While there is literature on the medical aspects of FGC, we were interested in understanding the daily life experiences and bodily sensations of Somali-Canadian women in the context of FGC. Fourteen women living in the Greater Toronto Area were interviewed. Interview data were analyzed using a phenomenological approach. We found that the memory of the ceremonial cutting was vivid but was frequently described with acceptance and resignation—as something that just is; that was normal given the particular context, familial and cultural, and their young age. Most of the women recounted experiencing pain and discomfort throughout their adult lives but were intent on not noticing or giving the pain any power; they considered themselves healthy. They dealt with both pain and pleasure in the context of their busy lives suggesting resilience in spite of the day-to-day difficulties of daily life. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Data Availability: All relevant data are within the paper. This is a qualitative study of only a few participants in a highly connected community. In order to maintain the anonymity of the participants, it is necessary to not include more data than are in the paper, itself.
Sex in the Somali community: from private to public
By Stephanie Linning for MailOnline. Seven Somali men who were part of a strong sex gang involved in the abuse, rape and prostitution of British girls have been jailed for more than 40 years. Victims aged between 13 and 17 were preyed upon, sexually abused and trafficked across Bristol where they were mercilessly passed around the men's friends for money. Many of the girls were groomed to view the abuse as a normal part of being the 'girlfriend' of a Somali man, as it was said to be 'culture and tradition' to be raped by their 'boyfriend's' friends. Scroll down for video. Mohamed Jumale, 24, left was jailed for 10 years. He forced a year-old victim to be raped by his brother, Omar Jumale, 20, right to save him from hell as he 'wanted to turn gay'. Omar was jailed for two years.
I remember the day I finally caved and asked my mum about the birds and the bees. It came as a surprise when my mum reassured me that sex is as natural to humans as eating or sleeping, and that there is nothing morally bad about engaging in it as long as it is done under the right circumstances. However, I quickly came to realise that this liberal discussion about sex was not as normalised in my wider community as it was in my household. In the Somali community, sex is discussed using hushed tones, and is veiled under the pretence of privacy and shame. As young people, we are often warned of the detriments of rampant sex and of the fact that sexual activity outside of marriage is a sin in Islam, a religion practiced by most Somalis, but rarely of the benefits that can be reaped both emotionally and physically from consensual sex. For the most part, our parents shy away from discussing sex with us because it is seen as a deviant act, unless it is performed in private between a husband and wife. Although I can understand that religion and their need to uphold an Islamic standard has an impact on the way that sex is discussed in our community, I also feel that it is important that we break the taboo and silence and explore it in an open and healthy way. Though never explicit, it is unrealistic to expect or believe that young Somalis do not engage in premarital sex at all. For this reason, we need to implement the societal changes that will allow us to have these conversations both amongst ourselves and with our elders.