Talking about periods and other very important things is one of the parenting jobs I most look forward to. It is an honour to guide my girls (and boy – he joined in too for the talk with the twins!) into adolescence so they don’t feel utterly confused and bemused by the sudden onset of those pesky hormones. Well, they do (of course) but it is made a little easier by their deep understanding of what is actually going on.
The tradition is simple – full of love with lots of affirming words, lots of teaching about hormones and periods and lots of meaningful presents. After all, if one is to make the transition from child to young lady, one has to do it in style…
A Surprise on Waking
I decorated a plain Tupperware box each with stuff I had lying about the place. Inside I placed goodies such as chocolate milk, yogurts, cheeses, blueberries, pancakes and an apple. On top I wrote a love letter to each of my girls. Writing to each girl specifically, I tell them everything I am proud of. I do not mention achievements, focusing mainly on character traits and things they have over come. At the end I tell them that no matter where they are or what they have done, Daddy and I will always love them. And we will always be their biggest cheer leaders. I share specific Bible verses that I have prayed about for weeks beforehand. The letters always (always) end up with all of us in tears 🙂
A Special Book
When choosing the presents, I try to choose things that will show the girls that they are growing up into young ladies. The first gift is of the book, Beautiful Girlhood. A rather old fashioned book, but one all four of my girls have enjoyed. I also buy the study guide to go with it which the girls can write in and record their thoughts.
A Special Bag of Presents
The main bulk of the presents come as a result of saving up for months and then blowing it all in The Body Shop! The Body Shop sells the most natural, gentle products I can think of. The bottles are a great size for the girls slightly smaller hands.
I bought the girls products which reflected their age. Becca received a range of strawberry products and Abigail received the White musk range. In addition, we bought Abigail some facial cleanser, toner and moisturiser as well as some clear make up such as clear mascara and tinted lip balm.
And as you can see above and below, they also received a hair wrap and hair band to keep the hair out of their face.
Reading the Book
The girls unwrapped the presents in between reading the short chapters of Beautiful Girlhood and chatting about them.
I feel very blessed because, whilst I assumed Lillie and Charlotte would be super close (being twins and all), I am always surprised by how much these two love each other. I mean, really love each other. They eat, sleep and breathe each other, often holding hands at night listening to Premier radio. They are, without doubt, the best of friends
The last little thing I buy them is some (slightly) more grown up pyjamas, that girls with periods might buy…
Although, as can be seen, they are not really that grown up… 🙂
Period Stuff for Younger Girls
I also collect some of the products that are available for younger girls, such as Lil Lets:
A Treat at the Local Coffee Shop
After we have read through the book, we go to our local cafe and the girls select a treat for themselves, whilst I write a list of all their questions, ready to be tackled once we get back to the privacy of our own home:
Once home, I get out my trusty white board to draw some tasteless but ultimately educational drawings to back up my teachings about periods and s*x. I am an ex-nurse and not much embarrasses me, so they are encouraged to ask any questions they want and I try to answer as factually and as straightforwardly as possible.
My very final presentation to the girls is a special mug. Everyone in our house has been given their own special mug. If any one of the children need to have a chat or is otherwise struggling in some way, then grabbing their mug and making both me and them a cup of tea silently communicates to me that I am needed. I then find a quiet (ish) place to sit and sip and listen to their worries. It is a way of me letting the children know that I am here for them whenever they need me.
What do you do to help transition your children through these tumultuous years?
For alternate ways to teach about periods see my review of Marsh Media