The awesome ladies of Dear Period have contributed to week’s Parent Talk Series. They emphasise the powerful tool that is communication in breaking the perception that Periods are a taboo. They are also pretty cool Period Party Planners!
I am in my 50’s and still waiting for my “period talk” from my mother…and yes, the anticipation will continue as period talk is still taboo for her generation. As soon as my daughter arrived into this world something systematically told me that she deserved a “period talk”, and there would be no age restrictions.
By “period talk” in the early years, as in toddler years for my daughter, exposure to the word period and period products were discovered early on for my daughter, M. You see, toddler M rarely liked to miss a bathroom session which meant broaching the subject matter early on including what was “this stuff Mommy had in her whoo-whoo”. Early on the biggest hurdle on broaching the subject was the topic of blood and that there was no reason to get a band-aid. As M got older, her exposure to all things period never ceased including any conversations with my friends. If you cannot tell yet, M was a five-year old going on twenty-one.
With the large variance in age on when a period can begin, M was empowered with both knowledge and security to discuss the topic from the topic never being taboo in our household. When M was twelve years old, she received her first period. To celebrate the occasion, we hosted a Period Party. We asked that everyone wear red, served red cupcakes, red everything. We figured why not…let’s embrace this new bloody friend with a large welcome party. M’s friends (both with their periods and without) had an absolute blast. Our goal was to make the topic non-taboo, and to hopefully assist any future comrades that would be getting their period shortly.
By all means, our household is not the “norm” for period talk, but discussing and accepting the natural occurrence early on in our house hold made the transition exciting over frightening for M and the parents. In retrospect, our household would not have changed a thing even with all of the interrupted bathroom visits early on in M’s period career. Our challenge is now for M to defy the rules for her generation.
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