Period shaming is experienced around the globe by women. It has many forms from having to wrap the pack of pads getting banished in menstrual huts. You may be surprised to know that the most developed nations too struggle with accepting periods. Women face discrimination, difficulty to access menstrual hygiene products, deal with period stigma at various levels, and in many forms. Period Poverty is the worse therefore I genuinely worry for my daughter and the first time she has her periods.
Its high time we women play our role to break down these stigmas, eliminate period shaming by normalizing periods. Know that its a basic right of every female to get to manage their period in a private clean environment and with dignity. Without the fear of getting discriminated, or being identified as a bad omen.
Period education starts right from your own home. You are supposed to educate your children about the process, its importance, and that it’s a normal, and human thing. I want to tell my daughter so much but by started with the basics, I want all of us to talk to our daughters before they have their first period.
DON’T BE ASHAMED OF IT
Period shaming or having your periods is not a reason to feel ashamed or look down upon anyone. It does not make you any lesser than anyone or any gender. You can still carry on with day to day life activities and it is ok to slow down to accommodate your bodily needs.
DON’T GET CAUGHT UP WITH SUPERSTITIONS
The world is filled with superstitions and myths about periods and menstruating women, hence period shaming. If a menstruating woman cooks something it will get spoiled, in some cultures such women are told to stay away from others, and many other wrong beliefs are prevalent in different cultures. Along with conveying facts, I would tell my daughter to steer clear of these myths and superstitious beliefs.
IT’S OK TO FEEL LIKE IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD
It is a part of periods to have some aches and pains but any symptoms that makes day to day life hard needs attention. Nobody needs to mask these issues out of a fear of getting discriminated against and shamed. Getting proper medical attention for menstrual health issues is essential to living a happy healthy life.
NEVER PANIC AND ALWAYS BE PREPARED
Proper education regarding what a period is and how to handle it is essential for reducing fear and panic on the big day. Nobody can stay with their kids all the time. Having them know makes them mentally prepared for what they may experience.
PLAY YOUR PART AND SPREAD AWARENESS FOR YOUR SISTERS
Managing your period well does not end the role of women in reducing the stigmas around menstruation. Participating in raising awareness around it, helping those such as prisoners and refugees with period supplies, building acceptance in societies and cultures where you see discrimination is all women should do and teach our kids to do.
Let us end the period stigma together. Also, if you’re struggling with irregular periods, here are 5 desi totkas.