I shouldn't be embarrassed to go to the store and buy tampons.
I shouldn't have to worry about if a male cashier is going to ring me up.
I shouldn't be faced with awkward situations for buying something that I NEED.
And yet I am.
I went to the store today to buy tampons, and felt humiliated as two boys snickered at my purchase.
When I put my tampons down on the counter today at the store, the male cashier grabbed my item, rang me up and failed to say one word to me. He didn't look at me. He never made eye contact with me. He was embarrassed to even look at me, making me uncomfortable and creating a fairly awkward situation.
Standing awkwardly at the counter, waiting for my card to go through, I'm looking around to see if anyone else is seeing what just happened. The only other person there was another male worker.
This second male worker sees what his coworker is ringing up, and starts hysterically laughing at the situation.
In broken laughter he says, "I'm glad I didn't have to ring that up." Because God forbid a male is about to hold a box of tampons to put into a bag.
As a female, being laughed at when you're the only customer in the store is humiliating. You are suddenly a target, and neither of the employees want to help you because you needed to buy tampons?
I proceeded to bag MY OWN item. Since my cashier refused to hold tampons, after his coworker's inappropriate laughter. I grabbed my bag. I looked at the cashier and said,
"Do my tampons offend you?"
All I saw were that his eyes were still fixated on the floor, and he still refused to make eye contact with me.
He responds "yeah", as if to rush me out of the store, and I am on my way. The only word said to me during my entire experience at the counter..."yeah". That was all I needed to hear.
As women, we can not control the natural phenomenon of getting our period, and as a male you have no idea what women have to go through. This is NOT what a woman should have to go through while buying products that she needs. When are we going to realize that this happens to every female, and that it doesn't have to be a "taboo" topic. Periods happen to EVERY FEMALE. Men, you need to get over it. I am going to buy my tampons. I am going to look you straight in the eye and if you fail to look at me during my entire purchase from you, I will call you out.
No more silence. We shouldn't have to feel embarrassed about what goes on with our bodies. I shouldn't have to pretend like periods do not happen, and you shouldn't feel embarrassed either.
Men, please don't feel awkward, there is nothing awkward about it. We buy tampons like you would buy any other product. You don't have to worry about a female cashier snickering about your shampoo, so treat a tampon purchase like any other purchase. Periods happen to every woman, and I'm sure your future wife won't appreciate your laughter when she has her period, right?
Women shouldn't be treated differently because they have their periods. I can't help that I get my period, and apparently two male employees can't help me buy products for my period.