discussion of menstruation

I hate that trans men and dfab nonbinary people have to indirectly (or even directly) misgender ourselves to have discussions about abortion or ‘women’s’ health care. Like, so much of the discussion about abortion is gendered. I don’t get it. It’s so easy to just say things like ‘pregnant people’ instead of 'pregnant women’. And there’s no escape from it. Any health care I require that relates to the genitals I was born with shouldn’t be called women’s health care, because I’m not a woman. Menstrual products should not be called feminine hygiene products because not everyone who uses them is a woman/girl.

This is gonna get a little TMI and discuss menstruation so if that’s not your thing, feel free to scroll on by.

I got my IUD on the 2nd and up until just the past couple days, I had minor spotting and cramps every so often, which could get pretty damn painful. I also had some backaches, but all of it was manageable. Now, according to my period tracker, I’m one day late, though that doesn’t technically mean anything because I seem to get my period every month and a half on average. Regardless, I can’t help but be excited that this is really working for me and I’m going to have five years of very light or no period at all.

TFA fic: in the place that’s made of old relations

Written for the cruel, cruel anon who left this in my inbox:

I’m having a lot of feels about Force ghost Anakin communicating to Rey while she’s left on Jakku (since she was 5??? Idk if that’s true???) and using the Tatooine religion you’ve talked a lot about to sort of help her and make her feel a little less alone (especially if she’s his granddaughter I feel like there would be some sort of familial obligation)

This will all be radically AU in two weeks, so enjoy it now I guess. I tried to write it so it would work whether Leia or Luke is her parent.

Warning for some frank discussion of menstruation (because can you just imagine how awful that would be, for a girl growing up alone - luckily her Granddad is from Tatooine, where they learn the facts of life young and have zero cultural taboos around talking about them).

in the place that’s made of old relations

The first time she met him, Rey thought the world was ending.

She’d been out in the desert, exploring. Looking for…something. Someone. She didn’t know what she was looking for, really. She only knew that she had been here, alone with only BB-8, for so long.

So she’d left Bebe in the shelter, in case someone came while she was gone. That was the smart thing to do. It would be terrible, if she missed her parents coming back. And she took a comlink, so Bebe could contact her if they did. She told him this very sternly, and she knew he’d understood, because he’d sounded very annoyed when he beeped at her.

And then she’d gone out into the desert.

The sky was clear and brittle blue when she left, stretching endlessly above and around her. Rey had imagined, as she walked, that if she stepped lightly enough, she could fly right up into it.

But the sky wasn’t blue anymore. Now there was no sky at all. It had been swallowed up, eaten by the raging sand of the desert that snarled and slashed at her as if it wanted to eat her now, too.

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When I was a libfem, I once saw a post about periods titled something like “Attention Period Havers!” and it really rubbed me the wrong way. I couldn’t put my finger on why until recently.

It would have said “Attention Women!” but that’s apparently offensive to trans women because it “excludes” them.

What are they being excluded from? It’s not the discussion of menstruation, because they don’t relate to or experience that. They are inherently not included from such a discussion due to their biological sex. Regardless of the title, trans women aren’t allowed in. So why not use the word “woman”?

I’ll give you the answer: men are entitled. Trans women are entitled. Trans women feel entitled to the word “woman.” They feel entitled to the idea of womanhood. They feel entitled to women’s safe spaces and discussions. Women can’t have anything without men trying to take away or turn it on its head.

Want to use the women’s bathroom? Maybe there is a trans woman in there. Want to talk about periods? Make sure you never use the word woman, use terms like “uterus bearer.” Have a question about vaginal health? You might consider asking woman, but maybe that woman has a penis (it would be transphobic to assume all women have vaginas). So you never ask (and get TSS).

By being entitled to the word woman, trans women are actively taking away women’s spaces and discussions. When a trans woman enters a women’s only space, it is no longer a women’s only space. It is a trans women’s space.

Using language that “excludes” trans women is not an act of violence against them. It is an act against women.

Trans women should be excluded from women’s spaces. It is not their place to be.

i am against the contemporary practice of “period art” that makes generalizing or essentalizing statements about some fiction of “womanhood” BUT I worry for the overvaluation of this caution: ie, i think that people who menstruate should be able to talk about it and that it can be empowering just as talking about sweating, crying, growing, being sick, giving birth, jerking off– can be empowering on a personal level. bodies experience all kinds of things and are marginalized in different ways and any of those functions should be up for open discussion and exploration. i think assuming that any discussion of menstruation in a personal-artistic context is always going to the fall into the bad 70s-essentialist-feminism rut is very limiting, and i think there should be special caution towards cutting off very young teenagers who want to talk about it openly. for many people in many contexts any discussion of bodily functions is still heavily censored. 

if you’re a terf don’t reblog this shit tho thanks :+) 

the way people discuss things like pregnancy and menstruation in SJ spaces is so fucking irritating at best and downright harmful at worst tbh

like on the one hand you have the people who think talking about these things at all is inherently transphobic and exclusionary, and who try to agressively silence *any* discussion of the political realities of sex-based oppression and call cis women and trans men degrading terms like “uterus bearer” or w/e which is obviously incredibly shitty and misogynistic, and a huge problem on this site

but unfortunately many women try to push back against both SJ and patriarchal taboos around these topics by turning to obnoxious hippie earth-mother-goddess crap and completely romanticizing pregnancy and menstruation and implying that everything about it is completely positive and **empowering** once you get rid of the patriarchy element, even though historically these things have been and continue to be nightmarish experiences for many women, for reasons that have nothing to do with patriarchy

i mean, if someone wants to relate to their *own* period that way, that’s entirely their prerogative and it’s whatever, but a lot of people take it way too far and it once again turns into insinuating that women are unnatural and borderline monstrous if they don’t feel a connection to/take pride in their bodies’ reproductive capabilities, especially if they’re disgusted by or unhappy with it because they don’t want children and are upset by being viewed as potential babymakers

it’s cool that we’re discussing menstruation as a natural and normal occurance that people shouldn’t feel shame/be attacked for, but can i just reiterate that
1. not everyone who menstruates is a woman
2. not all women menstruate
3. discussing menstruation may trigger dysphoria for some, so please tag it. this isn’t the same as cis men/society saying “ew i don’t want to hear about your period” it is a legitimate concern for a lot of people
4. thanks friends