At work the other day I was about to head off for a quick bathroom break and realized that I needed to grab a tampon. Yeah, it was that time of the month and my period was in full force. As I’ve done literally dozens and dozens of times, I went to my desk drawer and grabbed one out my stash. I went to slip it into my pocket and realizing I didn’t have one, I slipped it into my bra and headed toward the bathroom.
As I made my way across the office I started to think, Why the hell am I hiding my tampon? There’s just three guys that work there at this time and their desks are on the other side of the office from me. However, even if their desks were right next to mine, what does it matter? It’s just a tampon. So what if somebody catches on.
But there I was, hiding a tampon in my bra like it was something to be ashamed of.
Why Are We Ashamed of Our Period?
We all live our entire pre-menopausal lives dreading the return of that week each and every month. One of the most embarrassing things that can ever happen to a female of any age is having a bloodstain on our pants. Many times, girls in middle school will sit miserably in their soaked pads rather than go to the nurse’s office and admit they’re having their period so they can get a new one.
So when it comes to our inevitable monthly menstruation, why do we tend to feel shame?
Unlike days of old, we don’t have to spend a week out of every month bedridden because tampons don’t exist. We have oral contraceptives that let us know precisely when our period is coming. There are IUDs and other birth control options that can completely stop menstruation for 3 to 5 years. Over-the-counter medications and prescription options can alleviate aches and soothe cramps, and options like menstrual cups give us even more choices for dealing with Aunt Flo.
Yet, many of us still act like our period is the worst, most embarrassing part of our lives. Just try to talk about your period on social media. Menstruation “obscenity” is yet another attack on women’s bodies, but in a world where poop emojis are pretty much the 27th letter of the alphabet, why is a little menstruation blood such a big deal?
It’s just a fact of life that I’m going to have to change my tampon at work again in the near future. However, instead of hiding it in my pocket or stashing it in my bra, I’m going to hold it in my hand just as proud as a kid in the 90s holding their Tamagotchi (which, if you didn’t know, are making a comeback).
Honestly, when it comes to your period there is absolutely nothing to be ashamed of. Every women deals with it. It’s simply another natural body function. None of us are ashamed of taking a break to go to the bathroom to pee or poop, so why be embarrassed about having to change a tampon?
It’s a fact of life and if someone can’t deal with it, screw ’em.
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