Informal Feminism

{December 19, 2010}   Diva Cup, My Favorite Menstrual Cup

It was hard to pick a topic for my first official post. A thousand different ideas raced through my mind. Should I make it something hard hitting by talking about something like the sex trade industry or should I write about health because that’s the field I am currently working in. In the end I decided to choose to talk about something that could always use more discussion, the DIVA CUP!

            For those of you who don’t know the Diva Cup is a reusable menstrual cup. The reason that I choose this for my first post is simply because I love it. As a recent convert to the Diva Cup, I have discovered that it is by far the easiest way to deal with my period. I first heard about the Diva Cup about two years ago. The Trent Women’s Center brought them in to sell to students. Several friends of mine purchased their Diva Cup’s then. For the next 2 years I was told about it again and again, how great it was, cost effective, less mess, no leaks.

            I put off buying my own. I always had an excuse, the most frequent being its too much money at one time. But about 7 months ago I decided it was time to take the plunge I wanted to know was this the answer to my period woes. Having never been a fan of tampons I had always been forced to use pads. These were akin to wearing a diaper and always messy. Also there was the cost every month I had to stock up on supplies at roughly $10 dollars a month for 12 months I found I was spending a minimum of $120 a year on pads. This is a lot when money is scarce, so I brought my Diva Cup with the hope that this would be the solution. Since I have begun to use it I have found that it was indeed the answer.

            As I tell women who ask, yes there was a learning curve with the Diva Cup. All of a sudden I was faced with a whole new technique for my period. I read all the literature provided as well as many websites as I could find relating to the topic before actually tackling the real experience. When it got to that time, I found myself fumbling around, trying to get folds and 360 degree turns down. Within the first 2 days I had sprung a leak and was frustrated at trying. However, I was determined to get through at least a full period before giving up and persisted at learning the ever crucial 360 degree turn. By day 3 I had it mastered and settled into the comfort of the Diva Cup. It was everything I had been told, clean, easy to deal with, I didn’t notice it during my regular day at all, and at the end of my cycle all I have to do is boil it for 20 minutes and put it away. As well I could work with it in for up to twelve hours if need be, which is something that some women appreciate instead of having to run to the public toilet every four hours to change their tampons.

            I think if more women were open to giving this a shot then they would find that their periods are more manageable. However, the majority of women are afraid to give it a chance or have never even heard of it. When I mention the words reusable menstrual cup, there is a noticeable cringe in some women. They are afraid it is messy and are disconcerted by having to be comfortable enough with their vagina to be able to insert and remove it. I would link this back to the way women are taught to interact with their bodies; from a young age we are taught that our period is a dirty and shameful thing. It is something to be hidden and disposed of, never discussed in the light of day except in some sort of technical fashion. The Diva Cup challenges this by providing women with a product that forces them to interact with their bodies and periods. While a period might not always be a pleasant thing, it is something that naturally occurs. The Diva Cup gives women a solution that makes the experience easier. In addition it is more eco-friendly and can actually help to shorten the length of your period in some cases, this is because many of the drugstore sold pads and tampons have chemicals in them that help prolong the period in order to sell more products. The Diva Cup should be present to women at a young age to help prevent exposure to these chemicals and as well to help make young women more comfortable with their bodies.

 It is a product that I strongly feel should be presented in health classes to young women who are just learning how to deal with their periods. I had my period for ten years before I learned about it and wish I knew about it sooner. Though every woman should have a choice with how they deal with their periods this should be offered as an option, instead of something that a woman has to seek out for herself. As a user and friend of many others who are users I strongly encourage women to do some research and consider this as an option. Also discuss it with other women; periods shouldn’t be something a woman is afraid to discuss. Women should be open with each other about it because it is something that happens to us all and is completely natural. I hope this post encourages some who haven’t heard of the Diva Cup or have been afraid to try it to give it a shot. I did and have never been so relieved when my period comes, no more leaking, no more worrying about time, no more running out to the store because I am out of supplies and didn’t realize it.


Daria says:

Good first post :). I almost gave up using it the first time that I tried it, because I couldn’t get it to stay in right after having a baby. But I persisted with some tightening exercises (kegels) and gave it a shot again the next month. It works like a charm now. Glad I gave it a second shot, it is amazing how much better I feel, mentally and physically, now that I don’t have an uncomfortable messy pad between my legs for a week out of every month!

Roselie says:

I was lucky and got it to work my first time. I have saved tones of money from using it. Plus it is amazing if you do a lot of physical activities

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