“It’s going to be cold and it’ll probably hurt,” the woman standing over me says, clearly aware it’s pointless trying to say anything comforting right now. The truth will suffice. I nod and pull the skin at my abdomen – what I usually do when I’m in a similar position with my waxer.
Except this time I’m not with my super friendly, polite and soft-spoken waxer lady. I’m laying on a hospital bed, pants off and legs spread with an intern doctor standing at the other end holding a pair of forceps. I would have laughed had it not been so bloody painful…
Before I explain how I got onto that hospital bed, let me just explain WHY I ever wanted to try a menstrual cup in the first place.
Basically, they are a huge game changer for periods.
You don’t have to spend $10-$15 every month for 40 odd years on products that aren’t reusable or recyclable and in Australia, aren’t even tax-free (a conversation for another time).
The menstrual cup is an environmentally friendly, safe and reusable cup for menstruation. Basically, it’s a cup that collects your period and you can keep it in for eight hours without any issues. Most female travellers like me RAVE about their menstrual cup and how practical it is not having to buy pads and tampons overseas or having to change in dirty toilets.
I’m dreaming about my future long-term travels so I decide to give it a shot…
How bad could it be?
Alright, I’m ready for this. A period catching cup is a little weird but if all these YouTubers have used it successfully, I can too. I’ve watched a week’s worth of reviews, how to, what to and not to do. I even read up on the menstrual cup equivalent of ‘What To Expect When You’re Expecting’.
$45 later, I’m in my bathroom with an overly read manual in one hand and the cup in the other.
Man, this looks rather large for something meant to be “small”.
I fold it, as per the instructions, put it up and leave it. I can feel it but it isn’t uncomfortable – just like all the YouTubers have told me. So far so good.
Listen: A man has come up with a ‘solution’ to your period. Oh, goody. (Post continues…)
Three hours later…
Although you can leave the cup in for eight hours, I want to practice removing it before bed just in case. I go to the bathroom and poke my finger up there to feel for the little stem… and, um, where is it?!
I reach in a little further and can just touch the tip. The instructions say to grab the stem with my thumb and forefinger, but I just can’t reach it. Panic.