Our bloody secret: Why the period is still a taboo subject

It was kind of cool. The was normal. At the age of five I was aware that women bleed once a month, most of them at least. Point.

This is self-evident that had the Menstruation for me, to be lost in the increasingly, the older I got. At the age of eleven I got for the first Time, my days – as the first in my school class. I was surprised for the first Time of my period in school and my Friends after a bandage had to ask, was the unlikely embarrassed.

A girl ran joyfully shocked by the room, and cried all the children: “Agatha has your day already!”

I would not ask out loud in the office after a Tampon

We were, of course, children, and children much is embarrassing. I would, however, call for nowadays in a similar Situation through the office: “I get my days – has anyone got a Tampon for me?”


If I have to send to me the pain in my abdomen and someone (especially a man) would ask what is going on – I would say then: “I’ve got my days?”

May not be.

Why not? Because it’s embarrassing, uncomfortable, disgusting, and unsanitary; because I uninhibited to me as to be open to, or emotionally oute – finally, menstruating women are particularly bitchy or hysterical. The menstrual period, many prejudices and myths circles.

Why is this so? Why is such a simple physical process is still as strong a negative connotation? To go to the question of the taboo of Menstruation, has questioned the HuffPost Experts, why do we shy away from on a monthly basis-bloody facts and what needs to change, to our shame.

“Menstruation is Hidden”

“Menstruation is Hidden – and this is amazing, finally, it concerns half of the world’s population,” says Dr. Yael Adler. The dermatologist and best-selling author “in her book,” it speaks to why we are all physical processes, digestive noises, or precipitates, embarrassing.

According to Adler, studies have shown that most women are uncomfortable about your menstrual to speak – goes to show, for example : There, gave 60 percent of the surveyed girls between the ages of 13 and 17, that you the period embarrassing. Adler sees the justification for shame, apparently, in the negative Image of the monthly bleeding: “The period is generally considered to be disgusting, unsanitary, and unsexy , and it is a lot of myths, prejudices and stigmas around Menstruation.”

The period suffers from a negative Image, is partially understandable – that any woman who has ever had their days in white. Many of us suffer from not only pain in belly, back, or head, but also to changes in mood or in a bad mood. Some of my Friends are dependent on the Anti-Baby-pill, the menstrual cramps will weaken, and so the period bearable.

Other wines days before their menstrual period, seemingly unprovoked or over react even at trifles. And if Menstruation is a negative experience, we speak, of course, not so happy about it.

The period is often perceived negatively

Also, the gynecologist and author of the book “Outrageous – All about the fabulous female body,” Dr. Sheila de Liz says in an interview with HuffPost: “of Course we are not always about our days. Who has not ruined the favorite underwear, and was briefly surprised before a Date of the bleeding, or at the beach on vacation?”

Such experiences are, of course, is not only uncomfortable, but also embarrassing and are often overlooked. Finally, period blood is occupied in its meaning, unlike the blood, the outlet, for example, from a simple cut, wound or a nose-bleed. We bleed in an intimate, hidden place.

That the topic of the period, feelings of shame arise, Daniela Huber of pro familia Munich, therefore, quite normal – after all, one goes with body fluids in General, too sensitive, says the social worker. “In addition, the Menstruation has to do with sexuality, for many, it is too intimate to speak openly about it,” says Huber.

In the classroom, for example, Huber and her Team of young people on sexuality and physical issues to clarify – you notes again and again, that in school is often not a very practical body awareness takes place. “Also, girls and boys usually sit mixed in a class, then it is perhaps not as detailed on a specific topic such as the menstrual period.”

Just for men is a lot of ignorance prevails over the menstrual

But it takes the really – separate Education for girls and boys, in order to make the topic more accessible? Boys are not alienated, then the stronger of the Menstruation is not a taboo the bleeding then the stronger?

In my environment, I have always found that a lot of ignorance about the period, especially in men . It claims to have mood swings during Menstruation (Yes, many women have them, but not every; and no, a bad mood does not necessarily mean I have my days) or sayings such as: “period stain on the pants? That’s so unsanitary” (well, sometimes not preventable – we women are not looking for us).

Adler stresses that straight men usually know very little about Menstruation. They tend to keep the topic far from away: “Although it is not only women but also men this cycle of the women owe their lives to it, pushing the topic far away from you, and as a result, a lack of a voice.”

This voicelessness, however, must be evil meant to be. Of course, it happens that men thereupon perceive women as foreign, or even disgusting. Of course, there are cultures in the world, the stamp of blood-feeding women as unclean and during that time of the month to systematically exclude. May be the male to keep Silent about the period, but also with uncertainty – due to the often prevailing half-knowledge.

“May men of the period, do not feel intimidated because they do not understand you,” he says, and de Liz. Women are subjected to due to your cycle, hormonal fluctuations, the men would know. As a result, we would be the mystery for you.

Although the menstrual affects us all, because all of our life due to you have arisen, it enjoys still, not a positive Image To outweigh the disgust feelings in front of our body fluids, be it blood, does not have to be embarrassed – it is through his connection with the genital area. Straight men seem to often not have access to the theme – whether it is prejudiced by lack of awareness, lack of understanding or simply.

We overcome the shame of the period by we talk openly about it

We overcome the shame, however, as is so often the case with topics that are embarrassing us by talking openly about Menstruation. So, Adler asks that you explain boys and girls, just factually, what happens to the body:

“The fact that the woman bleeds once a month. That is a hormonal process, you lose 60 to 80 milliliters of blood. That you experienced at the age of about twelve to 50 years, 400 to 500 Ovulations and periods alternately. That the menstrual blood is not unsanitary: It consists of water, protein, desquamated cells of the endometrium, immune cells, vaginal fluid, and vaginal lactic acid bacteria, and of course blood.”

Explained factually and in its individual parts, broken down in the blood that flows from a seemingly-but-so-secret place loses its mystical character – for both women and for men who are not able to perceive this physical process in yourself.

De Liz is trying to convey women in your practice that you deal with your menstrual easily and in a neutral position so your daughters should be: ”Neither the period is a curse that falls on a monthly basis over a, this is yet another reason to throw a Party. A relaxed approach is important.”

In this context, I am very glad about my mother, which gave me a self-evident dealing with menstruation has taught – from a young age. The has demonized the period, even as it has bled on a Playground full of Rock. My first Menstruation laughed only softly, and then explained where the bearings will Bind and how to use Tampons. Even if the period was later, in school, embarrassing and even to some extent today still is, I know from her that a natural and relaxed handling of the menstrual is possible.

Younger women to go more relaxed with your menstrual

Fortunately, the Trend to a more open handling of the period is just for the younger generations to observe. What I experienced, for example, still in my Teens, to the questions, the giggles, the shame, after a pad, the oblique glances of the boys – the need to expose girls nowadays might not be as strong: “a Lot of girls do nowadays with their period, especially with each other,” says Huber. “There it is, for example, is not a Problem, to ask each other after a Tampon.”

De Liz has been observed that younger women in particular, increasingly, the shame is on her period, drop. The also the diversity that now exists in relation to menstrual products, for example: “To a more relaxed dealing with the period also new products such as menstrual panties or cups. I think this development is important because it brings the period of the grubby corner.”

We not only deal openly with our period, but also with the feelings and prejudices associated with it, we can overcome the feelings of shame and prejudice. We can on this physical process, the so many taboos experienced to talk to, we can explain and demystify – or in the words of de Liz summarize: “We get our Menstruation.”


This article was written by Agatha Kremplewski