It Has Come

2019

I was 12 when it came.
In Palestine, we say ajetny [it has come] when we get our periods.
It happened when I got home after school.
There was a lot of blood.
I got really scared.
I cried a lot.
I couldn’t understand why I was bleeding.
womanhood, period, body image

FULL STORY

Laughing at Me

2019

The first time I got my period I knew what it was,
But I also knew and prepared myself that I must hide it and not tell anyone.
womanhood, period

FULL STORY

You Have No Shame

2019

We were in the North Coast at the time.
I was not allowed to go swimming,
Because I was wearing a pad, and it was going to get wet,
Making it known that I got my period.
womanhood, period

FULL STORY

Five Minutes of Her Time

2019

I got my period when I was in 9th grade.
I felt that something strange and confusing was happening to my body;
Something I couldn’t control.
I was sitting in the living room that had a bifold door,
So it was never fully closed.
I tried to gesture to my mother to come help me,
But she was busy.

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

Nothing Wrong with It

2019

I was in the 9th grade,
The first time I got my period.
I used to always hear about it from my friends.
Mama treated it as something normal.
She told me about it before I got it.
But I used to be embarrassed by it,
And didn’t want anyone at home to know when I had it,
Especially my brothers.
It made me very tired sometimes,
And they sometimes noticed.

FULL STORY

1000 FAQ for Women

2019

I never feel shy asking him about anything.
He never turns me away.
“Let’s search for the answer together,” he’d always tell me.
Baba is amazing when it comes to respecting women.

FULL STORY

A Strong Woman

2018

I feel like I can’t be feminine and taken seriously at the same time.
I have to either be a child or act like a man to be given worth and acceptance.
Strong women are considered to be confusing—troublesome.
womanhood, social pressure

FULL STORY

War Secret

2019

“Who does this belong to?” she asked.
“It’s mine,” I replied, rather naively.
She laughed.
“Congratulations. You’re a woman now.
I have to go tell your father the good news!”
womanhood, period, body image

FULL STORY

She Forgot to Tell Me

2019

Mama forgot to explain periods to me.
The first time I got my period I was thirteen.
All the information I had about periods was from my friends.
womanhood, period

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.