Since we have consciousness, while we are still children, we begin to ask ourselves: What do we want to be when we grow up? There are many options floating around in our minds, no matter what culture, customs or group we grew up in. Teachers, doctors, writers, housewives, engineers; The possibilities are many and the challenges to achieve them are also many.
Leaving aside the delicate issue of opportunities in relation to gender, a physical aspect attracts attention: menstruation. Already from adolescence we go through this stage, a little traumatic for some, not so much for others, but undoubtedly natural. We hear myths, experiences and survival tips from those who have lived with this bloody companion for years and, however, no one cycle or body is identical to another, so each person’s experience is unique.
A study conducted by researchers at the University of Seville showed that menstrual pain affects the development of daily functions, leading to lower back discomfort, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, fatigue and dizziness, and other symptoms. There is a reason.
There is no debate about the fact that women with access to information and support can become who we want to be, but we cannot deny that from time to time we go through those days in which menstruation does not occur. The intense discomfort caused hinders our imagination. Girls. ,
In an article titled “Menstruation and Human Rights”, the United Nations organization noted that the stigma that persists in some cultures or groups can prevent women and girls from accessing treatment for menstrual-related pain or disorders. Is. This can also affect your overall health.
50 to 90% of women have experienced menstrual pain in their lives. 84% of women in India do not have access to sanitary pads. In the Netherlands, a study shows that approximately 14% of women are absent from work or school during menstruation. 3.5% said this happened during all or almost all of their menstrual cycles.
Thanks to the abundance of data available on menstruation, many countries have implemented measures that seek employment and educational equality. In 1947, Japan was the first country to enact measures in its law that established that if an employee suffered from menstrual pain, companies could not force them to work and must provide unpaid leave. Countries such as Taiwan, Zambia and Indonesia have implemented licensing in cases of menstrual-related discomfort.
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In Costa Rica, if a student or working woman has menstrual pain that prevents her from completing her tasks, she only receives disability benefits provided by Social Security. However, this remedy is only applicable in cases where there is a serious condition related to the reproductive system and is not applicable to general pain.
On the other hand, both girls and adolescents in our country lose an average of about 48 school days annually due to lack of economic resources to obtain menstrual hygiene products.
This year, a bill was introduced in the country named “Law on Menstrual Leave for Working Women and People with Menstruation and Day of Rest for Students Suffering from Menstrual Pain” (File 23,706). This project, which has not yet been discussed in the Legislative Assembly, establishes the right to one day of menstrual leave or a day of rest for students who need it, as a result of suffering from dysmenorrhea or menstrual pain. it occurs.
If approved, this legislation will encourage actions in favor of equality and human rights, it will provide safer, more comfortable and compassionate work and study spaces, and it is also possible that accident statistics will be reduced. Thus, working women and students can increase their productivity during pain-free days and increase satisfaction in performing their tasks.
I wonder if all Costa Rican women can be who we want them to be, both during and despite menstruation. Is it possible to overcome old cultural stigmas and improve our living conditions? Is it possible to change the duration rules? The answer to this is in the hands of our Legislative Assembly.
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