Many women all over the world experience menstruation: a monthly occurrence that often means feeling emotional, stressed, fatigued, bloated, and worse. In addition to these symptoms of menstruation, some women experience nausea, migraines, and debilitating body aches and cramps. For many, the symptoms associated with a woman’s period are so uncomfortable that some believe women should be allotted sick days during their menstrual cycle. However, taking an unpaid sick day isn’t an option that many can afford, so countless women suffer extreme pain and go to work.
Now, one professor is saying that women would be more productive if they rested during their painful menstrual cycles. The British doctor Gedis Grudzinskas is not the only doctor who has labeled the menstrual pains as a form of acute illness. Several countries have already made the switch and begun to give women paid time off for those menstrual days. So far, these are mostly Asian countries such as Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea.
There are of course those men who feel this is an unfair perk to women who are working to gain equality in the work place. However, it’s just another prime example of why women are controlled by their bodies and just can’t seem to be considered counterparts to men because of their biological differences. However, women are biologically different and many recognize that paid “menstrual days” are a form of equality and something that could create a happier work environment.
It will be interesting to see if the same sorts of policies become implemented into the European Union and the United States. Considerations like this should be taken seriously to further work towards gender equality in the workplace.