Christine Nderitu @dietfity1
“When I had my first period, I went into the pond and only came out when the bleeding stopped. My mum found out later when she found blood in the sheets, and she showed me how to use a cloth.”
This is what a girl somewhere in the world goes through when she has her first period. Such are some of the experiences I have been listening to for the last one week from young girls and women who until today struggle to manage their menstruation.
We still have girls who have no access to sanitary product and some who although having access are ashamed to buy and dispose OF the used ones. Among most, is the fear of getting soiled; and this is not just for young girls. A lady recently asked me to ‘check her’ when she stood up, and I was genuinely surprised.
How many of you are comfortable with the periods? How many men are free to talk about the period with their sisters, wives and daughters? Can you attend them when the cramps come ugly or they forgot to stock?
What about the boys? Do they know anything more than ‘it’s that time of the month’ (which I find rather misused), or are they part of the reason why a girl wishes she were a boy because he perpetuates the shame?
It would be interesting to know that some girls have been made to believe that eating sour food, fish and eggs makes them smell, and have resulted to avoiding these and other foods that are essential for a nutritious diet. They are struggling with anaemia, poor appetite and dysmenorrhea (painful periods), to the point that they skip school and that is beyond ‘it’s normal.’
So if they have been having heavy menstrual bleeding, a lot of pain and sickness, I would advise that before you say it’s normal, be sure that there is no underlying problem.