As I read through scholarly articles about PMDD and menstruation, it seems almost impossible to not consider culture as playing a factor in views, attitudes, and the perpetuation of the stigma. Thinking about that took me down a rabbit hole in researching cultural views and beliefs regarding the menstrual cycle and I was lead to an article in Best Practice & Research Clinical Obstetrics and Gynaecology from 2016 that had some really great information.
While the article broke down in more detail some major world religions and cultures, it was interesting to see the overall recurring themes among them. Such as the belief than menstruating women are impure, either spiritually or being able to cause physical danger. There is also the common theme of excluding or isolating menstruating women from the household and places of prayer, and often avoiding any sort of physical contact with them, particularly intercourse. Interestingly, nearly all of the religions mentioned required that women partake in some sort of ritual bath or cleansing after menstruating in an effort to become pure again. Look for a podcast episode coming soon about this!
Are there religious or cultural beliefs in your home or family regarding menstruation that are observed? I'd like to hear about them.