The Case For A Menstruation Hut

I’ve been through this 3 times now with the same results, so I think I can consider myself an expert at this point. The 2nd period postpartum, for me, is something I’ve learned to fear and respect. It’s like nothing I’ve ever experienced in all of my time as a woman.

Let me pause and state the obvious for a sec. This post is going to be ALL about woman stuff. And blood. Lots of woman blood.

With my first two kids, I got my period back when they were both 9 months old. I figured that was a pretty good run. This time around, it didn’t show itself until my baby was 14 months old. It was like winning the lottery. I didn’t have a period for almost 2 years. GLORIOUS.

Each time, the first period back is pretty average- heavy. Nothing insane. It’s a bummer because, obviously, I enjoy it’s absence. But, I settle into the 7 day routine quickly and accept my fate.

Then the 2nd one comes, and I’d be wise to just not even leave the house. (Though there was that one time I had to, complete with undies full of toilet paper.)

Can I just get one of those menstrual hut things? I can totally see the appeal. Banish me to a private room for a week, call me unclean if you must. Just give me wine, chocolate, Hulu Plus, and 5 gallon orange bucket from Home Depot for me to hover over. Any other method of collecting and disposing of this situation is futile.

The seclusion appeals to me mostly because I don’t have to try to hide horrific blood stains and splatters from my children before I have time to clean them. Yes, I could be, like, a really in-touch, honest mom and explain bodily functions to them. But, no, I don’t want to. It just comes down to that.

I’ve moved on to the Diva Cup since I had my 2nd baby. I mostly like it more than tampons. I did a very poorly lit video review of it (talking only, I swear, no demonstrating) years ago.

Part of the appeal for me was it holds more.

(Note: I have deleted several very descriptive sentences that make me laugh out loud because I think they might make a percentage of you vomit. I’m losing my edge.)

But I don’t think it would matter if I could shove a red Solo cup up there, I’d still have to deal with a homicide scene every. hour. The weird part about a menstrual cup is I get a VERY clear idea of just how much I’m expelling from my body. It’s a pretty precise visual.

More deleted stuff about Carrie and buckets…

It’s A LOT.

I was going to type something about how I had to have lost 5 lbs in uterine lining alone over the last 2 days, but then I just jumped on the scale and saw I’ve actually gained a pound. So I’m just going to stop tying now and go cry and eat some more Halloween candy.

Is this a thing other women experience? Is your first or second period postpartum just plain terrifying? I feel like this is something we need to talk about more, especially so expecting moms can secure a menstrual hut for themselves. Perhaps add it to a registry of some sort… along with a Home Depot bucket.

  • crystal - I am right there with you. I just had my first baby July 6th, I was unfortunate enough to have my first visit from flow in September. Total murder scene and totally unexpected. Just got over October’s murder scene and it was so much worse. How could I possibly bleed that much and not die? Three underwear have been lost to the cause this month due to my unpreparedness.ReplyCancel

    • Jill - Girl, I have been PREPARED like it is my JOB and have still lost 2 pairs. WHAT IS THIS EVIL.ReplyCancel

      • crystal - The burdon that comes along with being super baby growing warriors? I guess we can only be so awesome for so long before our body needs a break from its awesome spewing. LolReplyCancel

        • Jasmine - Rofl

  • SpeckyMama - Yesss! Had my first one just before my son’s first birthday, right in the middle of our Paris vacation. Felt like I was going to pass out from all that blood loss! Even macarons and wine and cheese could not get me energized for a good two full days during the peak. Ugh. No one warned me about this!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Jo Z - I have four females in my house. We are our own menstrual hut.

    Thanks to my kids’ complete effing lack of boundaries, I get the pleasure of hearing Harper say “You got blood Mama?” EVERY freaking three weeks. Bonus points when she tries to help me with a pad or tampon. Yesterday she offered me a band-aid.ReplyCancel

  • AmyH - Even though I exclusively breastfed, my period came back within 4 months after both babies. It’s like a shark attack in my bathroom. I basically have to have a tampon in when my period starts or it’s a murder scene. I ALSO have the joy of now having pmdd so I’m finishing my first month of generic yaz to help with that. I had ppa after my 2nd and the monthly fluctuations of hormones still made me super anxious the week before my period after I came of my antidepressant. I’m told the birth control will help with my flow AND moods. I’m due for my period any day and I’m NOT acting like a psycho…so that’s good. I’ll keep you posted on the flow. I NEED to try a DIVA cup though….ReplyCancel

  • Danielle - I’m 2 fricking years post partum. I had the Nuva ring for over a year after and just got it out because it was giving me splitting migraines last month. That first period after that was worse than the post partum ones(given I had a c-section so they sucked a lot of that extra nonsense out I’m pretty sure). I sneezed fifteen minutes after leaving the house for work, in traffic, and ruined my pants and underwear. I couldn’t even figure out how to explain to my male boss(in my small office of three employees) why I would be late and then when I couldn’t buy new pants because no stores were open why I just wanted to sit. I literally got to work and took out the tampon and it looked like a crime scene blood spatter everywhere. Seriously though wgat the bloody hell is that about!!!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Molly - I was kind of shocked when I got my period last month. I’m still nursing Sawyer and I just figured that wouldn’t happen until I stopped. NOPE. It was hell. Like, it was a murder scene. I don’t understand. It was wayyyy worse than even right after giving birth and lasted longer. Ummm, I was a little worried. But now I’m even more worried that the second one will be worse? Please tell me you’re kidding!ReplyCancel

    • Joni - Same here!!! I’m still nursing but just got my first period 13 months postpartum…I was in awe of how heavy it was (and DAMN losing the underwear battle! I felt dumb for forgetting how careful I have to be after two years of no period lol). I’m now really scared for the second one!!ReplyCancel

  • Lisa B - thank you for this. If only it was posted a week ago when I started my first period 13 mos after baby 2. I almost called my husband at work and/or an ambulance for fear I was hemorrhaging. After blowing through a box of super tampons and a pack of pads in two hours, and needing to wrangle two toddlers (and possibly, attempt to leave the house) I fashioned a pad out of one of their diapers. Figured if it can hold all their pee overnight I might have a prayer to not ruin another pair of pants after 20 minutes. Ladies, in a pinch, or for a week of a bloodbath, it actually works great. Next time I’ll be more prepared and stockpile Depends.ReplyCancel

  • Amelia - Nope. I got the mirena IUD just a few months after my first son and barely had a period and eventually none at all. Loved the freedom of it so I did it again after my second child. Its not for everyone, but it’s what works the best for me.ReplyCancel

    • Meghan - Amen sista! The Mirena is totally the way to go. I spot for a day once a month, and it’s getting lighter and shorter every time.ReplyCancel

    • Margaret - I did the Mirena also and am so glad I did! After the post-partum bloodbath, I am not sure I would have handled a ridiculous period nine or ten months later very well.ReplyCancel

      • AmyH - Not to be gross but my husband nicknamed my Mirena the “dick grabber” bc he said he could feel the strings poking him when we had sex. I only had it for a few months after my 1st was born and had it removed. My obgyn said the strings were left way too long by the person putting it in. Thoughts on that?ReplyCancel

  • Maggie - Am I the only one who gets these type of periods every other month since having #2? Like, one month of puppies and rainbows and regular/light tampons and then next month it’s like BAM. crime scene panties and doubled over cramps. And it surprises me every.damn.time.ReplyCancel

  • Megan - My husband and I are just talking about starting to try for our first baby. I had no idea!!! This sounds horrifying and yet I feel better prepared now that I know. Yikes!ReplyCancel

  • B - Basically for the first 6 postpartum periods I had to use a tampon, left over post delivery hospital pads and mesh underwear. Changed at least every hour. I still managed to ruin a set of sheets and two pair of yoga pants. Thank god my job allows me to work from home so I could make sure I was only steps away from a bathroom.ReplyCancel

  • Ashley - Yes!!! Registering for a hit would solve so many problems. I feel like my first pp cycle lulled me into a false since of security and then BAM!ReplyCancel

  • Jessica Romito - I want to be in a hut! I just had my first one last month after 11 months–now you’ve got me scared about the second one when I thought I was in the clear because my first one was pretty light. And I’ve heard horrific stories about the first one. This is the first time I’ve read about a horrific second period.ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer - Checkity-check-check-CHECK! 2nd round was definitely worse than the first time with after both kids. The pelvic floor cramping where I felt like I couldn’t event remain UPRIGHT for one more second was the worst part (aside from the insane frequency I had to change tampons). Even still, 15 months out (#2 was born just before Lowell), I have days where I have to use pads because wearing a tampon is agony. and completely ineffective anyhow. I HATE pads, too. I need to try the diva cup for sure.
    Oh and I’m still bitter about getting shortchanged after my second birth. With my firstborn, he was a total comfort nurser and nursed around the clock for more than 2 years. I didn’t have a period for 17 glorious months postpartum!!! But my second sucks his thumb and nurses much less frequently….period back at SEVEN months. BOO.ReplyCancel

  • Liesel - Well, turns out being infertile and enduring IVF is actually worth something. I get no period, zero. Not even a year after breastfeeding. It’s nice to know I have a leg up somewhere. It sounds as if yall might be spending in feminine products what I spend to get pregnant.ReplyCancel

  • Krista - Nope, no issues here. Normal cycles from the start. 10 months after my first one, 6 months after my second and 5 months after my third, all while breast feeding.ReplyCancel

  • Nicole - My periods have overall gotten progressively worse with each of my three kids. So much blood. So much crazy. So much back pain. So much nausea. Oh, but the first time I ovulated after my 2nd baby…I had to leave Target and was writhing around in the car and then at home. I had never actually felt ovulation before, but this time my ovary was violent! Now I’ve just settled into 2 weeks of PMS, 1 week of blood, and then I guess 1 week as a “normal” person. I should get a private menstruation island to live on.ReplyCancel

  • Jill Evans - hahaha! I only have a few more years to go, being old and all, but this made me laugh. Diva cup always leaked for me, but the Keeper with toilet paper wadded inside works pretty well. Messy at work, though. I have to use a private bathroom or risk scaring teens with bloody hands.ReplyCancel

  • Brianne 'Olson' Greenwood - My second cycle postpartum was THREE FREAKING WEEKS. Finally had to start birth control to get it regulated. I feel your pain.ReplyCancel

  • Andrea Corrigan - This is me. Every month. For the last 8 years! I just put it down to the big age gap between my Daughters ( 17 years ) I don’t leave the house for the first 2 days. Not since the leakage incident at the Bank in 2012…..Loan advisor said something funny, I laughed, big gush, big spread of redness, 2 if you count my embarrassed face. I hole up with tea, cake and a hot water bottle….it’s best for everyone.ReplyCancel

  • sarah - Your post-partum second period sounds like my regular period to be honest. The ones I had post miscarriage were pretty normal for me, just say, up one notch on the dial. There’s a contraceptive pill you can take to stop periods completely, you can take it at short notice, say for a holiday- that did nothing for me, I took it for 3 months and had 3 periods. You could have totally got more graphic btw, someone has to be πŸ˜€ReplyCancel

  • Randi Wagner - The first and second are usually bad for me. The blood amount is the same but everything else is intensified!! The cramps the headaches and the unbelievable amount of pressure!! I’m pretty sure I’d rather be in labor without any drugs instead of having those first two cycles!! ReplyCancel

  • Wendy Cray Kaufman - OMG You said red Solo Cup. I’m snarfing my drink right outta my nose right now….ReplyCancel

  • Michelle Oge Bray - Yes!!! That second period after baby is horrifying!!!ReplyCancel

  • Susan Krauss - My first postpartum period with my first child was something I will never ever forget. I was 20 years old. Flying alone from Alaska to Georgia with my then 3 month old daughter, when less than 30 minutes into the 12 hour journey I felt an explosion. NO signs leading up to this! So that means absolutely no materials, no supplies, no change of clothes. God was I young and dumb! πŸ™ I was 20 and alone. With a 3 month old. There was a line to the bathroom and all I remember is asking the most non-threatening elderly lady in line if she wouldn’t mind please, please sitting with my screaming baby. That in itself, a stranger on a plane with my baby girl, makes my butt cringe to this day. I

    I finally made it to the bathroom and it was a bloody mess in there after I exited 15 minutes later hearing her cries the whole time. (not really, I cleaned up after myself, but yes it was messy and yes she was crying). 30 minutes into said 12 hour flight and it had been so bad I had left a blood stain the size of a saucer on the seat. I was 20…and alone. I tied my long sleeved shirt around my waist, sat on a receiving blanket which I snatched up at the last second before deplaning for my connecting flight and repeated the whole process for the next two connections. I was visiting my (then) God awful terrible mother-in-law I might add. Being nice…and stupid. Got to Atlanta bloody and tear soaked, no exaggeration only to find out that my luggage had not made it. I had to explain to my in-laws what was happening and we stopped at Old Navy on the hour and a half drive from the airport to their home. My luggage showed up two days later and I have NEVER NEVER gotten on a flight since unprepared. I was 20. And alone.

    I could not make this up if I tried, even remembering it now I can’t believe how horrible it was.ReplyCancel

  • Jasmine - I dread the day.

    With my first, I never stopped bleeding. Came home from the hospital bleeding and bleed continually, straight into my pd. All of that lasted 7 weeks.
    This time, I’m nursing instead of just pumping and I have yet to get my pd. My youngest is just a few days shy of 7 months.

    I seriously am so nervous about it. And this post just reminded me that I should start to have products with me EVERYWHERE. So thank you for that.

    I am in so much pain my first three days of my pd. I can barely move. I really feel like women should not be required to work for at least the first two days of her pd…

    Oh and I have two girls. My husband is going to die when our girls hit this point… I can’t even imagine.ReplyCancel

  • Kim - I bled for six weeks postpartum, stopped for four days & then got my first period. I was exclusively breastfeeding as well. Expecting #2 in February. Anxious to see how my fluids treat me this time.ReplyCancel

  • Jennifer - Nope, never had this issue. IUD 6 weeks post-partum. Get one, unless you like these awful periods and blood and potentially more babies…ReplyCancel

  • Hillary Brooke Haenlein - so horribly accurate…just went through mine at 15mos postpartum…it was like a murder scene in my pants and I couldn’t leave the house for more than an hour for fear of overflow. ReplyCancel

  • Tiana Easterbrooks - If I am off birth control, that’s what my period is every month. They say if you soak through a ‘Super’ tampon in 30 minutes, it might be of concern. Well, how about a super, and a maxi, in 10 minutes. I’m sure you understand. I actually have dizzy spells sometimes from it. My mom was the same way, and referred to it as ‘bleeding like a stuck pig’. Its awful. ReplyCancel

  • Maria - My first PP period with my third he was around two years old, so like THREE YEARS with no period! It was SO BAD I had a disposable pad on and suddenly got that nasty “sposie squish” you get with disposable diapers. I’ve never had that happen before. SO GROSS!! BLEH!ReplyCancel

  • Jamie - Oh my gosh! My first period after baby was absolutely horrific. It was like a murder happened in my pants, and the pain! I felt so awful until I ate a huge hamburger (I guess because of the iron), and then I still had to wear a thunder pad with a super plus tampon. I don’t know why more women don’t talk about this.ReplyCancel

  • lauren williams - Seriously. So much truth.

    After my first, Aunt Flo and her vengeance returned REAL quick.
    Now it’s almost been a year with my second and i literally had no idea it could still be horrendous after that long! NaΓ―ve as it may sound, some part of me believed that my good ol body would get a grip and regulate without throwing a hissy.

    Tampons will forever be in my purse now.ReplyCancel

  • Johanna - So, I have not had a period since Memorial Day 2010 when I got KU with my daughter. I went the IUD route and have not had the bleeding. My fear of what is going to happen when I finally have it removed is just, I can’t even.

    I’ll meet y’all in the hut. I’ll bring the baked goods.ReplyCancel

  • Heather - I swear, sometimes it’s like you’re inside my head. My second one post partum after baby 1 was pretty rough. (Around 10months.) Luckily, I didn’t have to leave the house. It was puppy training pads in my pants for a few days. No lie. Baby 2, it was the first one around 9 months. Oh. My. God. It looked like I had been shot. And I was at work. (I teach dance to children. Yay, me.) At least my pants were black. So, I feel your pain. At least no seats got ruined.ReplyCancel

  • Shawn Campbell - I don’t remember mine being horrifyingly heavy, but they lasted forever. After my first baby I think something was going on for 5-6 weeks.ReplyCancel

  • Carrie Doolan - Yes this is me too. But if I were to stay in a menstrual hut it would be for 10 days as it lasts that long for me. Oh the things we women have to endureReplyCancel

  • Carolyn Kelly - Lol! Yes, me too! I freaked out and called my OBGYN because I was certain that there was something wrong with me. It actually took me a few periods to settle into something less panic inducing.ReplyCancel

  • Laura - Postpartum periods were not my problem. Without getting too sad (I dealt with the emotions long ago.), my problem were six miscarriages and all the blood associated with that. When super tampons paired with an extra big pad aren’t enough, you know you have a problem. Especially when it goes on for 3+ weeks. So glad that’s behind me, literally.ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly Marie - My first and second PP period is referred to as shark week (and I’m lucky if it only lasts 7 days). I’m pretty sure if a shark swam up and bit me in the uterus (totally plausible) that I would bleed lessReplyCancel

  • Darreth Naylor - Yes I experienced something similar 2nd period postpartum with both of my girls. However, after baby #3 and a tubal ligation, I’m not sure if the hormones from nursing for 2 straight years or what got all jacked up… I had 1 FULL YEAR of these periods. It. Was. Awful. I lived on a heating pad. I went through so many tampons and pads, I decided to take the money out of the kid’s college fund. And, I also experienced the worst cramping during ovulation. 3 days of feeling awful, but at least I wasn’t bleeding.ReplyCancel

  • Kristin @ In Between the Piles - Love love love this post! Yes, why do some women feel like they are above the task of wiping off the toilet seat? I used a diva cup back in my working for environmental nonprofit days, but this post might have encouraged me to give it another try. Thank you for making me laugh outloud while reading on my ipad. My husband’s response was, “Who knew menstraution could be so funny?”ReplyCancel

  • sam-c - I loved this post and read it on a busy and meaningful day, lol. Before babies, my period was regular 28 days on the nose no problem. After baby 2 it has been all over the place and at least 24 day cycle the last few times. before kids, I used to get some sort of warning, cramps, spotting, (eww, I hate typing that out). now it’s just like “open the floodgates”. which was yesterday, while I was sitting in my boss’s office talking to him. out of no-where. not only did I miss most of what he said because i was thinking “why is this happening RIGHT NOW, with no freakin warning ?!?” I was also praying for him to just STOP TALKING so I could go to the bathroom……ReplyCancel

  • Delora - I don’t get the human body. After my first baby (the one I breastfed about 75% and supplemented with formula), mine didn’t come back for 6 months, and only once he started solids. With the second baby, the one I exclusively breastfed and pumped for in the middle of the night and didn’t start solids until he was 7mos… it came back at 4mos.

    Please note that I bled for 6wks after both babies, so I really had no break between delivery and the horrible return to fertility with #2 πŸ™ReplyCancel

  • Desiree Fawn - I’m so freaking in love with my diva cup and I never want to live without it. I had to use a tampon once last year due to a missing diva cup situation and after using just ONE I drove to the store crying in pain — awful. Never going back!ReplyCancel

    • Jill - I feel like I need to try a different brand of cup because sometimes mine will hurt me. But I do know that once I find the perfect fit, it will be love forever.ReplyCancel

  • Kayley Anderson - Not a post partum period but I had one once that was so bad that it looked like I had stabbed someone in the front seat of my car. That was at least 4 years ago and since then I found out that I had fibroids and endometriosis. Worst pain I’ve ever been in. My first period post op was like not even having a period. I will never ignore having to use 2 super tampons and an overnight maxi again as long as I live. Yuckkkkkk.ReplyCancel

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