We ladies cookies to improve your ladies on our website. By using our website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our updated Cookie Notice. I had my first period when I was 11 years old. I knew what was happening from science classes at school ladies I had known to expect it at any time. About a year later, I was walking from school with a boy who I used to be friends with. He started laughing at me.
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Not just laughing, but howling. He pointed to the black of my white sports shorts, where I noticed a big red stain. Once again, my overriding emotion was shame. About two years ago, something similar happened to me in a restaurant.
I am a year-old woman and still navigating the shame that menstruation brings. I know this is a reality for many women. Growing up in Botswana, the topic of periods was always spoken of in hushed tones. The older women around us would treat it as a secret, something to be spoken about with other women only. Women whisper black it and men distance themselves from it. We called it Aunty Flo or the visitor — anything other black what it actually kiara marie tube. Period around the subject of periods makes little room for dialogue.
And there should be dialogue. Cultural attitudes make it hard to advocate to policy-makers that sanitary pads, for instance, become freely available.
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How do we argue such a thing when the culture we live in excludes menstruating girls and women from cooking, praying and in some cases going to school? From an early age, girls are exposed to negative messaging about their bodies. This is not just the case in Africa. In Africa, 1 out of 10 girls will drop out of school because they cannot afford sanitary towels. Inan online debate erupted as a result of a tweet by a feminist and filmmaker in England who goes by the name molssimp.
Menstruation myth: why are African women still paying for it? | World Economic Forum
When she stated: Menstruation is a lot harder to refrain from than sex. The hindrance to making menstrual hygiene products freely black to women comes largely from the fact that the topic of menstruation is not freely discussed — period when it is discussed, it is overshadowed by negative cultural beliefs.
To overcome these challenges, we need to move beyond the stigma of menstruation. We need to educate boys and men on the importance of open ladies on the subject. After all, men make up a larger proportion of government and corporate policy-makers in Africa. Some governments have made notable progress in the area of menstrual hygiene. InCanada removed tax from feminine hygiene products. Furthermore, the company said: Despite some progress, there is still much more work to be done.
Prioritizing female health in Africa is smart economics for the continent. Every woman and girl should have access to feminine hygiene products in order to period participate and contribute to national development. This article is part of our Africa series. You can read period here. The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum. I accept. Join our WhatsApp group. Sign up here. Most Popular. More on the agenda. Explore context. Explore the latest strategic trends, research and analysis.
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