Boys need period education too
If you want your boys to grow into men who respect women, then teach them about periods.
Every women I know has at some point been at the receiving end of a barbed, disparaging comment about periods or PMS.
It’s such a normal part of our culture that we don’t even realise it’s happening – and it happens because most men have no idea about periods, and the menstrual cycle.
A sarcastic joke, a belittling jibe, an unsympathetic response to a completely normal (and often painful bodily function) does nothing to promote self-esteem, gender diversity or body positivity.
And, so periods continue to be shrouded by myths and stigma, and then we’re collectively surprised when girls are too ashamed to talk about periods and would rather use bunched up balls of toilet paper than tell a teacher they’ve started their period.
Our culture makes girls and women feel bad or dramatic when we feel sad, or depressed or weepy before and during our periods, instead of being empathetic to the surge of hormones and physical changes our bodies – especially little bodies – are going through, we receive judgment.
So, let’s change the conversation.
A warm smile and a hot cup of tea goes a long way to making girls feel comfortable about their periods.
Let’s break down the stigma and start talking about it, not when girls start menstruating and it’s all a bit much and awkward.
Start the conversation about periods and reproduction when children are young, the Europeans do it that way and their kids grown into self-actualised and successful adults.
Both teenager girls and boys have so many questions; they just don’t know where to direct them.
You’d be surprised how many girls aren’t prepared for their first periods and how much misinformation about menstruation they retain.
Topics to discuss with teens:
- Promote period positivity– periods are normal and healthy, and if kids are told this from a young age, they will believe it. Let’s promote periods as the healthy and normal bodily function that it is
- Promote facts, not myths– all girls get their periods at some stage, and most periods work according to a 28-day cycle. We hear some pretty funny and often strange myths. So, it's best to have an open and honest conversation where both boys and girls can ask questions about periods
- Starting your period prepares your body for pregnancy– a lot of the misinformation about periods is because we as a culture have an issue talking about sex and reproduction in a healthy manner. Boys and girls need to understand how pregnancy occurs – if nothing else than to prevent unwanted pregnancies – but also because it’s essential to menstrual health
- Teach kids about anatomy– many girls believe they urinate and menstruate from the same body part. This is basic 101 stuff, but many girls are not taught about how their own bodies work. If girls think this then imagine what boys think?
- Promote menstrual products – education is power and being informed empowers girls to take control of their periods and manage them with dignity. It's important for boys to understand what products girl need and use to manage their periods. A fun experiment for both boys and girls is to dunk tampons in a glass of water and watch them expand. It demonstrates the absorption properties and brings a bit of fun to the topic.
Luna is here to make this experience positive and fun (ya fun) for you. We've got your back, and know you’ve got this too!
Email us any time, there's no such thing as a dumb question!