In a previous article on ‘Men-struation’ we’ve talked about menstrual education for guys in western society. But what about teaching boys about periods in countries where women are seen (and treated) as less because of their monthly bleeding? Or in areas where women don’t have access to sanitary towels? Should that also happen? Yes of course it should!
Where have all the girls gone?
In some countries (such as India and Bangladesh) the subject of menstruation is such a taboo, even girls aren’t educated about it. They might hear something from their mother or an older sister. But it also happens that they don’t know anything until the day they find blood in their underwear and think they have a terrible disease. As for the boys, naturally they don’t have a clue as to what’s going on either, they only learn that girls are impure every fourth week. And that therefore they don’t come to school.
It’s just a bit of blood, get over it!
Especially in developing countries, de-mystifying the subject could go a long way towards gender equality. If menstruation is considered normal, periods are explained, clean toilets are provided and a leakage stain is not seen as the end of the world, then more girls would stay in school during their periods, continuing their education. More women would go to work, continuing to earn money. And guys would know that girls aren’t impure, weird, weak, or gross, but that their uterus just sheds its lining every month. Period!
Why should women in developing countries, who already have to deal with monthly bleeding and unhygienic conditions, also have to deal with bullying and abandonment. Just because men don’t understand what’s happening? That’s bloody unfair.
(Photo: wecometolearn /Flickr)