This post is sponsored on behalf of Tampax® and Always®, however, all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
I began menstruating a few months after my 12th birthday. When I discovered the dark stain on my favorite pair of pink panties, I cried. Then I called my older cousin into the bathroom, where she showed me how to affix a maxi pad to a clean pair of underwear. And that was it. I went off to school and tried not to worry. My mom congratulated me when I called her at work to tell her about it.
You’re a woman now, she exclaimed with pride.
Was I a woman now? And was my newfound womanhood the reason I felt so incredibly taxed? Truthfully, I couldn’t quite not worry, and much of it was centered around the concern that I would have a period accident in front of one of the boys at school, a humiliation I feared I would never be able to live down.
I vowed then that the only way to ensure I would never have a period accident was to wear black clothing during my heaviest days. I also stacked my pads on top of each other, essentially creating a diaper, and then wearing two to three pairs of underwear, one on top of the other, to hold my makeshift diaper in place. As you can imagine, I was incredibly uncomfortable, but it was the only way I could be sure. And then I wasn’t. One day that summer, after successfully completing the school year without incident, I went to visit my aunt at her job. Since it was summertime, and I was away from the prying eyes of pubescent boys, I felt more at ease. I was a few days into my period, and it was a hot summer day. I opted to forgo my black “period pants” and instead wore my favorite pair of blue and white checkered shorts. My aunt was a librarian, and as you can imagine, I loved visiting her at the library. A short while into my visit, however, my younger cousin pulled me aside to whisper that the unthinkable had happened. I had a quarter-sized blood stain on the back of my shorts. I rushed to the bathroom to attempt to spot treat it with soap and water, but I only made a larger, now muddy-looking stain on my beloved checkered shorts. My aunt then led me into the staff room, where she had me turn to the side while she dabbed at the spot with a damp paper towel. While she was doing so, an adult male janitor walked in on us. He looked at my aunt, dabbing furiously at the stain, then at me, then back at the stain, before exiting the room. It was a moment I haven’t forgotten, over 20 years later. I interpreted the look on his face to mean that my period was something I should be ashamed of, something that should be hidden at all costs. I was traumatized.
For the next 5 years, I wore black, loose-fitting clothing whenever I was menstruating. That is until a friend in college introduced me to Tampax® tampons. I had tried, once, a different tampon with a cardboard applicator and quickly determined tampons were not for me. But Tampax® tampons, even way back then, were different. The plastic applicator ensured that they went in comfortably and leaks were a thing of the past. I’ve been a firm believer in the brand ever since, and truthfully, I credit Tampax® for helping me to get over the trauma of my early period days. And, as you can imagine, the improvements made to the line since my freshman year in college have been pretty amazing. In fact, the Radiant Collection from Tampax® and Always® is their best yet.
Tampax Pocket Radiant tampons offer the same protection of Tampax® Radiant Tampons, in a discreet, compact size.
Tampax Pocket Radiant even features a CleanSeal™ re-sealable wrapper for quick and easy discreet disposal.
Always® Radiant pads are worlds above the industrial style pads I used to stack one on top of the other back in my day. They’re thin and absorb 10x their weight. The quilted core also helps to absorb wetness and odors.
What’s even better is that The Tampax® and Always® Radiant Collection is up to 100% leak-free so I can wear whatever I want. No more tying a jacket around my waist, no more only wearing black, heck, I can even go swimming.
Coming of age is difficult, no matter how you slice it, but having products like these to help ease the transition is always a plus in my book. I’m glad that today young girls and women don’t have to suffer the way I did, and that we can all now confidently wear whatever we want 365 days a year, without feeling limited by a natural occurrence in every woman’s life.
I suspect that I am not the only woman to have a “period” story, so please share yours below! Oh, and are you a pad or tampon kind of girl?
Hey, Boo! My name is Lisa and you’ve stumbled upon my own little corner of the world. I’m a 30 something-year-old writer/mother/wife who happens to love lipstick, high heels, blackness, and the truth. You’ll find a mix of everything on this site, so I won’t bore you by trying to define this space. I hope you stay awhile!