How Can I...?

Discussion in 'Women's Issues' started by purplemoonbeams, Jan 26, 2005.

  1. [size=-1]My family has always been very hushed about menstruation and any type of bodily function (the parents are very liberal farters, mind you!). So just now, after about a year of wanting to try cloth, reusable pads, I emailed my mom saying, [/size]
    [size=-1][/size]
    [size=-1]"These pads are supposed to cause less cramps because they don't use bleach like disposable ones. You can wear 'em longer and you just wash them when they're "full". http://www.thekeeper.com/pads/or http://urban-armor.org/urban-armor/products/pads.html "Most commercial pads and tampons are bleached using toxic chemicals (like carcinogenic dioxins and furans) that can be absorbed by your body. These chlorinated organic pollutants are a cause of numerous health problems including cancer, birth defects, reproductive problems, endometriosis and immune system suppression. Tampons may shed causing problems like yeast infections, chronic irritation and toxic shock syndrome (TSS)." Can I get 'em? (Also: No more having to go to the store at inconvenient times, no awkward crinkling noises, and they last a long time)."[size=-1] [/size][/size]

    She emailed me back saying, "I don't want to get them. Too unsanitary, plus you won't want to wash them...I'll talk to you when I get home."
    How can I convince her that, yes, I really want to start using them, I will wash them myself, and yes, they are sanitary? What's unsanitary about them? They're more sanitary than the disposable ones! The disposables sit in the garbage can for about a week, spreading and collecting all those germs, but the reusable ones, you just rinse and wash them right away! That's like saying she doesn't want to get me any new pants because when I start my period at school and get it on the inside of my pants, it's "unsanitary"!
    Also, I gave her a little testimonial about how safe they are! I've read that they are supposed to decrease the cramping quite a bit, and she knows I have very nightmarish crampings on the first day and have to sleep it off for about three hours! Not to mention, I told her about all the money it saves.
    So what can I do? I need the facts for this woman. No, "this one lady said this and this about using them, though!" for her.
    I'm 16 and therefore have no credit card, and I doubt thekeeper.com will take cash. Any suggestions?
     
  2. I made the switch to cloth pads about 6 months ago and I love them. My mother still doesn't like the idea (I'm 16, but no longer live at home). I got mine from a lady on Ebay that makes them and sale them. They're much cheaper than any in the stores, I think you can get three for like 10 bucks! That's very cheap, compared to Glad Rags and such. If you type in "cloth pads" on Ebay some of the lady's stuff should come up. If you can't find it, let me know and I'll get you her e-mail. But, the good thing is, you can send money orders if you don't have a bank account or whatever, so you don't really need your mother's help. I tried the sea sponge a while back, but found my bleeding was to heavy and it just wasn't working. I imagine you can also get The Keeper from Ebay, couldn't hurt to look. Like I said, just a no-credit-card option. Anyway, PM me or whatever if you have any questions about what I've said. Good luck!
     
  3. lawngirl

    lawngirl Member

    if you don't have a credit card and the site doesn't take cash, perhaps they'll take a money order? i remember buying things online a few yeas ago, and some sites would take checks. so maybe they'd take a m.o., too. i don't know if that's still common, though.

    you made a good point about what's really "sanitary"... dirty pads sitting in the trash, vs. washing re-usable ones right away. germs are more likely to fester in a moist, dirty trashcan in a poorly-ventilated, small bathroom (imagine the effects of a hot, steamy shower on a funky trashcan? eeeew!) than in hot, soapy/bleachy water. plus, clean cloth is a lot healthier than having bleach and dioxins shoved against your vulva. the bloods going to be there, no matter what kind of pad you use, so cloth pads being anti-sanitary is bunk. they're not only just as sanitary, they're healthier.. like you mentioned to her already, about tss, for example. (if you use this argument, this is a good time to point out, "and you do want me to be as healthy as i can be, right?") and yes, if you bleed on your pants or knickers or sheets, you wash them and clean them and they're once again 'sanitary'... if they weren't, imagine how much money you'd be wasting on undies every month!

    ... which brings up the next point. ;) let's say you spend an average of $7/month on pads (depending on how heavy it is, or what brand you use, etc., etc... ). just a rough number. how long are these cloth pads supposed to last? let's say they can last for... 3 years? i mean, unless you stop raggin' in the next three years, you'll still have a use for them.. and they're not made to fall apart after two washings. now, you rag more than 12 times a year.. let's say you have the average 28day cycle, so you get your period 12.5 times a year.. which, over three years, is 37.5 periods. multiply that by how much money you spend per cycle, and you get $262.50!!! :eek: Compair that to the cost of the cloth pads, and show your mumma the math. Even if you only use them a few times, it will probably cost just as much as disposable pads for a couple months.
    and if they really do reduce your cramps, imagine how much money you'll save on any pain relievers you might use. and, like you pointed out, they're always there and available! no wasting money on gas to get to the only open convenience store in town at 2am on a wednesday.

    cloth can also reduce irritation. disposable pads can cause chafting, but i would imagine that cloth ones would not. so you could point out the comfort factor, too. plus, cotton is breathable, so it won't leave everything a hot, funky, festering mess.

    you could also mention the environmental impacts, as reusable cloth pads are much more eco-friendly.

    what you've already mentioned is really good, and very convincing. hopefully your mom agrees. and then there's always the more cliche argument, that just because something is different, it isn't automatically bad, or faulty, or unsanitary. good luck, lady!
     
  4. ihmurria

    ihmurria fini

    Maybe you can just ask to borrow your mothers credit card, and promise to pay her back - that way, it's really your money you're spending. I did that before I got my own cc, and I'd usually round it up, so if I orderd something that was $37.48, I'd pay my mom $40, so it's like tipping or paying for the use of her card as well. Made my mom happy, heh.

    Otherwise, maybe you can talk to a health store (health foods, not just a multivitamin store) and see if they have a list of people wanting to order. Or your guidance counsellor at school. Is there a women's centre at your local univ/college? I know our women's centre has a list of people who want to order the keeper (to just get one shipment, and reduce s&h). Do you know anyone else with a credit card? Older sibling, older friends, other family members, etc.

    good luck hon!
     
  5. dawn_sky

    dawn_sky Senior Member

    Another option would be to look around at local health food stores & hippy-ish places. Where I live, we have one chain (well, 2 stores) of health food store that also carries cloth pads. We also have a place run by peacefreaks that sells a variety of stuff from books to locally made candles & hats & stuff to Burts Bees stuff to alternative menstrual products -- keeper, diva cup, plus 2-3 diff brands of cloth pads. The thing is, I never thought to look there when I ordered a keeper a few years ago. It never hurts to look around!
     
  6. Thanks, everyone, for the suggestions! They all really helped! The closest health food/organic store around here is Whole Foods; I'll check there next time I go. :)
    Unfortunately, I live in a weird spot between two cities and can't drive, so to go buy something in a secretive fashion is a little tough. :-( But anywho! When I ask her again, I'll bring up the environmental and money issues.
    (Get this--the arguement I'm in a dilemma with is coming from a woman who used to collect her rain water in a jug and wash her hair with it, in the '70s! You'd think she'd say yes!)
     
  7. Myranya

    Myranya Slytherin Girl

    What my mom worried about when it came to these kind of things (and I must admit, not totally without reason :)) was that I'd do what I promised when it was all new, but after a few months or so I'd let them sit around and it would be up to her to clean up... Heh, yes, I could be a slob :p and I think a lot of moms worry about that... but if you get them from your own money she really can't complain can she? You can keep washing them and if you don't, it's your money... (I wouldn't even say wasted, because an honest try isn't waste, not everything we try in our lives works out... only in those instances something's just sitting around never used it's a true waste and I think you've given it too much thought to do that)
     
  8. Lilyrayne

    Lilyrayne Chrisppie

    purplemoonbeams, you can consider making your own cloth pads. I've made mine and they aren't that hard. You can also use some clean thick socks as pads.
     
  9. torz

    torz Member

    wow, i've never seen or heard about these before! i have really bad period pains for the first two days. i'd really love some of these. i tend to use tampons due to the convinience of them but i worry alot when i have them in, every pain or rise in temprature i'm worring about TSS & wondering if i should take it out.

    just one thing, you know disposable pads have chemicals in to stop it smelling, well do these pads smell as the Mblood is just sitting in fabric?
     
  10. Torz--I've read on several sites for the reusables that the chemicals they use in the disposables actually increase the odour! Blood mixing with a bunch of bleach can't be that great on the nose, can it? :)
    Bree--do you have a pattern and/or list of materials to home-make them? What would I use for the inner padding and liners?
     
  11. Lilyrayne

    Lilyrayne Chrisppie

    I use sponges too. I just started tho, so I am still getting used to them. I have also used a keeper. But think the point of this thread is this girl can't get her mom to let her buy any of these alternatives!

    purplemoonbeams, here is an excellent website that I learned to make mine from. It took a couple of weeks and a few tries, but once I got the hang of it and understood what I was doing, it was pretty easy from there on out and I made tons.

    http://pacificcoast.net/~manymoons/howto.html They also tell you how to work with liners and stuff, but I've known some people to just fold a clean huge gym sock in half and stick it inside the pad as a liner. I cut out custom sized pieces of fabric that could be folded and fit in there just right though.
     
  12. dawn_sky

    dawn_sky Senior Member

    As for the issue of cleaning them, I generally don't wash mine right away, as it sounds like you're talking about doing. I have a tupperware container (that I bought for this purpose and only this purpose!) that I use to soak my pads in until the next time I do a load of regular laundry. The soak water, if you just use water, is supposed to be really good for your plants, but I generally add a bit of detergent to the water, which really helps reduce the ickiness if they sit for 4-5 days before I get around to doing laundry. It's basically the same idea as how I've seen plenty of people deal with cloth diapers, so what's the problem? As long as you fill the water all the way to the top, they are in an anaerobic environment, so it is still more sanitary than having bloody pads sitting around in the trash can.

    Someone above mentioned using old socks... I only have like 5 actual cloth pads, so when I'm at home, I just use old washcloths folded up. They're bulky, which is why I don't wear them out in public, but if you get the cheapest pack at Target/Walmart/whatever (so your mom doesn't get upset that you're using her good washcloths!), & fold it to fit your underwear, it works great. When you get a pattern & some time, you could then cut those washcloths to fit as the absorbent layer...
     
  13. think there is washable tampons too? prolly not but i really like the idea of earth friendly pads but i really dislike wearing pads...they feel like dipers and make me think im a guy with a small penis for 6 to 7 days :/
     
  14. loveflower

    loveflower Senior Member

    good idea bree :D could you PM me with instructions on how you made those?
     

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