Welcome to the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research

The Society for Menstrual Cycle Research is a nonprofit, interdisciplinary research organization. Our membership includes researchers in the social and health sciences, humanities scholars, health care providers, policy makers, health activists, artists and students with interests in the role of the menstrual cycle in women’s health and well-being.

We strive to be the source of guidance, expertise, and ethical considerations for researchers, practitioners, policy makers and funding resources interested in the menstrual cycle. The Society holds biennial meetings featuring presentations of the latest research by members.


SMCR 2015: Menstrual Health and Reproductive Justice:
Human Rights across the Lifespan

Keynote Speaker Loretta Ross
[used with permission]

Join us for a multidisciplinary and global conference to strengthen our research, activism, clinical service, artistic expression, and policy. We are working to achieve empowerment and social justice for women and girls everywhere by heightening menstrual health awareness, education, and services.

Menstrual health is central to women’s ability to lead lives of dignity and well being in every society and every part of the world. Without menstrual health other core rights remain in jeopardy. In fact, the UNDP and UNICEF have highlighted menstruation as “the single most important factor affecting school drop-out among girls” (2007), impeding the educational attainment that would facilitate social empowerment and financial independence around the globe. Yet, menstrual health is rarely respected, protected, or fulfilled as a human right, and has not been recognized or theorized as a reproductive justice issue.

“Stigma around menstruation and menstrual hygiene is a violation of several human rights, most importantly of the right to human dignity, but also of the right to non-discrimination, equality, bodily integrity, health, privacy, and the right to freedom from inhumane and degrading treatment from abuse and violence.”

Dr. Jyoti Sanghera, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

We are now accepting abstracts—of no more than 500 words—describing papers, posters, workshops, panels or creative presentations. Proposals addressing all aspects of the menstrual cycle (physiological, sociocultural, psychological, or cross-cultural)  from menarche to menopause are encouraged, including those that involve research, theory, public policy, health care, and clinical applications, art, and activism. The possibilities are endless. Suggested topics intersect menstrual health and politics at any stage of the lifespan.

Download the submission guidelines and forms here! Deadline is January 16, 2015 [pdf].  In order to submit the form electronically, you must open it in Adobe Acrobat Reader.

We also seek spoken word artists and poets to participate in our second Menstrual Poetry Slam (interested? Email chris.bobel@umb.edu)

Because menstruation is a human right.


Robin Danielson Act Introduced on Menstrual Hygiene Day

Communities around the world marked the first Menstrual Hygiene Day on May 28, 2014, to break the silence and build awareness about the fundamental role that good menstrual hygiene management (MHM) plays in enabling women and girls to reach their full potential. Representative Carolyn Maloney of New York’s 12th District chose this as the ideal day to introduce an updated version of the Robin Danielson Bill, legislation to study the health effects of menstrual hygiene products. The Robin Danielson Act of 2014 would require the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to research whether menstrual hygiene products that contain dioxin, synthetic fibers, and other chemical additives like chlorine and fragrances, pose health risks. SMCR is among many organizations endorsing this bill. We urge you to contact your representative and encourage them to support the Robin Danielson Act of 2014.


Have you visited re:Cycling (SMCR’s blog) lately?

Members of the SMCR leadership team started the blog partly for fun and partly to increase the visibility of the Society for Menstrual Research and our work. At re:Cycling, we write about anything related to the menstrual cycle and women’s health, from hokey tampon ads and literary references to menstruation to the latest news on birth control pills to how to cope with hot flashes/flushes to menstrual humor and more. We’ve been favorably mentioned at Women’s eNewsSweetening the Pill, the now-defunct (sadly) Broadsheet, Feministing, and a few other places, too. Our favorite review came from Zara Rabinowicz at BitchBuzz:

What I really like about the site is that it addresses all those things you’re slightly to embarrassed to ask, and with sass and snarkiness that makes you wonder what was so bad about the questions. . . . re:Cycling aims to make you feel proud and confident about your cycle–and not bat an eyelid when discussing discharge.

It’s important you stay informed about your body and what relates to it, and it’s about time there was a site that kept you informed. The entertainment value is just a welcome bonus.

Check it out! We welcome your feedback.

 


Membership in the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research is open to individuals who have an interest in research on the menstrual cycle or related issues, and who support the purposes of the Society. Dues are $60 for one year or $110 for two years, and we also offer a self-selecting sliding-scale rate starting at $25. Membership benefits include receiving the Society Newsletter, registration in the members-only Society Email Discussion List, discounted conference fee, and receipt of our journal Women’s Reproductive Health (publication begins in early 2014). Everything about how to join the Society is available here.