let's talk about periods with everyone
What is a period? Why do periods happen? Do boys get periods?
If your child asked you these questions before, you might have been caught off-guard.
Let’s talk about that.
All kids - Boys and Girls need to know about periods by age 6. But that doesn’t mean you have to give “The Talk.” That talk can feel overwhelming, difficult for a child to digest, and intimidating.
Talking about changing bodies is a continued discussion that should be broken into small parts throughout one’s childhood. Just like we teach about brushing our teeth, the conversation can come up anytime and is important for overall health and self care.
Here are a few steps you can keep in mind as you navigate period conversation.
1. Casual talks vs. “THE TALK.” Periods are something to talk about over time in small chunks. Periods start between age 8-17, so it’s important to teach all kids, boys and girls, what it’s all about in ways that are easy to understand and appropriate for their age. Try bringing up the conversation in the period product aisle at the store or if your child asks a puberty-related question. Kidshealth.org says that kids understand periods at age 6-7.
2. You don’t have to know everything. If you don’t know the answer, let your child know that you will look into it and get back to them. There is no shame in this. In fact, it shows your child that you are open and that it is an open and continuous conversation. Also, we are here to use as a resource! Parents have a lot on their plates and shouldn’t be expected to know everything.
3. Encourage questions. It is normal to be curious. You probably had many of the same questions at their age. You can help promote questions by starting with some frequently asked questions.
Frequently asked questions include:
What is a period?
When will it start?
How long does a period last?
Will it hurt?
What should I do?
Who can I talk to?
4. Share your experience. When did you learn about periods? How were you taught? Puberty can feel like a scary time. Reflecting and sharing your own experiences can help your child know that they are not alone in the journey of puberty. Reassure your child that they know people who will or who already have experienced periods.
5. Periods are natural. About half the humans on Earth (AKA people with uteruses) will have a period in their lifetime. It helps to know that periods are normal and a vital sign of a healthy body! Our periods can tell us about the health of our bones, organs and body systems. Not to mention that it is a sign of a healthy reproductive system if we choose to have a baby.
Was this helpful? What was your experience? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.