10 tips to establish a healthier relationship towards your period
What does it feel like to get a period? And what does it feel like for you to get your period when you are trying to recover from an eating disorder?
Are you happy when you period comes?
Maybe you are actually scared.
What if you feel angry towards it?
I want to focus on the last two specifically: feelings of fear and/or anger when that blood either trickles down or gushes through into your underwear every month.
For a very long time, my period symbolised my womanhood; what it meant to be, feel and act like a woman.
And that terrified me.
My eating disorder kept me underweight and so I was unable to get a regular menstrual cycle. My body, straight up and down like a prepubescent tween, was something I could control and manage. "As long as I can keep my weight like this, I know how I'll look each morning, how my clothes will fit and what my body will look like when I wake up", I would think to myself.
But developing hips, breasts, a butt, or a cleavage...? No thank you! These womanly body parts felt wild, rawly sensual, voluptuous and out of my control. Too full-bodied, too powerful. Growing into my divine feminine was too much to bear.
So to suppress it all from budding from a little weed into a flower in full bloom, I chose to starve myself.
That is what I feared.
For a long time, my period symbolised that I was healthy. My eating disorder made me feel like super human. While everyone else was simply average (in my disordered eyes), I took pride in being underweight. At my remarkably low weight, I was still able to exercise like a robot, get top marks in class, and feel like I had unlimited will-power.
Hunger and resting were signs of weakness and laziness that I could never allow myself to give into. If I got my period, it meant I became "one of them" - a normal human, at a normal weight, doing normal things.
My anger towards my period was anger at my body for failing me. For not being good enough.
I had attached so many things to this monthly shedding of blood that ultimately these judgements and stories kept me from myself.
It has taken over ten years to truly feel happiness and to be in awe of the miraculous and complex cycle that my body does every month. I am honestly always so excited when it comes as I see it as a sign from my body (and my mind) letting me know that I am healthy and on the right track. I often message my close friends to let them know it's that time of the month - seriously ;)
If you want to start developing a happier and healthier attitude towards your period, here are some of my tips and advice that have helped me in the past:
- Get off the pill. If you want to know more about my journey of getting off the contraceptive pill and how it helped me develop a better outlook towards my menstrual cycle, click here.
- Join a woman's circle and engage in women's work.
- If you are suffering from an eating disorder, I do suggest some form of therapy, to figure out where the fear or resentment comes from. You can also read my top 31 tips on how to recover from an ED here.
- Practice gratitudes towards your body and towards all of the complicated tasks it performs seamlessly everyday.
- Become aware of the moon cycles and how your cycle syncs with it.
- Paint, dance or creatively express what your period means to you.
- Start to embrace your sexuality.
- Start a period appreciation group with your girlfriends :D Anyone want to join me for a period party?
- Practice positive self-talk so that you begin to associate your cycle in a brighter, optimistic way rather than weighing it down with doubt or apprehension.
- This may sound harsh, but deal with it. Accept that your period is going to be something you have live with for a very long time. You can either learn to love it and be grateful for it, or you can choose to tirelessly fight with yourself each month. You decide.
I wish you all the best on your journey to a happier, light-filled you.
In love, always,