My Period Story
While someone is menstruating, they frequently go through a variety of physical and mental symptoms. Cramps, headaches, mood changes, and tiredness are just a few examples of these symptoms. To lessen them, people may exercise, do self-care, rest, and drink plenty of water. To control their flow, they may also use period items like pads, tampons, or menstrual cups. You can learn more about these period products and others by checking out, “We’re Here To Talk About Periods.”
Although my story may not be particularly wild or hilarious, it is something that has stayed with me over time. During middle school, around sixth or seventh grade, I got my period. I remember it was towards the end of the day when I went to the bathroom and saw red. I felt scared and confused, since I had never had "the talk." While I didn't worry too much about it because other girls had gone through it already, it wasn’t common for middle school girls to talk about periods to each other. It was some type of secret I had to keep to myself. I didn't take advantage of the resources available at school. I was too shy, and the school nurse or even counselors didn't seem very open or welcoming to having a conversation about it. Or that could have been just my perspective at a young age being scared to share my “secret.”
So, when it was time to go home, I rushed to catch the train. Once I got home, I told my mom what had happened, and she explained everything I needed to know. From the basics of why we have periods, to which products were best for me and why people use others. Looking back, it was just a lot to deal with all at once, and I was scared and overwhelmed. But I have a good relationship with my mother, so our conversation wasn’t embarrassing for me. As a mother and daughter relationship goes, we grew closer from this experience. I hope that others have someone they can turn to right away when they first get their period, because that's something I wish I had had back then.
It's important to remember that menstruation is a natural and normal biological process, thus women who experience it shouldn't be shamed or embarrassed. Menstrual justice, period poverty, and menstrual health are just a few of the issues related to menstruation that can be brought up by talking about our periods. To learn more about these issues check out an article written for Harvard Medical School’s Center for Primary Care, “How to Fight Period Poverty and Stigma.” We can make the world a more welcoming and inclusive place for everyone by speaking up about our periods and breaking the taboo brought about through silence.
This anonymous story was written by a high school student living on the East Coast.