I never quite understood the menstruation-is-filth thing, mostly because I was so poorly raised no one made sure I was fully inculcated/brainwashed. Men dribble all over the tiles and floor but my pads have to be buried deep in the garbage so no one [read no male] will see them? Never let anyone see any sign you have a period because you will be embarrassed—that always seemed about the inherent belief in female shame in being female.
So I got my Diva Cup. It’s worth about half what I’d spend a year on pads and tampons, give or take a few Walgreen’s brands. The directions for care seemed pretty simple—wash with soap and water every time you empty it— until I got to the end—at the end of each period, boil the Cup in a pot of water for 20 minutes and, according to the FDA, throw it away at the end of the year and buy a new one. 20 minutes at a rolling boil seems extreme for high-grade silicone I paid almost $40 for. And it’s just menstrual blood—why do I have to throw it away after using it a dozen or so times? It’s silicone. You boil it. How unsafe can it be? Is this based on fact or the deep-seated delusion that menstrual blood is the “dirtiest,” most toxic fluid the human body can produce?
What’s menstrual blood/fluid? A “thick, blood vessel-rich, glandular tissue layer” that sheds if no fertilized egg attaches to it. No waste products, no bile, no shit. Grand total: about 3-4 ounces. Yes, ounces, not cups, not gallons.
I’ve never seen a warning on a silicone dildo or anal plug about only using it a year them throwing it away and reinvesting in a new toy for you and your friends and your friends’ friends. Care directions for a silicone butt plug? Put it on the top rack of your dishwasher or boil it for 3-5 minutes. No expiration. More like, Clean it each time and it’ll last forever. And this is an ANAL plug. Does the FDA think that what comes out of and lurks in most asses is somehow cleaner than a period? If a butt plug can be used again after 3-5 minutes of boiling (no warnings about it having to be a rolling boil, either), why do I have to boil a Diva Cup 20 minutes and throw it away after 12 months?
And who’s going to make me?