I’m Right, You’re Wrong: On Your Period, Lass?

by Marinka on March 19, 2012

It’s time, once again, for I’m Right, You’re Wrong.

A few weeks ago, my sister Mouthy Housewife Wendi tackled the issue of what to do when your friend refers to menstruation as “being on my period.”  Some sick shit, right?  Well, no sooner did that happen than my friend and homosexual-American Peajaye and I almost came to blows over the term.

Disagreement: Is saying “on my/your/her period” an acceptable expression or should whoever utters those words be punished to the fullest extent of the law?

Disageers: Marinka and Peajaye.

Position One: Don’t say that, ever.  It sounds gross, like you’re straddling a period or something. Blech.

Position Two:  It’s far superior to say, “on your period” than “having your period”. When you’re “on” something – other than drugs – you’re in the position of power; you’re assuming control. You’re on top. Big (Wo)Man on Campus. On top of the world! I’m on it, boss! You’re on to someone. It’s on, baby! The cherry on top! You’re on board. etc. Even if you’re on the rag, it’s you that’s on top of the rag, not the other way around.

When you’re “having” something, it implies negativity or being subjective; out of control. You’re having a breakdown. You’re having a shit-fit. You’re having a baby (to give to your husband, maybe? and I prefer You’re pregnant or With child or Put on a few pounds in front, no I’m not having a child, how dare you!) Having to go to the dentist. Having sex is good, but Getting it on is better. Even when You’re having a party, there’s work involved.

What do you think? Is “I’m on my period” an affront to human kind or not necessarily?

One year ago ...

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Deb March 19, 2012 at 1:00 am

I’m laughing too hard to take a side 🙂

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MFA Mama
Twitter:
March 19, 2012 at 6:28 am

Affront to human decency. PERIOD.

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Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes March 19, 2012 at 8:39 am

Either way, it is a bloody mess.

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Mamabearuk March 19, 2012 at 9:06 am

In the UK this is the standard phrase. Menstrating is something a dr or midwife might say and sounds terribly grown up 🙂 I’ve heard worse phrases used…

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Marinka March 19, 2012 at 9:10 am

“I’m on my period” is the standard phrase in the UK or “I’m having my period”? Please ask everyone in the UK so that I can have the definitive answer.

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Jodi March 19, 2012 at 10:34 am

I think the only acceptable terminology is “on the rag.”

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deb March 19, 2012 at 11:32 am

i’m too pms to think about it right now.

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Catheirne
Twitter:
March 19, 2012 at 12:12 pm

Being ON a period doesn’t even make sense. I don’t want to be ON a period, periods are dirty and gross. I get slammed by mine so I prefer the term “I am getting slammed by my period.”

That’s better, right?

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Kati
Twitter:
March 19, 2012 at 12:19 pm

I don’t have (or get on) my periods anymore – thank you Novasure!
BUT, all through high school, I and everyone I knew referred to it as ON. I always hated when people said “on the rag” because it sounded so crass, but “on my period” sounded normal because everyone said. In fact it wasn’t until I became an adult and became friends with hoity-toity East Coasters than I ever even heard the term “having my period”, which to me sounds a bit passive, like “I’m having crepes for breakfast.” If my hormones are raging and I’m considering homicide, I’m definitely ON something.

So I’d say honestly either one is fine.

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Megan March 19, 2012 at 12:59 pm

Well, thank goodness for menopause (I never thought I’d say that, thank you!), because I don’t have to care about this anymore.

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Kara
Twitter:
March 19, 2012 at 1:44 pm

Wow. I had no idea people felt strongly one way or the other. Frankly, I’m not even sure which is correct or if there is even a correct in this situation. I guess I’ll pay more attention next time I tell someone I’m menstruating. Or maybe I’m not even supposed to tell. I’m so confused now.

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Liz @ PeaceLoveGuac
Twitter:
March 19, 2012 at 4:02 pm

I am still reeling from the Mouthy commenter who calls her period a “crime scene in her pants” so I really can’t be offended by something as benign as “on…”

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alaina
Twitter:
March 19, 2012 at 6:51 pm

I’ve never said “I’m on my period” because if being on it is an option then being off of it should be an option and no one gave me that choice.

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The ZB
Twitter:
March 19, 2012 at 9:54 pm

I don’t usually discuss it with anyone other than The Hubby, because he’s the only one other than me that it really affects. We refer to it as Mean Woman Week. Although “Uncontrollable Random Sobbing Week” would be more accurate.

I’ve usually heard it as “on my period” though, or ragging or on the rag. I can’t say I’ve heard “having my period” too much. I really don’t like any of the more vague euphemisms, but I don’t think there’s ever going to be a single phrase that everyone can agree on. “Menstruation” does sound uppity, even though it’s the correct terminology.

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Lesley March 19, 2012 at 10:37 pm

My husband & I have this argument all the time except its “is it up the ass or in the ass?” Sorry, probably not very helpful! Anyway, definitely “on my period.”

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Caroline March 20, 2012 at 1:43 am

Never heard of being “on my period”. Sounds seriously wierd to me – would make more sense then to be “with period”, as in “with child”.

My husband always refers to it as being on the “IR list” (injured reserved).

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Julie March 20, 2012 at 9:31 pm

This controversy begs for a return to the genteel “visit from Aunt Flo.”

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magpie March 21, 2012 at 10:19 am

NOOOOOOOO

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magpie March 21, 2012 at 10:20 am

While you’re at it, would you like to take on “taking a dump”? You aren’t TAKING anything, you’re LEAVING something.

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Kati
Twitter:
March 24, 2012 at 12:21 pm

My husband says “dropping the kids off at the pool” or “taking the Browns to the superbowl”.
I prefer the far more dignified “going potty.”

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Becky
Twitter:
March 21, 2012 at 6:38 pm

I’m against any preposition, followed the words “my period”.

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Mary March 22, 2012 at 11:30 pm

Ever since my mother told me this happens to every woman I’ve been against it. However you say it. But “on your period” is way better than “friend flo is visiting.”

Reply

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