Periods kept following me around. And not just literally in my pants once a month. After I unwittingly became the first person in the UK to announce I was having one live on TV news and that it bloody hurt – I was nervously approached by women and men – all of whom had a shy hunger to tell me their or their loved one’s story. In the street, supermarket, at work and on the bus.
Some tales were sad; others rip-roaringly funny. And a few, beggared disbelief. I needed a home for these yarns and somewhere I could explore what periods mean to women and men and what ought to change.
A book was born; well, the beginning of one. At a very similar time to our son. My two babies – inextricably linked of course. Having only recently fought the fertility battle, fresh from my diagnosis of the debilitatingly painful period condition endometriosis (diagnosed 20 years late), our baby boy had finally given me a reason to cautiously feel grateful to my menses – having always loathed her monthly visit.
The book means a great deal as many people trusted their stories, deeply personal ones that they have never uttered a word about before, to me. This was all in a bid to finally rid the world of the stigma stubbornly and unnecessarily hanging around periods.
I hope that this tome will entertain, inform and point out things people have never noticed before.
Periods are a great untapped and unspoken about part of women’s identity. Religion, prudishness, men and women have kept periods firmly in a box marked ‘taboo’ for far too long. No more I tell thee.
A big thank you to Emma Barnett, author of Period., for the above post.
A little more about the book:
Emma loathes her period. Really, she does. But there’s something she loathes even more: not being able to talk about it. Freely, funnily and honestly. Without men and women wrinkling their noses as if she’s pulled her tampon out and offered it as an hors d’oeuvre.
But somehow, despite women having had periods since the dawn of time, we’ve totally clammed up on anything to do with menstruation. Why, oh why, would we rather say ‘Auntie Flo’ than ‘period’? Why, in the 21st century, are periods still seen as icky? Why are we still so ignorant about such a fundamental bodily process?
Now, in Period., Emma draws on female experiences that will make you laugh, weep (and, most probably, squirm), in a fierce and funny rallying cry to smash this ridiculous taboo once and for all.
Because it’s about bloody time.
Pre-order your copy of Period. here. Available to buy from September 5th.