Everywhere, Period: Denmark
Natasha Brock is a comedian based in Copenhagen, Denmark, where she’s from. Natasha contributed to our Periods Around the World series, where we’re aiming to demystify periods everywhere.
How old were you when you first got your period and what was that experience like?
I was nine or 10. I thought I had broken something inside of me. I remember having stomach cramps and thinking I just needed to go to the bathroom, but at the time I was shopping with my cousin and she wouldn’t let me go to the bathroom. When we got home I saw blood in my panties and ever since I’ve blamed her for my period!
In your community, is there much weight given to a girl getting her period? Any rituals or traditions?
Not really. I think it differs from family to family, but I don’t know of any Danish rituals surrounding the first period. It’s too bad, I always like hearing about rituals from other countries where they celebrate girls and make it a special experience, instead of a frightening memory.
Do you remember the first product(s) you used to manage your period?
My mom wouldn’t let me use tampons, so I used pads for most of my teen years.
How has your experience with your period changed over time?
It has always been an inconvenience for me; I’d rather not have it. But over time I have grown to appreciate it, knowing that is shows me my body is healthy. And that I’m not pregnant…
I’ve also become more comfortable talking about it. I’m a comedian and next year, I’m doing my second one woman show, which will be about the women’s cycle and period. These topics are still taboo to talk about on stage in Denmark.
Have you tried or do you use different products to manage your period now?
I started with pads, used tampons, and then switch to the cup about a year ago, and I loved using it, but I got an IUD a few months ago and switched back to pads and tampons. I try to only use organic and chemical free products. (Like Cora!)
Do you have any special rituals, like a hot bath, using essential oils, or eating certain foods during the week you’re menstruating, that help you manage your period?
I let myself loose when I get my period. I eat whatever I want, buy things for myself, but most importantly, I give in to my emotions. And I sleep a lot! That helps me the most.
Do you have any advice for a girl who has just gotten her period?
Don’t be ashamed or scared. And take time to figure out for yourself what and how you feel about your period. And find a good gynecologist—I found mine way too late in life and I wish I’d had someone (professional) telling me everything down there was alright.
Thank you, Natalie!
Featured image by Marc Kleen