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The red tent

(69 Posts)
paxillin Thu 29-Sep-16 21:14:00

My period is here. I actually wish there was a red tent for girls and women to menstruate and drink wine and tea. Exchange stories... anyone there?

The older I get the more I'm enjoying the couple of days of slowing down a little. My period used to be such a monster, started off as a source of shame as a girl, later a relief that contraception has worked and then a source of sadness when trying to conceive. It's like an old friend now.

paxillin Thu 29-Sep-16 21:19:30

It would be a supportive place for pregnant and menopausal women, too.

ateapotandacake Fri 30-Sep-16 17:05:36

Yes yes yes yes yes paxillin! You start one: I will come.

paxillin Fri 30-Sep-16 22:21:01

I imagine this thread a big bell tent, my grandmothers are here. We drink tea and don't much mind the pain. We could celebrate our bleeding, not hide it because it's the week we come together and chat.

The neighbour who found me crying on the stairs when overdue and exhausted has come, too. She fed me soup, made soothing noises and said the baby will come, they all do and despite being decades older never ridiculed me for being hysterical about pfb not just plopping out.

scalliondays Mon 03-Oct-16 14:46:15

My almost 11 year old daughter will be starting to menstruate in the near ish future - I'll bring her with me if that's alright. It will be nice for her to feel the warmth of our shared experience. We'll bring cake obviously!

paxillin Mon 03-Oct-16 14:51:13

I wish I'd had a tent for my first period. I wasn't keen on a first moon party, but hearing lots of girls and woman talk about it might have helped. Even if it would have been just practical tips (white trousers anyone? sheets bled on on a sleepover?).

scalliondays Mon 03-Oct-16 15:45:08

I'd really like to mark her first period by going out for a meal or for hot chocolate/cake or something. Not sure how she'll feel about that when the time comes. She used to be almost embarrassingly interested in my period if she was in the bathroom with me but now I'm not allowed to mention the subject. I keep suggesting that she keeps a single discreet sanitary towel in the elastoplast/tissues/spare change purse she keeps in her school bag but she won't have it. Maybe pizza will entice her out and I'll take a friend and her mum so that the mums can swoop useful tips and the newbies can pretend to ignore our wise words...

paxillin Mon 03-Oct-16 15:52:50

Buy her a piece of jewellery to mark it? Moonstone perhaps?

PlentyOfPubeGardens Mon 03-Oct-16 19:26:17

I did exactly that for DD paxillin, right down to the moonstone grin I was worried she'd be embarrassed but she was really pleased and still wears it sometimes now, 10 years later. We are a bit hippy though.

Not sure about planning a trip out, scallion. My periods were heavy and sweaty and painful, right from the start. She might prefer to curl up on the sofa with a good film and a takeaway.

I'm post-menopausal, so won't be a regular, but I think a red tent thread is a lovely idea smile

paxillin Mon 03-Oct-16 20:15:25

Menopause is another topic talked about in such hushed tones, Plenty. I remember one of my first bosses throwing open the windows loudly exclaiming "ye gods, the heat in here, sorry you young ones, I am menopausal". The blokes looked most alarmed and one said afterwards it was the first time he ever heard a woman say something about her menopause.

booklooker Mon 03-Oct-16 21:13:57

^ "ye gods, the heat in here, sorry you young ones, I am menopausal"

That is quite a strange thing to shout out.

paxillin Mon 03-Oct-16 21:17:47

It is indeed, but it shouldn't be. Many women suffer from this when menopausal so it should be totally normal.

scalliondays Tue 04-Oct-16 12:41:42

I like the moonstone idea. I also like the 'YE gods - I'm menopausal idea!' It seems more empowering to be upfront about it than sitting in sweaty embarrassment. Anyway, a woman has to start practising sometime if she's going to grow older disgracefully... I'm of an age where friends have started having tentative conversations about possible symptoms. I might hit menopause the same day dd gets her first period - wonder if I should make sure dp knows where the shed keys are? (For him not us!)

TemporarilyLost Tue 04-Oct-16 18:07:53

I quite like having my period after the initial flooding. I see it as a time to look after and be gentle to myself. <Thinks about both hands round a bowl of soup and wrapped in a warm pashmina smile>

I'll join you in the red tent.

Cisoff Wed 05-Oct-16 03:50:57

A freind, when training as a doctor worked in a very remote area with the indigenous population. When menstruating, the women were considered dirty and shunned and remained in a hut on the outskirts of the village. When questioned (by my slightly outraged friend) the reply was to STFU as it was the only sanctuary they had, for 6 days a month. No men, no violence, no beatings. Just women.

I've never suffered terribly with mine, so it's kind of an old friend now.

They're getting irregular, and different. A bit unpredictable. I see it as my ageing female body working exactly as it should. Of course I'm regular with my check ups etc, but the unpredictableness isn't something that needs to be managed. Fortunately.

A good friend has just been diagnosed with endo. She's over 40. Years of awful pain. Years of being fobbed off. I'm so angry for her.

paxillin Fri 07-Oct-16 10:57:39

It's over for the month. I'm ready to leave the woolly blanket behind and go do some stuff. I wonder how I'll feel when I'm post menopause. I kind of ignored my cycle when younger, but since my early thirties it sets the rhythm. Gives the month some external, natural structure quite apart from the work and school run one.

CuppaTeaAndAJammieDodger Fri 07-Oct-16 11:09:42

I'm there with you, we will need a stove to keep us warm/make tea. I will bring copious amounts of carbohydrates, chocolate and good red wine too.

The older I've gotten the more regular mine have become - i've started having a lot more pms symptoms too (mood/spots/breast tenderness/outrageous hunger) which I wasn't expecting.

paxillin Fri 07-Oct-16 11:35:35

I crave a cave woman's diet during my period grin. Meat, eggs, and fish. I'll eat outside if it gets too much. But yes, the stove is essential. Tea and wine, too.

BigChocFrenzy Sat 08-Oct-16 12:45:28

< pops head into cosy red tent >

re meno / post-meno:

I know some women have found it very difficult, but there is such a range of different experiences
I LOVE it smile
I'm 60, I've had no periods for several years.
I'd (almost) forgotten the discomfort & inconvenience
I was lucky though in having comparatively few meno symptoms, just a few hot flushes and sweaty nights. No mood swings. No HRT or anything needed.
Can't get pregnant.
No need for hormonal contraceptives and their side effects.

Like almost everyone, I had to change what & when I ate, because the changed hormonal balance adds fat around the midsection, i.e. increases the more dangerous visceral fat.
However, the whole "no more periods" (pardon my skip for joy) makes it very positive overall for me.

paxillin Thu 13-Oct-16 13:45:51

I hope I'll love it, too. I just find it hard to picture a future not in a monthly rhythm, I'm so used to it. I think it has been a positive experience for my mother and aunt.

Menopause is seldom mentioned in a positive light, it's all about suffering, infertility and ageing. Maybe there should be a last moon party, too.

Lorelei76 Thu 13-Oct-16 14:05:36

I can't imagine seeing a period as being anythng other than something to be treated with total utter dread.

I used to have so much pain and such heavy periods - now I am on the pill purely to keep them under control and it is wonderful.

BigChocFrenzy Fri 14-Oct-16 19:03:55

I think society still has remnants of the attitude that women who are past child-bearing age serve no useful purpose.


imo, a time to rejoice

paxillin Fri 14-Oct-16 19:06:36

So time for a right old knees-up then. Last moon party. Sanipad piñata, drinks served in mooncups.

BigChocFrenzy Fri 14-Oct-16 19:08:17

Only problem with a last moon party is that it is very difficult to tell when it finally ends.
At least for me, it tailed off in frequency and very much in amount.
I certainly couldn't have said that a certain month, or even quarter-year, was the final one.

paxillin Fri 14-Oct-16 19:13:01

I think the definition is 12 month without bleeding. So after the last period's first birthday.

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