As I began to write this article, I first started by dimming my screen. Discharge – a word that we don’t talk about because of the taboo that is usually associated with it. It’s “gross”, “dirty”, or “unsanitary” to the eyes of many. It’s something that we need to wash out, according to some rather misinformed boys – I will never forget the day my friend told me he thought we had to shove a sponge up there to clean our vaginas! The female body, while a temple, also remains a hidden secret that only a few of us feel comfortable discussing. It’s time we change that.
Recently, as I scrolled through Instagram, I came across a post that made jokes around the feeling that we get as we get some discharge and need to put our underwear back on afterwards. The woman in the video seemed both annoyed and irritated, but not disgusted. What was truly shocking, however, were the comments. From “there’s still time to delete this,” to “not everything has to be talked about,” the reactions to the video were for the large part a continuation of this taboo. Why are we ashamed of discussing one of the body’s natural ways of cleaning itself? Why is it that we can’t discuss these issues? Indeed, to my excitement, many also commented “OH MY GOD. I thought I was the only one!”.
It’s time that we openly talk about discharge. As women, we need to know what’s healthy from unhealthy. We need to know our bodies beter, and we should recognize what discharge means what part of the cycle we are in right now. We shouldn’t feel ashamed of speaking about our own bodies – they are magnificent, and the mechanisms they undergo to remain healthy and clean are even more interesting. So, let’s change the discourse around discharge – it’s normal, let’s treat it as such!
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