I would love it if we could normalise “period chat”, so that I can say this sentence for anyone that dares to challenge my emotional stability when it’s that ‘time of the month’.
Irrational, emotional, hungry, uncomfortable, bloated, spotty, hungry, snappy, needy, sensitive, teary, hungry, hungry, hungry are just some of the words that come to mind when I think about my period. Not only am I all of the above, but if like me you’re one of the unlucky ones, then you’re probably also in pain, agony from when you wake up to when you go to bed.
I’m completely aware that the discussion of menstrual blood probably isn’t at the top of anybody’s small talk or dinner party chat list, but the idea that the word ‘period’ is something that you have to whisper, or even worse apologise for, blows my mind. Even more than the fact that I’ve been single for three years. (Still bitter, not over it, boo-fucking-hoo). Quite like childbirth, periods are a fascinating and cruel work of nature. I still don’t really understand the science of it, and definitely can’t get over the fact that we only lose on average 80 ml of blood when it legit feels like I could fill a small paddling pool. Not only does blood come out of our genitalia, but stomach cramps rivet through our body like a little person is inside of you pulling repeatedly at your abdomen.
So, with cramps and blood in tow you must then queue up for the emotional rollercoaster that is a period. A ride filled with low highs and even lower lows. One minute I’m crying at a Halfords advert on the TV and the next minute I’m screaming at the washing up BECAUSE IT’S STILL JUST SITTING THERE. There is no rhyme nor reason to a woman on her period. The emotions are quite like pheasants when they run out in front of your car, they come quickly and appear from nowhere, dawdle a little and then fuck off faster than they came onto the road in the first place.
I do not wish to apologise for any of the above. I do not want to justify my emotions as it is my period talking and not me. I don’t want to go bright red at the checkout when I pass the guy behind the till my pack of super-plus tampons. I don’t want to EVER say the words ‘sorry I’m on my period’ when a guy implies that he wants to sleep with me: a) because I’m not sorry, it’s not my fault, nature is beautiful. And it means I’ve managed another month without getting pregnant, 10 POINTS, b) get over it and get on with it. And I certainly don’t want to use weird code words to tell people that I’m on my period, because the word period makes them feel uncomfortable, when actually I am the one that feels uncomfortable, see: blob, the rag, ‘time of the month’, Aunt Flo, I’ve got the painters in and IT IS CERTAINLY NOT BLOW JOB SEASON.
(Yep, I’m on my period now, can you tell?)
If you have ever lived with girls, you’ll know that somehow your ovaries communicate with each other and decide to all turn the tap on at the same time. This is a good, and a bad thing. It’s perfect because you can all complain together, feel sorry for yourself and each other and feel completely convinced about the fact that ‘he definitely was in the wrong, and you’re definitely not being irrational babe’. But at the same time, emotions are on high alert. It’s pretty hard to have a voice of reason in the house when you’re all on your period. Then again, there are moments of clarity, we obviously don’t walk around in a hysterical state, overly emotional about every little thing that happens (tbf I did cry because I couldn’t open an orange the other day.)
And to top off all of that, sanitary products are more expensive than a boots meal deal, and to be honest I think it’s completely outrageous that period poverty exists in this country.
I’m not saying that I want everyone to talk about my period as if it’s of public interest. But I don’t want to be expected to be fine, and I also don’t want my emotions to be a joke. They’re still emotions no matter how irrational or surprising they may be.
So, in short, DPMO when I’m on my period, don’t wince when the word is mentioned because it’s not my fault, do have sex with me (not everyone, just if I dunno, you’re my lover of choice or something), do fill me a hot water bottle, do be more sensitive, don’t take everything I say to heart, and for god’s sake please don’t tilt your head, raise your eyebrows and say “ahh are you on your period?” when I do or say something irrational.
Because I can’t promise that I won’t hit you, in the face, or the willy.