“On the rag.” “Visit from Aunt Flo.” “That time of the month.” “The crimson tide.”
The sheer volume of euphemisms for menstruation should be proof enough that talking about it is still taboo.
Yet, at any given time, 800 million women, girls, non-binary people, and transgender men around the world are bleeding.
For many of them, particularly those living in poverty, the stigma can have very real consequences. Sometimes, fatal.
While it might not seem like the most radical form of activism, the simplest action you can take to end period stigma is to discuss periods openly and without shame. By normalising speaking about periods openly, you’re helping to remove the unspoken societal rules against discussing it — which ultimately, can have a global impact.
Here are 3 TEDx talks from around the world to help you start the menstruation conversation.
Why can’t we talk about periods? | Jen Gunter | TEDWomen
“It shouldn’t be an act of feminism to know how your body works,” says gynaecologist and author Jen Gunter. In this revelatory talk, she explains how menstrual shame silences and represses — and leads to the spread of harmful misinformation and the mismanagement of pain.
A taboo-free way to talk about periods | Aditi Gupta | TEDxGatewayWomen
Aditi Gupta is a social entrepreneur and the co-founder of Menstrupedia, a movement working towards spreading awareness about menstruation.
She has conducted extensive research in understanding the levels of awareness — and unawareness — of menstruation in India and the impact on girls’ lives.
Gupta and her husband have designed effective educational tools for schools that use storytelling and sequential art.
The Power of the Period | Lucy Peach | TEDxPerth
What if PMS isn’t a curse, but is instead part of a cycle that can be both a powerful creative muse and life coach? Lucy Peach shares how learning about her period has helped unlock both creativity and productivity.