Feminism is all about equality. We talk about having an equal right of existence. Having said that, we also know that physiologically and biologically men and women are different. There are aspects of women that men don’t know, not because they don’t care, but more so because they are never made familiar with those aspects. For ages it’s been a taboo telling men too much about what a woman goes through, physically, during periods or pregnancy or childbirth. So, the question is when do we start getting about the change? For starters, we should speak with our sons about periods.
AND WHY NOT?
Why should it be only a woman’s cross to bear? If we want men to be more empathetic to what women go through then we must make them aware of some of the major biological changes that women go through as well.
I remember when I had started periods, my mom had categorically told me that the men in the family should not know about it, the men being dad and my elder brother. Maybe my mom had been brought up and taught to be discreet about womanly endurance. I did not understand any of these ‘rules’ hence didn’t question since I was rather young.
My Dad a rebellion of his time told mom that I would not be raised with the same archaic views that she had been; he broke all the myths that mom believed in and had tried to pass on to me. Many of those I have spoken about in the past and would speak about in other blogs on a later date as well. It was my brother that would question me and mom during those days of the month, why his rather spirited sister is tucked away in bed despite no visible fever, incapacitated with inexplicable stomachache. One day Dad had a talk with my older brother, he told him why his sister was in severe abdominal pain and why he should care for me in those days. He has since then been very empathetic to how a woman feels during her periods and has extended that sensitivity of understanding to his wife.
A lot of men are insensitive to women’s monthly cycles because they don’t know what the ordeal is about. They have been raised wearing blinders and have been drinking a potion of insensitivity. So if we need to see a change in how the new generations of men perceive women then we need to start talking about what impacts us as women on a biological level.
One may argue that the monthly cycle may not be the right way of describing women as it takes away from our fight of equality. I however believe that though periods may not be a be-all and end-all of women, but men need to know about it, be informed and empathetic, as those 2-3 days can be disruptively agonizing for some women while not so pertinent to some women who breeze through it without much discomfort. Either ways it’s a truth and both genders should be equally sensitized towards it for a society of equals to arise.
- Srushti Rao
- May 9, 2017
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