Myths About Your Period

Most Popular
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Sex when your friend's in town? Sure, say Susan Kim and Elissa Stein, the authors of Flow: The Cultural Story of Menstruation. We talked to them about their lively, irreverent book, and about why something so natural still gets such a bad rap.

MC: Why do we tend to be mum about our monthlies?

SK: They've been viewed with fear since the days when people didn't know where the blood was coming from.

ES: And religion didn't help. Ancient faiths found it unclean. Even the Bible warns men against shaking hands with a woman during her period, because she's impure.

Most Popular

MC: And having sex while menstruating was certainly out of the question--which still feels true today.

SK: For some guys, the idea of seeing blood on themselves gets at a very deep Freudian fear of castration.

MC: It makes women anxious, too.

SK: Right. Because we're sexually vain: I don't want to slink across the floor in a negligee with a streak down my leg. Even though it might be good for you--orgasms during your period can help prevent endometriosis.

ES: They can also relieve cramps and release oxytocin, the love hormone, bringing feelings of calm and well-being at a time when you could really use them. And some women report increased libido during their periods. Why would you deny yourself?

MC: But what about the mess?

SK: Buy a cheap Fieldcrest towel in dark red, throw it down, and give it a whirl. You might like it. You might not. But it's not like you're sacrificing a baby to a Druid god.

Tormund and Brienne on Game of Thrones
Culture
Share
Gwendoline Christie Breaks Her Silence About That Flirting on 'Game of Thrones'
Culture
Share
Watch This Tap Dancing Group's Flawless Tribute to Prince
Finding Dory
Culture
Share
Get Excited: Disney Movies Are Coming to Netflix
GIF
Culture
Share
Hero Woman Gets Back at Cheating Ex by Spoiling 'Game of Thrones' Every Monday Morning
Culture
Share
Meet This Year's (Totally Badass) Top Female Surfer
Game of Thrones Hodor
Culture
Share
The 'Game of Thrones' Cast Is Weighing In on Last Night's Heart-Wrenching Moment
Culture
Share
Your Monthly App Roundup: We Test All the New Ones So You Don't Have To
GIF
Culture
Share
Equal-Opportunity Ogling: 'Game of Thrones' Finally Showed Its First Penis
Culture
Share
The First 'Beauty and the Beast' Trailer Is Here, and It's Straight-Up Haunting
Culture
Share
What Really Happened to Hodor at the End of 'Game of Thrones'