Hi, I’m Emily! I’m a rising sophomore at Wellesley College. I think I can best be described as bubbly and adventure-driven-- especially when boba is involved! I’m also a shameless food photographer, stationery nerd, and aspiring polyglot. (Ask me about foreign languages or my pencil case collection sometime.)
Why do you care about periods?
When I was seven years old, I couldn’t understand why my older cousin always complained about getting her period. Personally, I had always been anxious to get mine; it would mean I was finally a woman and no longer just a little kid. (My mother and aunt even promised to take me out to dinner the day I got it to celebrate womanhood.) But as I grew up, I gradually saw that I was in the minority. I saw how menstruators around me felt awful about themselves when it came to getting their periods. Therefore, I care about periods because I believe integrating them more into our conversation can prove empowering for young women and menstruators everywhere.
I’ve experienced from people everywhere how the stigma placed on menstruation causes women to feel gross and ashamed. My most vivid memory of such occurrence happened when I was in seventh grade. A fellow classmate got her period in the middle of science class and left a red stain on her chair. She was consequently taunted all day and later confided in me how embarrassed she felt at that moment and how her body had seemingly failed her. I believe that more open discussion of periods can prevent such situations from occurring, and can lead to more widespread body-positivity and higher self-esteem for all menstruators.
When was the moment you realized you were interested in becoming a part of the menstrual movement?
I realized that I wanted to be a part of the menstrual movement when I first heard about Nadya Okamoto. She came to my school to talk about PERIOD and the power of Generation-Z to create lasting social change. Upon listening to her speak, I was so impressed by how much young people could accomplish and I instantly knew I wanted to be a part of something that united youth everywhere for a cause I cared deeply about.
What do you hope to accomplish during your time working with PERIOD, The Menstrual Movement?
I live in the smallest state in the country, and with that comes small-mindedness from many. My biggest goal this summer is to create a larger presence for PERIOD in my home state, Rhode Island. I hope to use social media as well as my old high school’s connections to inspire others to join the Menstrual Movement. My dream would be to work with all different types of people (ie: artists, performers, current students, religious groups, etc) to create content that intertwines periods with the many diverse facets of life. I want to film videos that incorporate the voices and individual stories of menstruators from all walks of life. Overall, I want to create content that illustrates how natural and influential periods are to the human condition and why we need to not only accept this fact, but celebrate it.