The Bodily Functions Question

One thing I’ve noticed in books and movies too actually, is that the characters rarely ever need to attend to their bodily functions. You do see people vomiting and taking a pee, or talking about needing to pee but it seems that in books and films generally, bodily functions stop at vomiting and peeing.

Take flight of the phoenix for instance. Not once during that movie do we see anyone taking a shit or hear them talking about going to shit, or wanting to take a shit. Neither do you see the woman talking about menstruation or the need to take care of her sanitary needs.

I fail to understand why we can watch and read about people vomiting and peeing but we can hear them say “oh hang on I must go and take a shit,” or “stop the car I must buy tampons.” We all do it for crying out loud so why deny its existence in books and movies?

I must admit that even though I feel strongly about it, every one of my 4 novels in The Lilean Chronicles series contains no mention of shitting or menstruation. Only one mentions peeing and only two mention vomiting. So why haven’t I mentioned the other bodily functions? I guess that although I know it’s stupid not to, I also know people probably wouldn’t like it.

I guess some things really are better left to the imagination huh?

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7 comments

  1. While I agree that you never read about bodily functions, I am ok with it… sorry.. I never intend to write about shitting, vomiting, menstruating etc… yes, i think those are ok left to the imagination.

    1. Hi there karmicangel, I guess it’s just the way my mind works. I agree some things are not necessary within a story, but I can’t help noticing their absence. I’m just weird like that LOL

  2. I concur. I find that most people don’t really talk about it in general day-to-day life either. I’m the only girl in my place of work and I think that if I mentioned tampons or periods the men that I work with would have a fit.
    I would have no problems writing about it though and certainly no problems reading about it, in fact I think that it would make certain situations seem more real. I read a lot of apocalypse narratives, so I think that a bit of poop would make it much more realistic. Haha.

  3. Actually the only time that tampons are ever mentioned is if it’s one guy trying to emasculate another guy during an argument, “Shall I get you a tampon?” Which I find a bit insulting to be honest. END OF COMMENT.

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