Changing up the Period Convo

I remember my first period.

I was 11 years old in the fifth grade. I just got home from school and BOOM, I’m bleeding. I called my mom at work, freaking out. She giggled and told me to grab a panty liner and sit still until she got home. I thought I was dying, so I placed it in my underwear (didn’t peel the adhesive off because, who knew) and I sat on my bed until she got home. She brought me pads home and that was it – happy period!

It’s easy to share this story now, but at 11, no way. I was embarrassed, frightened and little did I know, not alone. Over the years, women have shared similar sentiments with me. Recently, several women opened up about their first period experience on social media.

  • I was 14 years old and remember being super scared. I felt horrible and came home. My mom gave me this gigantic pad which felt super uncomfortable and I remember being self-conscious when I went back to school. Fearing that people would see it. – Lalaina
  •  I was in 5th grade. I had on light blue jogging pants with a dark blue stripe going down. I went to the bathroom and there she was. I think I was able to get a pad from my teacher but After calling my mom I was left balled up in the office (because I suffer from horrible period cramps) until someone was able to pick me up. Felt like days. After that my mom made me keep a kit (pads and underwear) in my backpack in case I had another accident. – Daichan
  • I was 10 and at school in the library laying stomach down on a bean bag chair. A boy in my class came up behind me and started laughing and making fun. Other classmates, wondering what the laughter was about approached me and saw my massacred blue jeans as well. The next thing I remember is going home and hiding my jeans and panties because what else would you do after your entire class sat there and laughed at you. A few days later my mom found my bloody clothes and she decided to yell at me asking me why I hid them and didn’t talk to her about it. – Theresa

These stories reveal the shame and fear many girls feel as they go through a perfectly normal experience. It also affirms our goal – to change the conversation around menstruation, so that the first time Aunt Flo comes a-knocking, girls are prepped with the products they need to carry on and the confidence to talk about their periods.

This can only be achieved by:

  • Ditching the hush, hush conversations and whispers for open and healthy dialogue in-person and online.
  • Making menstrual products readily available to all.

This is no easy task, but thanks to our dedicate troop of volunteers (present and future) we’re well on our way. If you believe women and girls are magic – join us.

  • Attend a Flo Party or host your own.
  • Make a donation. A $5 donation allows us to purchase 16 pads, 8 tampons. 40 panty liners, and a pack of wipes.

With Love,

Lamanda Ballard

Founder & Executive Director

Flo Code

The heart of our vision is focused on providing access to feminine hygiene products to those in need, bringing people together to end the stigma of menstruation through service and encouraging women to reclaim their power. PERIOD.

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