Wednesday, 30 November 2016

A bloody red alert.

My period is officially over! Today I woke up with no blood on my night-time pad, and nothing on the just-in-case tampon, either. Thank goodnessing fuck. As soon as I saw the lack of red this morning, I happily cracked open my box of The Pill in my bedside drawer and I popped a 'Wednesday'. I'm too excited for 30 days without that bloody hell, now.

Okay so, did that little string of sentences seem weird? Maybe TMI? Why? Are you not used to hearing these things? I bet if you're an avid reader of blogs, you'll have read something like that before. Also I have so many good blogging pals/heroes who have written about periods in the past year or so (will list 'em below!). It's another taboo that's being pored over and smashed to pieces. And I am delighted.


I've always been quite upfront and open about my Lady Timez. I remember asking friends on the playground at school, 'ermm, wanna come with me to the bathroom?' with suggestive eyebrow wiggles that I felt only young girls got the meaning behind – and then when I got to Year 11 and didn't give any shits I'd just flat out say 'I'm on, who has a pad?' 

Also, at school, I found I got to an age when teachers would always let me go to the loo mid-lesson. I think it was in Year 9, maybe. All us girls were excused – because the teachers, the young brightly-dressed women and even in some cases the stuffier older men, wouldn't want us to be uncomfortable, or y'know, bleed on their plastic chairs (which we all did at one time or another. Ughh). 

Caitlin Moran has said that even aged 40 she still discovers blood in her pants and exclaims 'WHAAAAT, fuck sake!?' like it's a hideous surprise. I do, too. I've come on at the worst possible times (admittedly not as bad as Caitlin, I mean, she came on while sitting on a white sofa and watching Benedict fucking Cumberbatch recite a Sherlock monologue about love that she was saving up in her wank bank). My favourite/worst instance of period was when I was pitching my first novel to an agent at the Curtis Brown Discovery Day. I was wearing a light lilac dress, with just 40 denier tights and a pair of M&S granny pants between me and the padded chair I was sitting on. And y'know what I did? I kept pitching my arse off – as my front bits expelled. I sat up ever so slightly, pulled my light dress out from underneath me (because blood getting on a cheap black padded seat cushion vs blood staining a smart and expensive dress...no brainer) and cracked on. Nobody knew. Well, Twitter knew, because I of course tweeted about it from the toilets right after my pitch session was over...


(Not pictured: oozing)

Anyway, back to the point. Periods are considered evil most of the time, but to be honest I just find them irritating. They come along when you're least expecting it and they bugger up your life for a few days. I've known friends to cancel plans with me because they're bed-bound with cramps and don't trust their uterus to behave for long enough to leave the house. I personally have only had proper period pain once, and trust me that was enough. I'll go into that later on...

Also, honestly, how many of my gorgeous female readers have been planning a lovely date night with your other half then BOOM, blood, and the plans are scrapped? Isn't it always the way? I often find I'll finally have something cooking up and getting going (as it were) in the personal department, and then I'll bleed continuously as if my body is screaming with nerves and trying to prevent me falling in love or whatever...
AND guy readers, I'm curious...does the bleeding bug you? I would ask all my guy friends in person and in private, but y'know, it's far more sensible to ask publicly in a post on the internet. That's what I do! 

* Interjection here, period sex is a thing and can actually be well good, like. Here's me talking about it for The Mix, on YouTube for all to see! 
(I showed this to the kids I lectured recently, after talking to them about blogging for 2 hours. It got a good/incredulous response.) *


I was inspired to write this post after seeing Hannah Witton's 'The Hormone Diaries' on YouTube; she has stopped taking her pill for the first time in years to see what happens to her body. I tell you, that is fucking brave. 

I came off my pill once, because I was experiencing symptoms of a brain tumour (+ inflated cyst around the brain tumour) and the neurologist I saw was so sure that my twitches and face slumps and mini-fits were happening because I'd been on the pill for almost 4 years straight and it was starting to mess up my body (after 4 years of blissful harmony with my body tho...?!). I came off my Yasmin and after 2 weeks or so...it wasn't pretty. My body soon realised it wasn't going to get the usual hormone suppression/regulation stuff, it wasn't just a usual week's break, and it got angry. The world fell out of my vag, honestly it was a literal blood bath, I was changing my pad every hour. My lower back and stomach were racked with pain, I was doubled over with it. My skin exploded in spots – a huge plus to my pill, mostly clear skin always! – and my boobs were suddenly aching constantly. My then-boyf would try and pat me on the shoulder or massage me and I'd cross my arms over my chest and shriek 'GET OFF ME YOU HURT EVERYTHING HURTS!' 

Now, I am sharing all this fabulous info with you guys because I feel it's something I should WE SHOULD – be able to share. Okay, there are restrictions, for instance maybe don't talk about your menstrual tendencies on a first date with someone you properly fancy (I guess it could be a good device to get rid of a date you're not that fussed about...) and perhaps keep it to yourself when you come on during a lunch with extended family or in-laws. Just slip away to the loo and take care of it, then tell family members afterwards if you wish. Don't yell, at the dinner table, 'I AM BLEEDING!!', yeah? 



However, with friends and people you definitely trust and think would share their experiences and personal tricks (like how, at 16, I used to tell friends excitedly that wearing a tampon until THE SECOND BEFORE sex meant less or no blood during, pro tip people), go for it. Share share share. Get it said aloud, in conversation, at home or in a public place. 
I personally LOVE being able to text and talk with friends about our periods. I'll throw it into conversation – usually when describing a minor yet emotionally traumatic recent event; 'oh yeah, but I'm on the blob so that could be why I cried for 4.5 hours...' It's guaranteed hilarity and/or sensitivity. So let's talk more. It's a natural thing. Why the fuck don't we talk about it? We talk about pregnancy and babies and (male) wanking (grr) and even a bit more these days about actual sex - so why not this? 

A big moment for me recently was when I actually started ripping out my pads, tearing open a new one and replacing in public toilets. I used to flush the toilet first, or wait until some kind lady would switch on the hand-dryer outside my cubicle. I hated the idea that people knew what I was up to, that I was bleeding and needed to stem the flow with a sanitary towel as all women do tho?! I'm also taking out pads and tampons from my handbag and not making any effort to hide them (but not exactly flaunting them either) as I walk to the toilet. For some reason I always felt like someone seeing me holding a bright pink packet or a yellow plastic tube would change their opinions of me. Wtf? 
-- little note here, can the FHP makers please someday create a wrapper for pads and tampons that actually is SILENT when you open them? Seriously, it can't be that hard. 



Okay, that's me done on this topic, for today anyway. I may have to get on the #livetweetyourperiod hype next month. I know I tend to slip into ranting mode when writing these posts and sometimes that can make the meaning ebb ever so slightly but I so hope y'all stuck it out and read on through the rants. 

This is just the latest in my series of subjects that I wanna chat about! Here are some others... 

And here are some of the aforementioned important blogger pal posts: 

Until next time, folks xoxo 

1 comment

  1. As a guy I can safely say I've never been that bothered about periods. I honestly don't understand the fuss? I know guys that have taken pictures of blood stains and even made the girls take the sheets home and clean them? It's honestly ridiculous. It's natural and even non period blood during sex happens, get over it. I'm all for period sex, though doing it on a towel or in the shower works best to reduce mess but it helps cramps and relieves tension (most girls seem to be really horny during their periods, from my Experiance) I think the whole thing is some stupid taboo that a lot of guys get funny about, it's immature �� And the difference being, if you don't make a fuss and make the girl feel as comfortable as possible, she will appreciate it. She's more likely to feel better, be more confident and then the sex will only get better! I know too many girls scared to bleed, aslong as your not physically harming her man up and do your job ��

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