Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Talking to Your Daughter About Her First Period

Do you remember going through puberty and what it felt like? I vaguely remember going back to school the fall of 6th grade and having developed a chest. I had always been quite a tomboy so it was a little weird for me. The boys weren't sure what to do either.

The other detail I remember was being given a book to read. It was black and white and had a copywrite of 1950. It had a lot of information but nothing practical. My goodness, no wonder I always felt so lost.

I wanted to be intentional about talking to my daughter about it and making sure she knows what is happening. Since I had her little sister when she was almost 8 we had a lot of discussions about pregnancy and how it worked. I didn't necessarily present the information, I just answered questions age appropriately as they were asked.

Now we are at an age where I need to discuss her period and what it means and how it works. This is truly an uncomfortable subject for me, mostly because I am not 100% confident that I understand the entire process. Regardless of my feelings I needed to have this conversation, so I put on my big girl panties and jumped into the process.

Before I talked with her I educated myself on the process. I wanted to be able to show her pictures and explain the process of her period to her. I wanted to have my ducks in a row and hopefully give her a good explanation of what was happening to her.

If you've followed me any time at all, you'll know that I believe in prayer. So it should be of no surprise that I prayed before I spoke with her. I asked God for wisdom and for peace as I spoke to her.

When I sat down to talk with her I knew I had to act normal. I needed to present the information in a casual manner to not freak her out. She totally didn't want to talk about this so I had to make it super comfortable. I set the scene by having her dad take her little sister out to play at the park. We now had an empty house and could have an uninterrupted private conversation.

During the discussion I used actual names of the body parts. She grew up knowing the word vagina so this wasn't too weird for her. She also knew the term uterus but wasn't completely sure how it all came together. This was my chance to do it right I wasn't going to blow it.

I demonstrated how to use pads and how to dispose of them. This seems like it should be pretty self explanatory, but I don't want her to be embarrassed or afraid to ask questions so I tried to cover everything I could think of. I also showed her tampons and explained that one day she'd be able to use them when she felt ready. 

To help her to be ready at any point, I gave her a make up bag with feminine products to keep in her backpack. The bag had a pad, feminine wipes, and a change of panties. Due to homeschooling we are rarely apart but if she was at a friends or something I want her to be ready.

The next thing we talked about was personal hygiene. In the past she'd been able to skip a shower if we hadn't left the house, but I explained that hygiene during this time was not to be skipped. It is actually very important and will help her to feel more fresh.

As a final step I showed her how to track it. I gave her a small pocket calendar and told her to put an X on the day she started her period and a O on the day she finished. I explained that it would help her to be able to predict when it might be happening again. 

Afterwards, we went out for frappaccinos, kind of a little celebration of sorts. 

Other than educating her, my biggest goal was not to scare her. I didn't mention cramps or back pain. After all not everyone has those symptoms, so why mention them.

Although this is a tough and scary subject, it is a talk that can be more comfortable if you go into it with a plan. You can't predict everything that is going to happen or every question that will be asked but at least by preparing yourself you'll feel more comfortable and hopefully more calm.

Sending you hugs as you enter into this new season of motherhood.

Oh yeah chocolate is always great to have during this conversation. 

I'm praying for you!

Book Recommendation:

Raising Sexually Pure Kids: How To Prepare Your Children for the Act of Marriage by Tim and Beverly Lahaye

Suggested Reading:

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