Not Disgusted

2019

I got my period at the end of elementary school,
During the summer vacation.
I didn’t know what it was.
I thought I was sick,
Or had some sort of problem.
I asked my mother in tears.
“It’s normal,” she said.
She didn’t explain anything.
“Normal how?” I asked her.
She still didn’t explain anything to me.

FULL STORY

A Muslim Woman

2006

I’m passive, weak, uneducated.
Veiled from head to toe.
One of his four wives.
Work in the kitchen all day.
And spread my legs wide at night.
That’s what you think, right?

FULL STORY

Black and Blue

2015

I wanted to be a boy when I was young.
My brother and our cousins would be allowed to play in the garden behind our house until late, but not me.
They used to hop the fence, play hooky, then come back and lie about it, make up stories.
As for me, if I even so much as tried to call my cousin at night they’d tell me
“Why? Aren’t you going to see each other tomorrow morning?

FULL STORY

Milk

2016

I didn’t drink milk because I didn’t
want to grow breasts ...

FULL STORY

Normalizing Periods

2019

I got my period for the first time when I was 11 years old.
I wasn’t taken by surprise.
I didn’t get scared.
Mama had always made me get her pads ever since I was very little.
And she had told me that when girls get older,
They bleed a little every month.
womanhood, period

FULL STORY

The Bus Owner

2014

It was me and two or three other girls on the bus.
Two of them were veiled and one was wearing the niqab.
We were all standing in a corner.
We were surrounded by men.
There was a man sitting with his legs wide open and laughing loudly.
It was as if he was the owner of the bus and could act any way he liked.

FULL STORY

Blood and Pain

2019

I was 13 years old the first I got it.
I got cramps,
So I went to the bathroom.
I was scared by the blood and called my mother.
She opened the door and saw me.
“Do you know what that is?” she asked me.
“Yes,” I replied.
She closed the door and sent someone to buy me pads.

FULL STORY

One of the Guys

2019

I’m a girl,
And I have two brothers.
I’ve always been told that I’m a “reckless” person.
But like I said,
I’m a girl who was brought up around two brothers.
What was I supposed to be like, then?
There was obviously a chance I’d turn out this way.

FULL STORY

I Hate My Period

2019

My sister, who is 3 years younger than me,
Got her period 6 months before I did.
She was 11 years old then,
And I was 14.

FULL STORY

Short Hair

2016

I always imagined myself with short hair.
Until I got it cut.
I was happy.
I felt like myself.

FULL STORY
x
Warning The stories on our story archive could contain potentially sensitive and/or triggering material. If a story causes you discomfort or pain, please remember to breathe and check in with yourself before continuing or stop reading completely if necessary.