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The Norwegian Menstruation Invasion

December 1, 2010

I have always assumed that Norway is a more progressive country than the United States. However, as the saying goes, ‘when you ASSUME you make an ASS out of U and ME.” It is apparently not unheard of for companies to monitor their employees bathroom use. For all of the U.S.’s classed, bass ackwards, old boys’ club ways of doing things, I can’t really think of a legitimate company (excluding the ones who hire [usually illegal] immigrants and abuse the shit out of them) that could get away with this without a giant media shit storm.

Some businesses have taken it a step further, and required that their employees to request electric key cards to gain access to the bathroom, sign a “visitors book”, and have even set up video surveillance outside of the restroom to catch unlawful pissers.

Possibly though, the greatest privacy violation though is what is happening to the female employees: they are now required to wear red bracelets to work when they menstruate to justify more frequent trips to the bathroom.

What the fuck.

While I have long since passed the point where I am embarrassed to buy tampons, in fact I parade around with them in front of me and watch people’s uncomfortable reactions, I still don’t want to be forced to announce it to the public. I am familiar with the experience of having to ask to go to the bathroom to attend to “personal matters” (I used to work at a resident treatment facility and do to the nature of the work, our clients could NEVER be unsupervised and my supervisor was a raging dick head more concerned with terrorizing kids than doing his job), but it’s one thing to request it on one-on-one and quite another to broadcast it with a bright red piece of string tied to your wrist like a kid in elementary school who’s lazy at arts and crafts.

I can understand a company’s want to cut down on wasting time in the bathroom, but there is a clear difference in behavior between someone who needs to piss or change a tampon with someone who is trying to “stick it to the man.” To punish everyone with such a disgusting and invasive privacy in 2010 is ridiculous and completely midevial. This practice labels women as “other” and is a complete violation of privacy.

What would you do if your work place required special identification for that time of the month?

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Ammy permalink
    December 1, 2010 6:17 pm

    I would wear the damn thing all. the. time. out of spite.

    • December 1, 2010 8:34 pm

      I would love to take it to the next level, and wear tampon earrings or a shirt that says MY VAGINA IS BLEEDING.

      Of course, I’d probably be out of a job.

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