Happy Tampers: Changing the Perception of Menstruation

At the University of Denver, the student-run organization Happy Tampers is striving to combat the stigma surrounding menstruation and contribute to the abolishment of period poverty on campus and in the greater Denver area. 

During one’s menstruation window, the last thought that should go through one’s mind is, “Where will I find my next pad?” Unfortunately, this is a harsh reality for many menstruators near and far. Having access to menstruation products needs to be a right — not a privilege. Happy Tampers continues to validate menstruators within our community by stocking bathrooms with supplies throughout campus on a weekly basis, as well as providing the greater Denver community with acknowledgement through product drives and general outreach. 

tampons with flowers Photo by Polina Zimmerman from Pexels Happy Tampers has changed the perception of menstruation by providing a space for all menstruators, making it their mission to emphasize the fact that not every woman menstruates, and not every menstruator is a woman. They help spread the message that menstruation comes in many forms. Preferred products, length of period, frequency of period, and symptoms are a few factors which contribute to each period varying from the next. The three factors of Happy Tampers– sustainability, outreach and distribution— fuel this mission of acceptance and acknowledgement. Menstruation products are known to hurt the environment through excessive packaging and waste, so Happy Tampers has joined efforts alongside the Center for Sustainability on campus to find products that comply with substantiality standards. In regards to outreach, the committee was formed to find ways to provide the greater Denver community with general resources and products. 

Sweatpants Against A Wall Arianna Tucker / Her Campus In many instances, it feels as though the mental effects of one’s period are overlooked. Yes, physical symptoms such as cramping, headaches, and muscle pain are most prominent; however, depressive or anxious thoughts, lack of motivation, and happiness are affected by one’s period as well. Through campus-wide events and weekly club meetings, Happy Tampers has given menstruators the space to take ownership of their journey. For some, that means exploring the variety of products on the market, looking into birth control to help ease symptoms, or keeping their journey to themselves. After all, not everyone is comfortable with being open about their menstruation, and that’s perfectly okay!  

Although periods can be weird, uncomfortable, and frustrating, Happy Tampers has been a source of comfort for students on campus. Knowing that you can walk into a building on campus and find menstruation products in a close-by bathroom has been a relief and a sense of ease for many. As a University of Denver menstruator, you’re seen, heard, and validated in your menstruation journey – we’re here to support you!