4 Reasons To Talk To Your Daughter *EARLY* About Periods.
Girls will usually start their periods anywhere between the ages of 10-16 when their bodies are ready, but some can get their period as young as eight years old. The age when you decide to talk to your child about puberty and periods is entirely your choice and how you approach these conversations will depend a lot on how naturally open you are as a family. It may feel early to be introducing grown-up topics when she’s still just a child, but providing that conversations are age-appropriate, there are benefits to be had from talking to your daughter about periods long before she starts them.
1. She’ll get the right info
The earlier you start chatting to your daughter about periods, the more you can control what she’s absorbing and the more you can make sure the information she’s getting is correct. Scary period myths spread around the school playground, so by talking to her honestly and letting her know that she can always come to you if she hears anything that doesn’t make sense to her, you’ll be separating the fact from the fiction.
2. You’re satisfying her curiosity
Children are naturally very curious so even if your daughter is very young, it’s likely she’ll have noticed that you have periods or she will have already asked questions about your tampons and pads. Rather than brushing off questions or thinking you have to give long elaborate explanations of the female anatomy, answer with simple facts each time she shows an interest. Being curious about the body and how it works is a natural, healthy part of growing up, so should be encouraged.
3. She’ll be prepared
The changes that happen to a girl’s body during puberty can be daunting, but if your daughter is aware of the signs and understands in simple terms why they’re happening, she won’t be freaked out when all of a sudden her breasts develop, she starts to have vaginal discharge and her pubic hair grows. All these changes will start before she gets her period so leaving ‘the chat’ until then, can be too late if you want her to be informed.
4. You’re strengthening your bond
Ok, you could easily let school, older siblings or your daughter’s friends tell her the need-to-knows about periods, but by communicating with your daughter yourself from an early age, you’re letting her know that home is somewhere where no subject is off topic. And that’s a good thing. By taking the time to talk with her freely, you’re setting the tone for open communication as she grows up to be a teenager.
PS: A great way to break the ice and start the conversation could be to use our new interactive films. The films introduce your child to Keira and Ben on the day Keira starts her period – uh oh! See how the situation plays out from both Keira and Ben’s perspectives and let your child make their own decisions with our pick-a-path interactive films.
Play the game here: bettyforschools.co.uk/films
betty is a teen brand which aims to break the taboo of talking about periods and challenge societal barriers about these types of teen issues. betty is changing the way we perceive and talk about periods, and instilling body confidence in young women. For more information check out the rest of the site or follow @bettycollective on all social channels.