How Muslim Girls Actually Manage Their Periods During Ramadan
Yes, its possible! You can manage your period during Ramadan and go on your own spiritual adventure.
To take part in Ramadan is a beautiful thing. But if it's that time of the month, how do you manage your period during Ramadan?
Before anything else, let's have a quick Ramadan 101 lesson.
Ramadan starts on the 9th month of the Islamic calendar where Muslims commit one whole month of intense prayer, reflection, and fasting from dawn to dusk.
It is a religious and spiritual practice undertaken to strengthen one's relationship with God and to be more aware and grateful of blessings people often take for granted.
Now during this holy period what if you start chumming? Rules say, If your period falls on Ramadan, you cannot take part of the fast.
"Cleanliness is half of the faith"
And since menstruation is the body's way of cleansing itself, it makes women impure for ritual purposes, not just for Ramadan but generally speaking. The sick and old also cannot take part of Ramadan for health purposes.
This is logical and accepted.
Yet there are still some people who reportedly think that "not fasting is associated with weakness or inability.” Given this thought, we decided to interview some of our own Muslim girlfriends to find out the real truth.
No stigma only misconception, say young Muslim girls
When we asked our friend Neefa Macapado if there's a certain stigma behind it, she was surprised by the question.
"In the community I grew up in it's not an issue because it's physiologic and Islam instructs that menstruating women can't fast and should just make up for it even past Ramadhan," she shared.
We asked another of one our girlfriends, Farrah Ghodsinia, who said, "There seem to be biased into thinking that Muslims/the Islamic world DOES PLACE A STIGMA on its menstruating women. When in fact, this is a stereotype/misconception and is not the case really. "
She added, "Perhaps, in some very conservative parts of the world, they place this stigma. But in many Muslim-majority communities that are progressive and have had Muslim women key leaders and figures, this issue is not the case."
In our conversations with these two young Muslim girls, there were three things we understood.
There is clearly no stigma in major Muslim communities. Why do some people assume that the Muslim community is a place of stigma? And, we have educated and progressive girls everywhere who are willing to educate the uninitiated.
Menstruation is normal, even for fasting Muslims
Menstruation is just another normal and natural phenomenon. It is not an issue or considered a stigma. And the fact is that there should be no stigma at all surrounding something that is so natural.
Which leads us to our second point, which Farraf brings up.
"If you see stories that say otherwise then they are not representative of the majority. Islam as a religion also does not say that this is a stigma/shameful thing. Many media outlets may like to portray this kind of 'backward' or 'repressive' view on Islam and how it treats its women. But we can break this cycle by the way we also frame our topics and questions," she enlightens.
At this Millennial age, educated youngsters are more understanding, unbiased, and of course more informed about how a biological phenomenon does not interfere with one's choices.
In fact, Muslims who look down upon women while they are on their periods during Ramadan are actually frowned upon. Media sites who write about such topics are perhaps just looking for a story.
#Noshade, but this is true.
Publishing a story of interest is a pot of gold for journalists. Yet, aren't we supposed to tell the complete story--to further investigate so that everyone is well represented? Now that's something, that's a real story.
Menstruation is a difficult time for a woman. They bring along cramps, sluggishness, low iron levels, fatigue, migraines, and even dehydration. And not being able to eat during this time makes everything all the more difficult.
However, if you are still keen to fast whilst on your periods here are a few ways.
- Stay warm to prevent cramps
- Take Magnesium supplements to help muscles relax
- Drink lots of water
- Do not overexercise
- Avoid coffee and dairy to keep cramps at bay
Managing your period during Ramadan may be a bit of a hassle, but there's always another way to go on your own spiritual adventure. After all, why should something biological hinder you from doing the things you want to, right?