This Sunday, 28th May is Menstrual Hygiene Day, which calls on us all to focus on breaking the taboo and bringing attention to the importance of menstrual hygiene management (MHM).
Menstruation can still be a taboo topic and in many countries it’s a cause for shame and discrimination. Menstrual Hygiene Day MHDay aims to help girls and women worldwide with the challenges they face. Supported by organisations such as Unicef and Oxfam, MHDay will be celebrated around the world, spreading knowledge and confidence amongst menstruators worldwide.
This years theme is “Education”, one of the most important aspects of MHDay. In many countries girls miss school due to a lack of access to sanitary products, PMS symptoms or feeling ashamed. Many countries also don’t teach sex education which leads to girls getting their first period and not knowing what is happening to them.
There is still a lot of stigma around the time of the month, such as the belief in some cultures that girls on their period aren’t pure or clean and are therefore prohibited from entering temples or taking part in certain activities. There is much education needed to overcome these stigmas and help girls worldwide to feel more comfortable with their period.
There is a huge gap in education, not only in less developed countries. Developed countries treat menstruation as a taboo topic as well. Most women don’t know everything there is to know about the bloody days, and schools often don’t bother teaching boys about menstruation properly either.
There is still a lot to be done. Periods should be treated as what they are – a normal and essential part of life and definitely nothing to be ashamed about! MHD hopes to open a conversation, so join in using the hashtag #menstruationmatters.
There are specially crafted EMojis (E for Education, M for Menstruation) as well to aid in spreading the message: