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"Dear Moon Sisters"...

“Dear Moon Sisters,” reads the sign on the back of the restroom stall door. Yet another admonition to monitor tampon and pad disposal. Sensitive pipes and all that. I reflect for a moment that every public restroom I have been in, all over the Earth, has a different way—ranging from cutesy to direct—to remind women not to flush sanitary products. I often wonder: Are we really still doing this? Is there any femme out there who thinks that a blood-soaked pad is not likely to clog a toilet? 

This observation aside, period taboos in general impact all women-sometimes fatally. In some villages in Nepal, for example, women on their periods are confined to menstrual huts, and can freeze to death or suffocate while banished during their moon time.  In some parts of Africa, periods keep girls from school. In India and Indonesia, periods keep women out of the temple. Period ostracization and bias has caused generations of emotional and economic annoyances: in some places, a woman can’t be touched; in others, she can’t cook for others…. and the need to buy period supplies represents a gender biased “tax” with no male equivalent. It’s hardest, of course, on poor women.  In US state prisons, for example, women have to pay for their period supplies, using the scant credits they are allocated (for things like calling home) on hygiene.

At Rosebud Woman, we’re very much about removing any taboos and stigmas around natural processes for all women—and the period is one taboo that needs immediate rethinking. 

Last fall, we were lucky to participate in an event called  Hack Your Cycle in New York, hosted by Nicole Jardim: The Period Girl.  Jessica Drummond, one of our Rosebud Woman Ambassadors, spoke on the panel about how how to optimize exercise and training in relation to your menstrual cycle, how your brain is connected to your hormones and pelvic pain (endometriosis), and how to nourish your brain for optimal hormone function. 

One company we really love that is working on this is Clue, an app for tracking your cycles. They also have a strong blog with a lot of great data on periods and period taboos—such as this article on how the moon time was once a sacred center of power, and was turned into something to be controlled.

Still, we persist. Persisting in removing taboos can be a tool for great awakening, individually or societally.