What If Men Could Menstruate?
by Tejas Nair
Have you ever wondered why sanitary (maxi) pad ads or even diaper ads use blue coloured solution and not any other colour? Why not red or yellow for realism? Well, it might be strange (or gross) to think of it, but not if you are into advertising. I now seriously thank the pioneers who thought of using blue instead of red or orange or yellow. Otherwise, I would retch every time one of those ads came up in the middle of my beloved Homeland TV series episode. Have a look at this parody video and satisfy yourself! And the answer to the above question is simply that human body doesn’t produce anything bluish. But then you will ask me, why not green? Maybe green didn’t strike those pioneers and they opted for blue, which happens to be more pleasant, pushed by decades of acceptance since the start, don’t you think?
That is just an interesting thought. But what if men really could menstruate?
(Have a look at this amazing video: The Story of Menstruation, according to Walt Disney, if you don’t know 2 things about menstruation.)
That opens door to many sub-questions like will both men & women menstruate? or is it just about men and now women’ll roam around opening their flies wherever they want in the streets in Mumbai to take a piss like how men used to? The latter will look like a mere gender swap and I’ll sit here wondering about the plight of those already hapless transgenders. If both men and women could menstruate, then who would plant the seed? IVF won’t work. Nor will that oldest fossil sperm which was unearthed few days ago somewhere in Australia, because we are talking about a generation where we are trying to obstruct the balance of nature’s sexual orientation. So we will focus on the only question of its kind: what if men could menstruate, irrespective of either sex’s characteristics?
If men could menstruate, then the male members of the families won’t stare on the floor during those ads. Dirty-minded male students won’t share a glimpse and a wry smile any more when one of their female classmates asks for permission to visit the loo mid-lecture. Men won’t turn their heads away in a jerk from stacks of sanitary pads in a supermarket. Boyfriends will understand when their girlfriends use the terms like ‘headache’ or ‘pang.’ To sum up, the idea of menstruation won’t cause embarrassment. Not all men like to hear jokes on themselves and the guys who actually create jokes on menstruation won’t stand a minute when they hear it now. So, all jokes about menstruation will vanish.
The debate over what is most painful, a kick in the balls or child-birth will finally be concluded. It will be agreed by all the sexes that it is child-birth which is the most excruciating. But, if men could menstruate, there won’t even be a question about what pains more because menstruation itself can sometimes be a real pain in the ass (pun intended). The words ‘paternity leave’ will be used more in official leave cards. Ovulation will be studied widely but porn won’t be touched.
The idea of sex will get some introductions. Men will know everything about the safe days to have sex and Dr. Mahinder Watsa (of Mumbai Mirror‘s sexpert column fame) may heave a sigh of relief. Sex won’t find a new definition, although porn will still not be touched. Because porn is more concerned with masturbation than any other factor it tries to relate with. New positions may enter the Kama Sutra although I doubt men will want to try all of them out because of the latest inclusion in their body machine. The men who hesitated to model for ads of undergarments will now have one more ad in their kitty of dislikes: sanitary pad ads. I can never control but laugh visualizing one such ad involving a man.
Since menstruation is just the beginning, many more functions will be attributed to men like pregnancy, breastfeeding, lactation & menopause. I wonder if Oxford will adopt the word womenopause into its dictionary! Would we men finally start to understand the psychology of women, if menstruation is supposed a playing factor, that is?
I don’t know about that but it would be interesting to visualize the whole scenario. When I think deeper, the whole science of life gets jumbled up and the idea ends up suffocating itself. Anyway, I’m sure it would amuse the living daylights out of me to have those men filled with chauvinistic hubris visualize this thought about menstruation which is, and ever will be, considered a woman’s trait. Does that make me sad?