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Ending ‘Period Shame’ in the Bedroom: How to Have Sex on Your Period

Did you know that the average woman will menstruate for seven years during her lifetime? In honor of National Women’s Health Week, it’s time to pull back the curtain on menstruation and address ‘period shame’ in the bedroom.

I have worked with many female clients who confess to me that they are ashamed to have sex when on their period. For many women, it can really complicate intimacy.

Some women refuse to even have sex on their honeymoon or other special occasions because they are menstruating. And in some cases, they don’t want to admit to their partner why they don’t want to have sex, so he’s left confused and feeling rejected.

However, there are many ways to ensure that your sex life stays intact, even when you are menstruating.

It’s okay if you or your partner don’t want to have sex while you’re menstruating. No one should ever feel pressured into sexual activity if they aren’t in the mood. But, if you take safer sex precautions (as you should during intercourse any other time of the month), there is no reason why sex on your period is dangerous or dirty.

Here are some tips for sex on your period:

  • Sex in the bath. Warm water is wonderful for easing cramps. Draw a warm bubble bath and then invite your partner in as well. You can rest easy that there won’t be any ‘mess,’ and the combination of heat and orgasms can help soothe cramps. Yes, orgasms are wonderful for natural pain relief!
  • Keep a package of natural wet wipes by the bed. Have a set of natural wipes near your bedside, like the kind that’s 99% water. You don’t want scents or anything too heavy and chemical-y near your delicate genitals. You can use these wipes to easily clean up before, during, and after sex.
  • Switch to dark sheets on your period. Many people recommend laying down a towel when you’re having sex on your period, but this doesn’t really accommodate more than just missionary position. It’s better to simply have ‘period sheets,’ which can be soft, dark, sensual sheets that you put on the bed whenever you know your period is coming. Then, you can enjoy sex without fear of stains.
  • Be honest with your partner.  An app like Flo can help you keep track of your period and when to expect it, and it can be really useful to send this info to your partner. Knowing that you’re on your period will help them to be more judicious about when and where they initiate sex, as well as to be more supportive in general during this time.
  • Use a condom. Yes, it is rare to get pregnant on your period, but it is possible. Using a condom will also make cleanup easier.

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