by Gracie McNally
When someone starts their period, it’s supposedly the beginning of adulthood.
However, when a teen starts menstruating, it is definitely not glamorous. In fact, society tells young teens that it is inappropriate and disrespectful to talk about their menstrual cycle. This makes them self-conscious about having a period, and that embarrassment is one reason that NFHS should provide menstrual products in the bathrooms.
Some teens are too self-conscious to ask for a tampon or pad from other people or the nurse. If a dispenser is placed in the bathroom for students to use, it would ease any anxiety about asking for products.
In an emergency when teens couldn’t go to the nurse, the products would already be in the bathrooms ready for use.
Another issue for some teens is that they cannot afford menstrual products. Buying menstrual products is not cheap. They can go from $4 a box to even $13, which adds up very quickly as periods are monthly. Not only would having products in the bathroom make menstrual products more accessible to lower-income students, but it would be great for teens to be able to grab some for later.
Students agree that having menstrual products would be helpful for emergencies.
“It would be very helpful for when I forget to pack products into my bag,” Julia Wolman (‘24) said. “I would love for it to be available to me.”
Our school has paid for items for all students in the past, including hand-sanitizer, school T-shirts, and even ice cream. If our school is able to purchase toilet paper for our bathrooms then it shouldn’t be a problem to add menstrual products to the list. All over the U.S., schools are supplying products to students. Just recently California decreed that all colleges and public schools must supply free pads and tampons to students.
Emergencies happen, and the issue should be considered and discussed more. Teens shouldn’t be embarrassed or ashamed of something that is a part of life, so schools should step up and see what they can do to help.