Don’t Apologise For Your Period: Bold Art That Bashes Stigma Like A Boss!

Posted on May 28, 2016 in Body Image, Menstruation, Women Empowerment

By YKA Staff:

On World Menstruation Hygiene Day, India along with the rest of the world is initiating a much-needed conversation that has been avoided for way too long. The stigma and shame associated with menstruation must be done away with for the women of this world to embrace and respect their bodies and without such a dialogue all talks of equality and empowerment will continue to be a half-hearted attempt.

To celebrate what has been hushed for so long, Menstrupedia set open their platform for people to share #PeriodPositive artwork on a public platform. Here’s a sneak peek at creativity that’s breaking the bias.

Submitted by Nasmina MP, director of I-LAB from Calicut, India

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Submitted by Debadarshinee Mohapatra. Debadarshinee attributes the period positivity in her life to her menstrual cup. She believes that a lot of the women can feel the same if they would give menstrual cups a try. This one is for period sustainability!

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Submitted by Debadarshinee Mohapatra. When I got my period for the first time, I literally didn’t know anything about it. Nobody told me what is it and why is it happening! Even my friends never shared anything related to menstruation.

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Submitted by Medha Kulkarni
“When she bleeds the smells I know change colour. There is iron in her soul on those days. She smells like a gun.” ― Jeanette Winterson

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Submitted by Feminism in India

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Submitted by Jeejivisha Kale. I have seen the kind of faces people make when I tell them the actual reason for my discomfort or the actual thing I am going to get from my bag or the store.
Many come up with responses like, ‘I am cool with it but others might not be. You need to keep it down!’ To those and the others. I say, this…

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Submitted by The Ladies Finger.

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Here’s a poster from Parinda Gandevikar putting matters into perspective. Why do we treat menstrual waste like it is radioactive material? Time to be more period positive and change how the world thinks about periods!

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Submitted by Menstrupedia.

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Submitted by Nomcebo Mkhaliphi from Swaziland, Southern Africa. “We bleed, We are Free, We are Normal And Healthy…. Be Period Positive. I am inspired by the red colour in the hope of destigmatizing menstruation and be Period Positive. For a very long time, I carried an internal shame and fear. Our girls should not suffer same. I would like to show the world that we can end the stigma, fear and beat the shame by joining hands and shouting out loud that we are happy, free, normal and healthy and we are Period Positive.”

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Submitted by Palashi Vaghela and Aditi Gupta. “I am this blood. This blood is me. I will not be ashamed of who I am.” #periodpositive

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Submitted by Meghan, founder of Shomota Women
“I live in a poor community in Kolkata. A lot of women use old rags and cloth for their period. They wash and then dry them in a dark corner in their rooms, leading to health problems. And all because they are ashamed to hang them outside. As we teach people how to use our cloth pads, hopefully, we are teaching them not to be ashamed, but to be period positive!”

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Submitted by Shreeja Chakraborty. No shame, just pride. #Periodpositive

“I am inspired by the various spiritual portrayals of the Feminine Face of God. The blood that we shed every month, is nothing but a sign that we are made of love. It is love that manifests itself through our bodies, nurturing and sustaining the human race. There’s nothing to be ashamed of. Instead, it is an honourable power given to us by the Almighty. To sum it up in one line, I believe that love is the main inspiration behind my poster.”

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Submitted by Shreya Bagthariya.

My Cousin : Periods occur so that you can have a baby. It’s blood.
Me: I don’t want it when I grow up. I’m sure I shall not like it.
Mother: It’s a natural process and it will occur to you too gradually.
Me: Ok. Let’s see!

Later when I got my 1st period I was not scared or hateful towards it. I was kind of neutral as I got 3 days long free time to read all newspapers columns and magazines which my mother has gathered over period of many years to make me read when I grow up (it was very touching gift for me as I love reading – a box full of reading material. Such a bliss!). I would like to mark here that during those days in our joint family, we were not allowed to touch anything and asked to sleep on the floor in a separate room as My grandmother thought it spoils her worshiping to God. We (me and my Mom) stopped following this tradition when we started living separately since we felt it was a belief that didn’t make any sense.

In my early 20s and post-marriage, I used to get irritated due to heavy cramps and used to kind of wish if I can get my uterus removed (Honestly, at times I still do!). But, we all do so as menstruation is no easy thing to handle. Later, I realised that it’s a part of my essence, my existence. This is what makes me a Woman! OR as my husband says, this is what make all women Beautiful!
Thus, I have been positive about periods with changing time and changing menstruation management options.

Let’s celebrate us by honouring our essence and getting more open & positive about it!

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Submitted by Kaanchi Chopra, Delhi. I believe that there is a lack of teaching about menstrual health in schools. Apart from that, it stuns me how many restrictions one is put under when one is on our period. Do not visit the temple, do not play, do not wear white, do not this, do not that. Friends in school are ashamed to take out pads from their bags because other people might see it. Women in localities carry pads in white polyethene so that the packets are hidden and no one views them. All of us need to realise that periods are a part of growing up, it enables our body to reproduce individuals and one should take pride in it. There’s nothing to be embarrassed about or be ashamed of. The people of our society should accept and embrace period positivity. More importantly, spreading awareness and information about the same should start in schools and homes from a young age.

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