Period visibility has been having a moment. From Thinx’s badass subway ads to tampon tax protests, women are fighting for the widespread normalization of menstruation.
And yet, we're still pretty squeamish when it comes to directly referencing that time of the month. Case in point: Speakers of every language, all over the world, have a special euphemism to save them from coming out and just saying “menstruation” or even “period.”
We wish we lived in a world where this wasn't necessary, but until we do, at least we can laugh about these (occasionally clever) linguistic workarounds. Some make explicit, even graphic, references to menstrual fluid, while others were clearly developed to save face in polite company. And so in some ways, they can actually reveal how periods are viewed in different parts of the world.
Ahead, nine international menstruation euphemisms (translated into English), courtesy of period-tracker app Clue.