Periods and stigma- Enough is enough

 A Twitter campaign has come into my life that I really, seriously love. A colleague brought it to my attention knowing it was right up my street (and hers, because girl power) and it’s called Live Tweet Your Period. You might have seen it, its not particularly new. I hope you have. It’s brilliant for the most part. It’s basically mensturators (technical term) world wide uniting to remove stigma and the the reaction of ‘oh gross I don’t want to know!’ The above depicts a few days of my life every month. I crave chocolate, I need pain killers, I lay on my bed and I generally snap and hate on everyone a bit. You know how it is.

Periods happen everyday to millions of women and they’re er, kinda important. Sorry fellas, but it’s time we were allowed to talk about them like the thing they are- a normal part of life. There’s been several occasions over the last few years when I’ve been doubled over at work, waiting for various painkillers to kick in and male colleagues have sauntered over and said “What’s wrong with you then?” I replied once by saying I have severe period pains and was met with recoiling and face pulling and behavior that would be appropriate had I just pulled an ovary out of my vagina and waved it in his face. Get over it, FFS. It’s not like I was going to go into extreme gory detail of exactly what was unfolding down there. The next time I was asked I just shrugged and said I didn’t feel well.

Well not feeling well is an understatement, I feel absolutely dire on that first day, and I know I’m not alone. But I better not bring it up or tell the truth in case it offends someone or I get told to man up, which has also happened. Well, thanks, but no thanks.

The whole Live Tweet Your Period campaign isn’t about going into gory detail either and it’s not just women expressing that they have pains and deserve sympathy. It’s about allowing women who feel the pain, the frustration, the physical aching, the raging hormones and the struggle of the waiting game to connect and share their pain and experiences. so basically, anyone who’s ever had and deals with periods. The no-nonsense, the emotional, the cramp-ridden- everyone. Being able to have a bit of a laugh about it can lighten the load, no? Those dark, hormonal days where you feel like you want to snap off the head of every other living human and you want to be in bed with a box of painkillers and a hot water bottle are easier to handle when you can just be open about it. I mean, I recently needed to go out and emergency buy tampons during work, so I made up a need to buy something else. Enough is enough. I’m not going to buy some more lunch guys, I’m going to get equipment to soak up what’s currently exiting my body, deal with it. Back in 5.

“I might not be at my best today because I’ve just come on and I feel like utter shit.” Unless you work in an accepting, all female office, it’s unlikely you’ll ever hear such honesty. It’s not often I let a period stop me from doing things, but come on, it can make you feel pretty deathly at times, and I know I have on occasion, not been able to work to my full ability because I’ve felt so awful. But it doesn’t happen that way for everyone, some people have no pain at all, it’s just the point of making periods normal enough to talk about without them being taboo.

Things have definitely improved, which is encouraging. I remember at school once, crawling into the medical office with such severe period pains that I vomited and the female secretary told me to toughen up ‘because we don’t want people to know about our woman problems.’ back then I probably nodded and carried on rocking in pain. If it happened now I would tell her to F off.

I urge any girl who’s sick of periods being stigmatised to get on twitter and look it up. I’ve just spent my lunch break reading genius, hilarious tweets and since it’s the first day of my period, YES THAT’S RIGHT, it’s thoroughly cheered me up.

So yeah, thanks Tracy Clayton for starting it. 

4 thoughts on “Periods and stigma- Enough is enough

  1. This is just what I needed to read. First day on today and that combined with the heat meant I nearly passed out at work. Not asking for sympathy but when your vision goes blurred, legs weak and have cramps so bad you have to sit on the work toilet floor for 10 minutes and then go back out like nothings wrong, not loving life. Definitely gonna check out the twitter campaign, am sure that and your post are just what I need today (well and a big bar of dairy milk too obvs)
    X

    Like

    • The campaign is awesome!! Ahh I feel your pain. This heat has been awful combined with stomach cramps and feeling flustered! I’ve even been too hot to eat chocolate!!! Thanks for reading xx

      Like

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