Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Great Moments In Tampon Literature

I'm back from vacation. Or should that be staycation? This is a new word to me, and, just like the word signage (or the phrases stepping up to the plate and thinking out of the box), I really really hate it.

Anyhow, I have a couple of funny stories and a few photos I'm willing to share, but the photos are all on R's laptop which is somewhere else right now. I took 829 photos in two weeks. Last year I took 45 more than that. This year, in a moment of fond maternal madness, I took 69 photos to document the twins' last day of being seven.

Obviously I am too intent on literally capturing the moment.

But I will leave you with some truly odd instructions I discovered on the Tampax literature in my package of tampons. My eye was caught by the phrase Read here about TOXIC SHOCK SYNDROME (TSS). And being interested in most things medical I was curious what the symptoms of TSS were (well, besides wondering how we progressed to acronyming every single thing in the entire universe). Did you know that "about half the cases are associated with tampon use while the remainder occur in men, children, and women who are not menstruating"? I read that sentence three times before I gave up. No, I lie, I stumbled across this sentence before I dropped the paper and leant against the doorjamb in abject dismay:

"You can avoid the risk of tampon-associated TSS by not using tampons."

Then, being the curious AND interested in most things medical person that I am, I picked up the paper and read on. I came across these instructions, which left me gasping for air AND wondering if this is really and truly necessary. That was when I really did drop the paper. Into the bin. You have to wonder who writes this stuff. And why. Surely we're all born with a certain amount of common sense, no? If I were a conspiracy theorist I would shriek "this is a conspiracy to encourage women to think that they are worryingly stupid AND need explicit directions with their own bodies!"

But I digress. Read on:

Always remove your used tampon before inserting a new one.

Be sure to remove the last tampon you use at the end of your period.

Use tampons only during menstruation.

Oh. My. Goodness.






16 comments:

Michelle said...

Definitely scary that those instructions are needed. But hey, gotta cover their backsides...if someone gets a brainwave and thinks, two tampons are better than one and things go wrong...

Anyway, have you heard of Divacup? (Or Mooncup)? You buy one of these, they last at least a year, and there's no risk of TSS. They've been around for years, but I only just discovered them a few months ago. They're the cheaper, healthy and 'green' alternative to tampons.

Subspace Beacon said...

Best title for a post EVER!!!!

Andrea said...

Speaking of tampons, I was just sitting with some women and heard tales of a woman who ended up with 3 tampons in because she forgot about them...ewwwww! So apparently some people need those instructions...

sheila said...

Michelle, you're right - they DO have to cover their butt. I fear for the Stupidity Levels of the Human Race some days more than others, I guess. Don't know about that Moon cup but I did use a sponge for a few years. It was a bit OTT in public restrooms for me though.

Subspace: thankyou thankyou. Maybe I'll start a rival Goop e-zine and call it Poop!

Oh Andrea, you AREN'T serious!? Well, I guess those instructions are there for SOMEONE. I don't know how anyone could not notice something was there.

Samantha said...

I had a roommate full of strange but true stories, and she knew someone who had pretty much done all three of those warnings. I guess they wrote it specifically for her - although she obviously didn't read the directions, did she ;-) I wont say how she finally realized they were in there (shudder) and well, I could say something else but the lady in me wont let me. I'll save it for in person ;-)

I also must reply back to your booting me out of the club. I have serious 'hagged' up in the last 9 years and would like you to reconsider my membership. Thank you.

;-)

Vivian said...

I'm glad you had a great staycation/vacation and am quite intrigued by these warnings and how they came to be. Or perhaps, I should just leave well enough alone.

Welcome back!

sheila said...

Samanthat, I'm afraid you are far too lovely and glamorous to be in the Old Hags Club at this time. Refer back in, say, 400 years. I might admit you then.

Vivian: LOVE the new avatar! It's SO glam! I have to say that I too am deeply intrigued by these warnings. It's a bit TOO catering to the idiotic for my tastes, even though I do understand the whole "sue happy" avoidance issue.

alaina said...

I'll just call you Wonko the Sane. Or Sheila the Sane, living on your little island of Outside the Asylum...

alaina said...

Aaack! Censorship!?! I have to WAIT for the satisfaction of seeing my comments posted on your blog?!? Oh, the humanity...

sheila said...

Yes, my darling Alaina, you DO have to wait. I can't just have any Tom, Dick, or BGI posting random comments on my blog. Think of the potential for chaos.

Love Wonko

Samantha said...

I thought of some more to add to their instructions. Hee hee hee. I'll share it one day when I've had a little too much to drink (which equals less then 1/2 a glass of anything with alcohol ;-)

sheila said...

Oh you DIDN'T!? Well, do share one day! And come and visit. I'll personally escort you onto the ferry. Shelly's coming in October - sneak on with her!

Samantha said...

Oh, I did!! ;-)
I have a fabulous talent for stating the obvious, so I took it from there and let my imagination go wild. I don't know if the world is ready for my version though...

Suji said...

How DID I miss this post :) Why would anyone use a tampon when they are not menstruating? Or am I missing something?

Sandylein said...

Just wait, my dear. Menopause, that blessed event when you kick up your heels and say, Yes! Finally! It's Over! Free At Last! can be surprisingly erratic. And one day your little friend shows up unexpectedly, and you dig out those dusty old tampons you're saving for your daughter, should she reach menarche before they disintegrate. And a few days later you... forget. Yeah. It can happen. A little mental-pause.

Sooo glad that's over ;-)

sheila said...

Suji, I had the same thought: why would anyone want a tampon for any other reason. Then someone mentioned nose bleeds. Which seemed reasonable. Weird but reasonable.

Sandylein! Where HAVE you been! I've missed you so much! Your garden is stuck on February 6th, but here your clematis was sublime. I was at a funeral today and feeling very old and cracked. What's L's new website? All my old links are...well, old. Just like me.