“Never trust something that bleeds for seven days and doesn’t die.”
— Mr. Garrison
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of women. I even married one. But you have to admit, once a month things get a little weird. Maybe there are guys who are very positive and supportive about menstruation, but I’m not one of them. I’d rather the whole thing stay behind closed doors, that I be spared the horror of even seeing the tools used to stymie the offending flow. I have nightmares about getting lost in the feminine hygiene section, pads and tampons and even more horrible torture devices leaping at me, leaving me a dried out husk with a spring fresh scent.
Feminists have long combatted this medieval view of menstruation held by dumb clods like me, and one group actually caught my interest. The Blood Sisters is a group fighting not only to drag menstruation out of the bathroom (figuratively, I hope), but to end the reliance on disposable, mass-produced pads and tampons. Yes, that’s right. They want women to make and reuse pads.
A better alternative is to buy or sew your own set of five to ten washable pads. They are easy to use, cute to look at, and comfortable. Just use them, soak them in cold water, and cold water wash them with your regular laundry.
As I read through the site, I was constantly torn between utter disgust and hope for reducing the ecological footprint of this inevitable part of womanhood. Anybody with a wife or girlfriend (or uterus) knows what I mean. A box, plastic pink wrappers, cardboard applicators, bleached cotton or rayon, all down the toilet. How refreshing it is to see the promotion of “kickass alternative menstrual hardware.”
Urban Armour, the commercial wing of the Blood Sisters asks the sensible question, “Why should we dress our periods in pale, drab, boring colors?” They offer reusable pads in a variety of styles, fabrics, and sizes. Not a pad person? They also sell sea sponges, nature’s own tampon, “your new squishy friend.”
Not comfortable using underwater flora internally? Try my personal favorite, the Keeper. This is just like the goal keeper in soccer or hockey, except it’s a rubber cup that suctions over the cervix and catches blood. Just rinse it and reinsert, “store in a 100% cotton bag in a cool, dry place between cycles and rinse before using again,” and it will last for ten years. At only $45 each, this is economically and ecologically friendly! As an added bonus, putting a tiny plunger in your hoo-ha can give you a green thumb:
Instead of flushing your blood down the toilet, you can dilute your cupful in a jugful of water and make a wonderful, natural fertilizer for your plants. You may want to select a special watering can for this magic brew and try it once a month. Sincerely, you will notice your plants get very perky!
Now we know Martha’s real secret!
While I still want to know nothing about this special time in a woman’s life, it’s good to know that some women are taking steps to make it less of a burden on our non-renewable resources, if not less of a burden on me.