Are You Terrible At Menstruating? Because I Certainly Am

The boy behind me was singing the theme from "JAWS" as the blood crept down my thighs. Sadly, no shark took his young life.
Publish date:
August 18, 2014
periods, cramps, m-rated, M

It’s not my fault.

I was, as the song says, born this way. I got a heavy flow, yo. My menses is my cross to lug along. It’s like the lame cousin your parents make you hang out with even though you hate each other. Except this cousin stains all my clothing with their idiotic and wild-at-heart antics. I can’t speak as to the truly wide-set nature of my vagina, but this gif is essentially my life.

I’m just not good at having my period. The innocent cycle of womb-shedding isn’t to blame. It’s doing what it’s supposed to be doing. It arrives monthly, with a predictable staid one-plus day each month. I’m in synch with the moon like a goddamn boss -- a werewolf boss.

My period’s always been bad. Lots of blood, total weakness, vomiting, sweating, THE WORKS. It took me until last year to start actually tracking, and that was only because I finally addressed the hormone disorder that my dumb ass thought was just how everyone felt during their period. PMDD is real. If you’re worried you’ve got it -- talk to your doctor. I waited until I was 29 to even bring it up. In the immortal words of Jack Nicholson in the seminal classic "As Good As It Gets": Don’t Be Like Me.

Now that I’m keeping track of it, you’d think I’d be better at, you know, having it. I’m not. I don’t know if it’s a quirk of my physical design, but when I get my period, I get it everywhere all of the time. If I’m traveling or in bed with someone for the first time and I’ve got my period, I double-bag it with a massive tampon and an overnight pad. Then I lie in a state of rictus and pretend to sleep for five hours before getting up, raining fluid into the toilet for a while and then pretending to be well rested. I am a joy to know.

Here are six periods I sucked at having.

1. On The Road

It’s the 6th of the month. I know I’m going to get my period. I’ve been having cramps for two days. I’m also driving from Texas to New York. Do I bring any sort of sanitary napkin with me? No, why on earth would I do that when I can ball up a massive wad of truck-stop bathroom tissue every time we stop and pray to god the dam don’t break and my labia remain un-splintered?

2. In The Ocean

I see you teenage boy, loudly singing the "JAWS" theme as I loll out of the ocean, blood streaming down my thighs. I see you and I respect your comedic prowess. May the too-small tampon buoying along out there in the ocean act as the necessary chum to attract the vicious shark which will, god willing, end your reign of terror.

3. During The Movie

Internal monologue: "Oh God. It’s happening. It’s happening right now. Fuuuuuuuck. Why am I at the seat by the wall? I can’t get up, what if it all comes raining down? Okay. Be cool. You’re wearing a skirt. Kind of like, discreetly pull it up until your underwear is pressed against the cushion? Maybe it will act as a blotter? Oh my god I am a monster. A MONSTER."

4. As a Houseguest

I’m pretty sure that if for whatever reason I am called upon in the middle of the night to dispose of a body, "Downton Abbey"-style, I’ll have no qualms doing it, getting away with it, and without breaking a sweat. That’s because from the ages of 13 to 26 I woke up having Godfather’ed all over a host’s sheets, only to quickly and secretly get them cleaned, dried, and stain free. You wish you were as stealthily.

5. During a Fight

“I would keep yelling at you about shutting me out emotionally, but I just dropped a clot and the cramping also made me fart, so now I’m going to quickly leave the room before my entire argument is discredited and also I burn a hole through your nasal passages. GOOD DAY SIR.”

6. On The Subway

She stood up. She turned around. She saw the blood on the plastic seat. She was speechless and panicked. A man gave her a piece of newspaper without making eye contact with her. She wiped it up. She missed her stop. She thought about this while visiting Chicago where the subway seats are, god help us, upholstered. If I move here, she thought, I'll have to carry Resolve around.

What’s been your biggest period disaster?