Tuesday, September 11, 2007

What!? You air your what in my bedroom??

More youngsters with hygiene problems.

This 19 year old girl Yu, whose father is a popular cosmetic surgeon and her mother, the Deputy Director of a hospital in Shanghai. She stayed with me for 6 month. You would expect the child of 2 great doctors to be a role model when it comes to her personal hygiene. My eyes almost popped out and jaws dropped at what I saw!

Two months after Yu moved in, one day my kaypoh (busybody) maid came running to me, asking me to go to Yu's room. I followed her and she showed me the towel rack where several strips of dirty rags hung from it. I looked puzzled and my amused maid told me, these rags were used by Yu during her monthly period. Huh!?!?

Apparently, Yu tored a towel into strips and every month, when her menses came, she would fold these strips of rags to use as a sanitary pad. At the end of the day, after her nightly bath, she would wash it and air it on the towel rack.

Any one tried washing blood-soaked fabric? The stains stayed and so do the smell. OMG!!! I want to puke as I write this! The sight of the pieces of stained rags fluttering in the breeze made me so sick. I imagined the boys in the house seeing it and curious, unconsciously wandered in to sniff. Noooooo!!!! Yucks.

I waited for Yu to come back from school before gently telling her to get sanitary pads and taught her how to use them. This is the new millenium and yet there are girls in big cities who don't know how to use a sanitary pad. *slap my forehead*

When I told my Mom this incredible tale, she nonchalantly told me when she was in her teens, she used banana leaves. She tored the leaves into strips..... ARRRRGGH! I don't want to hear any more!!!!


  1. Wah lau!!! Lucky I haven't had my lunch yet! Reading that .... arrghh!! The mental image! I can almost *sniff, sniff* smell it!! Can't imagine how bad it was for you. :D

  2. moby,
    So gross, right!? haiyo.... still want to sniff sniff....

  3. my long time ago maid used rocks to wipe her shit when she was living in the village. and yes, she also used and re-used cloth like that for her menses, ie. till she runs out of cloth! hahahaha i AM spoiling your appetite further ya? *grins*
    lemme spoil it further then! i don't know what else she used after she ran out of recycled rags. i think i was 'deeply-coma-ed' then to take in another word.

  4. LOL, modern women have the convenience of sanitary pads and tampons nowadays but it was really banana leaves and re-usable cloth in the old days.

  5. Urgh .. Grosssss!!!!

    So ignorant! My goodness ..

    I never thought that this method exists in the first place. The most outdated method that I know is when u have to use string to tie the pads to your hips or something like that.

  6. misti,
    Huh!? Rocks!? She must have a really hard bum. kakaka..... I thought they wash it in the river.

    Oh no! I don't want to think further on that!

  7. sicari,
    Yup, re-usable cloth and leaves were used in the old days but until today, it is still in use! Incredible!

    My Mom stopped using that 45 years ago.

  8. eww eww ewwwwww!! yeah it used to be a "wash and reuse" routine for women way back then, but now we have better ways of maintaining a healthy hygiene mah... hope she won't go back to that towel method!

    then again, she's probably helping the environment by recycling... LOL!

  9. lilMrsT,
    Oh yes, my Mom taught me to use the strings to tie the pads when I first had my menses.

    And I really didn't think about what women used in the past until I saw this. bleekk....

  10. May,
    Yay, in a good way, she's helping the environment by recycling. But she's also poluting my house and freaking me out!!!

  11. Yikes! Is this Gross Week for this blog? Must've been quite surreal with all those red cloths swaying in the wind.

  12. Miss Loi,
    Yup, I made this gross week. More coming up. hahaha.....

  13. We are lucky we live in this age and time with all the conveniences. prob parents too busy earning money even to teach and show daughter what is avail. She used what she had been taught to use. Prob an old aunt or grandparent or even maid that taught her that. Cant blame her.

  14. You seem to be gaining an unhealthy appetite for the gross. :-P

  15. Eeeee... This is gross man!

    Shanghai is a hip city and yet the ppl still use the old method? Good thing your maid was kapoh. Kekeke...

  16. You know, they do sell reusable (an environmentally-friendly) sanitary towels nowadays. I just read that they are manufactured in Japan. I don't know how the blood stains get removed though...
    but TOWEL RAGS???!!!!!

  17. It;s so gross but yet it is funny. Her mum never shown her how to use sanitary pad?!

    But then your mum with the banana leaves, this is the first.

  18. stay-at-home mum,
    Surprise! Surprise! Her Mom taught her that. And her mother is a high-ranking Medical Director in a large hospital. The family is well-to-do, so they don't have to scrimp and save. Both sets of grandparents have passed away.

    Sanitary napkins are already sold in Shanghai years ago. Don't know why these mother and daughter don't use them.

  19. sicarii,
    Got meh. No lah. Just ranting and getting it off my chest. hehe...

  20. lzmommy,
    Whether in Shanghai or Beijing, such things do happen. In this case, this girl comes from a family of educated professionals.

    Sometimes cannot just see these people's nice physical appearance or beautiful attire. Their behaviour and conduct is a different thing.

  21. giddy tiger,
    Oh yes. I read about it too. But reusable!? I won't buy that. You need water and detergent to wash it. Troublesome.

  22. malaika's mummy,
    Yes, I was surprised her mother didn't tell her about sanitary pads.

    My Mom came from a poor family and they lived in a kampong when she was very young. At that time, the country folks had never heard of sanitary pads.

    The women would dry the banana leaves and cut them to smaller sizes to fit. My mom said the dried leaves scrapped against her skin when she walked. Oh boy, so glad I wasn't born that early.

  23. Ouch!!! I think I'm gonna miss my meals.. :P

    Paper rolls I heard of but never of banana leafs nor towel. EEEEEE....!!!!

  24. hahah..
    1. I love your description of music. I love the fact that your son is sooooo "tang wah"!!!! Must teach me how.

    2. I have heard of 5 days never shower, but 2 months? *faints*

    3. If she prefers cloth, ask her to wash with COLD water. She is being environmentally friendly mah.. HA HA HAH HAHA!!! *now pukes with that thought*

    Sorry for compressing comments into one box ah.... U stole my COINS! ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!

  25. EWW EWW EWWWW!! ecl, can u not post dirty things anymore?

  26. i know about the rags but banana leaves? Mmmmmm... Luckily we are now in the 21st century :D

  27. luckily the guys didnt use the rags as a facecloth..

  28. etcetera mommy,
    haha.... now you are more informed. I learnt a lot from my foreign students and guests. More to come, can stomach it? :)

  29. mott,
    aiyahhh.... why never bury your gold coins? kakaka......

    Now she uses sanitary pads already lah, more convenient and hygienic.

    I teach you to cast spells on your kids so they will be tang wah. Wait for me go KL. :P

  30. ehon,
    Tomorrow got some more. hahaha....

    You don't like dirty things? Dirty pictures leh? ;P

  31. chen,
    I'm sure you have even seen ladies using cloth.

    Never seen leaves meh? Ask your Mom or older female relatives what they use last time. I'm being kaypoh again. hehe....

  32. Hi chocolatelust,
    I was worried they might use it as hand towel ah!! Very suay (unlucky) then.

  33. eastcoastlife,
    Oh my goshhhh!!! Are we too high tech or is she so left behind? Nowadays, I supposed all the girls use sanitary pads eh? Who else don't know this basic knowledge? Probably only your Yu. :P

  34. alamak lidat also can ah??? really wah lau eh??? wat century now??

  35. Sometimes even today, there is things like this making us drop our jaws.

    Lucky her that she had someone (you) that could tell her!!!!

    Imagine to go around with these... OH, no, do NOT imagine that!!!!!


  36. It's normal lah those days.,.even in the western world.
    That's how the term 'on the rag' came about.

    Reminds me of a humsap song...

    "Rich girl wears a napkin.
    the poor girl wears rag strip.
    But Dinah she wears nothing at all
    she let it drip and drip"


  37. Kok,
    There are still girls in China who use recycled cloth. Some truly cannot afford to buy the sanitary pads.

    There are actually a lot of things that are happening in less developed countries where we would find it incredible.

  38. wennnn,
    Yup, such things are happening in some parts of the world. We are lucky to be born in a modernised society.

  39. mamabok,
    haha.... unthinkable that such things are happening huh!

  40. Captain Lifecruiser,
    Yes, I don't want to imagine any more. It's too gross.

  41. east meets west kitchen,
    hahaha...... I SAW the rags!!

  42. Cocka,
    Waaah!!! Where did you get the song from? Can find this type of song some more. You got the ink leh! kakaka......


  43. wah! read till almost wanna puke also. That's really hard to imagine and really really gross..

  44. mamatang,
    haha.... all of you are lucky I don't want to upload the photo. You all wouldn't be able to eat after that. The horrible image is going to stay in your minds. lol....

  45. OMG! So stinky....errrr....
    Maybe napkins too expensive.

  46. I know I am late but some people have to work in a place where blogs are firewalled! :P

    When I was 12, we had a washer lady who came for 3 hours each morning. One day, my grandma saw this Indian lady put her wet cloth home made pads in a shopping bag when she had to change to a new pad. My grandma told my mum that the bathroom was full of blood cos she washed her pad in there and didn't wash the blood away properly.

    Life is like that. Some poor people can't afford to buy sanitary pads but I suppose this girl must be from a well to do family if she is able to study in Singapore. Right?

  47. ed,
    hehe..... some girls look good on the outside but they could probably have a different lifestyle from us and bad habits.

  48. tigerfish,
    hehe.... she probably thought that napkins are a waste of money.

  49. awwww... poor Judy,
    You cannot blog-hop during work hours. :(

    My this girl comes from a well-to-do family. She could afford sanitary pads, but I don't know why she didn't. Probably trying to save money because the exchange rate is 1:5.

    I was talking to my Malay neighbour yesterday night and she said she has relatives using recycled cloth these days too. Looks like this is a common practice among the older women. Thrifty? Environmental friendly?

  50. Oh yenjai,
    Definitely. Many more I couldn't tell. hehe......

  51. OMG!!!!
    Are they still that advanced??? Or they want to save the environment????

    Anyway, you've been awarded...


  52. angeleyes,
    I want to think they are conserving the environment. hehe....

    awwww... thanks for the award. :)

  53. OMG! Unless her mother taught her that, otherwise it's really unbelievable! Afterall, she is from a big city and her parents are doctors... Don't want to think of it anymore, getting sick!

  54. windy,
    Yes, her Mom taught her that. I believe her Mom does it too. I don't know why when her Mom's a well-to-do doctor.

  55. hahahaha! that would be sooo funny if boys sniff it and smile :D
    my mother used cloth for the period in the 50's.
    its sooo nice to have sanitary pad these days!

  56. it may be too late to make a comment on this post but just wanted to say ..
    that its seems like most ppl think using cloths are outdated or ulu whatever.. but its making a comeback in the western world bc of environmental and health reasons. If you dont believe me, google luna pads.