what is a menstruator?
Put simply, a menstruator is a person who has a period.
Why not just say women? Don’t all women have a period?
Well, while most women and girls are menstruators, not all women have periods. Some women use birth control that stops menstruation, women in menopause do not have periods, some women could have amenorrhea or a menstrual disorder that prevents periods, and some women do not have the biology to menstruate.
Isn’t anyone with female anatomy a woman/girl?
This is where the importance of differentiating between sex and gender identity comes in. A person can be born with the biological sex, female, and identify as a woman or a gender identity other than woman (ex. nonbinary, man, transgender, genderfluid, etc.). A person who was born intersex could also have periods.
It seems dehumanizing to call a person a “menstruator.” I wouldn’t call someone a “urinator.”
It is important to talk about people respectfully and inclusively. There are some inclusive terms to describe a person who menstruates: “menstruator” and “person who menstruates.” The language is still changing as we learn to include the range of gender identities of people who have periods.
Overall, menstruation does not define a woman or anyone else for that matter. Whether you menstruate or not, to be a woman is to be respectful to yourself, empowered in your actions, and an advocate for all.