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Open Letter Regarding Menstruation

Dear Whoever-Decided-Periods-Were-Disgusting,-Dirty,-Unnatural-Things,

Are you aware that at one point, the monthly period of menstruation was regarded as a sacred necessity and even revered by men? Fertility and the process of reproduction are actually quite awesome, when you think about it. Yes, certain aspects thereof can be uncomfortable, but they are quite natural and quite necessary for the propagation of the species and continued perseverance of our race. Have you seen Children of Men? I doubt it, since you are long since dead I'm sure, but it certainly helps illustrate the point.

The reason I bring this up is because as a woman living in our modern world, I still have the same natural body that my ancestors did thousands of years ago. The functions are the same, and yet the emotions and conditions surrounding this monthly recurrance are quite bothersome.

I read a book not too long ago called the Red Tent, and in it the author describes how periods were perceived and experienced before Jesus walked the earth. I remember being shocked to read that it was a time of rejoicing and celebration. There were wines and sweet breads and the women were considered pure. Did you know that a woman is at her cleanliest when she is menstruating? True. It was a delightful contrast to what I'm feeling now.

To be frank, I feel dirty. I feel unattractive. I feel almost shamed in a way, and I don't think that's fair. Yes, blood can be somewhat off-putting, but the process is necessary and it's nowhere near new.

Now there medicines to help suppress or curb this process, and several of them are terribly useful for certain purposes. However, the most disconcerting thing surrounding this event is that it is actually socially acceptable to be disgusted, sometimes violently by mere notion of menstruation.

This has the potential to create a ridiculous amount of emotional stigma. Women avert their eyes when buying tampons, avoid their significant others, the topic becomes something of which we do not speak. I think this is highly problematic.

So, I would like to know what your rationale was for labeling menstruation as "gross." Maybe that way I can hack it apart with a hatchet and feel less self conscious when next month rolls around.


Une Femme

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( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 12th, 2008 04:11 am (UTC)
Dude, I totally agree. I hate how it took me years of menstruating to be able to walk into Walgreens and only buy what I came for, instead of filling my basket with a bunch of other stuff I didn't really need to hide the tampon box. But, I can proudly say that now I can waltz up to the counter, tampon box in hand, and un-selfconciously hand it to the cashier. I finally got tired spending 30 dollars for a five dollar box.
May. 13th, 2008 08:22 pm (UTC)
Hopefully if Hillary becomes president (I'm still an Obama girl BUT) girl items will become FREE and science will somehow make men menstruate, haha.
May. 21st, 2008 03:25 am (UTC)
it isn't the mood swings, nor is it even if physical appearence of blood on the cock if fuck happens...it is the horendness smell. menstruation stinks. not just the vigina, but hair, sweat, even urine...all smells awlful. every fluid in your body smells different.

nice post though. almost made me feel guilty for not liking to fuck my girl while she's raggin'.

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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