Positive Menstrual Culture?
We recently invited our period storytellers to share their experiences and hopes for the future in an online circle. What stood out firstly was early experiences of shame, inadequate education and support, and shared commiserations that things have been so hard for us for so long.
But the other thing that jumped out was the WISDOM of those in our circle, and their deep awareness of what is needed to create a positive menstrual culture. Here we’d like to share are a few of the golden nuggets that came out of our time together.
What does a positive menstrual culture look like?
- Every period is valid
- Parents are re-educated to overcome internal stigma
- Men are brought into the conversation - menstruation, lack of access to products and menstrual health is not seen as a ‘women’s problem’ to be solved by women
- The womb is looked after and taken care of
- We are treated as individuals - not generic robots!
- The creativity, passion and power that comes from menstruation is encouraged and celebrated
- Period products create no waste
- Families and schools educate both boys and girls
- Periods are normalised
- Conversations about menstruation are regular and consistent, so the language changes and the power of the taboo is negated
- We let children into the story, so it’s normalised for them from a young age too
- Media is reformed - false ideas about women’s bodies, advertising codes reflect a positive attitude towards menstruation
There is a lot of work ahead of us.
But what has become extremely clear since the launch of Period Revolution is just how important and necessary this work is. The best part though, is just how many INCREDIBLE people are dedicating their time and creativity to creating a better culture for all of us. Educators, artists, influencers, advocates and therapists across the globe are creating meaningful change through their work on the small and large scale. At our sharing circle for example we were very grateful to view Bleed With Me, a short film by Indo-Canadian feminist filmmaker Varsha Gill - and have a book giveaway from Amanda Laird, author of the Heavy Flow book and podcast!
We are delighted to be in community with so many incredible, passionate people - and it’s these connections that have shaped our journey this year and what is to come in the future. There are a couple of things we know are important for 2021: honouring those that have come before us, true collaboration, equity and racial justice. It doesn’t mean anything unless we can take everyone.
There’s so much to come and it feels thrilling and terrifying and invigorating. For now though, we recognise the end of the year that was 2020 as a chance for deep rest - so we hope you enjoy yours while we’re taking ours!