KARLA WELCH, superstar stylist to Justin Bieber, Olivia Wilde, Sarah Paulson, and Lorde; who’s styled campaigns for Dior, Vuitton, Nike, and Apple; and is the creator of x Karla, which has dropped successful collabs with Hanes and Levi’s. Recently, Welch founded The Period Company, which is driven by the goal of changing the conversation around women’s periods and of ridding the world of single use disposable products that never decompose (ever). Here, she answers our reader’s Q about doing it during it.
Pardon the overshare, but my girlfriend gets offended because I don’t like having sex when she’s on her period. I just find it to be a bit much, honestly. She feels that it’s a very natural thing and I’m being old fashioned, which I get…. but I mean… am I crazy? What’s the compromise here? – Anonymous
Let me start by saying, that when it comes to sex, no one should have to do anything they don’t want to do or feel comfortable with. Having said that, try asking yourself what about it makes you uncomfortable.
This is probably because as a culture we have been programmed for centuries into thinking of a woman’s period as gross or dirty or just the pain in the ass associated with cramps, bloating, fatigue and bleeding through white pants in public. So there’s been some humiliation associated with it. Imagine how women feel!
And I get where you’re coming from. It’s normal per the norm to feel this way. BUT let’s explore a new perspective and banish the old taboo. Consider that a woman’s period is actually one of the greatest indicators of her body’s health, and that her body is functioning at full capacity and, in short, doing what it’s supposed to be doing. A lot of health issues can go into NOT getting a period. If we can reframe the way we think of periods as being not just natural, but actually a really healthy and great thing… you might take on a different outlook on it. And it sounds like your girlfriend is already there.
In fact, a recent survey for The Huffington Post showed that a whopping 55 percent of women thought period sex as natural and awesome.
According to a 2017 Time Magazine article, some women report they feel MORE aroused and MORE sensitive around this time. Some research even suggests that orgasms can even relieve menstrual cramping and PMS (win-win, if you ask me).
In some cultures, periods are considered pure and scared, and play a very important role in tantric rituals.
And lastly, a woman’s “flow” can serve as extra lubrication during sex, which can also increase pleasure. If you typically use a store-bought lubricant, this may be your week to go natural.
And look, I get it, it’s fucking messy, it can ruin the sheets. So try laying down a dark towel! Do it in the shower! And consider going at it on day two or three instead of day one, which is usually the heaviest flow, and could indeed get quite stain-y. Having sex in the missionary position can also limit blood blow due to, obviously, gravity.
At the end of the day, whether you and your partner decide you do or don’t want to, the key factor, as with most things sex and relationship related, is communication. Talk it out! And then by all means, do it already.