10 Rules From The Buffalo Bills Cheerleading Handbook Will Force You To Make Your Daughter Quit The Squad Forever

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Have you ever heard the old saying that Buffalo Bills cheerleaders should be seen and not heard? Me neither. That’s because most people understand that cheerleaders are people too, instead of perfectly robotic, upstanding members of society who need to be told how to wash their vaginas.

Yes, you heard me right. Buffalo Bills management cares a lot about the performance of their cheerleaders—so much so that they have provided an overly detailed guidebook to instruct the ladies on exactly what they can and cannot do, down to the type of tampons they use:

The patronizing and controlling guidelines emerged as the Buffalo Jills cheerleading squad announced on Thursday that they are packing up their pom-poms for this season and will not turn out for the team.

The Jill Cheerleaders Code Of Conduct instructs the women on how to keep certain ‘intimate areas’ fresh, offering advice such as ‘When menstruating, use a product that (sic) right for your menstrual flow.’

Covering all conceivable bases about the cheerleaders and their bodies, the ‘General hygiene & lady body maintenance’ section of the book states that ‘A tampon too big can irritate and develop fungus. A product left in too long can cause bacteria or fungus build up. Products can be changed at least every 4 hours. Except when sleeping, they can be left in for the night.’

So much WTF here. Never in my life has anyone told me what size of tampon to use and how long to leave it in. I also find it hard to believe that tampon size and duration could potentially affect a cheerleader’s performance. Perhaps in very, very rare cases, women have suffered from fungal infections caused by leaving a tampon in for too long, but REALLY. There’s no way this is cause enough for concern to put tampon restrictions in an official handbook.

Dumb cheerleaders don’t know how to use tampons, everyone knows that. According to the all-knowing handbook, dumb cheerleaders also don’t know how to eat in public in a formal setting or communicate with people with disabilities. These pretty idiots need to be told exactly what to do and say to best represent the Buffalo Bills.

Though things are hairy in the Buffalo Bills camp with a class action suit claiming the team violated New York’s minimum wage laws and cheated cheerleaders out of pay, parents of dumb daughters can learn a thing or two to train up a young girl in the way she should go.

Take a page from the Buffalo Jills handbook when parenting your young lady:

  1. Don’t be overly opinionated about anything.
  2. Do not complain about anything.
  3. Say “Oh my goodness” instead of “Oh my God.”
  4. Do not consume a conversation.
  5. Watch your body language and never flirt.
  6. Say “excuse me” with any bodily function, even if no one is around.
  7. Don’t talk about politics.
  8. Don’t talk about religion.
  9. Don’t make sexual references.
  10. Don’t use the wrong tampons at any time, DUMMY.

(Image: bikeriderlondon/Shutterstock)

You can reach this post's author, Bethany Ramos, on twitter.
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    • tSubh Dearg

      Presumably you can’t consume a conversation, because it might make you fat!

      • Valerie

        Each word you speak is one calorie.

      • gothicgaelicgirl

        tSubh Dearg- We’re fucked so, very hard to get us Irish women to shut up lol.

        I’m pretty sure I’ve consumed at least enough to sink a small continent just this morning.

      • tSubh Dearg

        No wonder I’m overweight, it’s all caused by the amount of chatting I do! I wonder if written conversations count, or, if you talk really fast can you negate some of the calorific content of your conversations?

      • gothicgaelicgirl

        Then we’re definitely screwed lol I spend a LOT of time on blogs and forum sites like this…

        I blame the internet for me being a heifer!

      • Williwaw

        If you use textspeak, it consumes less calories, so start ROFLOLing.

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        I can agree that it’s very hard for you Irish ladies to stop talking. I swear I’ll say good bye to my riding coach at least four times before I actually get a chance to leave the farm because she’ll think of something else to say before I get out the door!

      • gothicgaelicgirl

        I always do the BYE BYE BYE BYEEEEEEE on the phone lol!!

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        OMG! My coach does that too. I didn’t really think it was a thing outside of the movie “Shaun of the Dead” (Shaun’s gf Liz does it), but when I heard my coach do it on the phone in real life, I was so amused!

      • tSubh Dearg

        This is in fact how every conversation ends in Ireland:
        “well, I’d better let you go – oh but did you hear about Mary down the road…..”
        *another 15 mins talking*
        REPEAT x 10
        Finally: Bye, bye, bye, bye, bye

        This sums it up (and other things that make you Irish)

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kpZbaz3Wlfw

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        That conversation ending is exactly how every conversation with my riding coach ends. And the Irish in me must be starting to come out, because I’ve started doing it too!

        And that video nearly made me spit my water all over my computer. :P

      • tSubh Dearg

        Mission Accomplished! :D

      • gothicgaelicgirl

        LOL My mom even does it now in the heavy Dutch accent it’s hilarious!
        Nearly every Irish person I know does that or we do the “Ah sure talk to you so!” and promptly hang up.

      • Mystik Spiral

        This is where a thesaurus could come in handy. Use long words and at least get your calories’ worth…

      • Butt Trophy Recipient

        Does this apply on the internet? Cuz if it does… I’m so screwed.

      • Paul White

        *looks at beer gut*

        Can confirm. Talking is why I’m fat. Ignore the chocolate.

    • Valerie

      Yeah, my radio show hosts have been talking about this. I just can’t even. I know they signed a contract but I doubt it included being groped and fondled. Yuck. That is the reason they are not cheering- 5 former Jills are suing because of what a horrible gig this is.

      • Bethany Ramos

        #washyourvagina

      • Obladi Oblada

        #manageyourmuff

      • Bethany Ramos

        LOL!

      • Obladi Oblada

        #containyourcunt
        This could be fun…;)

      • Bethany Ramos

        #brushyourbush

        Hahahha

      • Obladi Oblada

        #polishyourpoon

      • Bethany Ramos

        Hahha I love this.

      • Obladi Oblada

        It’s really more fun than it should be.

      • EmmaFromÉire

        #Fannycuretime

      • Bethany Ramos

        Hahahhaha

      • Obladi Oblada

        #tendtoyourtaco

      • Bethany Ramos

        #groomyourkitty

      • Obladi Oblada

        Hahahaha…my husband’s immediate response to this would be, “Only if I can use my tongue.” He’s such a pig. hahahaha

      • Bethany Ramos

        LOL!

      • tSubh Dearg

        #manageyourminge

      • Bethany Ramos

        LOL!

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        #weedwhackyourwoohoo

      • Obladi Oblada

        #weedyourladygarden

      • Obladi Oblada

        #pruneyourpoon

      • Valerie

        #Cleanyourva-gine.

      • Obladi Oblada

        #untangleyourtwat

      • candyvines

        #de-lintyourbint

      • Obladi Oblada

        Bahahahahaha

      • Kat

        Or #buffyourmuff

      • Obladi Oblada

        Nice. ;)

      • Valerie

        And OMG, where is Butt Socks when you need him?

      • Obladi Oblada

        #lostSocksinabox

      • Obladi Oblada

        I’ve gone through and re-read them all and I’m cracking up. Hil-ar-i-ous.

      • Bethany Ramos

        LOL – now I have hundred of catchphrases for lady grooming!!

      • Obladi Oblada

        Who knew there were so many colorful ways discuss personal hygiene?!

      • Butt Trophy Recipient

        You’re just mad cuz you don’t like to wash your feet daily!

        XP

      • Valerie

        Whaaaa? And where are my upvotes? You don’t like me anymore, do you? :-P

      • Butt Trophy Recipient

        Dude, you’re postwhoring so much today… hard to keep up

        :(

      • Valerie

        ?????????????????????????
        Oh dear. You’re lucky I just had a 3-glass-of-wine lunch or else this would have made me way more ragey.
        #HDY

      • Butt Trophy Recipient

        Dude, you got like 50 comments today already! I’m doing my best to upvote them all

        :(

      • Valerie

        Just joshing you. So have you stalked me yet on the internet? Valerie Puffalumps?

    • Guets

      “Say “excuse me” with any bodily function, even if no one is around.”
      I’m trying to picture these girls in the bathroom alone talking to themselves. What point does this serve? My gawd these are dumb.

      • Valerie

        If a Buffalo Jill farts in a bathroom stall alone does it make a sound?

      • https://twitter.com/FaintlyXMacabre Theresa Edwards

        Not if she whispers, “tee hee, excuse me.”

      • Valerie

        Why do I get a vision in my head of these girls as like, Disney princesses? They talk to animals….I guess talking to furniture and bathroom stall dividers isn’t much of a leap. “Oh, I’m so sorry, bathroom partition! I hope my gas did not offend you! Teehee!”

      • Obladi Oblada

        I wonder what happens if they shart?

      • Valerie

        It better come out in Bills colors!

      • Obladi Oblada

        Thanks a lot @disqus_ZHF3LU4CGe:disqus. I’m now sitting in my office laughing like an idiot. Thankfully, I’m the only one here.

      • Kat

        Be sure you still say “excuse me” if you commit a bodily function.

      • Obladi Oblada

        Not to worry. When I guffawed like a buffoon I politely excused myself to no one. My southern belle, pearl clutching, lady like manners are intact.

      • Heather Knodel Melson

        I’m going to get slammed for this one, I know it, but this is the one thing I actually agreed with. I believe this exercise is trying to implement a habit. If you say “excuse me” every single time you burp, toot, sneeze, or cough, it will become a habit — a good habit, as manners never go out of style.

        I’m waiting for the bashing and/or the screenshot of my comment to appear in another Mommyish article. For the record, I thought everything else was ridiculous.

      • Valerie

        Do they ask the Buffalo Bills to do the same? If so, fine. They are cultivating an image and I can understand that. I mean, the Yankees have to be clean-shaven and have close haircuts and I think that’s very respectable for the image they are portraying. But if this is specific to the Jills I have a big problem with it.

      • http://Mommyish.com/ Eve Vawter

        I could feature it if it will make you feel better!

      • Mystik Spiral

        But where do you draw the line and just let your hair down and relax? I wear bras and shoes at work, but you better believe the first thing I do when I get home is lose them both. I also take off the makeup and put my hair in a ponytail. I know these things aren’t necessarily “manners”, but I don’t think I need to present myself AT ALL TIMES the way I do most of the time out in public.

        Also, while I would never curse at work, if I’m alone and stub my toe, you better believe there’s going to be at least one “fuck” coming out of my mouth.

      • EmmaFromÉire

        The bras come off and the fucks aren’t given when I get home. It’s my house and i’ll fart like a trucker if I want to.

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        I’ve spent enough time in certain settings where I need to be super polite so I very rarely forget to excuse myself if I need to. That being said, I’m not going to slam you, because your opinion is valid and with some people, that works for them.

      • gothicgaelicgirl

        I do this…
        But it’s more from force of habit of doing it around the kids to teach them.
        I burp? “Excuse me”

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        If I’m with people I don’t know well or a more formal setting I’ll say excuse me, but with my boyfriend and my parents, I’ll burp and if they look at me say “what?”
        But my parents are usually REALLY relaxed about that sort of thing. Half the time after I burp, if my mom’s there she’ll ask if I feel better lol.

      • gothicgaelicgirl

        lol!! I used to be more easy going until my fella did a fart and I laughed and said WOAH your arse’ll be burning after THAT one.
        and then a week later the 8 year old repeated it in the schoolyard. Luckily her teacher and I get on well and she admonished the little one but secretly told me it was funny as hell.

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        Hahaha. Yeah, I know I’ll have to keep myself in check at home once I have kids. That sounds exactly like something I’d say to my boyfriend!

    • WriterLady

      This only reinforces my embarrassment at having been a middle school and high school cheerleader. There are so many prevalent stereotypes, and these professional squads only enhance those stereotypes. However, it’s important to note that professional cheerleading is worlds apart from high school or collegiate cheerleading. Whereas NFL cheerleaders exist solely to look pretty on the sidelines, scholastic cheerleading is a legitimate sport in most cases. Sure, many of the girls play up their appearances on game day, but you can bet that the advanced tumbling/gymnastics and stunting are no easy feat. It often requires extreme athleticism to pull off the routines (this includes both the female and male cheerleaders). But, yeah, NFL cheerleading is an affront to all things feminist. I’m glad the Bills cheerleaders are demanding more money, but why don’t they shed light on some of the other glaring problems? Like, oh, dictating personal hygiene requirements and mandating weekly weigh-ins. And forcing the women to be robots, devoid of intellect or personal opinions.

      • Bethany Ramos

        Good point! I definitely agree that cheerleaders deserve respect.

      • WriterLady

        Thanks, Bethany! I don’t think ALL cheerleaders deserve respect, but many do. I was mostly pointing out the huge chasm between “professional” cheerleading and other types of cheerleading. Even then, there are some girls who choose this route so they can wear a short skirt. But, as the sport has advanced, I think this type of shallow mindset has become the minority. I suppose it all depends on what type of school one attended. Most of the girls on my squad were honor students and involved in other sports (soccer, track, etc.) and activities. As an aside, I actually know a professional cheerleader (not very well, but she was friends with the crowd that my brother and his wife hung out with). She embodies everything that is wrong with professional cheerleading–posing in next-to-no clothing, allowing creepy men to post offensive things on her social media page, etc. Oh, and as soon as she became a Ben-Gal, her IQ appeared to plummet. Despite having a master’s degree, she stopped discussing anything of substance and turned into a Barbie doll. Ha!

      • Bethany Ramos

        There’s the good and the bad for sure, but like you said, athletic cheering is HARD. And very unrelated to tampons. ;)

      • WriterLady

        Absolutely!

      • Rachel Sea

        Maybe she has similar contract requirements. If she likes her job, and wants to keep it, she might have to stick to dumb topics.

      • WriterLady

        I somewhat agree. She actually doesn’t “say” much of anything, and she never did–even prior to winning a spot on the squad three years ago. It’s just a lot of pictures with her cheer buddies at nightclubs and a slew of other places. The Ben-Gals must have less restrictions, as she poses with alcohol on occasion (along with her fellow cheerleaders–out of uniform, of course), which I think is a good thing since they must be a less rigid organization. She’s really a sweet girl, and also very smart. She teaches in Grades 6-8, I believe, but never discusses anything having to do with her teaching career, either. I think she might just be a very private person (which is a good idea when you have several thousand FB friends/stalkers, and goodness knows how many Twitter fans).

      • Psych Student

        Thanks for reminding us that actual cheerleading takes some real athletic talent. I can’t run and jump and lift and kick like that.

      • Armchair Observer

        Unfortunately, the courts don’t view cheerleading, at any level, as a sport.

      • WriterLady

        Some states now legally recognize cheerleaders as student athletes. But I agree that there is much more work to be done. The athleticism required of competitive cheerleading is on par with most sports. It’s basically a form of gymnastics. https://www.aacca.org/content.aspx?item=Resources/Test.xml

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        I think Penn and Teller did an episode on cheerleading for their show Bullshit a few years ago. I do think it is a sport, at least at the amateur, high school level, but they pointed out that there are a LOT of safety issues that are sometimes overlooked. I’m sure there are great coaches out there who make sure there are enough spotters for specific tricks and that are properly certified in first aid and know how to treat sprains and other minor or more serious injuries, but there are a number that aren’t. And obviously P&T do have a bias, but I found what they had to say interesting and that there needs to be work done both within cheerleading and outside of it.

      • WriterLady

        Yes! I was going to mention the dangerous aspects of cheerleading. I don’t have a statistic on hand to back this up, but the last time I read about the issue, I learned that there are more injuries in cheerleading than there are in football (arguably the most dangerous sport). Part of this is inherent to the sport itself (throwing people in the air and catching them on a tile floor is an extraordinarily dangerous maneuver–even for those who are well-trained), but there definitely needs to be more and better regulations. Thankfully, I think organizations are actively moving in that direction. The organization I cited above mentions that many squads now have to carry insurance if they are performing at the competitive level. I’m not sure that’s extremely helpful, but in my day, any person could be a cheerleading advisor/coach. In reality, the coach should be well-trained and knowledgeable of all facets of tumbling, stunting, etc.

      • http://nessyhart.wordpress.com/ pixie

        Yeah, like I said, the Penn and Teller thing was a few years ago, so already out of date, but I think it’s great that there’s hopefully a push to make it safer with better trained coaches.

    • Obladi Oblada

      That list at the end is remarkably close to how I was raised…with the exception of the tampon thing. You NEVER talk about that stuff.

      • Bethany Ramos

        I feel that!

      • Obladi Oblada

        It’s crazy how accurate that is and it’s very common in the south. You know…cotillions, debutantes and the like. I was to behave as a lady at all times and I mostly did until I discovered the sweet nectar of the gods that is commonly referred to as vodka. *sigh* Then I became a ‘table dancing lady’. My pearl clutching (but wonderful) mother still hasn’t recovered from some of the things I did from 1992-1996. ;)

      • Bethany Ramos

        LOL! And I went to cotillion too. :/

      • Obladi Oblada

        Hahaha…I never went to cotillion. Thank God. I think I may have burst into flames.

    • http://wtfihaveakid.blogspot.ca/ jendra_berri

      So THAT’s how you use a tampon! Goodness, and all this time I’ve been shoving leaves up there for 10 hours at a time. Thank heavens there are organizations like these to show women how to take care of their box!

      • darras

        You mean ‘lady body’. Box is such an uncouth term!

    • CW

      My sorority had such a detailed set of rules governing our appearance that we used to mock it in my chapter. Our pledge mommy basically told us to use our common sense and that as long as we looked well-groomed and stylish nobody was going to nit-pick.

    • Kay_Sue

      Some of these are ridiculous, but I understand the not expressing opinions of a variety of types. Cheerleaders are a very public face for the organization. They do more than just cheer games–they go to public appearances, work with charities, even do USO tours overseas. It’s not about shutting up, but about presenting the organization well. The only issue I have with that is that I don’t know that players have the same restrictions, and they too are the public face of the organization and should have the same censure. I know some teams have pretty strict media policies, but I don’t know about the Bills in particular.

      A lot of employers have similar policies on opinions. In the military, it can be an actionable offense. My former employers each had social media policies that prohibited me from expressing opinions on certain subjects online if I had identified myself as an employee of their company. I have personally fired someone for violating that policy. My personal opinion on that aside (I don’t agree that employers should have any say in any part of their employees’ personal lives that is not directly work-related), aside from the tampons, oh my goodness, and talking to yourself, these don’t seem that far off from the policies that were in place at my work places.

    • Layla

      Has anyone ever watched making the team the Dallas cowboy cheerleaders on CMT. I’m sure they also had an extensive list. I always loved when they said a girl was not “show ready” basically code for ugly. They were way harsh.

      • Bethany Ramos

        Yes, I watched that show and have no shame!! It was very intense and pageant-y.

    • AP

      Did anyone see the Raiderette lawsuit earlier in the year, where it turns out the girls are basically not paid for their time?

      Cheerleading has the highest incidence of traumatic brain injuries of any other sport except football, and cheerleaders often don’t have access to athletic trainers and team doctors that football players are allocated. That’s reason enough not to let your daughter be a pom-toting Hooters waitress on a field.

      • WriterLady

        Professional cheerleaders don’t need this level of support because they don’t perform gymnastics moves or do stunting–at least to my knowledge. If we’re talking high school and college, then yes. That’s where cheerleading becomes a legitimate sport, hence the reason you’ve suggested medics and athletic trainers. These girls are hardly akin to Hooters waitresses-in-training, but I’m guessing that was more of a tongue-in-cheek comment directed at professional cheerleading (which absolutely involves playgirls on display). They only to need to be able to perform very simple dance routines that any 6th grader could do. They do, however, have to be tanned, toned, gorgeous, and willing to wear a washcloth-sized skirt with their midriffs showing. Oh, and also willing to sacrifice their intelligence and personality to step into their role as a pro cheerleader/dancer. To each her own, I guess. The pay would not be my beef; it would be the continued humiliation and objectification.

    • SA

      Makes you wonder what it was that went down that ever gave them the idea to dictate what type of tampon should be used.

    • Psych Student

      So, I do have thoughts about the tampon thing. If we were talking to adolescents, then discussing size and frequency of changing is important. Leaving a tampon in too long can cause TSS which can (though I imagine rarely now-a-days) be fatal. Now, I don’t have the *faintest* idea why they felt the need to discuss these thing with grown women who have probably been handling their menstrual needs for at least a few years by now.

    • Rochester

      If they didn’t like the rules they shouldn’t have joined!
      Once again whiny spoiled brats ruined it for everyone.
      If they made the team this year you wouldn’t be hearing from them.
      But over privileged children don’t know how to take rejection.
      America is a very sad place these days.