Sign language to discreetly talk about periods?
Today Marie of the Instagram account @littlebunbao and bilingual French, sign language professional, comes back with us on the taboo around menstruation.
Indeed, for many menstruating people and their entourage, menstruation is still a taboo subject, as it is sometimes seen as dirty, impure, something that should not be talked about. The objective of this article is to give you the keys, through sign language, to overcome this taboo and communicate about menstruation in a discreet way. Because the taboo around menstruation has dramatic consequences on menstruating people, notably by contributing to their isolation.
So let's start with some sign language notions to teach you how to sign about your period!
Signing "I have my period" in sign language
We start with the sentence "I have my period". To make the sign of the periods you are simply going to take the hand in 5, that is to say with the 5 fingers unfolded and you are going to advance the middle finger, that is to say to bend it by pointing it towards you. You are going to position this one below your chest and you are going to make several movements downwards, that is to say to go down like a drop which is going to fall. So these are the periods.
To sign I'm on myperiod for the first time, you're going to point to yourself and say "me", then you're going to do the "period" sign again, to which you're going to add "first". To sign "first", simply hold up your thumb to say "one". To do this, you are going to take your fist and just stick out your thumb. You are going to make a movement of bottom in top with this one to go up. Once the thumb is up, you have to shake it once. This is the "first" sign.
Finally, for the "times" sign, you have to make a cross sign with your two index fingers, which is the mathematical sign for multiplication.
You now know how to sign "I have my period for the first time".
Signing "I have a painful period" in sign language
To express that you have a painful period, we start with the sign "period", to which we add "to have pain". To sign "to have pain", you take your fist again, from which you take out your thumb. You then position it at the level of your chin and you rub your chin with your thumb in a movement where the thumb goes downwards, that is to say from top to bottom.
The importance of the facial expression is essential here since it will allow to modulate the pain. If you make this sign with a neutral face, you are in pain, but it is bearable. On the other hand, if you make this sign with a very tense face, on which one feels the pain, it means that you are in great pain. A range of possibilities is then possible between these two extremes to express your level of pain.
You can now sign "I have a painful period".
Signing "I need sanitary protection" in sign language
To ask someone for sanitary protection, you will start by expressing the sign "protection". To do this, position your right hand at a right angle, like a duckbill. Your left hand should be positioned flat under your right hand. You then take it down a notch to express the term "protection".
Then, for the term "hygienic", you put your two hands with the fingers "in 3", that is to say that the thumb, the index and the middle finger must be unfolded while the other fingers are folded. You cross your arms and pull as if you had grabbed a string, your three fingers are thus stuck and your right hand is in front of your left hand.
So you know how to say "sanitary protection".
And since you are asking, you will add the "please", which will make it clear that it is a question and that you are asking something of someone. To do this, you take your hand in "B", i.e. flat, with the inside facing the person and you position it at the level of your cheek. Then you move your hand down your cheek for the "please".
Each time you go to sign, you point to yourself if you are going to talk about yourself. So if you're talking about the periods, "I have my periods," you're going to point and go "periods. And if you're asking someone about sanitary protection, you're going to add the pointing at the end or the beginning to the person to indicate that they're being asked.
You now know how to sign "sanitary protection please".
Signing "do I have a task" in sign language
To ask if you have a stain in sign language, you must first make the sign "buttocks". To do this, you will put your two hands in a 5-shape, the five fingers unfolded, with the inside facing the person. You will then lower one hand while you raise the other and vice versa.
Then for the sign "task", you will make the sign 3 to the person with your thumb, your index and your middle finger. It should be noted that normally when we ask if we have a task, we make this sign three directly on us. But here, as you positioned the buttocks just before, you will make the sign three facing the person.
Moreover, you will, thanks to the facial expressions, show that it is a question by making an expression of the face which wonders.
You now know how to sign "do I have a task?
Signing "go to the nurse's office" in sign language
To ask if you can go to the nurse's office in sign language, you will first make the word "nurse". To do this, you will take your closed fist, put out your thumb, and with your thumb you will draw a cross on your shoulder. This cross refers to the cross of the infirmary, more exactly the armband that nurses had on their shoulder.
To express "go", you take your two index fingers from you and move them forward with an upper body movement.
You now know how to sign "go to the nurse".
What sanitary protection should I use during my period?
To live your period as serenely as possible, our collection of menstrual lingerie is ideal. Made in France, in certified organic cotton, our menstrual panties do not contain chemical substances harmful to your health, nor to the planet! Our absorbent technology protects you from leaks, and the anti-bacterial properties of our absorbent zone in eucalyptus fiber prevents bad odors.
Now you have the keys to communicating about your period discreetly through sign language. If you would like to learn more about sign language, we invite you to approach sign language training centers. And for your period, you can always protect yourself with our menstrual panties!
If you would like to see a picture of the signs to help you understand them better, you can watch our YouTube video on this subject!
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