Don’t be ashamed. Period.

February 20, 2015

No, Aunt Flow hasn’t come to visit. Neither has cousin Red. It’s not Shark Week, and the crimson wave has not rolled in. I’m just on my period.

Obviously, the timing of a girl’s menstrual cycle is almost unknown amongst high schoolers. This monthly occurrence is hidden like a dirty secret by 97 percent of female students at KHS. At lunch, their eyes glide around the swarming commons as they hurriedly unzip their backpacks and sneakily slide their tampons up their sleeves, preparing for the uncomfortable walk to the bathroom. When they can’t stand the sharp pains in their lower stomach anymore, they reluctantly raise their hands and ask their teachers if they can go to the nurse to get painkillers for their “headache.”

Although menstruation is natural, there is still a stigma attached to it, making it taboo, as if people don’t bleed from getting cuts all the time. Since the male to female sex ratio is nearly one to one in the world, half of the population does not experience these periodic roller coasters.

When a girl is angry about something, however, it does not automatically make it acceptable to ask if it is her “time of the month.” Not every person is identical, and neither are all periods and their symptoms. It’s bad enough having to deal with the stress of wearing white shorts, going to the pool and getting into skinny jeans during a period, so it doesn’t help to have to keep the whole week-long event a complete secret.

Do you think people should not talk about periods?

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If periods are supposed to happen to girls, then they should not feel like they are the most unnatural, embarrassing thing to happen to them in high school. Girls should be able to visibly carry their tampon or pad in front of the hundreds of kids in the cafeteria. Girls should be able to complain about all of the problems Aunt Flow brought them without being judged. Friends should be able to tell me they’re riding the crimson wave without anyone raising an eyebrow. Although many things in life that aren’t normal, periods are. And if this is an awkward article to read, get over it. It’s supposed to be.

Period.

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