Tampons Attacked for Holding Women Back

Say What!? 45

tamponsFor years, we've been subjected to advertisements for feminine hygiene products that make it like buying certain pads and tampons will have us frolicking in fields and doing impressive dives into pools. Much fun has been made of how these commercials are willing to show us anything and everything other than what they're actually for: Menstruation. Our messy, inconvenient, but very extremely, super-duper womanly and human periods. It's something we certainly don't want to look at and often will go to great lengths to not even have to deal with. But does that mean we're not -- gasp!! -- feminist?!

No, really, this is a question being asked now apparently. A story in The Daily Beast yesterday queried: "Are Tampons Anti-Feminist?" You've got to be kidding.

The argument being that menstruation is under-represented in film and TV. And when it does make an appearance, according to Lauren Rosewarne, "it needs to be concealed, deodorized, and that anyone finding out about it is a substantial social faux pas for the woman, if not, social suicide." Oh jeeeze. And tampons "hide" our periods, they make it "invisible." So they contribute to this shame society wants us to feel about our menstruation and reproductive health. Oy.

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The fact is, yes, society is way too uptight about menstruation, reproductive health, and female sexuality. None of these topics should be nearly as taboo as they are. But I'm sorry, is demonizing TAMPONS the answer? Uh, no.

What's more, I feel like getting all bent out of shape about the politics of using a tampon totally undermines the REAL battles that are being waged right now on equality and women in general. I'm not going to sit around worrying that the world wants me to keep my period "invisible" when there are politicians silencing rape counselors from doling out invaluable health information to rape victims. It's crazy to fret about the fact that there's not enough "period-inspired music" when we've got much bigger fish to fry like Texas legislature "degrading women and girls to sex objects, and brood mares, and bald eagles, and leather wallets," as local activist Sarah Slamen put it in a searing speech she gave on Monday.

Okay, it may all be interrelated. But the bottom-line is that tampons make women's lives easier. They're more liberating and empowering than not. We're not necessarily frolicking in meadows as a result of using them, but it sure is easier to focus on more important matters -- like getting ahead in work and in life -- when you're not worrying about your period. That said, tampons are anything but anti-feminist. Geeze, talk about choosing your battles!

Do you think society seems way too hell-bent on making menstruation "invisible"? Or do you think it's really not an issue?

 


general health, health products, menstruation

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nonmember avatar blue

You bet your butt, I want my period to be invisible. I don't need to walk around flaunting the fact, that I have blood coming our of my lady parts. Since when is keeping our bodily functions to ourselves, a sign of feminism or not? Things like these are usually born out of necessity, did they ever consider women WANTED something like tampons. I know for sure, that I do and would!!!

B1Bomber B1Bomber

So what would be an appropriately feminist method? Blood soaked pants? Birthday hats?

sassy... sassykat122

It aint society making my period as invisible as possible, its me. Pads? So my lady parts can sit in it? That is gross to me. It is no more social suicide than if someone wets or poops themselves, all gross.

sassy... sassykat122

It aint society making my period as invisible as possible, its me. Pads? So my lady parts can sit in it? That is gross to me. It is no more social suicide than if someone wets or poops themselves, all gross.

sassy... sassykat122

It aint society making my period as invisible as possible, its me. Pads? So my lady parts can sit in it? That is gross to me. It is no more social suicide than if someone wets or poops themselves, all gross.

sassy... sassykat122

It aint society making my period as invisible as possible, its me. Pads? So my lady parts can sit in it? That is gross to me. It is no more social suicide than if someone wets or poops themselves, all gross.

nonmember avatar blh

Uhhh do they expect you to just....bleed everywhere?? Wtf. Some people are so stupid its unreal.

nonmember avatar mel

I don't do pads. Too messy. I have and it always gets on my underwear or my leg somehow. You can't tell if your just sitting in it or if its spilling over. I really never have an issue with a tampon. It makes it bearable.. lol

If ththat means I'm an anti fem in some eyes. Then I'm a non blood soaked anti fem.

craft... craftycatVT

Yeah, we should just bleed all over the place. Because that wouldn't be a hygiene issue or anything.

nonmember avatar Sally

After actually reading the linked article, it seemed to be much more about the marketing and representation of tampons in pop cultural rather than a diatribe about how wearing a tampon revokes your feminist card. There are plenty of legit points expressed by the author of the original article, and acting as if expressing said points somehow detracts from the important health issues in the national spotlight seems a little silly. (Plus I'm fairly sure most people that are fighting against women's rights don't frequent The Daily Beast.) It's a piece that explores the interesting way that we, as a culture, approach periods and the feminine experience in general. That being said, I still prefer tampons for my own convenience, not because I'm ashamed of bleeding once a month. Better late than pregnant, right?

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