If you grew up in the early noughties and your sex education was anything like mine, your period was the impeding boogie man coming to get everyone. Adverts told you that you’d use a pad covered in miscellaneous blue liquid to deal with it and teachers informed you it was something to be dealt with quietly and secretly. Oct. 10 marks the first National Period Day in the UK, a step towards destigmatising menstruation once and for all. And it clearly can’t come soon enough as a recent study found nearly a quarter of people didn’t know what was happening when their period first started. Clean water charity Wateraid has found that there’s still a stigma attached to periods and unearthed some disturbing statistics about period poverty in the UK, too.
Wateraid spoke to 1,000 people between the ages of 14 and 21 living in the UK. They found that