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I read an article from The Stir about menstrual cups that really just made me mad.
Basically, it discourages cup use. The author mentions discussing cups with her mother, a nurse, who vehemently opposes the idea and suggests she speak with an OBGYN. She gives the name and link to professional website of an OBGYN, and goes onto discuss the health concerns the doctor supposedly told her about.

She talks about the risk of infection. To her credit, she acknowledges that the cup becoming discolored does not mean it's dirty, but she also says cups start to smell in a way that implies is inevitable. She also makes it seem like washing is so difficult when so many of us get by with rinsing and boiling in plain ordinary water. However, I can at least acknowledge that yes, if a cup is not cleaned, you could risk infection.

The only other real concern she gets right, seemingly by accident, is the issue of some women finding the stem uncomfortable.

She talks about the risk of toxic shock syndrome, and implies that everyone is basically lying when they say it can be left in more than 8 hours.

One point is completely wrong in so many ways. She says it can only be used on heavy days, which we know is wrong since they can be used even when you aren't bleeding. Then goes on to say that latex on light days can be painful. The DivaCup is the cup she specifically mentions, which is not made of latex. She also says that younger and newly sexually active women might find it painful because: "just not that much room to have the cup in place comfortably."
I won't even touch the "not that much room" statement, because I'd lose my mind, but the implication is that being sexually acitive is necessary when we here know that virgins can and do successfully use cups.

The last concern is about emptying the cup in public which, okay is a genuine question that comes up here often. But she discusses how new users might have trouble not spilling it when taking it from the toilet to the sink, and that just seems like the weirdest statement. You're more likely to spill it while removing it then when walking it to the sink (not that the sink is the best place to empty, but that's another issue).

Real issues with cups like there being a learning curve when first to inserting, and needing to know more intimate details of your body live vaginal length and cervical position aren't even mentioned.
Overall, the tone just struck me as very period-phobic. It perpetuate some of the prejudices from the medical community that aren't all that rooted in reality, and some giant leaps to conclusions.
Also, she seems to be doing her best to make cups sounds scary, but even so they don't sound all that scary. The infection point might be the best attempt, but one of her other big 'think twice' points is "You might spill it!!!!! OMG!!!!!1!!!"
It's almost kind of pathetic.
But begs the question, why are some people so invested in detering people from trying cups?
It's Not Fair, Laika.: Kingdom Heartsitsnotfairlaika on December 13th, 2012 06:40 am (UTC)
I didn't read the original article, but that all sounds ridiculous. I have been using the same cup for three years and it has never smelled bad.

"Not much room" makes my blood (no pun intended lol) boil too. Come on now.
neumeindilneumeindil on December 13th, 2012 06:48 am (UTC)
I've heard that more than once discussing them with friends, and my reply is usually the same (with slight variations of wording depending on the sensitivity level of the friend): "It's smaller than a penis." :(
Amanda: Help help I'm being repressed!sophiahagia on December 13th, 2012 07:30 am (UTC)
This article is extra upsetting to me. I know the author. (By "know", I mean I went to school with her little brother and her mom and my mom work together.) Sigh. I have been using a cup for over 5 years and recently converted my younger sister to cup use, and I am pretty sure we're both still here to tell the tale...
D'Man of MDfixx on December 13th, 2012 10:28 am (UTC)
I agree. It is absurd to go out of one's way to dissuade anyone from trying cups. I mean there are probably some people who are too inept to use cutlery too, but you don't see people writing articles dissuading people from having knives in their kitchens. It the interest of total fairness, it can honestly be said that tampons are not completely without risk, but I realize I'm preaching to the choir.

Oh hey, I just remembered the REAL reason I came into this forum. I was thinking I might post this apparently home-made promotional video I found online. I would think it might have been posted here previously but as I don't frequent this forum, I would have no idea.


Edited at 2012-12-13 10:33 am (UTC)
m03m on December 13th, 2012 10:30 am (UTC)
It's a pretty crappy article, but I can't be bothered to work myself up to a frothy rage over it again. I do remember, though, how I felt when I first read it. I felt just like you.
spikey_krisspikey_kris on December 13th, 2012 12:58 pm (UTC)
You know how infomercials try to sell you a new product by exaggerating how ridiculously difficult it is to go about using the old product? I get a feeling that this blogger must write the before part of infomercials...

Seriously, everything in her post is bizarre. Emptying the cup in public is an issue??? I'm assuming that if you'r in a bathroom stall, where you're disposing of other human waste in the toilet, that dumping a small cup of blood in there too isn't so far fetched?

I started using the cup in June. I have to say, I have really never found it difficult to take out, and I've never made a mess while doing so. What are other people doing that this is so difficult for them? The first while I did find it a little uncomfotable, but I trimmed the stem and worked out a good insertion method and it was no longer an issue. I find them infinitely more comfortable than tampons ever were.

Also WHY are people who don't use the cup so vehemently against it that they feel the need to disparage it!?! People are strange...
juliiie87juliiie87 on December 14th, 2012 07:44 pm (UTC)
Exactly, you'd swear the author works for a tampon or pad company ! Of all the many (usually positive if not raving) reviews I've read, interestingly she's the only one not to have actually tried one... (or maybe there was that british columnist who's well passed menopause). That says something.

Good to know members of this community have commented too ! I just couldn't bring myself to got hrough all those negative, uneducated comments, knowing that you can't reply to the comments.
Naoko Kensaku: Naokomistressnaoko on December 13th, 2012 03:08 pm (UTC)
My first thought upon reading the article: She's really scared of her vagina, isn't she?
mood_swinger23 on December 13th, 2012 07:12 pm (UTC)
Instead of getting all heated over this... has anyone taken ACTION over this?

Firstly-- well, has anyone commented and just flat up chewed her out? (Or let me guess, are comments restricted?) Sometime's telling a person off makes me feel better. Even if it's not the "right" way to go about doing something.

Secondly-- has anyone asked her to cite her sources? You know, like you're supposed to when you report/ review things? Where is she getting her information from? How many people has she talked to about their own personal experiences with cup use? Has she even TRIED one herself?

I didn't open the link-- but [Thirdly] is it possible for the LJ community here to just make a come back (and someone how tag hers, assuming comments can't be made?) article about all the good things about cups? (ie "rewrite" her article as it should have been written in the first place?) Including, oh, say actual SOURCES, actual PEOPLE who USE the cups? Supportive and information medical/doctor's opinions? (Can we find those?)

A typical user will sadly probably not question this particular user's excess amount of bias-- ie-- seemingly having no sources and only addressing the negatives over the positives. I guess if they're really hating pads/tampons they will still look into the positives, locate factually correct info, and still try one for themselves-- but still-- [b]Why don't we just make a better article to counter her nonsense bullcrap? [/b]

I'm up for the task, if it's possible.
And to the person who knows this person-- what an uncomfortable position to be in! (Too bad you can't point out everything that is biased and factually incorrect in her article... hopefully we can!)
teacupcake89 on December 13th, 2012 07:48 pm (UTC)
A big YES in agreement to this! (to any or all of the options! :)
mood_swinger23 on December 13th, 2012 09:39 pm (UTC)
Any idea where we can get our hands on a bunch of NPR's, or OBGYN's (and a really public as well as frequently visited site) to support said post? Short of just the other "blog posts" this is supposed to be an attack against? That should be our first step...
m03m on December 14th, 2012 10:35 am (UTC)
If you'd clicked the link, you would have seen that we have made many comments on the article, back when it was published. And if you'd read the article, you'd have known about some of her sources.
juliiie87juliiie87 on December 16th, 2012 09:52 pm (UTC)
I've read all the comments now, and boy, does it feel good ! The blogger gets distroyed ! And very cleverly so, too. Some of those comments are actually delightful for how sarcastic they are. Thank god for cup activists everywhere. :)
juliiie87juliiie87 on December 13th, 2012 10:35 pm (UTC)
The worst part is that we CAN'T EVEN REPLY to those comments of women who think it's "plastic leeching chemicals in their parts", un comfortable or unhygienic... Seriously guys, what can we do ?? *so annoyed*
a DJ who lived in seclusionknittinggoddess on December 14th, 2012 02:10 am (UTC)
Increase science education and basic literacy so people know the difference between medical grade silicone, latex, and "plastic"!

Oh wait, you mean more immediately and attainably? Just keep speaking out.
a DJ who lived in seclusionknittinggoddess on December 14th, 2012 02:08 am (UTC)
A friend of mine is transitioning, and is inundated with people telling her she's Doing It Wrong. (Even from other trans women!)

People are afraid of change, and/or unwilling to accept new ideas or even the idea that other people might have preferences different from yours. I think menstrual cups fall into this new idea zone.
Aut viam inveniam aut faciam.infragilis on December 14th, 2012 02:13 am (UTC)
That's ridiculous. It's also incredibly sad how many women are commenting saying they've heard about cups but won't even give them a try now thanks to this article.
acat112233acat112233 on December 15th, 2012 10:11 pm (UTC)
When I was researching cups, I happened to come across this article. The comments in response to the article definitely encouraged me to do more research. The blog post generally seemed negative and full of inaccuracies; so, I decided to give them a try in spite of this it. I'm glad that I did.

Ugh...that's the difficult part about the deluge of blogs/reviews these days, everyone's got one-- some are worth reading, most aren't, and they're not always accurate. Hopefully, readers out there are wise enough to know the difference.