Here’s a stat to get your blood boiling: 42% of US women say they have experienced period-shaming by men.
A survey of 1,500 US women commissioned by “period-proof underwear” manufacturer Thinx revealed that nearly 60% of women feel embarrassed when they menstruate, due in large part to pervasive taboos and the attitudes of men.
The survey also revealed that about three-quarters of women hide their tampons and sanitary pads when they head to the bathroom for a change. Another 29% said they have cancelled plans — especially exercise — because they don’t want their period to be inadvertently exposed.
Global Citizen campaigns on ending period taboos and ensuring access to pads, tampons, and other menstrual health resources for every girl and women in the world. You can take action here.
Nearly half the women we polled have experienced period shaming. Have you? https://t.co/B1QE7GT0iK— THINX (@SheTHINX) January 4, 2018
“The culture surrounding menstruation must be changed, and it takes both women and men to make that happen,” Thinx said in a statement. “It starts with open, honest conversation, and continues with education that empowers women to feel aware of and comfortable with their bodies and flows.’
Women should never be ashamed of saying they’re on their period or saying the word pad!! It’s not your fault that some people are dumb enough to be disgusted or uncomfortable of menstruation. That’s their problem they need to fix not yours!!!— fathin (@be4utifool) January 5, 2018
Fortunately, activists in the US and around the world are fighting to shred menstruation taboos and counter the narrative that periods are somehow unnatural or otherwise worthy of shame.
I’m on my period🤭...and I’m not EVER going to let anyone make me feel ashamed of it✊. I love it❤️ because if it wasn’t for my period, I wouldn’t be the proud mother that I am today👌 #periods#motherhood#Women4Women#womenshealth#reproduction#beautiful#mother#feminist 😉— Sarah Choujounian (@thewomenscoach1) January 4, 2018
NFL offensive lineman Joshua Garnett has teamed up with his sister to normalize menstruation and provide free pads and tampons to homeless women and other activists, including Chelsea Clinton, have pressured governments to end the ridiculous “tax on blood.”
Their efforts are helping ensure that no woman has to cancel a swim, disguise their tampons, or feel embarrassed while purchasing pads at the supermarket.