Hello guys, it’s been a while! Adulting is getting in the way of us being consistent, but we’re back! No excuses!
This week’s post is inspired by a health account, l am in charge of at work. I am learning a lot and sharing with my inner circle and l have decided to share with you.
Growing up, l was a very shy child (still shy) and teen but it always got shielded when l was asked to do something. I don’t know, lf l am explaining it properly but let me share an example with you. The Pearl in class who does a presentation or is asked to read at the school’s nine lessons and carols is different from the Pearl who would rather be a homebody on most days and keeps to herself. The first Pearl is a confident one for the task assigned and often that is the Pearl, a lot of people have encountered.
I was so shy, when l began to menstruate, l could not confidently walk to the closest shop or pharmacy in my neighborhood to purchase sanitary pads because l reasoned everyone on the shop would know, l was mensturating and l was embarrassed about it. My mother tried to talk me out of it but little came out of it. I just could not bring myself to do it. It did not also help that most of the closest shops had male attendants. This was around the time I was 13-14 ish.
My mum desperately tried to break the shyness but it did not work. I developed a code word with my Dad for sanitary pads , we called it the “ the stomach thing”. l assumed, the whole thing was coming from my stomach. So anytime l called up my Dad and said l needed the stomach thing, he knew exactly the type of sanitary pad to buy. This went on for a while till l got into senior high school.
In an all girls school, one would assume, we would all confidently call out sanitary pads and other items meant for menstruation by their names but we had code names for them that were being used long before we arrived in the school. Looking back, l am unsure why we were so embarrassed about something that is so natural and we really have no control of. Some of the fancy names for a sanitary pad was : “osomo biscuit”.
I believed, l was over the whole period shyness and “hush hush” attitude when it comes to menstruation till l began dating. In the early stages of our relationship, l was extremely guarded with what l shared with Abei. I did not see a need then to share that l was having my period or about to. I raised eyebrows when l saw other girls confidently tell their male friends about it. I always felt, there was really little they could do about the situation so why mention it anyway?
So back to Abei and l, when l was experiencing PMS(Premenstrual syndrome such as mood swings), l would simply tell him, l would like to be left alone for a while. He would ask questions unending to ascertain the actual reason and l could not bring myself to share.
One time, we were having a conversation around health in general and he was sharing with me about cramps and other things his female friends had shared with me. I was surprised by how much he knew and at the end of the discussion, l realised it was really pointless holding back. So he shared the information he had read on the subject with me.
Besides regular menstruation, l was oblivious to other important things that affect a woman’s body and the various challenges some women experience. I only found out about endometriosis and PCOS this month due to the health account at work. If you experience heavy and painful menstruation, you should go check it out at a hospital because it may be a sign of some challenge you may be experiencing.
How confident are you about sharing your health related issues with your partner?
This week’s post is by, Pearl only