‘we are more alike my friends than we are unalike’
I’ve long loved this line from Maya Angelou’s poem, The Human Family and was reminded of it again this week when preparing to launch the latest edition of #ChangeMakingWomen.
Today on our podcast my co-host Ziada and I talk about a subject that affects our everyday lives as women but is taboo all over the world.
Our monthly cycles, our bleeding, our periods. The days of the month when, throughout the middle of our lives we usually shed blood if we are not pregnant (or breastfeeding).
On the show we talk about our own experiences of beginning to bleed and how they were handled in our homes, our experiences of school where we both feared the ‘shame’ of staining our skirts and being laughed at and what its like trying to hide something like that as a child.
I share some of what I have learnt from tracking my cycle and learning how to get in better sync with it over the past few years and how I believe that can help us as women in our lives and work.
We also talk about the fact that a major reason for girls dropping out of school is the lack of sanitary hygiene products and facilities in schools and Ziada shares more about what the Tanzanian government is doing to reverse this trend.
We conclude that change is urgent, that menstruation, and how we experience it should be a topic we talk about freely, that we no longer want to feel we have to keep quiet about such a fundamental part of our lived reality and that its time we break this unhelpful taboo and share our experiences about how what it’s really like for us when we are bleeding with the people around us.
Perhaps then we can start tackling the issues it presents in terms of access to education and the need for women’s cycles to be respected in order for us to live in harmony with our own bodies.
You can listen to our Podcast, Bleeding for Change – Breaking the Taboo about Women and Menstruation now on SoundCloud, ITunes or Stitcher.
Resources to help you get in tune with your cycle as a woman making change will be just one of the things available in the new community for change making women I am launching later this year. If you are interested in hearing more about that when it launches you can sign up for the mailing list below: