Men Supporting Menstruation
Most men can go through their entire life willfully ignorant of menstruation and what that means for the people around them.
Beyond ignoring it, men often play a part in stigmatizing periods. They consider it taboo. A subject that shouldn't be talked about in public.
Menstruation is normal, menstruation happens. And women are often left carrying both the stigma and the price tag that has been built around menstruation.
Men can do a few things to change this. Speak about menstruation---say the word period as many times as you need to until you come to the realization that periods aren't taboo. Doing so, and actively being part of these discussions instead of trying to silence the idea of periods, can help reduce stigma.
The Men Supporting Menstruation idea is meant to both support men learning to talk more openly about periods, and also give them some opportunities to support those who menstruate.
There is no reason why those who don't menstruate shouldn't be aware of what menstruation is and how it impacts the lives of those around them. And there is no reason why dads shouldn't be part of normalizing menstruation for the next generation of both daughters and sons. Remember that while the majority of people who menstruate are women, not all who menstruate are.
THE NEED FOR MENSTRUAL PRODUCTS
There are shelters, transition houses, and other women's services that are looked to for support. Tampons and pads are one thing that women often need and products that are often in high demand and shorter supply.
There are some very simple ways to be visible in your support of those around you.
As part of this project, I'm proposing financial and material support for local organizations who provide menstrual products to those who need it.
PURCHASE AND DONATE
- Every month when you're in the grocery store, add menstrual products to your cart and buy them.
- Vary the products you buy from month to month. Buy pads, or tampons, or menstrual cups.
- Find a local organization that collects menstrual products. Find a few if they exist in your area. Donate your products to these organizations.
DONATE TO EXISTING ORGANIZATIONS
- Find an organization that already collects and purchases menstrual products to those who need it.
- Donate to them monthly.
BUY AN ANNE
For the rest of 2018, I'll donate all online sales of my Anne of Green Gables cross-stitch piece (in honour of the amazing episode on menstruation in the new series) to organizations that provide menstrual products to those that need them.
For May and June I'll be donating to Cornerstone Housing for Women.
Let those around you know you are doing this. I have started the #MenSupportingMenstruation on my own social media accounts if you would like to add your own images to it.