Motherhood, menstruation and men

I had always planned on having kids and feel very blessed to have 2 wonderful boys. As much as I would have loved to share the whole ‘first period experience’ with a daughter, I’ve had the period conversation with my boys. I mean, how could it not come up given both boys came to work with me when they were young, Lunapads are in my bathroom, and Lunapads is where Mum goes to work everyday? Here is a short video on my thoughts on being a working mom and why I think it is important for boys to grow into men who have a healthy respect for girls, women, and their bodies.

My thanks to the cameos in this video of Warren Te Brugge from My Arms Wide Open. Not only is he an advocate for girls and women in South Africa, he is an amazing role model to boys and men. By involving boys in his work to promote Pads4Girls (read about it here: “Education Equity: enabling girls to stay in school”) boys are not only gaining a better appreciation for the challenges girls face each month, but actively working with him to help find the girls who most need menstrual supplies. Look forward to a blog post and video from Warren very soon.

Please share with me your thoughts on being a mom to boys or why boys and men need to be part of the menstruation conversation! I’d love to hear from you!

 

pixel Motherhood, menstruation and men
  • Marleah

    I’ve been so lucky to have a supportive husband who is open to, at the very least, listening when I debate washables, using a DivaCup, etc. 

  • Marleah

     And … I posted before I was finished. :) We’re currently expecting, and if we have a son, I hope to raise him to be just as open and caring and supportive of women!

  • http://www.ladiesholiday.com/ Ladies Holiday

    What a gift you are giving not only your children, but all of us. Thank you.

  • heatherwhite

    So well said. I’ve bee so fortunate in having a close relationship with my two younger brothers and as well with my other half. I think we often make assumptions about the male perspective and in my case my assumptions have always been wrong. The men in my life (and I know many others) are supportive and understanding as well as curious and interested. Thanks for the post – an important discussion. xx

  • Nancee

    love how you guys are doing additional videos on such interesting topics! fantastic video :)

  • http://babyinbroad.blogspot.com/ Noelle

    Menstruation is not, and shouldn’t be a GIRLS ONLY club. Men and boys absolutely, without question need to have period smarts, too. (And NOT in the stand-up-comedy-PMS-jokes way.) I’m absolutely baffled by the number of men who want to have intimate, long-term relationships with women, but feel totally fine—even justified—in their feelings of icked-outedness about periods and the female body! My four-year-old son already knows a little bit about periods, thanks to a great description of the process in ‘It’s So Amazing’ and Mommy’s drawer of colorful Lunapads in the bathroom. 

  • Teri

    In a house with four boys ranging in age from 21 years to 7 months, and one girl (4 yrs), it’s REALLY cruicial that the boys have/will learn(ed) about periods, pads and why chocolate is so important!  We’re a very open family when it comes to discussing such matters, and I see now, with the older boys, how empowering them with this information when they are much younger, makes it easier to talk about now that they are older and in dating relationships. It gives them a perspective on the whole moody side of girls and hopefully a better understanding of, and respect for, the natural processes of life.  Best thing I ever did was switch to reusable pads, and as a mom, I am very much looking forward to sharing and celebrating the experience when my daughter has her first period!

  • http://www.MoontimeRising.com/ Giuliana Serena

    Thank you for a wonderful post and video! Love seeing this topic discussed! I personally love speaking with men about menstruation. I find that more men than you might believe are open and curious, and willing to be supportive, it’s just that most have never been invited into the conversation, and many even feel excluded. In my professional life, I’m an outspoken advocate for bringing men (and boys) back into the conversation about menstruation. As a wife and mother to two young sons, it has been made all the more clear to me that gender need not be a barrier to understanding basic feminine biology, or the more nuanced aspects of our flow. Because menstruation is a central part of my work in the world, it’s commonly discussed in our home, and feels totally normal and natural. My family sees my blood when I’m changing and rinsing my pads, and often watch as I feed the rich fertilizer to our garden. Even if menstruation wasn’t the focus of my work, I’d still recognize that as a parents, it’s our responsibility to bring children up with compassionate education about the nature of our reproductive bodies, whatever their anatomy. Having fathers and other male mentors with positive views and experiences of menstruation is crucial for all children (and adults alike!) And because it’s what I talk about out in the world, I am certain, beyond any doubt, that women will not reach the kind of equality and acceptance of our natural flow (that is our birthright) without the compassionate collaboration and support of our partners, brothers, fathers, sons, etc. We find ourselves at a time when this acceptance and appreciation is more realistic than anytime in the past, oh let’s say 3-5,000 years. And despite the misconstrued notions purported my most mass media outlets, we have a lot of room to grow and a whole lot to look forward to. The movement towards open communication is gaining momentum, as evidenced by this post and all the other work coming to light on the subject, and I’m happy to be a part of it.

  • WarrenTB

    For all the men out there – something to think about: Menstruation is an experience all people and men in particular should respect and cherish, for right at the completion of this monthly experience is the place and circumstance from which the lives of our future children in the world have the opportunity to spark and ultimately be born into our world and our communities. Simply that ‘event’ called menstruation is a key factor in our lives. If it didn’t happen, I wouldn’t have the opportunity to work with the amazing people I get to work with in our communities because I simply wouldn’t be – think about it and celebrate the wonderful woman in your lives… and if you have sons educate them.

  • http://ritesforgirls.com/ Kim

    Hi, I’m a Mum to boys (and a girl) and discovered that the source of their dislike of menstrual blood was because, to them, blood means pain and that something is wrong.  Me bleeding scared them. I have had to reassure them more than once that my bleeding is a good thing, and I am not hurt or wounded.  Then they relaxed and became more curious.

  • Kat

    My two year old son is curious about my pads and seems concerned when he sees bloody pads in my underwear, I think because to him blood means someone has an “owie”. He asks many questions about the pad and the blood. How do I explain periods in terms a two (almost three) year old can understand?