As if nature hadn’t doled out enough crap for one woman to handle (51 years old, too late in life for a baby, still having periods with accompanying migraines and cramps, AND full-blown premenopausal symptoms), the sanitary napkin industry seems to be conspiring against me, as well.
- Wings. Wings, wings, wings. Most designers of pantyliners believe that what women want most is little flaps of sweat-inducing plastic lined with sticky strips popping out of their underwear all day long. I despise those wings. My nether regions are not attempting to fly anywhere. I’d much prefer a product that is permanently grounded.
- Maxi Plus Overnight. Mattress in your undies, anyone? That’s a great feeling.
- Thin liners. Yeah, might as well put a dryer sheet in your pants. You’ll get just about the same amount of absorbency.
- Super-wides. Compare these beauties to those two-lane trucks that have to be escorted down the highway and you’ve got a pretty good idea of how great these panty liners are. They’re what I currently have at home. The genius inventor of this particular style thought it would be a good idea to place the sticky bit around the very perimeter of the liner, so that it has no chance of touching any part of the crotch of my underwear. Sticks great to my thighs, though. If you listen carefully you’ll near my shriek of pain any time I drop trou to take a pee.
- Cheap-os. The ones I had before the killer super-wides had the endearing habit of ripping open as I innocently went through my day, so that any time I went for a pee I’d discover a little trail of puffy, white cotton up the back of my pants.
If I were a conspiracy theorist I’d be certain the sanitary napkin industry was run by old, white, Republican men. You know the ones – those guys who don’t want women to have access to women’s health care, who would like nothing more than to live in our vaginas, “the better to patrol them, my dear.” Who else would have such contempt for women as to create these instruments of torture?
Yeah, I know there are alternatives.
- Earth-friendly, reusable liners. I’m sorry. Just too much for me. Like I need more laundry in my life.
- The menstrual cup. Yes, it is what you’re picturing. I used a diaphragm for years and that was gross enough. I simply can’t go there.
- Tampons. Due to some sort of surgical weirdness, I seem to have come out of the C-section required to deliver our Oldest with an internal staple in a rather unusual place, rendering tampons extremely uncomfortable.
And so, I am at the mercy of Kotex, Always, Carefree, and company. In a never-ending search for a small, absorbent, yet not offensive, pad to stick to my undies.
Geez, is it too much to ask?