Free Bleeding

Free Bleeding

Free Bleeding

Journee Trotter, Staff Reporter

Free bleeding is a movement based on freely bleeding without a pad or tampon during a menstrual cycle. The movement was first brought to light in 1970 after the reaction to toxic shock syndrome, and more recently referenced in 2004 by a blogger.

“I like not feeling like I have failed somehow when a product leaks…Mainly it is just about being comfortable with menstruation…I am not lazy! I am not irresponsible! I just think it is okay to overflow sometimes!” the anonymous author of the blog stated.

The second notable reference of the free bleeding movement was in 2012. Photographer Emma Arvida Bystrom posted a photoshoot titled “There Will Be Blood,” and the pictures depicted women doing everyday acts with blood stains forming on their clothes. The shoot had no text, but prompted controversial and feministic reviews.

“I do feel expected of. Like I have to take care of my period so I can be a functional member of society…more of a mindset than it is an action [free bleeding], the idea is…letting ourselves bleed…” blogger Kelly Jo said.

I personally agree with the movement to an extent. The message of the program is about a lot more than just women being lazy. It signifies how women are constantly shamed for a very natural thing that they have no control over. Although I completely agree with the underlying message, I do not agree with just freely bleeding on yourself. I find it slightly unsanitary, but I would support someone who decided to participate in the act.

There are multiple women world-wide who support the free bleeding movement. One of them being Elizabeth Denton, a reporter on Seventeen Magazine.

“…I have slightly irrational TSS-anxiety if I leave one [a tampon] in too long…I heard that there was a brand of underwear called Thinx that absorbs period blood,” Denton reported.

Thinx underwear was founded by Radha and Mika Argawal and their friend, Antonia Dunbar. The underwear is designed to be moisture-wicking, anti-microbial, absorbent, and leak-resistant for women on their menstrual cycle. The line comes in thong for light days, cheeky for medium days, and hiphugger for heavy days.

The organization in my opinion has very good underlying intentions. I completely agree that women’s periods should not be negatively glorified into something that makes women feel shameful. Although I disagree with going out in public and bleeding all over yourself. Like I said before, I find it unpleasing, but overall I think this organization has a good cause.