This morning, I was innocently catching up on some news when I found this perfect little gem: a Disney video from 1946 that talks about menstruation. Who knew that Disney participated in things like sex ed? I have always associated Disney with fairy tales and princesses and cute baby animals – but I’ve never thought about Disney when I think about what my period really is, so this was a major surprise.
This video is a must-watch for a few reasons, and here are the things I love (and by love I mean sort of hate but mostly love) about it. As the top commenter on the YouTube video page so accurately sums it up, “how did I get here??“:
1. The narrator’s voice is oddly soothing.
2. The fact that the woman’s body shown is totally blank, just a human-shaped blob, with no hint of breasts or a vagina, but meanwhile it’s a sex ed video, so… it doesn’t make any sense.
3. According to this video, our Fallopian tubes are not connected to our ovaries. Hm, that’s interesting.
4. I enjoy the way the narrator pronounces “maturing” like “matooring”. So old-fashioned! I love.
5. The cartoon girls sort of look like Snow White.
6. This video reminds me that there was once a time when people thought girls couldn’t shower or bathe during their periods (this video reassures girls that “not only can you bathe, you should bathe!”). OMG, just imagine if people still thought that. We’ve come so far.
7. The completely sexiest attitude towards women in this video is just something you look at and shake your head for a very long time about. After letting girls know that it’s totally fine to exercise during your period, the narrator reminds girls that “when you come to think of it, most of your daily routine is on the mild side” and then shows an image of a girl carefully dusting the couch. I mean, obvs, that’s what we do all day.
8. I also love the ridiculous advice for getting over our annoying PMS symptoms: “Once you stop feeling sorry for yourself and take those days in stride, you’ll find it’s easier to keep smiling and even-tempered.” Girls, remember, even if your cramps are so bad you feel like you’re birthing an invisible baby, keep a smile on that pretty little face of yours. You wouldn’t want to look angry, now would you?
Watch it for yourself to see this stuff in action:
In all seriousness, though, it’s pretty cool that Disney put out this video, which was honest and straightforward for that time period. Remember, this was the 1940’s… things were totally different back then than they are today. In 1946, girls weren’t walking around clutching their stomach and whining about cramps (what, like you’ve never done it?). Periods and sex education in general were not discussed as much as they are today. So it’s nice to see that a huge company like Disney was willing to talk about it and educate young girls.
But still… there is a reason I love the Internet, and the fact that it can dig up old stuff like this is one of those reasons.
What do you think of this video? Would you take this advice? Do you think it’s way too sexiest? How did you learn about your period? Tell us in the comments!