Image: Inayat Dhanda
The following was submitted by SMIW reader Inayat Dhanda.
Kangana Ranaut very rightly said; “period blood isn’t gross”.
I’m proud to bleed. I’m proud that I have the privilege to reproduce and ensure continuity of the human race. I’ve actually wanted to write on this for some time, but thought, people would judge me. When I was a pre-pubescent in the 8th grade, we were taken for a short seminar conducted by a gynaecologist in our school. It was a very funny affair, because we got circulars addressed only to the girls in every class. The boys were obviously curious to know what was happening. The cherry on the cake was how all girls came up with different answers on being asked as what that circular contained.
“Sewing classes” one said.
“Dance workshop” said another.
Then there were a few like me who said; “We aren’t supposed to tell”.
Menstruation is a natural bodily process that MILLIONS of women experience. Then why do I have to hide my periods from my guy friends, father and my brother? Why do I have to pack my sanitary napkins in a paper, twice, when I dispose it off? Why do I get a packet of whisper from the medicine shop carefully wrapped in a brown paper or black plastic, as if it’s a packet of illegal drugs? Why do I always have to lie, that I have a fever or headache, when I experience period cramps?
Even here, there are a few privileges that I enjoy, which other women don’t. I know of people, including some of my friends, who are considered impure and asked to sleep on the floor when they are menstruating. Some can’t enter the kitchen during ‘those days’. Some can’t worship or attend a jagrata of a mata who ironically, is a woman herself.
Why is it said that God listens to a girl’s prayers more, when she hasn’t hit puberty? I will tell you why. Because we love being stupid, and superstitious, and scandalous, and discriminatory – and that’s where it ends. Let’s not be so stupid that we loose all our reasoning and stick to crazy practices. I refuse to be idiotic anymore. I make this choice. This very moment. How about you ?
I’m a happy girl. I’m happy to bleed.
About the Author:
Inayat is a practicing lawyer, a graduate in media and communication, a jewelry designer and a traveler. You can contact her at email@example.com