Category Archives: #PeriodTalk

Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) Awareness Campaign

Friday, January 10, 2014 at 2 pm ET, people are coming together on Twitter for #PeriodTalk. (that’s 1 pm CT, 12 pm MT, 11 am PT)

This month the #PeriodTalk TweetChat will focus on raising awareness about tampon related Toxic Shock Syndrome (aka TSS).

You ARE Loved, a non profit dedicated to raising awareness about tampon related TSS will be the guest and will be tweeting as @youarelovedTSS.  Be Prepared Period will be the host and will tweet as @bpreparedperiod.

This hour long event will offer information about Toxic Shock Syndrome via tweets, advice on how to avoid it and what to do if you (or someone you know) develop symptoms. And, there will be time for questions and comments.

It’s period wise for women, as well as men, to be aware of TSS and its symptoms. Young girls, teens and young women are at the greatest risk and often mistake it for the flu. Know the facts and know how to get help for yourself or for a friend/family member if symptoms arise.

If you’re not familiar with TweetChats or want more information about #PeriodTalk, drop by Be Prepared Period’s site and find out how it all works.  It’s an awesome chat…a period wise chat. And, it happens the second Friday of each month.

Hope to see you there!

#TSSawareness   #periodtalk   #womenshealth   #periodwise  #TSS

#PeriodTalk #TwitterParty

Friday, July 12, at 2 PM ET (1 PM CT, 12 PM MT, 11 AM PT), Be Prepared Period kicks off year three of #PeriodTalk Tweetchats with a party – “Our 2nd Annual Menstrual Party.”

To the regular attendees of #PeriodTalk – I look forward to partying with you!

If you’ve never attended #PeriodTalk, or been involved in a Tweetchat, I encourage you to log into Twitter Friday (check times listed above) and follow #PeriodTalk.

Tara Bruley, founder of Be Prepared Period, said the following about #PeriodTalk.

We started these chats back in July of 2011 with the non-profit org You ARE Loved.  Continuing to host these events we’ve covered a variety of topics. Our 2nd year of tweet chats included the following subjects:

·        August 2012: Your TOTM: Time of the Month

·        September 2012: Back to School: Periods 101

·        October 2012: PeriodTalk Celebration – The launch of our Q&A forum for all things   menstrual (making PeriodTalk available 24/7/365)

·        November 2012: Menstrual Understanding & Creativity

·        December 2012: Menstruation and The Organizations That Care

·        January 2013: Puberty & Menopause: A Dangerous Combo

·        February 2013: Learning to Love Yourself & Your Period

·        March 2013: Endometriosis Awareness

·        April 2013: Pelvic Pain: What It Is & What You Can Do About It

·        May 2013: Be Prepared for Summer & Your Period

·        June 2013: Conventional Feminine HygieneProducts & Their Toxic Implications

As Director of Connectivity for You ARE Loved, I witnessed #PeriodTalk go from a tiny idea to the awesome outreach it is today.

I encourage you to visit Be Prepared Period. Read #PeriodTalk transcripts and visit the PeriodTalk forum.  You won’t be disappointed.

#PeriodTalk is about…period talk.

You can talk with some truly period wise women (and men), exchange thoughts and ideas, ask questions that have always bothered you and gain a lot of period wise knowledge.

Anything goes and nothing is too icky to discuss in #PeriodTalk.

Hate menstrual taboos?  We do, too.  Love certain products?  We do, too!  Have questions and need answers?  We all do!!  Just want to connect with others who understand what it’s like to menstruate? Well, what are you waiting for?  Want to share your experience?  Hey! We want to hear!

Come on! It’s going to be fun!  It’s a period party!

Join us Friday, July 12 and help kick off year three of #PeriodTalk TweetChats.

See you there!

(Be sure to stop by and register for a chance to win during #PeriodTalk!)

It’s Time to Talk about Menstruation

Sarah Ogden, a Staff Writer for Everyday Feminism, recently wrote an article.that screams  “PERIOD WISE” beginning with her first sentence: “All right, folks, it’s time to talk about it.”

“Breaking News: Menstruation Is Awesome!” is loaded with timely and important information – and chocked full of encouragement.

“It’s a beautiful thing.” That’s what she said about menstruation.

She said a lot more, too, like…how her boyfriends knew more about her body than she did and that the products we use help us remain disconnected from our bodies.

How’s that for a teaser? She packs quite a punch in her piece.

Here are some highlights.

  • We need to reclaim this experience and find power in the blood that unites us.
  • Menstruation is natural, beautiful, and powerful.
  • Some companies try to make us feel bad about our periods to buy their products.
  • Vaginas are not dirty.
  • Some companies try to make us feel periods are “inconvenient” to buy their products.
  • Menstruation is not a disease, and there should not exist a “cure.”
  • Our periods connect us to the moon and to the sea.
  • Menstruation is a shared experience amongst women and trans people who menstruate.
  • What’s a menstruating person to do? (She shares 3 tips.)

I encourage you to take a few minutes and read Sarah’s post.

If you use tampons as your main menstrual product, I hope Sarah’s words below awaken you to the possibility of trying other products (esp. reusable menstrual cups like Lunette, Diva, Keeper, Instead SoftCup, or pads like Always Infinity or cloth).

We use plastic to put tampons in our vaginas, pull them out by the bottom of long string, and then throw them away, all without getting our fingers bloodied.  We are almost completely disengaged from our blood and our bodies.

Period wise women redefine menstruation by breaking taboos and challenging long held beliefs and assumptions.

Period wise women personalize menstruation through the acceptance of their own experience and in sharing their experience with others.


  • How have you redefined menstruation?
  • How have you personalized it?

#PeriodTalk – Are You Missing Out?

If you’ve never attended the monthly TweetChat #PeriodTalk, I’d like you to glimpse what you’re missing.

This past Friday, hosted Learning to Love Yourself & Your Period.

A sampling of the #PeriodTalk follows.

nicolemjardim Women have many different opinions about their period based on their very first period experience #periodtalk -1:11 PM Feb 8th, 2013

MenMenstruation @nicolemjardim My first experience w/ periods (even if not my own) was of fascination and curiousity. It drove me to learn more! #PeriodTalk -1:17 PM Feb 8th, 2013

FebyTweets @nicolemjardim Communication is crucial. We have to break the cycle of shame. #PeriodTalk -1:18 PM Feb 8th, 2013

_EndoHappy @nicolemjardim it’s so important that girls are encouraged to talk openly about it #periodtalk -1:20 PM Feb 8th, 2013

MenMenstruation @nicolemjardim Unfortunately periods were a topic to be hidden from boys and all things around it was hush-hush. #PeriodTalk -1:21 PM Feb 8th, 2013

FebyTweets @nicolemjardim In a perfect world, every culture would treat menarche with respect and celebrate it. #PeriodTalk -1:23 PM Feb 8th, 2013

Lunapads A4: Positive, releasing, life-affirming, cleansing, powerful. #PeriodTalk -1:23 PM Feb 8th, 2013

JesDrummond A4: I adore my cycle now that I understand it. Hope it will b around for many more years. #PeriodTalk -1:23 PM Feb 8th, 2013

nicolemjardim Many of us have been taught to not acknowledge our periods because there are many more important things to worry about #periodtalk -1:24 PM Feb 8th, 2013

MenMenstruation The worst thing for boys AND girls is that attempting to hide all things #period only makes for a negative attitude towards it! #PeriodTalk -1:26 PM Feb 8th, 2013

nicolemjardim The first step to period love is to begin honoring your body and all that it offers you on a monthly basis #periodtalk -1:26 PM Feb 8th, 2013

GladRags My favorite reason for not going out is “sorry, i’m really busy menstruating right now.” It’s a task all by itself! 😀 #periodtalk -1:27 PM Feb 8th, 2013

Mommy_to_5 I also think I wouldn’t mind my period so much if it was an aunt flow kind of period instead of an aunt flood kind of period #periodtalk -1:29 PM Feb 8th, 2013

FebyTweets Understanding the menstrual cycle and honouring the different phases is empowering. #PeriodTalk -1:34 PM Feb 8th, 2013

Mommy_to_5 I am open to anything that makes aunt flood become a distant relative that I only have to deal with on occasion #periodtalk -1:34 PM Feb 8th, 2013

AlisonLeipzig Body confidence is loving and owning who you really are. THAT is self-love. #periodtalk -1:36 PM Feb 8th, 2013

Lunettecup @AlisonLeipzig Q6: I love that I’m not typical. I have curves. Although I hate the cellulite I love the curves! I am WOMAN! :) #periodtalk -1:41 PM Feb 8th, 2013

AlisonLeipzig I used to feel like my body betrayed me and that my body was my enemy and there was a ton of emotion attached! #periodtalk -1:42 PM Feb 8th, 2013

JesDrummond It’s hard standing on the cliff again watching my 9 year old girl. I’m careful to love even my flaws for her. #PeriodTalk -1:46 PM Feb 8th, 2013

The next #PeriodTalk TweetChat will be held on March 8, 2013 at 2 pm ET.

On Your Own

How old were you when you realized you were on your own, period wise?

This became a reality for a 12 year old friend of mine when her period began while at church

It was unexpected and she was unprepared.

And so was her mom.

(You know how it is – you don’t miss something until you need it and that last pad used during your last period, that wasn’t replaced, sure is missed when you start somewhere other than home.)

I asked if she had requested a pad of any of the women present.

No, that thought didn’t even enter her mind.

When asked what she did, she proudly announced that she put toilet paper in her panty and tied her jacket around her waist.

Then she said, “It really wasn’t a big deal.”

(Wasn’t a big deal….  I’m glad it wasn’t.  As we know, It could have been a really big deal – and may be the next time she’s caught unprepared.)

I left her with several suggestions, period wise.

  1. Keep a pad in your purse and one in Mom’s purse.  You never know when you/Mom/or someone else might need it.
  2. Stash a few pads at church, in the women’s restroom or someplace you can quickly and easily access.
  3. Place a pad in your mom’s/dad’s car (dashboard glove compartment is ideal).
  4. Consider using a small makeup bag for keeping pads, wipes and a spare pair of panties handy. (can be kept in Mom’s trunk, under the car seat, restroom at church, locker, backpack, purse)
  5. Be sure to replace any of the stashed pads used – that way you are always prepared.
  6. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for a pad. Women have periods and many keep something in their purse for “just in case” and will be happy to share.
  7. Talk with your church’s women’s group and ask about creating a “for emergency” bag which can hang on the hook inside each stall in the women’s restroom (small gift bag containing a wipe, pad, liner, tampon)

Unexpected and unprepared are two words that often equal “big deal” when used in regard to our periods.

And, we often feel we are on our own when it comes to managing our periods. We deal with it, like my 12 year old friend, privately. We make do, the best we can with what we have, and hope it doesn’t become a big deal. When in reality, we don’t have to “go it alone!”

It’s so much easier when we menstruate in community – open to sharing, to discussing, to learning. Imagine this precious 12 year old saying to you, “My period started, do you have a pad I can use?” and you saying to her as you reach into your purse, “Sure! Here, I’m so glad you asked! Don’t worry, it’s happened to all of us!”

What period wise suggestions would you offer a tween or teen new to menstruation?


When I joined Twitter – I had so much to learn.  For example: every Friday I would see #FF in tweets.  I had no idea what it meant until a veteran tweeter explained Follow Friday – a day when people recommend other Twitter users worth following.

What a great idea!

Want to know what I think is an even greater idea?

Imagine a world where we boldly share our menstrual status – where #FF stands for Flow Friday and women everywhere shake off menstrual taboos and via tweet, Facebook post, blog, email, clothing, jewelry, (Feby) bracelet…we share our menstrual status.

And, in doing so we create menstrual community where #periodtalk becomes the norm and no woman ever feels isolated by or in her menstrual experience.

#PeriodTalk TweetChat

Tara, founder of @bpreparedperiod, hosts a monthly #PeriodTalk  TweetChat, which focuses on a “commitment to open menstrual conversation and education.”

Today I was privileged to be one of three guests in the #PeriodTalk TweetChat. The topic was Menstruation & The Organizations That Care.  The guests were Morgan @Pads4Girls, Celeste @DaysforGirls and Suzan (me) @youarelovedTSS.

A sampling of tweets from the guests follows.

Pads4Girls is a social impact project of @lunapads that supports education for girls in developing nations. We provide girls in need with reusable menstrual supplies so they can attend school during their period.  In many communities, disposable products are impossibly expensive, leaving menstruating girls to fend for themselves. Without means to manage periods, girls are forced to stay home from school rather than risk being shamed. Girls who drop out marry earlier, earn less & are at greater risk of developing HIV & dying from childbirth complications. Menstruation is a taboo subject & many girls reach menarche without knowing what is happening to them & why. The UN estimates that girls miss up to 20% off their class time because of their period. @Lunapads has been sending donated cloth pads to NGOs and groups working in Africa since 2001. In 2006 @Lunapads commitment to girls education was formalized with the creation of Pads4Girls. With the help of @lunapads customers, we’ve provided over 3000 girls & women with pads in over 15 countries. We partnered with @TTextiles to create specialized 1-size-fits-all menstrual underwear that hold absorbent pads. We’ve raised enough to provide 10,000 period kits made by @TTextiles to be distributed throughout Malawi in Feb!

You ARE Loved – a nonprofit org focused on raising TSS awareness. It’s impossible to raise awareness about tampon related TSS without talking openly about menstruation. You ARE Loved also provides factual menstrual information and shares about safer menstrual alternatives. In the summer of 2010, 20 year old Amy got sick with what appeared to be the flu – only it wasn’t. Amy died a few days later from tampon related Toxic Shock Syndrome. Her Mom, Lisa, decided to do everything possible to raise awareness so other families would not suffer a similar loss. Over time that vision grew and gave birth to a nonprofit – You ARE Loved. Please take a look at our TSS awareness brochure & share it with others. We are raising awareness about the ONLY fem hygiene product you should worry about causing TSS: traditional tampons. Brands like Kotex, OB, Playtex and Tampax all come with increased risk because they contain viscose. Any other menstrual option is safer when it comes to TSS – organic tampons, pads, & cups (disposable&reusable). It’s important to remember that tweens, young teens and younger women are more likely to develop TSS, and die from it. They are at increased risk because 1) they have not yet developed antibodies and 2) have risky tampon use habits.  TSS does not take a holiday. Know the facts. Learn what to do.

@DaysforGirls is a grassroots org of thousands of volunteers worldwide ensuring more dignity, education and health for girls. Mission is to give girls the dignity of quality washable menstrual supplies they can count month after month. Millions of women go without MHM. Our goal to reach every woman in the world by 2022. Collaboration and awareness is key.  Receiving MHM and knowledge is powerful. Afterwards women and girls have stood up to exploitation, child trafficking and FGM. In Kisii, Kenya after a DfG distribution and empowerment talk FGM (female genital mutilation) dropped by a reported 30%. Did you know that hundreds of thousands of girls are sexually exploited in exchange for hygiene? It’s hard to imagine. Girls suffer humiliation, infection, exploitation and marginalization just for lack of feminine hygiene.  One beautiful, educated 16 yr Kenyan girl said after learning what her period is, “I’m so glad to know. I thought I had HIV.” Imagine having to choose between being exploited to stay in school or being married as an enslaved child bride.  @DaysforGirls has sent over 60,000 kits to 30 nations on 5 continents thanks to volunteers worldwide. We also empower local women in the countries we serve to make their own.

Throughout the chat questions were asked to engage and inform TweetChat participants.

Q1: Please share ur name & the number of girls/women you’ve known that’ve been unable 2 afford fem care items (A. 0 B.1-4 C. 5+)

Q2: What percentage of class time do you think girls in east Africa miss due to lack of access to menstrual products?

Q3: What do you think girls in the developing world who lack menstrual pads use to manage their flow?

Q4: Before this tweet chat, how would you rate your knowledge of the need for fem care items abroad?

Q5: Do you know anyone who uses tampons?

Q6: Would u know what to do if u or someone u know got ill w/flu-like symptoms while using or w/in days of using a tampon?

Q7: How familiar are U with the symptoms of Toxic Shock Syndrome? Thx to Suzan symptoms can also be found @

Q8: Do you think lack of MHM (menstrual health management) solutions effect girls in the USA?

Q9: How can you raise awareness about lack of MHM?

If you’ve never participated in a TweetChat, I encourage you to attend the next #PeriodTalk TweetChat on January 11, 2013, hosted by Tara (@bpreparedperiod) of Be Prepared Period. More information, along with the transcript of today’s #PeriodTalk, can be found on the TweetChat page of Be Prepared Period‘s site.