Menstruation is a taboo topic all over the world, including the United States. Some women aren’t able to look me in the eye when I start talking about periods, or even be in the same room as me. There is a sense of shame and an “ick factor” that is inherent in the topic.
The main reason that many women do not have adequate access to feminine hygiene products is because of this taboo. For women in poverty, these products are costly, and there is no place to get them for free. Shelters are not able to provide enough feminine hygiene products because of the taboo. They will gladly ask for clothing, food, and hygiene products, specifying soap, shampoo, and toothpaste, but they won’t ask specifically for feminine hygiene products. Furthermore, these products aren't covered by food stamps. These products are not affordable and not recognized as a necessity, but women need them desperately.
Breaking the taboo can only lead to more access to menstrual products for all women.