#MyPeriodStory: I Didn’t Know About Periods

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When I was in 8th class I had my first period. At that time I didn’t know what period and my mom and sister didn’t discuss it with me. I didn’t remember the exact time or date, but I remember what happened. One day in the evening, the pain started in my stomach. I just thought that maybe eating heavy food is the reason why my stomach is in pain. At night I slept, but my stomach was in so much pain. In the night pain increases.

I was trying to sleep. At night I felt very weary , but I ignored and slept. When I wake up there is a lot of blood in my panties. I said to my mother. My mother said to come into the hall. My grandmother did some kind of puja. She came with gram water. And she bathes with this water and rounds around me. She told me to go and take a bath. When I took a bath then my aunt gave me a sanitary pad and said how to take this.

She gave me some information like every girl has to period and not to worry about it. one thing doesn’t talk about this with any male member like father, brother and any male friends. That time I thought that why don’t share with these people, it just has a question. I didn’t get any answer. At the same time my aunt informed me that don’t touch pickle and don’t do puja during this period. And when you complete 5 days then do shower and then you pure after that you do puja and all things . which clothes you wear firstly wash then put anywhere.

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A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
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Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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