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Because there's no such thing as a bad question.
Menstruation is part of who I am. At a few days away from being 30, I've been menstruating for over half my life. And I'm used to it. I accept the cramps, the bloating, and the high cost of feminine hygiene products. I'm confident I can handle my period on planes, in meetings, and even on beach vacations. I am a seasoned menstruator who always has spare pads in her handbag, in case you ever need to borrow any. And yet, I am freaking terrified of getting my period on my wedding day.
To unleash the power of the adolescent girls is to create a world where girls are able to take advantage of any and every opportunity to come her way. It means to create a world where she not only has access to education, but also the freedom to attend school. Where she has reliable sources of nutrition-rich food and clean water, and doesn't have to risk sexual assault to collect it.
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"If this was a picture of blood from a finger laceration, there'd be no issue."
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We all grew up absorbing messages through jokes, comments and "feminine hygiene" ads that suggest women's vulvas (the outer genitals) and vaginas (the inner parts) are dirty, smelly, ugly and taste bad -- usually with a reference to salty fish. It is high time that we debunk some of those myths to help us all -- those of us of all genders -- to better understand and celebrate the healthy truth about our intimate body parts!
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At the clinic I rarely met women, young or old, who understand their fertility and what happens during the menstrual cycle. They all know about the blood, although not always why they bleed. But few know anything about what happens between periods. No one has told them. Why have we kept this information from young women? Why do we tell them they can get pregnant any time of the month? If it's to encourage young people to use protection when they have sex, it doesn't seem to work.
Menstruation is a natural occurrence in every woman's life, and yet, it is shrouded in some type of feminine mystery. Women will spend about 3,000 days of her life menstruating, and yet almost none talking about it. Girls are often taught from a young age that their cycle is their secret, not something to be openly discussed.
Talking about sexual and reproductive health with students is always a little bit awkward, even in the best of situations! Having these discussions within a culture that often considers anything related to reproductive health to be taboo can be particularly challenging -- and incredibly important. In rural Tanzania, such topics are rarely discussed. The national curriculum includes the topics of menstruation and reproductive health, but these topics are frequently rushed through, or skipped altogether, by uncomfortable teachers in underfunded, overcrowded schools.
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For many women, memories of their first period aren't pleasant: feelings of fear, embarrassment and confusion coloured this rite of passage for many mothers currently parenting tween and teen girls. O...
Periods can be a complicated topic for many people, but when you give a box of tampons and a chart of a woman's reproductive system to a group of men, something like this is bound to happen. In a new...
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When Instagram repeatedly removes the photo of a sleeping girl with a period stain on her pajamas, this becomes more than a class project. We are content seeing sexualized bodies, but the moment we gaze upon something that does not serve our sexual egos we are offended. Highlighting the fact that the vagina is used for something other than sex is a direct attack on our idyllic conceptions of a manicured feminine identity. We are not outraged by blood. We see blood all the time. Blood is pervasive in movies, television, and video games. Yet, we are outraged by the fact that one openly discusses bleeding from an area that we try to claim ownership over.
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There's nothing like the strong bond that's created when two women find out their periods are almost synchronized, or when they officially become period sisters, to be exact. But according to the vid...
The reproductive cycle is a complex little factory that operates underneath layers of skin, muscles and organs for roughly 28 days. Now while this silent operation may feel like nothing (unless of cou...
In Kenya, the average cost of a package of sanitary pads is 75KSH -- approximately $1 CAD. While this may seem like a minimal amount of money, the average daily income for unskilled labourers is around $1.50 CAD. Providing access to healthy and sustainable menstrual management materials allows women to stay safe, and healthy, and does not sacrifice her ability to participate in work, school or daily activities.