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Kiss and Tell: “After my date, I had to get my tampon removed in the ER”

For Elizabeth, a 23-year-old student, it was a rough morning after

Kiss and Tell: “After my date, I had to get my tampon removed in the ER”

Welcome to Kiss and Tell, a series about the steamy, surprising and frequently absurd world of Toronto dating. Send your most memorable stories from the pursuit of love and lust in the city to .

—As told to Juliann Garisto


For my second-ever Tinder date, I made plans to meet Anna at a bar called Bistro 422. She was a few years older than me and visiting from Montreal, where she studied at McGill. She was gorgeous, with big green eyes and long red hair. Plus she didn’t wear makeup, which I liked. I was nervous, mostly because I still wasn’t used to the idea of meeting up with a complete stranger. Anna was in Toronto for only a few days, though, so I knew it wasn’t going to be anything serious.

I was living at my parents’ house in Mississauga, so I took the train into the city. The bar had a speakeasy feel: you had to walk down a flight of stairs and through a dingy basement to get to the back patio. And it had really cheap drinks—like, the cheapest you could find. I arrived early and, not knowing what else to do, started drinking while I waited. When Anna strolled into the bar, she had a cool, tomboy demeanour. She was definitely more relaxed than I was.

We ordered a pitcher of beer plus the funniest-sounding drink on the menu, which was the Slippery Nipple. I had no idea what to expect, but our server showed up with a room temperature shot glass filled with what looked like chunky milk. I later found out that it’s supposed to be a shooter of Baileys and sambuca. If made properly, it separates into distinct layers, so it’s clear on the bottom and creamy on the top. Ours did not look anything like that, but we drank them anyway.

The conversation was typical getting-to-know-you stuff: we talked about what we both did for work and hobbies we enjoyed. Nothing too intimate. Mostly it felt like we were killing time while I drank my nerves away. After we finished our pitcher, Anna wanted to go to another bar called the Green Room because the one we were at was getting too busy.

The Green Room was less crowded, and there was a nice table by the window. We settled our bags on the floor beside us and ordered a pitcher of beer. Then another one. Admittedly, we were both drinking a lot. I don’t remember exactly how, but sometime after that second pitcher we ended up in the bathroom, and then in the same stall.

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We started fooling around a bit. I was on my period, so it got messy, but Anna didn’t seem to mind. The only issue was that I’d forgotten to take out my tampon, so the whole time we were in there it was getting pushed farther and farther up. But I was too drunk and horny to notice that anything was wrong. Even worse, once we were done, I drunkenly assumed I had done the smart thing and taken my tampon out. I honestly thought I needed a new one. So I put a fresh one in before we went back upstairs.

When we stumbled over to our table, the bar was completely empty and my bag was nowhere to be found. After we looked around for a bit, it became obvious that someone had stolen it. It was my favourite bag, plus it had my wallet and keys in it. In the moment, though, I was only worried about how I was going to pay for my drinks.

I didn’t want to have to ask Anna, but I had no choice. She didn’t make me feel bad about it, though. After all, it wasn’t exactly my fault that my bag had been stolen. Still, it was clearly the end of the night now that I had no money. The date ended there—Anna paid for everything, we hugged goodbye and I got an Uber back to my parents’ house.

The next morning, I woke up with a brutal hangover. The first thing I did was go to the washroom. Then all my memories from the night came rushing over me. I took out the tampon I’d put in after hooking up with Anna and then thought, Wait a minute…did I take out the one before this? Suddenly it clicked. Somehow, my brain was able to think back far enough to realize that, yes, there was a second tampon still inside of me. I soon realized that I couldn’t reach it on my own, but I didn’t feel any panic or pain. My now sober mind just connected the dots. Obviously, I felt like a complete idiot, but having gained a night’s rest, I was able to think clearly and take action.

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I immediately texted my best friend, Gia. She agreed to meet me at the ER at Toronto Western Hospital. So I gathered my things, stealthily told my parents that I was going to meet a friend and took the GO train back into the city. Gia and I found each other by the front entrance of the hospital. We had a smoke while I filled her in on the details of the night.

She was kind of freaking out. She kept saying, “Oh my god, there’s a tampon stuck inside you.”  I was like, “Yeah, I know, it’s fine.” She was surprised at how calm I was about it. “It’s okay,” I said, “It happened. We’re going to deal with it.”

We went into the hospital and did the whole emergency room check-in process. When it was our turn, the staff brought us into one of those curtained-off stalls that give you the illusion of privacy. Eventually, the doctor strode in. She was very matter-of-fact and didn’t ask any questions. Clearly she’d already been briefed on the situation.

After the doctor asked me to spread my legs, she inserted a speculum. I was surprised by how quick it was. It was only a matter of seconds before the tampon was out. The doctor made a point of showing it to me. It was almost blue—not something you would want to think about being in your body. Gia stayed with me the whole time, even though she had to look away. When it was all over, we went and got brunch.

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A few months later, I visited Montreal. I messaged Anna—maybe, I thought, she’d want to grab a drink. She never responded, which I thought was fair.

It wasn’t a bad experience on the whole. I don’t feel particularly ashamed or anything, but it was enough to make me realize that I don’t want to be the kind of person who has to get drunk just for some semblance of connection. I’m not sad that I never saw Anna again, though I do still fantasize about reuniting with my stolen bag and wallet.

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