Women should definitely be granted period leave
We need menstruating circumstances
All women can agree the worst part of the month is definitely “that time”. The hormones are flowing, the cramps are approaching and that general feeling of self-pity and hopelessness invades your mind. Menstruation is a bore. Period. It usually comes every 28 days, but on occasion it can creep up on you when you least expect it. Boom. There goes my favorite pair of thongs.
A company based in Bristol has recently introduced a “period policy” where women have the option to take paid or unpaid leave from their job if they are on their period. As many of you may know, this is called “Menstruation Leave”. NHS statistics show 90% of women experience period pains and 14% of women are unable to work due to the severe pains they experience. Menstruation leave is not about taking time off work but focuses on the productivity of the work women do.
When a woman is on her period, she is in a “winter state”. She needs to keep warm and take care of her body. The “spring state”, the time immediately after her period, is when she is three times more productive and concentrates more than usual. So basically, women are able to reduce their hours the week before and add on hours the week after. Surely this is a brilliant thing?
I think this should apply to all jobs and further, to universities. Period pains can be a viable reason not to attend lectures or seminars. Some women experience extreme pain when they are on their period and, when especially severe, it can interfere with their day-to-day activities. It can be so bad not even pain killers can do the trick.
Stop saying it doesn’t hurt. Boys telling a girl “oh, come on, period pains can’t be that bad” is like us saying “being hit in the balls can’t be that bad.” It angers you massively. Boys, you have no idea how painful fertility can be. I for one get terrible period pains to the point where I cannot physically move. I retreat to my bed and embrace a fetal position. I feel faint and sometimes physically sick. I’ve passed out before. I’ve been caught hallucinating in my bath whilst being completely dry. I get intense, dull cramps in my stomach, my lower back aches and it is impossible to feel comfortable. This can go on for hours. Periods are horrendous, they affect our working state and so we should have period leave.
Here’s a few remedies that I like to use in order to decrease the pain for anyone who is wondering…
Peppermint tea soothes feelings of sickness. Peppermint oil dabbed on your pillow also helps you to relax. Painkillers, Feminax is highly recommended and period pain orientated are the best. Long deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth. Hot water bottles placed where you ache: under your back or on your stomach. And my personal favorite, if you can, have a nice hot bath.
Furthermore, look at regularly conducting some bodily positions whenever you begin to feel those horrible pains approaching. Conducting all of these remedies and positions can really help take the edge off your pains. I’ve merely listed a few examples of things I do to ease the pain – this alone shows how much periods can affect not only my work, but also my life. I’m sure this is the same situation for many women.
In summary, jobs and universities should allow women and students menstruation leave for the first two days of their period. Perhaps menstruation leave should always be unpaid. This would more than likely show reliable results of women who do suffer from truly terrible pains, as they would rather stay at home and not be paid for a couple of days then suffer in the workplace.
Either way, I strongly feel that something should be done about this.