Breaking Stereotypes of Women’s Period

Today we are extremely open when it comes to talking about periods but back then people used to talk in whispers. Many people have a lack of education regarding menstruation. It is equally important for boys to know facts about periods. A lot of false things people have heard about periods in the past, and they still believe in it. Your mother or friends tell you what to do, what not to do when you start getting your periods, but not all of them are true. 

Normally, girls start getting periods between the ages of 8 to 16. It is observed that 1 out of 5 girls in India miss school after they start menstruating. There is a lack of awareness among the people, which is the main cause why stereotypes exist in our society. In this article, we will break down these myths. 

Period blood is dirty

Menstruation doesn’t take toxins out of your body. It doesn’t mean women are not clean or pure when they are menstruating. If the blood was toxic, then they would not have been alive. Women are treated as impure, and thus they are not touched, even not allowed to touch anybody, not allowed to visit religious places such as temples. Some girls even don’t go to school as they are embarrassed, ashamed, frightened about their periods. In some villages, women are thrown out of the house to live in separate huts and thus be isolated. These norms were passed to women in ancient times to make sure that she gets maximum rest.

Do not exercise when you are menstruating

Exercising during menstruation has its own benefits. When women menstruate, they develop symptoms like pain, cramps, depression, bloating, mood swings, fatigue, nausea, and many more. Women’s bodies go through physical and chemical changes, which can be alleviated through exercise. Exercise increases the production of feel-good hormones, which helps to improve your mood. It is recommended to do the exercise that you can tolerate as the first few days of the period are quite difficult. There are even simple exercises like walking, stretching that you can easily do during your periods.

You can’t swim during periods

Using pads while swimming is not suggested. There are other options like menstrual cups and tampons, using which women can swim while they menstruate. 

Periods are expensive

Pads, tampons, menstrual cups can cost money, but they help women to be comfortable and hygienic. Women in villages are seen to opt for dirty clothes, soil, and ash to use during their periods, which is not good for their health. Women should not be ashamed of buying sanitary napkins. Recently, 500 women from Kerala have switched to menstrual cups for a green future through which they have set a good example for all women out there.

The first period of a girl is celebrated, but it is usually a celebration of her fertility. It does not reflect the social acceptance of periods. Menstruation is still a stigma and a taboo in our country, and not a lot of people are willing to talk about it and treat it as a normal body function. Women face embarrassment about their period. In various parts of our country, menstruation is still taken as a dirty and unholy thing. We need to talk about it and treat it as a normal and natural process. Let’s normalize menstruation.

Written By-

Pranali Mahindrakar, Student of BSc. CS, Pune.

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