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We need to talk about periods

New research revealed ahead of International Women's Day (March 8) shows that the stigma still exists in young people when it comes to their periods, with over 60% feeling embarrassed while menstruating.

Research from menstrual cup brand INTIMINA highlights that two-thirds (65%) of those surveyed feel shame when menstruating at school, a place where they should feel empowered and supported.

The survey, which included 1,000 12 to 17-year-olds, found that although 85% of young people learn the basic facts about menstruating before their first period, 86% rely solely on their mother for this information, with only a handful (7%) feeling comfortable enough to discuss menstruation with their father or a doctor.

A helpful guide

This International Women’s Day (March 8), to champion and empower those beginning a new phase of life, INTIMINA launched a new audio version of ‘The Wonder Girls Guide Book’, which offers a collection of short stories detailing journeys of periods and puberty. It provides learning experiences and advice, and helps to break the taboo around something so natural. The book can be downloaded for free on INTIMINA’s website.

INTIMINA’s gynaecologist Dr Shree Datta said: “There’s no doubt that we still need to destigmatise the talk around periods – for everyone – people should not be bullied or teased for having periods, which are as natural as growing hair. It’s time to open up and be up front and frank about what periods mean, in school, university and the workplace so that we tackle period myths.”

Educate and empower

Danela Zagar, INTIMINA’s Global Brand Manager added: “Educating people and empowering young women to feel free of any cultural taboos and stigma is what every modern society and education system should be doing. ‘The Wonder Girls Guide Book’ can act as a guide but it can also encourage more open conversations, which is why we are thrilled that it’s now accessible via audio book.”

Bex Bastable
Bex Bastable
Bex is a journalist and the co-founder of The Women's Work Collective.


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