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Menstruation and a Midwife

by Natalie Corden | binti_period | Binti International
Tuesday, 27 September 2016 13:44 GMT

* Any views expressed in this opinion piece are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.


I raise up my voice, not so that I can shout, but so those without a voice can be heard.

Malala Yoosafzai

As a midwife, mother, daughter, friend and WOMAN I understand that many women and girls have no menstrual dignity and are shamed when they have their period.  I knew that in some countries girls leave school when they get their first period and in the UK many homeless women have no access to sanitary products.

Yet, I hadn't reacted till I saw the campaign by BINTI. I first saw Binti on my beloved twitter feed. Amidst my degree I had to find out more as the imagery portrayed made me STOP. I reacted in my mind and heart as I thought of the period shaming that was described. As a midwife my focus is to have women at the heart of my care. I support them in their choices and decisions around their body, their baby and their birth. So, why did I find Binti so interesting?

I can see the women in my care that have grown up with sanitary products, no shame and attending school regardless of their menses. The girls described by Binti are shamed when they get their period, they leave school or do not attend when menstruating and have little access to sanitary products. I suppose I thought of myself at the age of 11, frightened and scared that my uniform may have a stain or changing for PE hoping I hadn't leaked. Still, I did not feel shame.

As a midwife I hope to empower women that I care for, but my thoughts are that girls need to have positive beginnings when menstruating to build their LOVE for their bodies. Thus have a sense of control that ultimately benefits their lives for future birth and for a foundation of psychological wellbeing their whole lives through.

So that is why I know the work that Binti does is so important and will impact global midwifery in the future as these girls grow to be women, BUT first girls need our help so that the ${esc.dollar}{esc.dollar}{esc.hash}Crimson shame stops.

Please take a look at Binti.co.uk - lets help to create a world with menstrual dignity for all women.

 My thanks to the wonderful @JohnWalsh and @binti_period.