These types of visits can more colloquially be referred to as virginity tests, which bodies such as the World Health Organisation (WHO) UN Human Rights and UN Women have all outrightly condemned.
American Rapper and producer T.I. has recently shared that he accompanies his 18 year old daughter, Deyjah Harris, to the gynaecologist’s office every year to check her hymen is still intact.
The revelation has sparked an enormous level of backlash across social media, and for good reason.
“This medically unnecessary, and often times painful, humiliating and traumatic practice must end … WHO states that there is no evidence that either method can prove whether a woman or girl has had vaginal intercourse or not,” said the UN agencies.
The myth of the hymen breaking being synonymous with losing your virginity itself has time and time again been dispelled. Reproductive healthcare organisation Planned Parenthood also issued a statement on Twitter: “Idk who needs to hear this but virginity is a made-up social construct, and it has absolutely nothing to do with your hymen … Some people think you can tell if someone’s had sex before if their hymen is stretched open. But that’s not the case.”
Ironically, the platform T.I. chose to reveal this infringing information about his daughter was on a women’s podcast, Ladies Like Us with Nazanin Mandi Nadia Moham, which provides a space for modern-day women to discuss issues facing them and experiences they’ve had.
In recent times, violations of women’s rights have been subject to change. It took petitions, perseverance and women pushing the boundaries to change abortion laws in Northern Ireland from criminalised to decriminalised.