In a world that is marred with COVID-19, India has been in a lockdown and the practice of physical distancing is in practice. This has severely impacted these women weavers who have lost their livelihood and space of solidarity.
In my personal experience, we grew up hearing the words like ‘sick’, ‘ill’, ‘down’, ‘time of the month’ etc., commonly substituted secret codes for the word ‘periods’ or for referring to menstruation.
Even though menstrual cups have been available for commercial consumption since 1937, confusion and anxiety surrounding them seems to be commonplace.
Next time you meet someone with PCOS, please don’t tell them to eat healthy or go to the gym. They probably know that.
Due to the lack of awareness around sanitary or menstrual waste disposal and the absence of laws to force segregation, most women dispose of used sanitary napkins along with the rest of the domestic waste.
Although, the UN acknowledges menstrual hygiene as a global health issue, the outbreak of pandemic, ‘Covid-19’ has globally increased the vulnerability around period poverty.
While PMS is highly common, PMDD requires a diagnosis due to the fact that it is disruptive to the person experiencing it. However, in India, the awareness about PMDD among most health professionals and the general public is still low.
Women in India and Nepal are considered impure and untouchable, for having a healthy functioning body; quarantined into "huts", vulnerable & alone.
We need to disintegrate this cultural narrative of motherhood being a standpoint of a woman’s life. Normalize postpartum depression and celebrate the mothers who have sought to carry on despite this.
The myths around menstruation are sugar-coated with care and affection. Disguising it in the name of the gift, women are restricted and excluded.