Submitted Date 06/06/2019

Menstruation is, for a large population of the world, a taboo subject. Why? I'm not sure. Perhaps it's because it has to do with blood. Or maybe it's because it has to do with a woman's vagina while having nothing to do with sex. It's often seen as gross, disgusting, and far to personal to speak about. But the thing is, it shouldn't be. Menstruation is a naturally occurring cycle in a woman's body that generally indicates the amazing gift she has of bringing another human into this world.

But the ugly side of periods isn't how the blood is "gross". It is the side effects that many women have to hide or we will be seen as weak, complaining, over dramatic, or hysterical. But the plain truth is, it fucking hurts.

Imagine a constant stabbing pain in your lower midsection for 1-7 (possibly more) days. Pain relievers don't make it go away. You are lucky if they even dull the pain a bit. Now here comes the nausea which may or may not turn into full on vomiting. Headaches, muscle aches, hormone fluctuations, aversions to food or water are several of the symptoms that many women deal with. Now imagine this.... women deal with this EVERY MONTH!!!!!!!!!

The average age a girl begins having a period is between 12-15, and the average woman stops having them between 40-50. Many times though, it begins before and stays after that. But if we go with the statistics of 12-45, the average woman has approximately 400 periods in her lifetime. If we average the amount of days a period is, that brings the number to 2000 days (5.47 years). Now remember all those symptoms I told you about? Picture them happening to women every month for approximately 33 years of their life.

Now, thankfully, not every woman has to deal with all this every month. Many get only a few of the symptoms, but a large part also get all of them or more. This is just the tip of the iceberg for some women in their periods. (Google dysmenorrhea) Basically, compare it to having a HORRIBLE and PAINFUL stomach flu every month for 33 years.

As women, we are expected to work, mother, and function normal lives in circumstances such as these. And that can be an enormous struggle every month.

I wanted to bring more awareness to this subject in the hopes that it can empower women to realize how strong we are, but to also educate men on how rough it can be for a woman during large portions of her life.

Men, support your mother, sisters, partners, etc when they are dealing with their periods. If they need tampons, heat pads, or Midol, help them out. Chances are, they are dealing with more pain than they show.

Author's note: I decided to write this after spending the night high on painkillers that didn't numb the pain a single bit. All the while, I was lying in the fetal position with a hot water bottle pressed against my skin. And when I finally fell asleep for a few I hours, I woke up just to puke my guts out. This is reality for women.

Works Consulted:
Davis, Charles Patrick, MD, PhD. "Menstruation (Cycle, Period) Symptoms, Definition, Cycle Length, Irregular Bleeding". MedicineNet. 25 April 2018.


"Menstruation (periods)". healthdirect. May 2018.

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  • Kiersten Felch 3 years ago

    "it's just cramps" and in high school I spent the entire day out of it from debilitating cramps. because it was something I was just expected to make it through lol

  • Ceara 2 years, 10 months ago

    I think it's important to remember that all women feel pain differently. Like you mentioned, some women have only a few symptoms while others have all of them. Some women judge other women for "not being able to deal" with their symptoms, but everyone feels pain differently. Thanks for sharing!