch someone walking down the street scratching her vagina.
I don't see the problem with either. A long as you don't do it for an extended period of time, I don't see what the big deal is for either gender. We've all got parts and sometimes they itch or get maladjusted in your pants... and you can't always make it to a restroom to fix it.

Get over it, people. For the SLOG audience, I'm rather disgusted by how stuck up everyone seems about this issue.
like mama said "don't scratch, wash" me...i'm just fffeeellliinn'
I like seeing how long a discussion like this goes before someone corrects "vagina" with "vulva."
Some of you people are just too uptight to believe. Yeah, I scratch my balls. I scratch my balls in public. And no, I don't pretend I need to go to the bathroom - 'cause I don't. What I need to do is to scratch. Or extricate some part of my junk from unexpected folds in my underpants.

Lemme guess, none of you have ever had to extricate some part of your junk from unexpected folds in your underpants. Yeah, right. I'm laughing at the thought of a whole room full of people smiling and carrying on through gritted teeth while suffering needlessly - meanwhile, for the cost of 2.5 seconds' worth of "dignity", I'm happy as a frickin' clam.

I know what side my bread is buttered on. Good luck with forever being uncomfortable, you dainty lil' schmucks.
I would assume women have more problems with pubic itching than men because women are more likely to shave or trim their pubic hair than men are.

and pube stubble itches like hell.
of course I usually just excuse myself to the bathroom and go all out, but I figure that's normal procedure for anyone with an overly undignified bodily problem.
@50 It's usually easier to overlook or even not think about the distinction, but... I couldn't. I had to go and picture it, and then I couldn't un-picture it, and then I had to say something.
Carry around a large purse/bag/book and use it to block sight of your crotch. Observant people will still guess what you're up to, but no one can technically see you scratching yourself. Alas, doesn't help for a wedgie or butt itch.
@29 (If only there were the perfect sized bra. There isn't. Most women are in between. And indeed there are in-between sizes, but only if you have small boobs. Anything over a "C" and you're lucky to find the perfect bra that doesn't muffin top nor gap nor strangle nor let the girls slowly slide under the band.

And then the bastards will discontinue it.)

You just described the clothing industry in general for women (for some reason men don't face this problem as much).

And I'm guessing it's not the vulva so much as the pubis mons and the labia majora (which corresponds to the scrotum embryonically) that itch. Ladies, can you check me on this?
I think people should feel free to pick their noses and adjust their body parts at will.

That said, when my nuts itch, I scratch them discreetly.
Vagina is the common use term for the vulvar/vaginal area. Sorry if you don't like it, but that's how people use the term. No one says vulva, ever, unless they're a doctor. It's like glans. It's penis and vagina not medically unwieldy terms.
Yes, I'd like one vulva wax, please.
Ya, baby, lick my vulva!
OMG You can see lady gaga's vulva!!!

NOT GONNA HAPPEN. Get over it.
"... If it is okay to itch your balls in public..."

I know it's been said, but it just can't be said enough. You cannot 'itch your balls' (barring some very dicey grammar and handfuls of poison ivy). You 'scratch' them. Please get it right.
It's not always itching, either. Some of us have balls which find their way into seriously uncomfortable positions, and a little yank-and-shift is needed to put the buys back in their proper alignment.

Please wait...

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