Hollywood may not want to discuss it, but we do. WE DO.
The way the internet reacted to that transformative scene from I May Destroy You is all the evidence we need to suggest we have to do more to normalise period sex on tv and in real life. Hollywood may not want to discuss it, but we do. WE DO.
Biagio removing a bloody tampon like he was just casually fishing out a tea bag from a cuppa was iconic enough, and then he went on to prod an actual period blood clot in the middle of a sex scene with unabashed acceptance. It was the refreshing and nuanced portrayal of sex we didn’t know we needed to see.
If you are the proud owner of a uterus, the chances are you’ve felt like some kind of period pariah at some stage in your life, no thanks to the whole bleeding from your vag thing which apparently still seems to be a radical act, even in 2020.
Often, it’s the blood factor that can put couples off exploring and enjoying menstrual sex, but having a good bonk can be pretty messy anyway, so what’s a bit of cervical mucus when you’re covered in bodily fluids anyway?
When you’re sharing your body with someone, you’re sharing your whole body with them and menstruation is a very natural and normal part of that intimacy. And hey, if it makes your cycle more enjoyable, why not capitalise on that? This is what dark bedsheets and shower sex was made for, people.
Sure, if it’s not your jam and you can’t think of anything worse than doing the moves when it feels like someone left a Nutribullet unattended on beast mode in the deep depths of your womb, you are more than welcome to sit and cry this one out with a hot water bottle and some snacks. There’s no judgement or shame either way, just as long as you’re not letting Aunt Flo stand in the way of a good shag.
If being on your period fills you with shame and embarrassment, then it’s important to unpack why your period makes you feel that way.
If being on your period fills you with shame and embarrassment, then it’s important to unpack why your period makes you feel that way. Confront your period shame and examine the influence it has on your relationship with your body. Let go of uncomfortable feelings and just go with the f-l-o-w. We’re not suggesting you need to start leaving your menstrual cup on the window sill under a full moon but a bit of pragmatism wouldn’t do any harm.
The benefits of period sex may surprise you, from helping to ease period cramp to better orgasms, natural lubrication and increased pleasure. Experiencing sensual pleasure and orgasm releases the feel-good chemicals dopamine, oxytocin and endorphins and these can act as natural painkillers. Orgasms and pain-relief? What a crowd-pleaser.
We should stress that all the usual caveats apply with period sex. You still need to use contraception in the same way you would if you were not on your period. Whilst it’s true that the odds of getting pregnant while menstruating are lower, it’s still possible and you can also still contract and pass on STIs.
Sexual intercourse whilst on your period should be as normal as painting your nails
Wherever you stand on period sex, the bottom line is having and enjoying sexual intercourse whilst on your period should be as normal as painting your nails. Love & blood should be allowed to mingle, they don’t have to be kept apart like two warring Shakespearean families.
It can be poetic and romantic if you stop listening to the narrative that tells you it’s dirty and gross, and instead listen to the narrative that says life is short, sex feels good and periods happen.
So, when the river runs red, bloody well make Cherryade!