I have been dating this guy for a year and practically living with him for most of it. Among other issues that I think are red flags but I keep brushing them off, today’s incident has really made me push to finding an anonymous space to vent or perhaps find shared experiences. I am on my period, and since I have been staying at his place after the lockdown began, I have limited clothing (I havent been able to go back home). He has always lend me his clothes and I always make sure I take care not to spoil them. When I’m on my period, I prefer wearing pants since I feel like it keeps my stuff down there together. I wear this pants with a belt all the time. After so many months of not saying anything, today, he said, “You’re wearing my pants, what if it stains? And then went on to (according to him he was being sarcastic/joking/thought he could say stuff without being judged) make some theatrical expressions of disgust when I said, it’s just blood and there is not contact happening to your pants. A lot other things were ‘jokingly’ said, including comparing other bodily excrement to menstrual blood (after I said it’s not impure to which he again ‘jokingly’ said, oh so are you saying we can use transfuse this blood and reuse it for another human being)?. I instantly felt this rage plus sadness pile up in my throat I asked him, why do you think the blood even passes through us? He said he doesn’t need to know that and it reminded me of my father who had said the EXACT same sentence to me a long time ago. It doesn’t help that my father and I don’t share a healthy relationship anyway. I ‘reacted’ saying that’s exactly what my father said and it’s making me angry. I said I can’t have this conversation right now and I feel like this is ignorance. He continued to probe me in an instigating manner by asking me Why I think men should know about it when if you need help during your periods, you can just ask. I said so that you understand what we go through (he has two sisters by the way) and help without having to constantly ask. Previously, I always brushed it off whenever he made fun of my moodiness during PMS, that eventually even I just attributed my irrational feelings to that phase.
I said I will send you resources online about why other people think men should know about menstruation because whenever we argue, he will never buy anything I say. I literally googled ‘Why men should know about menstruation’ and sent him some easy to follow links. and a video by man urging other men to educate themselves. He tried to lighten it all up by saying Yes I went through them (in no less than 2 mins after I sent it to him) and said why don’t come out to the hall and explain with a diagram, pen and paper (again, ‘jokingly’). I said I don’t mind explaining but when I think of it, Why is it too much to expect a grown man of 27 years to educate himself on this issue when he has all the resources he needs under his fingertips? Also, both of us can never seem to normally communicate with each other about issues that bother us, so we started texting (from one room to another). I came out to the hall after I changed out of his pants and wear my own clothes. Now he thinks I was making some sort of statement and stormed off back to the bedroom. I told him I changed because I dont want to make him uncomfortable and they are his pants afterall and he said 'Now you are the one stretching this, not me.” before storming off. Honestly, I just felt bad and didn’t want to risk staining his clothes and feel the shame or embarrassment which I shouldn’t be feeling in the first place. I understand I may have not handled the situation in the right way, and I could have just sat him down and made me understand the ABCs of periods but WHY THE FUCK SHOULD I HAVE TO? Why is it okay for him to think he doesn’t need to know what happens with 50% of the world’s population, or forget that - just his own girlfriend/sisters/mother? Why is it okay to think that he has done his part by ‘not complaining in the past when I used his clothes during periods’? I know I maybe blowing this out of proportion but I just feel extremely frustrated and sad that I’m writing this while I sit in the hall alone and crying. oh and Btw, we haven’t been able to even have sex for god knows how many months now and it’s clearly an lack of communication and intimacy issue but I can’t even fucking go home and need to deal with this somehow. As always, by both of pretending it never happened and moving the fuck on.