The Barbados Association of Endometriosis and Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (BAEP) celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day with a discussion with students at the St Ursuline Convent.
World Menstrual Hygiene Day is celebrated every year on May 28 and it encourages the importance of good menstrual hygiene management.
The principal of St Ursuline Convent Cheryl Wade said the presentation was informative as she learned about pelvic conditions which many young women and girls suffer with on the island. “I learned a lot of things today – most of them quite scary – about what is going on inside the female body. We are so lucky, those of us who do not suffer from any of those things,” she said.
Wade noted the speech by Chantè Warden who recounted her experience as a young woman living with endometriosis really touched her. “The young lady who talked about her personal experience and said that she has to take morphine every six hours every day for the rest of her life is quite scary. I thought it was a very good thing [to hear about it as] it would open our eyes. Even if we do not have those things, we will be able to understand the experiences of others,” she said.
Vice President of BAEP Rashida Daisley said they donated sanitary napkins sponsored by Always as well as two copies of their book Invisible Not Imaginary. She told the media the event was used to sensitize the female student body about the signs and symptoms of a period that was not normal.
“We spoke about menstrual health and what is normal and what are the signs and symptoms that the young ladies need to look out for. We also enlightened them about endometriosis – a very painful condition that affects a lot of young ladies [and] polycystic ovarian syndrome. We told them about the symptoms and complications,” she added.
Daisley said as the world celebrates World Menstrual Hygiene Day on Tuesday, she sought to educate the students of the Ursuline Convent School that their menstrual cycles are not to be seen as disgusting.
“We really tried to hit home that menstrual health is important and that periods are not dirty and they are normal. We need to end the normalization of period pain. That is why we spoke about endometriosis and the severe pain [it causes] and we really hope that the young girls are able to understand those things,” she said.
Daisley who is also the new Medical Director of Clinical Services at the Barbados Family Planning Association said the donation of the book, Invisible Not Imaginary would help students who suffer from pelvic conditions feel less alone. (LG)