Relation mère fille ado

How to talk about periods with your daughter ?

Opening up conversations about periods with your daughter is essential for helping her comfortably embrace her femininity and all that it entails. Discussing puberty, sexuality, contraception, and emotions without taboos is important, and menstruation deserves clear explanations as well as empathetic listening because it can be misunderstood and distressing.

When should you start the conversation ? 

With girls reaching puberty earlier these days, some experiencing their first period as young as 8 or 10, it’s wise not to wait until they are teenagers. Ideally, start discussing menstruation as soon as your daughter learns about menstrual bleeding. If, like many mothers, you find your young children following you everywhere, even into the bathroom, they’ll soon notice and might ask about your monthly cycle.

How to discuss about periods ? 

The first step is to reassure your daughter that you are not hurt or in pain, which might be her first concern upon seeing blood. Explain using simple but accurate terms that this happens every month to women who are not pregnant. Emphasize the natural and normal aspects of menstruation and let her know that she, too, will experience this when she’s older. Even if the conversation feels uncomfortable, try to stay calm to minimize any apprehension she might feel.

Demonstrate through your demeanor that menstruation is not a big deal and nothing to be ashamed of. Avoid expressing any negative sentiments, even in an attempt to dismiss them, as this might suggest that periods can be problematic personally or socially.

What if she discovers periods on her own ? 

If you’re uncomfortable with your daughter witnessing your period, wait for her to bring it up. She might discover your menstrual products or hear about it at school and surely will have questions. Once again, handle the conversation straightforwardly and ensure all her queries are answered. Keeping her in the dark due to lack of knowledge can breed fear and rejection.

If she doesn’t ask questions by the time she’s around 10, take the initiative to discuss menstruation. Start by asking what she knows and fill in the gaps with more precise language. At this age, she can understand the nuances of the menstrual cycle. Don’t hesitate to use diagrams or videos.

Discuss the different menstrual products available and consider buying some so she’s prepared for her first period. Make it a fun shopping trip and present her chosen products in a beautiful gift box. Menstruation should be celebrated as a joyful step towards a life full of possibilities, not viewed as a burden or a source of shame.

Celebrate this important milestone with your daughter and encourage her to share her feelings about this new phase. This will help her feel more positive and supported.

And if you feel overwhelmed…

There’s no need to stress over something that makes you uncomfortable. Your daughter’s puberty can be a time for you to reflect on why the topic makes you uneasy, but it’s not essential to force yourself if you’re not ready. If discussing periods feels too daunting, consider asking a trusted woman—be it an aunt, sister-in-law, or a close friend—to help out.

Your daughter will benefit from having a relaxed and informed conversation about her first period, regardless of who it’s with. Don’t feel guilty if you’re not the one to have the talk. Everyone has their own experiences and there should be no judgment concerning such a personal topic.

As societal taboos continue to fade, it’s vital to pass on a more open and understanding approach to menstruation to the next generation. Help your daughter navigate this journey toward the liberation of women’s issues with grace and knowledge.

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