Menstruation is a word that is still considered a taboo. The issue which is being flushed down in the form of hushed whispers amongst family members sitting together, but CHANGE THE TOPIC is all that is whispered at the mere mention of the word PERIODS. I would refrain to talk about the fiasco that we all witnessed in the name of so called biological lectures during our middle schooling. I still remember how progressive our academic institutions were and how magnanimously they feigned the mere pretension of women empowerment all the way through separate menstrual hygiene sessions. Such sessions were always organised with the primary intention of ostracizing all the boys of the class. This is a special note for all the lovely mothers out there to understand that menstrual awareness is not just meant for girls but the boys too.
We are living in a modern society, people are becoming advanced in their thought process. though, this advancement is usually preserved for all the insubstantial aspects. In many households, a menstruating girl is being seen or looked down upon by her male siblings or even husbands that she is down with a fever. Really?
Why men are being deprived of such quintessential awareness?
Why many older men of the families are still stuck on reducing the relevance of such discussion into a mere ‘girls topic’ or females problem. Being a parent do ensure that boys have equal knowledge and awareness about menstruation as your daughters. There is nothing to be ashamed of, nothing to be hidden and kept veiled from them. It’s even more unfair to blame the men for being insensitive towards such issues when they have always kept ignorant of the pain and inconvenience a woman often goes through during her monthly cycle.
I have thought upon some creative and interesting ways to make your kids aware of the dynamics of menstruation in their early ages. sensitization is a continuous process and it doesn’t evolve overnight. hence, they must be sensitized.
• Send your male child to go and fetch the sanitary napkins and reason with the shopkeeper to give it without wrapping it up in an opaque paper/polythene.
• Tell your daughter to discuss her PMS woes with her dad, male siblings and friends in school without any inhibition. Never inculcate this habit of brushing her pain and inconvenience under the rugs.
• Researches have evidenced that teachers’ attitudes and classroom resources only aid to prolong the negative stereotypes associated with menstruation. So, make sure as a parent your school is providing access to such information which is accessible to girls. This will help them a great deal in understanding rather than feeling scared and bewildered or grim.
• Common questions and curiosity regarding MHM (menstrual hygiene management) should not be curbed and all the queries especially of boys must be addressed at all costs.
• Fun interactive games about menstruation can be organised, so that kids can actively participate and understand the nuances about periods in a fun way and discussions too can be followed through.
The PMS (of males) comes from our sociological conditioning and upbringing which has been taking place for decades. The labyrinth of societal patterns, poor communications and lethargic interactions have resulted in such men who are least sensitive about the normalcy of menstruation with reproductive and sexual capacity of a woman. The dynamics of menstruation must be known to them. Masculinity is much beyond than exercising mere muscle power and it should be emphasized more upon building up supportive sensitive structures to achieve better and cordial social relations.