This could be one the most helpful and honest reviews ever written. One Amazon user, Ben (ahem) Dover has written the following piece of advice for anyone wanting to try out the Diva Cup #2 Post Childbirth Mooncup.
If you’re not familiar with Mooncups they are a reusable menstrual cup, that you insert into your vagina in place of a tampon. The basic premise is that it “collects” menstrual blood rather than using a pad or tampon to absorb the fluid. You take it out every 8 hours, empty the contents, rinse or wipe it and then it’s ready to be reinserted. A blurb on the company’s website describes it as “Comfortable, convenient and safe: the Mooncup can be used overnight and when travelling, swimming or exercising,” although the Amazon reviewer might disagree with the first adjective in that sentence.
LISTEN: After a new pair of period undies? The Mamamia Out Loud team have you sorted. Post continues after audio.
So one of the many new devices I purchased for this trip was a Diva “Moon Cup”. Since feminine hygine supplies would be hard to come by and waste-producing, I opted instead to buy a thing like a Barbie Deluxe Toilet Plunger, and stuff it up my hooha.
The theory is that the cup catches your pan drippings, and you empty it a couple times a day, washing it with hippy soap, and reinserting. It presupposes you are enough of an Earth Mother to be OK not only with your monthly outpourings, but also with generally fossicking around in your flaps. Now, I am no stranger to gore. Nor am I squeamish about my delicate rose of delight, except that I have no such illusions about it and indeed am always reminded of nothing so much as stuffing an oddly-warm raw turkey. So, when after several weeks of teasing, the Period Fairy threatening to postpone the Communist Invasion until I was actually getting on the plane (I was about ready to scream and cry at some hapless unwary male just as a sacrifice to appease her) at last I greeted the rosy-fingered dawn and set about embarking on my new life as a eco-friendly Diva.
The Moon Cup comes in two sizes; Size A, for youthful nymphs under 30 who have never given birth and have silken tresses and tinkling laughs and are all size 0, and size B, for Big Ol’ Bitches like m’self, who have either spawned, or are so old (ie over 30) that they might as well have been poppin’ them out like Duggar Donuts, because their sugar walls are now echoing corridors full of cobwebs and slackness. Of course the packaging phrases it more nicely, but I was miffed to see that despite having never replicated, I was still doomed to the Big Gulp size because of my age alone.
So, chalice in hand, fingers washed, and let’s fold that thing like a taco (no, not THAT thing, the other thing!) and cram it up where only one man has gone before and even then not for a damn long time even when he WAS still around. I’m sure I imagined the rusty creaking sounds as I tried to shove something which was larger than anything previous (with the exception of various medical speculums which, I believe, were constructed by the same person who designed the Montlake Drawbridge)into the Gaping Maw.
Now, you’re supposed to roll the cup up, smuggle it past the border, let it expand, then turn it clockwise (or counter clockwise, or then one way and another, stopping when you hear the click, or something…) anyway, you’re supposed to be able to turn this thing like a dial in there.”If the cup does not turn easily, you did it wrong” Oh, of course, I’ll just grasp hold of a thing about the size, shape, and slipperyness of the pointy end of a peeled hard-boiled egg, which is now buried in the meaty folds of my innermost femininity, which, I may add, are well-sluiced with the special effects from a Quentin Tarantino film, and spin that sucker like a dredel.
There is, also, a small stem at the base of this cup, which, being made of the same slippery silicon and about a centimeter long, is about as helpful as providing a live, untrained earthworm for a handle. More on this later.
So, rotate this thing in situ, to ensure a good ‘seal’ and a comfortable fit.
Does. Not. Happen.
Ladies (and gentlemen, although I hope for your sake none of you gentlemen are reading this), I tried. I hauled that thing in and out of there more times, and with much less joy, than Eeyore with his birthday present, and not once could I get that thing to “turn easily”. I finally gave up, since it seemed, at one point, to be “fully inflated” and more or less in the right place. Frankly I think that having left my furrow unplowed for so long, I’m not exactly the proper degree of hotdog-hallway that the instruction-writer was intending to address, but so be it. Let’s give this thing a whirl, if we can’t give it a twist.
Fast forward a few hours in which I’ve done nothing much. To its credit, I don’t feel the presence of THE CUP at all, no discomfort, not even a vague sense of “eugh” as I sometimes have when knowing all that stands between me and my khakis is a small cottony Dutch boy. In fact, I’m getting rather concerned that the Diva Cup has wormed its way in like some form of parasitic jellyfish and is now eagerly migrating up my fallopian tubes, with me all unknowing. Time to go fishing.
And that is where I discover that, while it’s difficult to try and ‘turn’ a Diva Cup newly lodged in your sanctum sanctorum, it’s a freakin’ log-fall compared to trying to recover said Cup after it has gotten comfortably settled in the downy folds of your blood-engorged tissues. Yes, indeed, if cram my fingers up there to the point of pain, I can just, tantilizingly, tickle the end of that goddamn silicone ‘stem’. Grasp it? Not in hell.
Of course the instructions say, if this happens, DO NOT PANIC. Well, thank god for that, because I was already running through the list of people I’d trust with a flashlight, a set of forceps, and an experience that would scar both of us for the rest of our lives. There were instructions for different positions, and “bearing down” and so forth, which I tried, to no avail, and I was pretty sure that my ham-fisted efforts (ahem) were just making things worse on the “swollen” front, so Diva and I took a break, and retired to our respective corners for an hour or so.
Now I brought out my secret weapon: Beer. If, gods help me, I ever have to have a baby, I intend to be drunk off my ass for the delivery, and I surely hope that the Fairy Prince Unicorn Elvis who is my chosen Babydaddy will provide a bedside IV of godly ambrosia, or at least Jim Beam. But anyway, two beers and I’m good to go spelunking in quest of the Holy Grail once more.
Either the beer, or the break, or the combination of all of these and squatting on the bathmat like a Neanderthal crapping, finally, produced enough of that goddamn ‘stem’ to grab (which was good, because I was dreading having use the kitchen tongs Up There or something) and, with a surprising amount of horrible suctioning “discomfort”, the invader was routed! And, wonder of wonders, it was indeed partially filled. Not filled with DELICIOUS CANDY, no, but it did seem to have been, you know… -working-, before I so rudely dislodged it from its parasitic feeding. I felt a combination of grudging respect and intrigue, as one might upon meeting a foe worthy of their steel. Provided we could agree to disagree on the whole “turn 360 degrees in place” aspect, perhaps this could indeed be a workable partnership. Better than bleeding into the Rupununi and attracting every caiman, pirahna, and candiru fish for fifty miles.
But not without some boundaries first. I tied a ROPE to that stupid stem this time.