Menstruation Myths and Rituals Every Pinay Knows Too Well
by Sherry Tadeja, September 19, 2018 3:20pm
Art by Dani Elevazo
To every girl, their menarche or their very first period is a monumental turning point in growing up. Growing up in a Filipino household takes this moment to extra levels through superstitious rituals and warnings. All those stress to make the rest of our menstruating lives less stressful—NOT!
And yet we all fell victim to doing at least one (or all) of these anyway:
"You have to wash your face using your undies with your first-period stain to avoid pimples"
First of all, this ritual has got to stop. It's unhygienic. Second of all, no research nor medical evidence has proved that menarche blood can prevent acne. A “your very first skincare package” would’ve been better. Thanks, Mom!
"You can't take bath when you have a period"
They say taking a bath during your menstruation can either turn you crazy or infertile. And your elders have probably told you that you'd be at risk of cold air entering your body aka nalalamigan. All of which are...crazy. It’s important to clean your body, especially during your period.
"Jump 3 steps from the stairs so your period will last for only 3 days"
In reality, a normal period can last up to three to seven days. Who are we kidding here?
"Eating sour fruits will make your period cramps worse"
Sour fruits (or any food at all) don't trigger cramps. It's even recommended to amp up your fruits and veggies especially in that time of the month to prevent the likely chance of bloating. Instead of googling your way out of dysmenorrhea you can apply a hot compress, mint ointment or if the pain is too much (which likely happen to some) take medicinal tablets to relieve from this inevitable discomfort.
These questionable rituals are outright old maid’s tail and most importantly unhygienic. We talk about blood naturally coming out every month and that should entail some extra hygienic practices. It may or may not affect your menstruation but it's an impactful thing you can do for your health. Trust us.