Tired of Taboos

Dhanya Sivakumar

Updated: May 3

Are you TIRED of the taboos? Us. Too.

via GIPHY

Period taboos and stigmas silence the necessary conversations we NEED to be having. No one should feel like they have to hide their period. That’s why we believe in normalizing period conversations and promoting period positivity. When we open up conversations on menstruation, our goal is that someone somewhere can relate to the period experiences and stories shared here! So that’s why this week we collaborated with Larisa Southerland from the Instagram page @sustainablylarisa to share her period experience, as well her tips for anyone thinking of making the switch to sustainable period products!

Larisa Southerland's Instagram page

When asked about her first-period experience, Larisa recalls; “I was in 6th grade and I just remember going to the bathroom and seeing blood. I wasn’t too freaked out, as I had some knowledge about periods. I just went to the nurse and she said “welcome to womanhood” haha. She gave me a pad and maybe spoke to me for a couple of mins and sent me back to class. [...] I think I remember learning about it from a book my parents gave me when I was younger that had to do with maturing and experiencing changes to my body. I’m sure once I got my period my mom taught me more about it, but it wasn’t made to be a big deal so I don’t remember too much otherwise.”

Larisa Southerland

Periods can change over time, and can even change from cycle to cycle. For Larisa, she details that it was more recently that she started to become more comfortable with her period. “I started becoming more comfortable with it recently. I went on birth control when I was 15 with the intent of making it lighter. I eventually chose birth control that made it go away completely. I was so happy lol. I had to switch my medications and now I have a period again but it’s so light that it’s not really bothersome.” When asked if her view on menstruation has changed over time, Larisa shares “It hasn’t really changed since I never really had any negative feelings towards it. The only thing I didn’t like was how painful my cramps would be and that it would be inconvenient.”

For anyone experiencing challenges and struggles with their period, Larisa says I think it’s easier said than done for many people to be ok with menstruation. But it’s something you can’t really control, so why worry too much about it? It’s natural and in many ways is associated with fertility.” Larisa further shares that;

I think educating everyone, regardless of gender, would help get rid of the stigma around menstruation. I think we’ve already come a long way, as well.”

Menstrual education is EXTREMELY important. And it’s not just for people who menstruate, EVERYONE needs to be educated on menstruation. We need proper period education in homes and in schools so we can tackle these stigmas and ultimately normalize having conversations on menstruation. Only then can we FINALLY shed these harmful stigmas and taboos. Having conversations on periods is liberating! Almost half the world’s population menstruates, so why should we have to hide it? Honestly, we are TIRED of the taboos.

Ruth Pads

For those currently considering making the switch to sustainable period products, Larisa shares her advice: “I now use period underwear from Knix. It’s great for me because my periods are so light and I’d hate to contribute to the waste produced by pads and tampons unless I really had to. The advice I have is that it’s definitely worth it to switch to sustainable options, if you can afford it. They’re more comfortable and will keep tons of waste from entering landfills and polluting our waterways. If you can help cut back on waste conveniently and comfortably, I really don’t see a reason why you shouldn’t”

Check out Larisa’s Instagram page @sustainablylarisa for more helpful tips and advice on living an eco-friendly and sustainable lifestyle! And check out our previous blog post #Plastic-Free Periods for more information on the environmental impact of traditional period products.

What’s Next?

We hope that Larisa’s story resonates and relates to you! We want to continue normalizing period conversations and building a supportive network for people who menstruate. If you would like to see your period story featured on our blog contact us at hello@getruth.ca or connect with us on social media! Thank you for reading! Don’t forget to wear your masks, wash your hands, and stay safe!

- Ruth