Yeah, THAT fifth-grade talk. You clicked on this knowing EXACTLY what the fifth-grade talk meant. The talk that you secretly looked forward to all year only to find it awkward and uncomfortable. It lacked that special quality you were hoping for – although it did come with an awesome gift bag of samples pads, tampons, and deodorant. The awesome sample bag had to be quickly hidden from the boys.
If you’re old enough to be the parent of a pre-teen or teenager, it’s likely that at one time in your life the characters in a Judy Blume book spoke to you in a way that no one else could. Easily relatable, as if they were reading your mind. Living out their story was #goals.
You might have spent your days fantasizing about how wonderfully perfect your period would be, including all the special products that were beautifully marketed for young, aspiring, menstruating young women.
What you learned about growing up depended on the people in your life, their comfort level, and better yet, their knowledge to be able to thoughtfully talk about your feelings of anticipation or what is happening during menstruation. Knowing this information as a younger person helps us to understand our natural fertility cycle so that later in life when it becomes important, we can understand our body works and what to do to avoid or achieve pregnancy.
Unfortunately, we don’t learn this kind of information. At best, we had a brief, awkward conversation with our mother (or other female adult), and the fifth-grade talk – led by a teacher with limited knowledge about such things – because he/she likely never had that same meaningful conversation or opportunity to understand the complexity of the fertility cycle.
Now as a parent, it’s your turn to pass on the information that was never really passed on to you. You remember what it felt like to be that young girl dreaming of your first period, and now that your daughter is that same girl, you’d like to share with her. But where do you start? What do you share?
Our Girl Up! Online course will help you and your daughter learn and share together. You’ll have a deeper understanding of your own fertility while having the opportunity to celebrate this special time with your daughter.
Wendy Trees Shiffer, MS, FACCE, LCCE is a mother and maternal-fetal health educator. She is the founder and program director for Family Trees Birth Programs serving childbirth professionals and new parents.