We all grow up in an environment where discussion about menstruation and menstrual hygiene is largely absent. This leads to several very awkward and even funny first period stories.
Lala Rukh and her friend Sadaf Naz got together to create a platform called My1stPeriod for Pakistani women to share their period stories
Lala Rukh is a social entrepreneur and a science communicator working on popularising science and mathematics education in Pakistan through her social enterprise titled Science Fuse. Sadaf is the founder and CEO of Her Ground, a social enterprise working on women’s health, focussing specifically on menstrual hygiene. They are both Acumen Fellows 2018 from Pakistan.
Their message is that periods shouldn’t be a mystery before girls start. They aim to document stories of first period experiences to break the silence of misplaced shame
Many girls are not aware of periods the first time around and end up facing several hygiene issues. They want these stories to empower women to speak about this experience so that others do not have to experience it in isolation.
Let’s get rid of the stigma attached to periods. Share this video with your period stories.
Gepostet von Ohmygod Yaaa am Montag, 28. Mai 2018
To make it easier for many women in Pakistan to understand the stories, they are written down and audio files are also available so that the message reaches everyone indiscriminately
In the following audio, Sadaf Naz shares the story of her first period at the age of 13. She mentions how she had to use a cloth for the first four years and it was actually when she first joined a university that she found out about sanitary pads. Her mother was a known figure in her locality and refused to go ahead and buy sanitary pads when Sadaf went home and told her about it. That’s when Sadaf bought the first sanitary pads in her life.
In the following text, Sadia Khatri describes her first period experience
She talks about how her period came in like a monster and enforced femininity on her. She raises a good point about how such topics are not even discussed among girlfriends and everyone silently adopts the mannerisms of womanhood – waxing, wearing bras, not being able to play with boys and indulging less in outdoor activities. It is important that one finds a friend circle which is open about such discussions s0 that it’s easier to deal with these situations. And that is precisely how Sadia found out why pads caused irritation and rashes and she shifted to tampons. Then she mentions overcoming the myths around menstruation and eventually getting comfortable with dealing with periods.
To listen to the audio, click here.
When you listen to these stories, you realize that we have all had similar experiences in one way or the other
We are taken back to the time when we were very confused about embracing this new part of womanhood and all the changes it brings with itself. It is because of these reasons that it is important to discuss these issues, push mothers to be comfortable with discussing them with their daughters and eventually moving the debate towards menstrual hygiene.
The platform, My 1st period, is open for everyone to share their stories. There is no shame in the process that we go through and people should be comfortable talking about it. There is nothing to hide and it is only when we talk about it, will we be able to dismiss myths and help women attain better menstrual hygiene.