The romanticized version of having a period is that women-besties magically “sync up.” Believe me, I have willed these “magic powers” for years now, and all that this has managed to result in,is my sister starting her period a week after mine. To be very honest, I was disappointed to say the least. While giving me the Draught of Living Hell (Harry Potter nerds will get the reference), the least I could get in return was the inexplicable joy of sharing this hell with a close female companion.
On the rare occasions that my best friend and I had a period together, we would celebrate this feat with an exultant high five and some ice cream. (“Wait, you’re on your period? SAME!”) This inevitably led to me feeling better during that time of the month where all I could think of for the first two days was the consistency, color, and shape of the blood flowing between my legs.
Not having my period synced up with someone makes me feel invariably lonely. It leads to me staying up at 1 am, clutching my throbbing abdomen, Googling: “How much of pain killers is too much?” or “Is it possible to feel nauseated and horny at the same time?”
On nights like those, a menstruating buddy would have been most helpful. The more I thought about this, the more I realized that there were probably thousands of women like me at that very moment, looking up the most bizarre of things just to make the cramps, or the nausea, or the headaches, or –God forbid- all three of them at once, go away. It just takes a woman’s search history to ascertain when her time of the month is. Telltale signs include sickeningly cute cat videos, devastatingly sad movies (The Fault in Our Stars is a prime example), and absurd period-related medical questions. So, I asked myself this: what would a solution be to the millions of menstruating women who ironically feel that they are on their own during this time of the month? What about the hundreds of questions women have that are not serious enough to be asked to a doctor, but debilitating enough to be Googled at 1 a.m.? The answer almost immediately came to me: Period Support Group.
I decided to take matters into my own hands to start something I would like to call Agony Aunt. Anyone who feels alone while on their period and wishes to ask a weird question like the ones I looked up, rant about something that is unfair in this patriarchal world, needs some advice on something,or just wants to say, “Hi, I am a fellow menstruator,” can contact me on my email address:[email protected].
In fact, even guys can contact me if they have any questions about menstruation, or are genuinely curious about any aspect of female physiology. I will copy the messages I receive anonymously and answer them here on the blog (unless, of course, you don’t want to be anonymous, in which case, your name will be mentioned). I assure you that I will respond to the emails to the best of my ability, and answer the physiological questions with my rudimentary 10th grade Biology (not to fear, unlike most Indian schools, my school taught Sex Ed).
Here is the catch though. You will have to start the email with the phrase: “Dear Agony Aunt…” This would make it seem more support group-like, and most of all, add whimsy to our mostly dull lives.
I hope you do send me emails. It will be interesting to know the doubts, fears, and bizarre queries and problems women and men have about periods. As I said, I will try my level best to respond to these emails. Happy menstruating! (If that is even possible.)
Author: Shloka Gidwani
Shloka is a 12th Grader at B.D. Somani International School Mumbai. She calls herself a Feminist and loves books, swimming, dogs and Coldplay.
Editor: Divya Rosaline