Let me get something straight right outta the gates. This isn't a 'woe us' post, or a 'go women, men suck because their vagina's don't make the red sea part' post. If this makes you uncomfortable, GOOD. Then you're precisely who should keep reading. If you haven't realized by now, half of the world bleeds. For 5-7 days on average, and doesn't die. That's pretty frikin cool and pretty frikin gnarly. So, why don't we talk about it more openly? Blah blah blah there's a whole lot of reasons. But I call bullshit. Let's talk about it! Let's make girls who have yet to start their menstrual cycles know that it isn't something to be afraid of, or embarrassed by. It's what your body is naturally meant to do. It can absolutely suck sometimes. Like, so bad. But - there wouldn't be anything to laugh or connect about if it was peach keen jellybean. Ya feels?
And me? Well, I have a period from hell today. My cramps are so bad it makes me feel like I'm about to throw up any minute. I had to cancel plans that were really important to me. I get dizzy every time I stand up. I had to call my sister to bring a heat pad over and shove it under my pants to warm my uterus like the devils oven it is right now. I smothered myself under my duvet and texted Alice - who of course got her period yesterday because how else are we not freakishly connected?! And provided me with some gut wrenching humour, letting me know she bled through her jeans ... suuuuper sweet times, yup.
SO - after shoving a few cupcakes down the hatch, I decided to start asking some ladies what they think of their monthly Auntie Flow who comes for a visit. She's totally that Aunt that would have fiery red wire-like hair and big purple cat eye glasses, carries the kitchen sink in her purse and tucks her tissues into her wrist watch. Like, you can guarantee she'd be the loudest at any family gathering and would be kissing everyone on the face with smeared red lipstick. Anyways, she comes, she makes herself comfortable (by fucking rearranging your living room for a few days), and then gets to work.
Let's open up the conversation and throw it all on the table. Get messy, get honest, and find some familiarty and humour in these words. We here at CC are literally obsessed with hearing women's words, and I love how all these answers are down right honest and straight up real talk. Some dig it, some don't. There's no right or wrong way to bleed friends.
So, my badass ladies ... What is it you loathe about your period? And what is it you find cool about your period?
"What I loathe is that I become a different person for a few days. I have a space of a day to two days, where I'm tired, angry, my eyes feel hollow and even simple human interactions like making eye contact seem difficult and confronting. What I love about it is the same thing. I become hyper critical and for a small space each month, I evaluate all of my life choices through a much less forgiving magnifying glass. I question things, I ruminate. And I think that's a good thing. Each month I'm faced with the much more critical version of myself. The other thing I love about my period is the wonderful relief it supplies when it signals to me that I'm not pregnant. That I've got more time to live my one wild life, sans kids. I feel in tune with my body and the ebbs and flows of its natural rhythms." - L I L
"I hate that I get super moody before it! And I love that I'm not preggers and it actually makes me feel super grown up and like a woman!" - B E L L A
"Loathe the cramps and the process of feeling bloated leading up and having to think about changing my cup before leaving the house and the fear of leaks. What's cool? That we get in touch with our bods, eco friendly menstruation options, and that our bodies sync with the world and other women and create life." - B R E T T E
"The whole uterus shedding and having to shove things up your vajayjay to stop destroying all your clothes with blood is kinda nasty, but I think it's cool how innovative we have gotten with living with those yucky symptoms. Like we have tampons, pads, diva cups. You can use the pill, IUD's, that other thing that the doctor puts in your arm, etc." - C L A U D I A
"Cramps. Cramps. CRAMPS. I can't deal with the uterus death. I think the bond that all women have to each other because of periods is cool; it's a little inside joke we all share. It's something most women are comfortable talking to each other about. Whether it's laughing together about your period horror story or offering comfort during your worst PMS symptoms. Oh also, I'm like weirdly confident during my period even though I feel like shit." - E L I Z A
"How bad my skin gets, and how bloated I feel the few days leading up to it. It's so brutal. And buying pads/ tampons/ new underwear if I ruin some / whatever, because it can all be pretty pricey. And like every other girl in the world I think cramps are the worst thing ever. What I do like though is how it kind of bonds you with other girls. I guarantee if you asked for a tampon, pad, hair clip, midol, anything ... There would be other girls offering you something. Or even just an ear to listen to you complain about your cramps, mood swings, acne, whatever. You could honestly probably make a new friend with a girl just by talking about how brutal your period is." - A L E X
"I hate everything about my period - the back pains, the head aches, how bipolar mine is and decides to come late (4 weeks late this past time to be exact). How she decides to grace you with her presence right when something important is about to happen in your life. I hate tampons, even more so pads. I hate cramps, and I hate having the fear of waking up to blood being all over your sheets after a heavy flow night. How if your period is late, your world starts to spin because maybe you're prego and have to start thinking about all the things that you'd rather have happen to you then getting knocked up. Oh, and how my boobs hurt like I'm a 90 year old woman and they are saggin' to the floor. Only positive thing I can say; mine only lasts 3-4 days and I don't get it every month. I think that's it?" - B A I L E Y
"It's cool that my body knows what it's doing. But what it's doing is ridiculous." - K I M
"Hmm i could think of a few things I hate but the main would be the horrible mood it puts me in and how the hormones can cause me to act like a psycho path without me even being aware of my reactions. The cool thing about periods is how it connects women!! We all understand the unwanted desire of bleeding every month and the inconvenience it brings us. Also how we are in sync with the women who we surround ourselves with is pretty frickin cool." - M I K A E L A
"What I loathe is that it always goes up and down in how heavy it is flow wise ... so sometimes it's super heavy and sometimes it's super light so I never know when it's going to be over or when it's going to ruin my cute underwear! I think it's really cool that it reminds me every month of the power I am capable of as a woman to make a human in my body. That's so rad." - B R I
"The feelings of my innards getting ripped out of me, the mess it might sometimes bring, and the lack of motivation I feel. I love it because it reminds me that I'm a woman and that I'm one day able to carry a baby with me! It's also relief sometimes!" - T I A N N A
"I was literally sitting here being like fuck my period is coming in a day and it feels like a fucking baby is cramping my uterus and lower back. I hate the gooch cramps that make you feel like you're dying. And thinking 'like actually is this what labour is like because fuck'. Omg the hormones. A cool thing is our uteruses are frikin rad magical organs and even though they put us through this bloody hell once a month, it's good to appreciate it for a moment. And then go right back to hating life. lolz." - J O R D Y N
"I remember the day I first got my period, finding the back of my school dress stained a dirty, earthy red. What I loathe most about my period isn’t the cramping, it’s the fucking mess of it. I think of my period during my high school years and immediately I recall of all the times I had to awkwardly bend backwards over the sinks in school to try and wash the blood out of my skirt, followed by gracelessly crouching underneath the hand dryers in a panic, asking my friends what the fuck I was going to do for the rest of the day. Back home, I remember the countless times I woke up to stained sheets and pajamas, which I then had to discreetly pass off to my mum, eventually resolving to sleep on towels. After thirteen years of menstruating I’m still frustrated I haven’t figured it out yet - every now and then I still ask my friends to check my ass for blood stains, I still bleed through my pajamas, I still sleep on towels. It’d be great if your period enhanced your intelligence, or made you freakishly strong for a week, or just an amazing dancer. Women all over the world being handed monthly superpowers by Gaia, as a tribute to females only. That would be excellent. I can’t speak for all women, but my period doesn’t do any of that. I am an inconvenienced, distracted, crabby, insatiably hungry, randy-as-hell, bad dancing bitch. And it didn’t ever occur to me to appreciate my period for what it was until a friend of mine broke down midway through high school, because she still hadn’t got hers. It made me see my period as a monthly indicator of my general health and (hopefully) my fertility, so yeah that’s cool. As women, we’re all members of this secret club. Even the women who don’t or can’t menstruate. They’re definitely in. It’s a pain, and a mess, and quite seriously stops me from doing stuff sometimes, but this shared shitty experience serves as a cornerstone of female connection. - G E M M A
Laugh, bleed, laugh and bleed some more. (Maybe cry a bit if you need). Ride that scarlet wave. It'll knock you into the swell and pound on your insides - but just keep your head up and look around at all the other fierce females riding along with you.
Shedding my insides right along with you babes.
- Molly -
Also, do yourself a favour and watch this :