The idea of this game is to familiarize the players with the different products regarding menstruation. Getting to know different products and how they might be used will help understand that periods are a natural thing of everyday life. In addition it can bring certainty to deal with menstruations, regardless of whether one gets them themselves, or it is a close friend or family member experiencing them. If you as a leader feel like you’re uncertain about whether you know enough about the products and how they are used, it is worth familiarizing with them beforehand to be able to answer possible questions and encourage discussion. Print several sets of cards and divide the group in pairs or smaller groups within which the players can make the cards and play. If you have time, it is also a fun activity to color in the playing cards.
- Printed playing cards
- (Coloring pencils)
The game is played like a regular memory game; the cards are shuffled and set on the table with pictures facing the table. On each turn, a player turns two cards of their choice. If the pictures in the cards turned are not the same, they are turned again and kept in the game. If the pictures are the same, they are removed from the game. The player with the most cards at the end of the game wins.
Print the playing cards needed in the game:
Aiding questions and answers for the end discussion:
What might affect which period product one uses?
- Some products are better for some than others, depending on personal preferences. Products that are used in different ways or made of different materials will also feel different, and be more suitable for some situations than others. Different products also come in different prices. Disposable pads and tampons are much cheaper for price per unit, but in long run, ie. a moon cup that lasts for years will be much cheaper. It is good to remember that for someone with low income, being able to use the period products of your preference is not self-evident. In choosing the best product, one can also think about how environmentally sustainable it is – often the disposable products are partly made of cotton and plastics that are harmful to the environment, hence putting more pressure on the environment. On average, a menstruator uses around 10 000 disposable pads or tampons in their life, whereas a moon cup can last for years. Also a pair of comfortable, washable and sustainable period pants can be a great option.
There were other products in the cards that weren’t directly for managing the blood flow – what is the point of these?
- Contraceptive pills, for example, can also be used to ease heavy and painful periods, as well as for delaying them. Often, people who take contraceptive pills can find that their menstrual cycle is more regular than before. A painkiller, again, is often needed as many people experience pain in their stomach and lower back. Pain, regularity, the amount of bleeding and the age when periods start vary a lot between individuals, and many kinds of experiences can be ‘normal’, regardless of maybe being different from a friend’s experience.
Why is it important that everyone has access to menstrual products?
- Living an everyday life could be somewhat difficult without menstrual products. There is no need to hide periods, but living your normal life is likely to be easier if one can manage their menstruations. Especially in Uganda, it is quite common not being able to afford menstrual health products, and having to miss school days because of this. At worst, one might have to drop out of school as a result. In many countries there remain several negative and harmful beliefs about menstruation, which means that a girl or woman’s life becomes very restricted, if she is on her periods.