What If Men Got Periods?

In our culture, we women tend to do a lot of concealing about our periods — asking a friend in hushed tones for a tampon, hiding maxi pads in special pockets of our purses, choosing to wear black on heavy days to hide any potential stains. But a new commercial asks: If men got periods too, would we feel more comfortable talking about them?

The commercial, for period-absorbing underwear Thinx, imagines a world where men and adolescent boys get periods. In the opening scene, a boy tells his dad, “I think I got my period.” We also see a man with a blood stained bedsheet, a guy checking the back of his pants in a bathroom mirror and teen boy whose pads fall out of his locker. (A nice girl helps him pick them up, of course.) There are more examples of things girls and women deal with every month too — only it’s all happening with guys instead. I have to say the guy in the locker room with the tampon string hanging out of his boxer briefs made me laugh! (What woman can’t relate?)

In the ad, no one is embarrassed by periods and period products because we all get them. What’s the point of keeping it a secret?

Perhaps period talk tends to be so taboo because it’s a woman thing. We talk to our daughters about their first period, but we don’t talk about menstruation to our sons. (We should!) And if women and men were truly treated equally in our culture, maybe we wouldn’t have to keep our menstruation on the hush hush.

It’s a smart idea from a pretty cool brand — and it should give everyone pause about how we approach conversations about menstruation and the female body in general. Definitely, check it out.

The national TV ad will run on 18 networks across the United States, including: Bravo, E!, Oxygen, BET, MTV, VH1, HGTV, the Food Network, TLC and NBC starting tomorrow.

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