NotBlueAtAll

I'm just a fat gal with a blog and an opinion. Well, lots of opinions.

TMI Tuesday…

November23

Since I had no submissions for Tank Top Tuesday this week I’ve decided to do a different sort of post all together. If you’d rather not read about lady bits and business, then please come back here tomorrow for your regularly scheduled program & topics. Thank you!

If you don’t mind reading about lady bits & business, then you’re in for a treat! Ha-ha!

About three years ago I had happened upon an ad for the Diva Cup in my BUST magazine. Along side it in the ad were sea sponges and reusable cloth pads. I thought that was just a bit too crunch-hippie-granola for my taste (oh how tastes change). But I decided to do a bit of research to see exactly what this Diva Cup business was all about.

At first I did the typical search engine searches and really only found a couple of vague reviews and product information. At the time I was also a vegatarian and loved the post punk kitchen‘s forums for all things food and veg related. But after some random digging, I found a thread specifically about Menstrual Cups! (There is even a LiveJournal community for it.) Suddenly I was reading comment after comment of ladies who used these cups. Crazy, right?

Well, not exactly. You see, Menstrual cups, while a larger initial investment (around $30 I believe), end up saving you thousands of dollars! Also a great reducer of much icky waste products heading for our landfills. As a loyal tampon user, I saw no reason to switch until I realized just how much waste my period was creating. Yikes! Not exactly what I want to think about, but a reality none the less. So I kept reading reviews, experiences, instructions, troubles, jokes…you name it!

I had decided to take the plunge! I headed to my local Whole Foods market (Ugh! I don’t shop there now for a heck of a lot of reasons), I had heard they sold them there, and grabbed my very own Diva Cup! Now, I was 29 at the time and thus went with the larger cup. I had read all about the issue with the stem and how nearly all ladies who buy their cut the stems off completely. And since you couldn’t return it if the stem was removed entirely (I believe you can trim it a bit and still return it- not at the store but to the company itself) I headed home and tried to give it a go as is.

Um, NO! Ha-ha! Thinking back I have to laugh at all of my many failed and stubborn attempts to make my Diva Cup work for me. Bad idea! You can imagine the soreness I had to live with after so much struggling. After I finally relented, I then had to use a tampon. OW! No good. But I suffered, ashamed of myself, and waited until my next period. And then the next and the next. I did so much research on insertion techniques it is not even funny.

Then after a few months (I had nearly given up, to be honest) I decided to give it another shot. After a some personal relaxation techniques (heh) and a shower, I tried it again…and I did it!  It worked! It was comfortable! It didn’t leak! I actually couldn’t feel it at all! And, best of all? No waste, no emergency trips to the store, no wondering if there’s a stain on my ass…It was fabulous! I even, finally, placed the Diva Cup pin on my purse! (It came with this cute daily pinback that simply said “Diva” on it.)

Now? I’ve been using my Diva Cup successfully and happily every since! Fairy tale? Nah, it’s just a matter of understanding my own anatomy and figuring out what works best for me. You see, prior to this endeavor, I wasn’t exactly friends with my vagina. I mean, she was alright I guess, but we were mere aquaintances rather than besties.

I cannot tell you the immense difference it has made in my life. On those rare days when I am having a super heavy flow, I actually feel it before it leaks! I know when it’s full! I can feel it. It’s kinda neat, actually. Hard to describe, but I just do. And now I also know more about my own vagina. I take very good care of my little cuppy and have a little drawstring satchel for it and even bought the Diva Wash for it (although, not necessary at all). The hard thing is getting so excited about this major life change and not exactly  being able to talk about it. Another fabulous thing about it is that I can go to a concert or work or a hike or whatever and not have to empty out at all! I empty it in the morning when I wake up and at night before bed. Now some people will say that you needn’t remove it to have a bowel movement, but I just prefer it. So I will occasionally empty it more often as needed for this additional activity. But I’ve never had it shift or slip or anything like that. And since it’s in me, I don’t have to wear special underwear or worry about wearing certain pants or skirts. Awesome!

And the best part? One Diva Cup should last about Ten Years!!! Fuck Yeah!!! So if you think about how much you spend on pads or tampons in a year and multiply that by ten years? Yeah, it pays for itself so fast! I can honestly tell you that most ladies find no problem what so ever with insertion after the first attempt or two. Somehow that wasn’t the case for me. There are a ton of resources out there now and you can even find neat diagrams of different folding styles for insertion, too. There are other cups with different names and some are made of different materials, too.

I guess what I’m saying is that it is so awesome and great and I just want every woman to know about it! Because I had never heard of it before and to think of all of those years I spent worrying and stressing and oh that awful last day when you’re tampons come out sorta dry. EW! That is the worst feeling! Ugh! No more! I can’t say that I love or enjoymy period, but it’s certainly not as much of a burden as it used to be. It makes me sad when women give fifteen BS excuses why they won’t try it. But I know it’s a scary thing to change what is currently working for you. It’s a very private decision to make. But I don’t care how heavy your flow, it can take it! Pads and tampons actually make it look like there’s a ton of blood coming out of you, but after using the cup and seeing with your own eyes specifically how much is coming out? It’s not that much! Teaspoons! Ha!

What do you think? Have you tried a menstrual cup? Worried about it? Tell me all about it!

=0)

**If you’d like to submit a photo of yourself exercising your right to bare arms for the next Tank Top Tuesday post (doesn’t have to be in a tank top) email it here: notblueatall@notblueatall.com

***If you’d like to submit your own TMI Tuesday story to be posted here, please email it here: notblueatall@notblueatall.com

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posted under Bargains, Blog, Buzz, DIY, Easy
24 Comments to

“TMI Tuesday…”

  1. On November 23rd, 2010 at 2:47 pm Jackie Says:

    I’ve never tried DivaCup, but I did try Instead once and I had so much trouble getting that thing out of me both time that I kinda just gave up. This sounds like it might be easier to grab to remove? just wondering.

  2. On November 23rd, 2010 at 4:08 pm Not Blue at All Says:

    1,000 times better! I never tried instead but have heard enough horror stories to know that they’re nothing alike. If I recall, instead was sort of diaphramish and had a thin condom like material/texture which made it difficult to remove, etc. Diva Cup is flexible, but not flimsy! It works through suction, not just blockage or absorption like some products. So when you put it in properly it can make a quiet but recognizable suction sound. So when you want to remove, I know there are different methods, I just sort of poke the side to release the suction and pull it right out. Easy-peasy!
    Thank you for reading & commenting.

  3. On November 23rd, 2010 at 3:11 pm Shoshie Says:

    Oh man, I love my cup. I have the one made out of silicone because of a latex allergy. I’ve been using it for three years and have had very few problems with it. I was really concerned that it wouldn’t be compatible with my IUD because suction + thing in uterus could be bad. But I haven’t had any problems at all. I just have to be careful not to catch the string when I pull out the cup.

    Also, I cut off the stem. It was so pokey and annoying!

  4. On November 23rd, 2010 at 4:09 pm Not Blue at All Says:

    Yes! I cut the entire stem off eventually. That was part of my initial problem. I think Diva Cup is scillicon and Moon cup is latex or rubber? I could be wrong. It has been ages since my big research projects began. Ha! I hadn’t even considered how an IUD might interact with the cup. But it’s good to know that you’ve had no trouble with it. Thanks for commenting!

  5. On November 23rd, 2010 at 3:24 pm Chris Ingle Says:

    I LOVE my Diva Cup! I discovered this maybe a year and a half ago, and will never ever ever go back to disposables again. I even recently converted a friend of mine who initially thought it sounded “gross”.

    And yeah, you totally touch on a side-benefit that I think is important for all of us — knowing our Lady Parts.

  6. On November 23rd, 2010 at 4:11 pm Not Blue at All Says:

    Yes! The gross factor is big when first talking about the cup. But when you are able to truly see what’s coming out and understanding that it’s not the same stuff that comes out of a wound (you’d be surprise how few people get that) it makes a difference. And yeah. I can honestly say that I understand my anatomy much better now. I don’t know that that would have happened without the Diva Cup.
    I guess that once I discovered the concept and kept gathering information, I just knew it would be right for me. I only wish I had a.) heard abotu it sooner and b.) cut that stem off right away! Ha-ha! Thanks!

  7. On November 23rd, 2010 at 5:32 pm G Says:

    Love my Diva Cup! I bought the Size 1 and theoretically I should go to a Size 2 since I’m 31 now, but the diameter difference is tiny and the 1 still works fine.

    I actually left the stem on mine; I tend to wear it up higher so the stem isn’t as pokey.

    I currently am in the process of converting every woman I know to the cup, it’s so much less waste and really helps us to understand our bodies better!

  8. On November 24th, 2010 at 8:33 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Now that’s interesting. I think you’re the first I’ve seen who kept the stem. But hey, whatever works! And fuck yes! Keep spreading the word! Less waste, getting to know your anatomy better and maybe, just maybe people will stop with the menstruation = ickies thing!

  9. On November 23rd, 2010 at 6:03 pm maggiemunkee Says:

    this is making me want to give my diva cup another try. i was able to get it in and out relatively easily after a few tries, and it works wonderfully when i’m standing. but i found that as soon as i sat down, it shifted and leaked all over. is it possible that i hadn’t gotten it in properly? now i want to spend all night researching insertion techniques! whee!

    i’m really interested in diva-ing again because i started taking blood thinners due to a blood clot in my leg. i’m really curious to see how it affects my flow. *ladyparts nerd*

  10. On November 24th, 2010 at 8:36 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Yes! I had this same problem at first. You should honestly hear or feel a suction sound to know it’s truly in correctly. I didn’t for ages and it would work while walking or standing but yeah as soon as I sat or laid down or something it wouldn’t work. I say give it another shot. I think I waited 3-4 months after my first several failed endeavors before picking it up again. It’s not going anywhere so stay patient and you’ll get the hang of it eventually. Everyone’s different and I did find that it helped me understand how my ladyparts worked and were shaped. Funny, but I hadn’t a clue before the diva cup! For insertion I have found that the “punch-down” method works best for me, but I had tried the “c” and “7” styles too. Good luck, doll!

  11. On November 23rd, 2010 at 7:44 pm Risha Says:

    I’ve considered trying it on occasion, but I find tampons very uncomfortable at the best of times (even the slim versions). I’ve been reluctant to lay out the 30 bucks only to discover that I can’t fit it properly, or, more likely, it always aches.

  12. On November 24th, 2010 at 8:40 am Not Blue at All Says:

    The only time my cup ached was when I left the stem on those first few times. It is possible that it’s not for everyone, but I have found that reluctance is often the more common obstruction. And what’s $30 when it will last ten years? I definitely felt a big disconnect between me and my vagina at first. I was like, “C’mon, work with me here!” and got very upset with it. Sounds ridiculous but hopefully you can understand. I can assure you that it will fit properly once you get a handle on the insertion/removal part. And honestly? Most ladies don’t have the troubles I did! After months of research I was ready to take the plunge and felt completely inept after the first few tries. But now I can’t imagine trying to have a period without it. And they do have a return policy on the diva cup site. So please do consider it. =0)

  13. On November 23rd, 2010 at 8:30 pm withoutscene Says:

    I love you for this entry!!!!!!!!! You are fucking rad, seriously.

  14. On November 24th, 2010 at 8:40 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Aw, love you right back, lady!

  15. On November 24th, 2010 at 5:45 am Jenna Says:

    YEAH TOTALLY! I bought my Mooncup a couple of months ago and after a learning period or two I am not happy as a clam, or rather my clam is happy :). I too had to cut the stem entirely off which makes removal a challenge some days but I actually like to be able to see my menstral flow. Why do we get all, “ew, yucky, gross” about it? I think being able to see the differences from one month to another or within the time frame of a period empowers me to know my body and is part of total body acceptance.

    I had had a real tampon scare which was was brought me to the cup and now I think, “um how weird and backward to stick a wad of cotton up there to soak it up, I mean really…” the cup is far superior!

    I try to talk to other women friends about it but mostly I just get weird looks and a changing of the topic. Too bad as they are missing out.

  16. On November 24th, 2010 at 8:52 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Yes! The silly ick factor. But that goes back a long way in misogynist history, I can assure you it’s no modern thing. Back to the times of witches and demons…ladies always hold mystery and thus should be feared or scorned! Ha-ha! But once you’re a cup convert there really is no going back. I absolutely think it’s important to understand and pay attention to your body signs and what better way, right?! Thank you for reading & commenting!

  17. On November 24th, 2010 at 6:55 am vitty10 Says:

    I haven’t quite mastered my Diva Cup yet, but I keep trying.

  18. On November 24th, 2010 at 8:54 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Don’t give up! I let mien sit for four months or more after those many failed attempts. But in the end it worked out. You may want to look up some different folding techniques for insertion. I found this to be most helpful and I tried many ways, but the “punch-down” method worked for me best and I still do it that way! I am semi-relieved to hear that I’m not the only one who has struggled. I do with you the best! =0)

  19. On November 24th, 2010 at 10:19 am vitty10 Says:

    I just tried again, successful so far… Thanks for the tip about cutting off the stem, that made a world of difference. I’m sure I need more practice now, lol!

  20. On November 24th, 2010 at 10:24 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Oh yay! I’m so glad! I’ll keep my fingers crossed for ya! =0)

  21. On November 24th, 2010 at 2:22 pm Nicole Says:

    I’ve really wanted to try one of the cups but never had a regular period because of medical issues. Now I have to take BC so I don’t get another cyst… and only need tampons, etc. 4 times a year.

    The amount of products and waste that results is ridiculous. The only thing I was concerned about with the cups is the fullness/cleaning in the middle of the day. When I did my original research – a lot of women seemed to remove the cup in the shower to avoid mess/easy clean up but obviously that only works if you are at home. I suppose there is a learning curve and once you get the hang of it, it might be easier?

  22. On November 24th, 2010 at 3:02 pm Not Blue at All Says:

    This seems to be a major issue for many who first hear about the cup: “Oh the mess!” But I can assure you that it’s not that messy at all. Yes, there is a learning curve. But in the shower? Not in mine and not with these hips! Yikes! Sounds dangerous. Ha-ha! But seriously? While on the toilet I just reach up, squeeze the cup to release suction and at that point can either pull it out to inspect and dump in the sink or simply dump it directly into the toilet bowl without worry. I have only twice splashed or spilled and since it only needs to be emptied twice a day it’s no biggie. Only once or twice have I felt the need to remove it during the day at work. And still it’s not that hard at all. Plus you get the feel for when you’ll need to before it’s too late anyway. After over two years of use (it may be more, can’t really remember) even if I know it’s full I also know that I have about 20-30 minutes before it actually wrecks my underwear! It’s a science and a personal one, but fantastic, still! And yes, the waste lady products create is beyond my comprehension. I think the cup is great for those who only menstruate a few times a year (I did this when I was on BC for ages) because your flow is usually minimal and thus tampons can really dry you out. And hey, no Toxic Shock Syndrome risk!!!

  23. On November 25th, 2010 at 7:59 pm mimbles Says:

    I love my Diva cup so much, and I’m furious that it took me till I was in my late 30’s to find out about them! I’ve had mine for about a year now and never had any problems with getting it in or out. I’m on a campaign to make sure my daughter’s generation know about them right from the beginning (she’s 12), the school ran a sex ed seminar for kids and parents about puberty and I interrupted the section about periods when it became apparent that only pads and tampons were going to be mentioned to spruik the cup. Had lots of mums come up to me afterwards and ask about it.

  24. On November 26th, 2010 at 10:02 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Well, thank goodness for you! Honestly, I personally thank you for speaking up and out about the cup. I feel the same way! So many years without it! UGH!!! =0)

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