Stock Photos That Get Periods All Wrong

May 6th 2016

Laura Donovan

For some women, having your period never gets easier, even with age.

Many women also face the cultural taboo surrounding periods, in addition to menstrual cramps, hormonal migraines, and premenstrual syndrome (PMS).

The stigma of menstruation took center stage last summer when presidential candidate Donald Trump said Fox News host Megyn Kelly had "blood coming out of her... wherever" when she confronted his historic mistreatment of women at the first presidential debate. Though he denied that he was talking about her period, many still felt he perpetuated a negative stereotype about women's health.

Period stigmas and stereotypes manifest in other forms of media as well.

Stock photos, which are typically generic-looking images meant for online news publications, often include stereotypical and inaccurate images surrounding female periods. Various media outlets use stock photos, which feature models, for relevant stories. Various companies, from BigStockPhoto to Shutterstock, carry stock images, which tend to be cheesy or over-the-top. There is even a Tumblr page titled Stupid Stock Photos dedicated to mocking particularly silly stock images.

Here are a couple stock photos that get periods all wrong.

As a woman, I can safely say that having your period is nothing like sitting on a bed with snow falling from the ceiling.

Mid-section of a woman during her period

Show me a woman who says she has pretended to smoke with a tampon and I will show you a liar.

girl with tampon as a cigarette

This image seems to imply a woman tastes her period blood and rubs it around her body for fun. Most women would probably agree that this is not what they want to do on their periods.

woman eating cherries in her mouth

This image perpetuates the stereotype that women are cranky and hostile when they're on their periods as a result of PMS.

Period pain image from stock images

According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, around 85 percent of menstruating women have at least one symptom of PMS during their periods every month, but PMS has a range of symptoms, so it does not necessarily mean a woman will be on edge or irritable when she has it. She might just have really bad cramps, swollen breasts, or acne. In short, PMS is so much more than feeling grouchy.

Many stock photos show women in pain from cramps. This image does not convey a message of pain. The woman appears to be experiencing an almost amused expression from her cramps, which are actually quite painful.

Woman in pain during her period

RELATED: What Happens When Women at This Company Get Their Periods