Cass posted a photo showing their self with a period stain on their pants, holding a sign that says “Periods are not just for women #bleedingwhiletrans.” This is not the first time Cass has shown that periods aren’t just for girls. They also created a coloring book featuring Toni the Tampon, a gender neutral character meant to illustrate that people of all genders get periods. Cass, who recently came out as transgender, posted a poem along with the photo, explaining the gender dysphoria and fear they experience each month along with their cycle.
“The five days it flows/ I try to breathe, I dissociate/ While my body rips outs parts of me/ Leaving nothing but a shell of hate./ The blood drips from an open wound/ Of a war waging deep inside my corpse/ The battle between mind and body/ Immovable object; unstoppable force,” Cass wrote.
Since posting the picture last month, Cass has gotten messages of overwhelming support, but they have also received an incredible amount of hate. Teen Vogue caught up with Cass to talk about why they posted the picture, and what the weeks after have been like.
Y’all know I’m trans and queer, And what that means for me all around, Is something that’s neither there nor here, It’s a happy, scary middle ground. So when I talk gender inclusion, And I wrote these rhymes to help you see, I’m not tryna bring up something shallow, Periods are honestly pretty traumatic for me. See my life is very clearly marked, Like a red border cut up a nation, A time before and a time beyond, The mark of my first menstruation. So let me take you back, To the details that I can still recall, Of the day I gained my first period, And the day that I lost it all. I was 15 and still happy, Running around, all chest bared and buck, Climbing trees, digging holes, And no one gave a single fuck. I mean I think my ma was worried, So I went and grew out my locks, A sign I was normal, still a girl, A painted neon sign for my gender box. So, the day I got my period, My god, a day so proud, This little andro fucked up kid, Had been bestowed the straight, cis shroud. The relief got all meshed up in my pain, In that moment, I sat down and cried, Just thanking god I was normal, While mourning the freedom that had died. Everyone told me my hips would grow, I looked at them and couldn't stop crying, "What's wrong with you? You'll be a woman!" They kept celebrating a child dying. See my body had betrayed me, That red dot, the wax seal, On a contract left there broken, A gender identity that wasn’t real. Most people deal with blood and tissue, And yet my body forces me to surrender, Cause every time I get my cycle, Is another day I shed my gender. My boobs betray me first, I feel them stretching out my binder, I send up questions, "am I cursed?" And wish to god that she was kinder. The five days it flows, I try to breathe, I dissociate, While my body rips outs parts of me, Leaving nothing but a shell of hate. The blood drips from an open wound, Of a war waging deep inside my corpse, The battle between mind and body, Immovable object; unstoppable force. #bleedingwhiletrans #menstruator #genderinclusion #mencanmenstruate #protectranskids #periodpride #genderdysphoria #menstruationmatters #ifmenhadperiods [PLEASE SHARE!]