A healthy girl, from ages 8 to at least 19 for late bloomers, experiences a biological phenomenon in which her uterus sheds to prepare the womb for a baby. This process releases blood from the body and is called menstruation. It goes on until menopause – which has its own set of hardships – at the age of 45 at least.
Now then, our world is evolving to a place where gender roles are being balanced out. Women have more control over their lives, access to reproductive health, and can define their own roles in life. This is a progressive thing, though it begs the question, can menstruation, under these circumstances, remain ethical?
This question cannot be anything but rhetorical, of course.
Ethics are the moral principles that govern a person’s behavior or the conducting of an activity. In short, right vs wrong.
Biology can be deemed reasonable in administering menstruation for reproductive purposes. The injustice, if it can be called that, is in that only one gender has to ‘suffer’ it. It is a blessing and a curse, and out rightly, a bias on natures part. What then, does this tell us of our role as women? Are we predestined to carry more burdens? Why wasn’t biology equal? Is nature misogynistic?
Of course, this article gives more questions than answers and for some it is downright preposterous. But say, a time came when women could decide to not have menstruation, without suffering any damaging long term side effects, what then? Will this fall under women’s rights or will it oppose human rights?
There is not much to say to that which cannot be changed though these musings have left me with a bit of insight on the scales of gender balance.
HUMAN RIGHTS DO NOT DICTATE OUR GENDER ROLES
Before you are a man, before you are a woman, or a trans, you are a human first. If we hold fast to our human quality, that we all breath oxygen and that we all want to avoid suffering and enhance enlighten or pleasure, then we will learn to understand each other regardless of our gender, socio-economic background, or class.
It can’t be ignored that to err is human, and sometimes, the majority isn’t right. It is here that we ought to embrace an open mind, allow ourselves to grow and transcend our humanity because this is the only way we will work together as a diverse, creative, and innovative world.
CULTURE IS CONTINOUSLY EVOLVING
Some cultures evolve faster than others, and no culture is perfect. The best cultures and/or societies are those that put love, respect, and understanding before weighing the gender, social class, or education of a person.
Every individual in our society is shaping the culture of the day. Therefore, if there is a trend of evil vices such as violence, laziness, or corruption, it is time to clean the system from a grassroots level to the highest institution. It starts at an individual level, and that individual is you.
Wait, I thought this was about menstruation. Right!
MALE AND FEMALE IS LIKE THE YIN AND THE YEN
Nature has given us different attributes. As women, we get mandatory menstruation and child bearing prowess. Men, well, nature didn’t trust you enough. Still, we are complimentary. It’s the chicken-egg situation all over again. It’s a circle.
Women need men, and men need women – even beyond the gender roles that society has impaled on us. Humans need each other. That’s how our societies have gotten this far. The struggle for gender equality and equity is not about bringing one gender down so that another can rise.
It’s about holding hands and moving together in a future that we both created and worked hard for. It is a world of diversity, peace, love, and understanding. And it starts with you.
Hadassah is a freelancer in Communication Media and Non Profit Management. She is Founder and Project Manager of SAFIGI Outreach Foundation [www.safetyfirstforgirls.org] in Zambia, a youth led volunteer organization working to advance safety for girls via Safety Education.
Her goal in life is to attain overall freedom and ultimately be a delegate for peace and conflict resolution. When she is not overwhelmed with ever impending deadlines, she can be found working on her manuscript, or taking pictures for her blog [www.themisguidedhermit.com]. She loves practicing healthy living and volunteering for worthy causes.