A Prep For Women During That Time Of The Month And Post Menopause
Guest article by ‘Peanut Gallery’
I know that this subject can be an embarrassing one to touch on (women’s needs for ‘that time of the month’), but I realized that it’s hard to find information from a prepper standpoint. My purpose for writing this is to help other preppers with information about this, a dual purpose reusable washable prep (sanitary pad), rather than stockpiling countless disposables.
About 10 years ago I started thinking about reusable feminine napkins. I figured there are reusable diapers, handkerchiefs, dinner napkins and other assorted items that are normally purchased as a disposable, so why not washable feminine sanitary pads. When I first started the search, I was directed time and time again to sites that only sold disposable pads. I would give up for a time and try again every so often.
I gave up again until about a year ago:
When I started the search again, I actually found much more this time around. However I was no longer in need of feminine pads as menopause changed things for me. After menopause women produce less estrogen, a hormone that helps keep the lining of the bladder and urethra healthy. Deterioration of these tissues can aggravate incontinence. It may start out small and brought on by coughing, sneezing, and laughter.
LBL otherwise known as “light bladder leakage” will affect 1 in 3 women in their lifetime and is more common in women than men.
Now you must wonder how does this affect me as a prepper.
Well if you are stockpiling disposable sanitary pads for your monthly needs, you know how much you go through in a typical month. So you multiply that by the number of months and years that you feel you will need them, whether it be pads or tampons.
Now menopause comes along and you find that you now have a new issue. Okay, so you decide you will now store Tena, Poise, or some other product to deal with your new issue. Okay how much do you decide to store?
Well unlike your monthly cycle which can be pretty regular and predictable, incontinence is totally unpredictable. So in order to avoid embarrassing issues you need to wear protection every day. Which means that when you have LBL, you will need to change the pad. So how do you figure how many you might need in a typical day? If you decide maybe 4 a day, multiply 4 by 365, and then by the number of years that you feel you will need them. I can’t imagine trying to store that much for a problem you may or may not get!
This is where the reusable products that I have found will not only save you money but if you don’t end up using them, you will have a valuable barter item. I know some women use the Menstrual Cup. However I like the washable pads as when you are done with your monthly cycles, they can now be used for incontinence. Multiple uses for one product!
Reusable Sanitary Pad ‘Mama Cloth’
Great Post Peanut Gallery! Thanks so much for addressing such a timely topic. :)
I ordered a few more sets. I had some washable pads from another company, but there are so many more companies who make them now and the prices are way cheaper than what I bought years ago.
I love reading the reviews on Amazon. (Where would we be without MSB and Amazon LOL!)
Also we ladies out number the men around here, so good time to stock up!
Check out the Heart Felt Bamboo with Charcoal absorbency – wow that’s cool!
Peace, Wisdom, and Blessings to all :)
Thank you for the article. After three tours of Vietnam and having been exposed to agent orange I had prostate cancer when I was 60 ,the VA supplied all of my medical needs and pads after surgery. For many years I used disposal pads. Then I had a device called ams800 was implanted and now it’s one pad per day and my wife was uses pads also, so again thank you.
Here is a site with a pattern for those who like to sew
Thank you for touching on this subject !
We ran an outreach ministry awhile back. While looking at ways to help the community we came across these. They are very easy to make and very costly to buy. Even if they are not used now, they can be made just in case.
We men are so lucky, I do not know how my wife puts up with these issues but now consider what it would be like after a SHTF event. And I have 4 grown girls that would bug out here – life would become pure hell. Now I have something else to stock up on; the checkout girl at Walmart is going to think I have lost my mind when I buy out their warehouse of———-you know those things, those things.
When seven daughters were at home DH used to stock up at Sams. Once the check out asked him if he had vending machines….so that became the big joke that night at the dinner table!!!
Great article PG.
for those of us living in the west….the “weed” mullein works great! it can also be soaked and used to create a “plaster” for wounds and breaks. It is soft, pliable and absorbent!
Timely subject for me as I have been looking into this problem. I ran across a little info on the “Frank and Fern” website but the only ones mentioned are around $15 each. So I’m searching for something friendlier to my wallet.
Good job Peanut Gallery, well written and delivered.
As a single crusty old fart I can appreciate the need for knowledge and for prepping for ALL of the needs. These matters you speak of are just nature and part of the creatures we love, so why is it most men run scared from the facts? I could never figure that one out…
If you (men) have a Lady in your life, Wife, Daughters, GF you sure as heck better help prep for them in this manner also…. As No Joke said “life would become pure hell”. Let me tell y-all; God has spread no greater wrath as a woman in need, so you sure as heck better take care of these needs also or you just may be on the receiving end of the greatest threat to the known universe; The Female. :-)
Don’t forget the chocolate and chips…lol, they are tandem with the “needs”…
TX is anonymous, sigh….
@ Anonymous AKA Texas
you will get NO argument from me.. HAHAHA
NRP, I have no man to give my wrath to…
But as you men know, menstrual pads are great for wound dressing when those band-aids won’t cover the man sized cuts and abrasions and when a kiss from your wifey-poos won’t help your big Boo-boos. ;-)
“and when a kiss from your wifey-poos won’t help your big Boo-boos. ? Gata LOVE it, HAHAHAHA
As far as “NRP, I have no man to give my wrath to…” I’m sure you could find some lone wandering to raise hell with, heck anyone with 10,000 miles would do :-) :-) :-)
best comment so far way to go Stardust
Thanks NRP, and everyone else. Being a sensitive subject, I am surprised that there are so many comments. I am glad to see the guys also taking the subject seriously. When it comes to prepping, one must look at everything we purchase regularly.
Those of us that are familiar with women of countries other then our own, have known about these items for a long time.
Just like there are many countries that don’t use toilet paper.
Americans are so spoiled!
WHAT!!!??? they don’t use TP??? how do they ever function as a country…???
Actually I have spent some time in Asia, you’re absolutely correct. :-) :-) :-)
To a Haitian, the worst possible insult towards another is to use the term ‘Blood Cloth’. (The cloth used for what you are discussing.)
That term “blood cloth”, used in Jamaica towards a man, will result in a deadly fight!
Back in the old days, my mom and grandmother (1920’s to 1940’s) resorted to the “sanitary belt” and washable rags before modern napkins were invented, then the napkins and belts were replaced by adhesion pads.
Grandma had a gas stove in the basement laundry room and a big wash bin and she told me it was for boiling the menstrual rags and diapers with bleach. She used layered cotton terrycloth towels she had sewn for her female needs. It is rather funny, I inherited the old singer sewing machine she used to make them. So if a woman finds herself in a bind without modern pads, go back on the rags, the belt, and bleach.
Yes, Stardust, I have heard the same stories w/ rags, boiling water, with bleach to sanitize. It was all too common during our history. Indeed, with paper and plastic disposables, we have truly become a VERY spoiled society!
Thanks for such a great article, Peanut Gallery!
I have drafted a pattern to make the pads for a granddaughter but have yet had the time to assemble everything needed to make one. Thankfully, nothing is needed at the moment!
Thanks Modern Throwback, I had been wanting to write about this subject for some time. Finally decided to approach Ken with the idea. I know some women think to only supply for their monthly cycle needs, unaware of what could await them at the end when menopause takes over.
PG, great job on the article!! We do have to broach this subject. Not much is written about this on the other sites and it is important.
I am happy that my son is different ( having me and his sister ). He is not ashamed when we go to the store to remind us that we need some or actually go to the isle, pick the packs up and put them in the shopping cart. One time, he was approached a young girl in the store carrying a few packs for us and was asked for whom he is buying. When he answered, the girl called him the coolest dude on the planet. He came back flushing in his face and proud like a little rooster. My daughter told him that just by understanding about our needs that all the girls will adore him. Needless to say, while he was in high school, some of his female classmates would always run to him and ask if his sister has spares :)
When I began to purchase a couple of boxes of san pads for my granddaughter, I did some research and learned that there are quite a few toxic concerns w/ the pads made now. After reading, I have stopped buying those disposables! Now I hope that she will learn (in her time) that cloth re-usable pads will be safer to use while also being economical. I am starting to teach her to sew and at some point, she can learn to make her very own pads. At this time, she doesn’t even know about those ‘facts of life’ yet…lol
First of all, this “silence” issue really bothers me. If the term were “condom” no one would hesitate to use it. But mention feminine in the sentence and everyone cringes away from the topic. Guys, this is a natural thing and if we can talk about your needs you can talk about ours. Or walk down the “girly” aisle or buy the things without man-shame.
End of rant.
Most menstrual cups are disposable, one use items. Those which are not are expected to last as much as a year before you need to replace them. They are not infinitely reusable, and at $15 to $30 a pop I don’t see that they’re a good idea for prepping.
Reusable pads are the only reasonable solution for a long term problem.
Lauren, I do most of shopping since my wife works and takes an hour to get home. I buy the pads for both of us, and if she needs any other under cloths or nylons I take care of that for her. You have to step up to the plate and be a man.
I will say “thank you” in her behalf, although I’m sure she says it often herself.
Juiceman, thank you :)
I know that the makers of the Diva Cup suggest that it be replaced every year, but comments on Amazon suggest that people use it for many years before replacing. Storing a few cups takes about as much space as a box of tampons. Even when using a cup, though, pads are needed, at least for those with extremely heavy periods. Having reusable pads (or at least the materials and knowledge of how to make them) is the best idea, but pads alone just don’t cut it for everyone–at least not if they are going to be productive members of the group at that time of the month.
I heartily agree that having disposables available for times when clean water isn’t plentiful is good idea.
I’ve been using Luna pads for a couple of years and love them. I am on the heavy side so I don’t like the soaking and cleaning. This also uses way to much water which could become more precious than gold. I’ve had the Diva Cup for a while and I’m trying to gradually switch to it with a cloth liner. This works much better for me, decreases accidents too.
I will get a years worth of the throw away pads.
Grid down, you have no running water, no dryer. I’ll already be irritated enough!
Thanks for bringing up the subject.
I do stock up on them from BJ’s.
But I don’t have a years worth for me and my daughter and that’s what I want.
I’ll do it in two trips.
And if anybody says anything I’ll just give them the PMS dagger eyes of death look!!!!
Those reusable pads don’t look like they could handle the amount of blood I loose every month anyway!
I may invest in some “reusables” for after we use up the years supply of disposables!
By then I’ll be a little more hardened.
But if I had to deal with that crap, on top of everything else in the “beginning” of a shtf event, it wouldn’t be good.
Great article Peanut Gallery! And thank you for addressing this issue with sensitivity and practicality. Luv ya’ll Beach’n
@Heartless, I’m amazed you either had the nerve or the stupidity to post this comment. How many times have you provided a “nice foot rub or back rub” without expecting your female partner to “acquiesce” to your desires? Something in return, right? Yuck. Keep your back rubs. I’ll “take care of myself”. Thank you.
I’m going to assume that Heartless had some kind of shock recently that burned out his brain cells. Maybe he’s experiencing “that time of the month” for himself to account for the diatribe.
I think that he forgot to replace “heartless” with “anonymous” :-]
Heartless, are you serious? Surely you must be joking. If not, all I can say is WOW!
Ken isn’t even CLOSE to your assumed description of who you think he must be.
I’ve never met him, but it’s not very hard to figure out that he is the antithesis of what you described.
And BTW you don’t need to understand the biological processes of a woman to buy pads.
You say women are stark raving lunatics at around the age of 50? SMH!
I say a man who says, “I will never understand why it is that you girls just can’t just take care of things and leave us guys out of it.” Is a buttercup who needs to suck it up!
Seems to me you have a lot to learn even after being married for over 40 years and having daughters.
This topic does seem to hit some men’s primitive circuit–you know, the one that says women are made only for one purpose, and unclean if they can’t fulfill that purpose? And the accouterments of that time of the month are as unclean as they are.
I understand where the stigma comes from, but I can only posit brain damage for the remarks about Ken.
My guess is that you could be having the male equivalent of “that time of month” and actually you almost hit my funny bone.
FWIW I would much rather take care of my own female needs (I know exactly what I want and also plan b),but if a man is married or a couple does the shopping together then the man by default needs to have some inkling of what to get. If your other half is having a really bad of a time with her cycle then she needs to take action. Whether it is a change of diet, medication, relaxation or ?? If it medication then that is something else I would stock up on. : )
Stocking up on Black Cohosh may be a good thing for many.
I am 65 and never took hormones..about a year ago, I began having issues, not bad, but uncomfortable, and started BC.
I take one morning, one night and issues gone.
I planted some last fall–I hope it comes up.
I have to say that I have never experienced living with a man who was afraid of buying “supplies” for their wives and daughters.
My father (who was born in 1909) was not afraid of or disgusted by purchasing menstrual cycle supplies for his wife and my sister and I. My husband was not afraid of or disgusted when asked to do the same for me. My Son is not afraid of or disgusted when asked to shop for supplies for his wife.
This is no different than purchasing toilet paper or paper towels for the household. We are preparing for a lack of disposables for every other aspect in our lives. Why is this any different? It’s a necessity.
I hope every woman out there, knows whether the man in their life is afraid of helping them. And if they’re not man enough to take care of you, get rid of them.
“I hope every woman out there, knows whether the man in their life is afraid of helping them. And if they’re not man enough to take care of you, get rid of them.”
For those exact reasons, I got rid of mine!!
You go! Thanks for telling him off :-)
I read something awhile back about how women can also use natural sponges for “these needs”. They basically work like tampons, for those who prefer tampons. You have to get NATURAL sponges and cut, shape, and trim them to size. They can be washed out and then boiled to sanitize and last a long time. Safety note: Using man made sponges can be toxic, so only use natural sponges.
Thanks Anonymous, I vaguely remember hearing about using natural sponges many, many years ago. I had forgotten about that.
One other important but rarely discussed item, is monestat. Ive been very blessed to only have two yeast infections in my 46 years. But medicine for that is one thing i NEVER want to be without
SE, plain organic full-fat yoghurt fixes the infection. Not fat free, because the enzymes fighting the spores are removed.
Really?! I did not know that! Great info! Beach’n
Beach’n, I had this issue with yeast infection when I had to go three times with chemo and antibiotics. The chemo kills even the healthy cells and the antibiotics kill the good flora. My doctor was an idiot when I told him the repercussions of being on the meds and the first thing out of his mouth was well don’t have unprotected. Needless to say, I was alone at all these times, not having a husband or a significant other around me. So, when I told him that this is the case and the meds are the ones causing me the trouble, his jaws dropped apologetic and he said he was sorry for making the assumption.
As to yoghurt, one a day, plain, not fat-free, will keep you balanced because of the left leaning bacteria. The fat free stuff is chemically changed and the good bacteria is killed of much during the processing. Try it out for about a week or two and see what happens. I don’t take penicillin based meds, because that gives me all the problems and I have gotten more sick from taking them, so therefore, no more antibiotics for me.
I’m too laughing pretty hard. Boy, how easy it was to press one heck of a lot of buttons here.
Yes, I’ve a woman in my life. Yes, I’ve bought thousands of dollars of supplies for the women who’ve passed through my life – personally been the one to run up and get same. I’ve participated in natural childbirth, the entire Lemaze gamut – 4 times. Held my newborn grandchildren, diapered and dealt with those results more times than I care to count (or recall). Oh, yeah, I’m quite familiar with anatomy and the entire process of procreation. I’ll not even go to the use of a come-along to aid in the birth of a calf and many many more rural veterinary experiences I’ve had.
But, too….. I did grow up in the old black and white days of a man pacing some waiting room floor anticipating the results in the pre-sonogram days of not knowing the coming generation’s gender. The best we had was a needle hanging on a thread suspended over the expectant one’s palm – back-n-forth for a boy, rotating in a circle for a girl, if I recall. When one of a man’s worries was getting a box of cigars to pass out in proud declaration of his new family member. I recall well those old television shows where a man had to keep one foot on the floor of the bedroom in such scenes. Tell me please just how wonderfully society has progressed since then with over 52 million children eliminated pre-birth as being more ‘convenient’ – matters of choice rather than gifts from God, a divorce rate well over 50%, when some divisions of our society along various lines have caused the number of children born into a family by different fathers to far exceed the formerly normal one mother, one father paradigm? When a young man and woman married if nature happened and they began a family unplanned. Was that truly all bad? Being responsible and doing what I learned young was the “right” thing to do? Seems to me that this country was pretty great during those times prior to this so-called progress.
I furthermore do believe that based on all my experiences I am not a doctor; nor, would I wish to be one. Engineering and circuit design and control are more up my alley. Certainly not a forced study of female particular health matters. And is that wrong? I wonder. Seems progressive liberalization of all life has injected itself into even the prepper movement. That we all must be some sort of metro-sexual and ‘modern’ man, those of us of the male persuasion. I’ll tell you here – I’d look pretty damned funny in tights, or with ear-rings; and, I’ve never even considered a manicure.
Yeah, I have to laugh. Not a thing wrong with any person – male or female – striving to know as much as possible about anything they so choose. But…. choosing is the key to freedom. I’ll be damned to be made to choose beyond the basics on any issue that for millennia has been the province of the better half of our species. Will I do all I can to help if asked on some birth matter? I have – successfully – in my past, assuredly would in any future to come. Would I still travel to obtain supplies for the forgetful and oddly unprepared for a regular event woman in my life? Sure. I’d still rail the same as I would if I found that we somehow used the last roll of TP without anyone but me noticing the state of inventory. No different than bar soap, lamp wicks, kerosene or any other staple item. And definitely I’d do my very best when faced with a difficult birth or any other need by any woman in her travail.
If anything, I think we all need to be able to express whatever we wish without some societal censure for just being honest. And ladies – I do give one hell of a good back, foot and body rub. It might actually be worth your while to afford any such primitive man the right to stand out of the fray of the monthly or end of reproductive life to preserve his own peace on earth a bit too. After all – are we not equal in terms of our sense of the pursuit of happiness? Ah!!!, I forgot the most important saying!!! “If Mama’s not happy, no one’s happy”, right?
I’ll continue to follow what has always worked best. An old saying, “in any relationship, each person should give in 60% of the time and there’ll always be an extra 20% leeway to cushion the differences”. So, ask – I’ll make the run to the store…. one more time. And I’ll bite my tongue damned near in two to not escalate yet one more hormone driven argument that there is no hope in hell chance of winning. “no dress has ever made you look fat, you look perfect in everything you put on”, “your green bean casserole makes my Mom’s pale by comparison”; and “no woman in my life has ever looked as pretty as you”, and “she (some former ‘flame’) never meant anything to me; there’s only room for you in my heart darlin'”. In other words, I thank the Good Lord for you ladies; but please, dear-hearts….. try thanking the same Creator for us guys – even unenlightened and throwback ones. I’ll do my best to remember to put the seat down; even though, it makes more sense to me to keep it up. Viva La Difference.
Since I clean the toilets at my Casa, any male friends are advised to sit on the throne not wash it down…..sometimes us guys just dont get it, right ladies
@Heartless, Then I would ask a simple question: What was your intention in posting something you knew would be inflammatory? Your comment brought up some strong emotions because it is precisely the way I was raised–women stuff was anathema and not to be mentioned. I would have let that pass. It was your unprovoked attack on someone who has done a lot for us that made me the most angry.
What was your purpose? Just to cause tension? To stir the pot? I’m afraid I’ve lost any respect for you and I will question any statement you make in the future.
Enjoy your moment of notoriety.
I could not have said it any better than you. I also thank the Creator for all his work and wisdom.
Great subject Ken the washrags, bucket and bleach also are applicable for the both the front and rear of the torso as needed, toilet paper is nice but does not always clean the machine so to speak.
Yes, often it is the uncomfortable subjects that we avoid, but necessary nonetheless… ;)
There are several sites that offer patterns, for cloth or for knitting/crocheting, that are free. The biggest reason to stop using disposable tampons, for any woman right now, is the fact that the bleach, and other chemicals, that they are processed/treated with leaches into our systems. I am in the process of trying these alternatives out for myself and for my teenage daughter. These will also be added to my supplies, along with the materials and directions to make more.
Here are the sites that I liked:
Hope this helps someone. Thanks for the articles, I am new to both your sight and ‘prepping’ so I can use all the help and tips I can get! Thankfully, I have a few others in my area that are not new to this and are willing to help.
My order finally came in for the cloth products for the old lady leaking syndrome. I just got a couple for a trial but they are very well made if a little spendy. I will get back with an update when I’ve used them for a while
They are so comfortable that you can forget you are using them. I will never go back to disposable.
I have some initial thoughts on my new purchase. Overall I will like them. I think that what I really would like falls in between what the company offers. Between a level 1 and level 2. Looking at buying the materials to make my own but I would also need to get a sewing machine so I’m not sure that is the way to go. But at roughly $12 each cost does add up. I will give it more time to evaluate before I rush into anything.