It is very sad to see rising star, Fantana signed to the Rufftown records proudly flaunts her pad on stage and defends her action, Lifestyle editor, Portia Arthur writes.

Ruff Town newest signee, Fantana who is out with her single, ‘Girls hate on Girls’ was among the rising musicians who performed at Shatta Wale’s Reign Album at the Fantasy Dome over the weekend. 

In a video circulating online, Fantana was seen performing in an extremely short glittering dress which showed off her derriere and menstrual pad. This came after music lovers, fans at the auditorium and social media users criticised her poor stage performance and vocals.

In the video, Fantana was seen dancing provocatively trying to entertain the audience in what seems to be her second stage performance knowing she was menstruating and had to dress according to avoid exposing herself. 

Female celebrities just like every woman menstruate and coincidentally it might be a stumbling block in the work and just like the case of Fantana, if the necessary care and personal hygiene is not practiced.

While pregnancy is a celebratory topic, menstruation is considered a dark phase which is supposed to be dealt with secretly. 

What is menstruation?

According to bmcwomenshealth.com, ‘menstruation is a naturally occurring physiological phenomenon in adolescent girls and pre-menopausal women

What is menstrual hygiene?

Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) is defined as ‘Women and adolescent girls using a clean menstrual management material to absorb or collect blood that can be changed in privacy as often as necessary for the duration of the menstruation period, using soap and water for washing the body as required, and having access to facilities to dispose of used menstrual management materials’. Menstruation necessitates the availability of material resources to absorb or collect menstrual blood, facilitate personal hygiene and dispose of waste, ideally with adequate privacy”.

Products to use during menstruation

While pads and tampons may seem like the most practical sanitary products to invest in, several alternatives have recently emerged on the market that is far more affordable, comfortable and environmentally-friendly such as cup and disc. The cup is made from medical grade silicone and, once inserted into the vagina, can collect blood for as long as 12 hours.

The menstrual disc lasts for up to 12 hours, but it has also been designed to allow its user to enjoy mess-free period sex. 

In a press release posted by Fantana on her official social media page, it reads; 

Earlier on this year, I read an article about the persistent harmful socio-cultural norms, stigma and misconception around menstruation which leads to the discrimination of women and girls in some parts of the world

In some places, menstruating women continued to be viewed as contaminated impure and are often restricted from engaging in certain activities according to research by experts.

The united nation’s report released on 5th March 2019 quotes ‘ the stigma generated by stereotypes around menstruation have severe impacts on all aspects of women and girls human right’.

As clearly stated by Fantana in the above, NGOs and other health organisations are creating more awareness about menstruation, products to use and how to dispose of them properly and we must commend their efforts. Menstruation is not a sin and taking care of yourself during menstruation is as important as taking care of your day to day activities.

"Despite a lot of awareness going on and efforts by the UNDP to end this discrimination and abuse against young girls and women I was surprised to see some bloggers and a section of the media high light and body shame me because i refused to let my menses stop me from performing when I felt it coming 30 minutes before I went on stage last Saturday at the fantasy dome" Fantana writes.

In the paragraph above, Fantana blasts the media for talking about how unhygienic it was to show her menstrual pad to the audience at the Fantasy Dome.

Evidently, Fantana wanted to rock that beautiful dress and according to her, she got her menses 30 minutes before the program. The talented musician could have worn underwear beneath instead of just a wearing a panty knowing perfectly the kind of performance she rehearsal over and over again before the show.

As stated above, there are different products accessible to Ghanaian women during menstruation.

Again, what prevented Fantana from changing her costume? Her management team should have a second dress for the unprecedented circumstances. Flash back to when Cardi B suffered a wardrobe malfunction on stage? She quickly changed into a gown and performed for her audience. 

Fantana continues to write "Regardless of my costume being transparent, my only option was to put on a sanitary pad and still go-ahead to perform. I am a woman and I’m not ashamed of menstruating".

Fantana talks about her dress being transparent yet she had 30 minutes to decide what to perform at her allotted time or switch with another performer to find a the perfect dress to make her feel c comfortable and safe on stage.

Yet, with reason unbeknownst to her alone and her team, she chose to wear a see-through dress, flaunt her pad and blame bloggers for discriminating against her?

She concluded that , I want to urge every woman to resist being discriminated against because of menstruation. I hope some people read wide and learn about menstrual health to stop the stereotype against young girls and women.

Yes, my menses appeared 30 minutes to my performance and I had to put on a sanitary pad and still go on stage. Menstruation is not a shame and I urge all young women to take a cue from my actions and not to let it stop them from doing anything they want to do”.

Most working-class women work effortlessly during menstruation. 1 out of 10 women takes a day off to rest if the bleeding is accompanied by severe pains beyond control.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with working during your menstrual but one must be extra cautious to observe personal hygiene and disposal it properly. It is not stated anywhere that women should women should FLAUNT THEIR MENSTRUAL PAD IN PUBLIC as propagated by Ghanaian musician Fantana and her management team.