On a beautiful spring afternoon, you and your 10-year old daughter have escaped the chaos of home to enjoy some time together in your favorite park. You are captivated by the hilarious stories she is telling you about her friends and marveling at the dreams and ambitions she is considering. As you sit listening to her, you realize there is something different about her today.
She isn’t running to chase butterflies in the park. Her excitement is not coming from the possibility of enjoying an ice cream cone together. Today, she seems more serious and her conversation is filled with expressions of opinion rather than the silly conversations you have enjoyed together in the past.
As you listen more carefully you realize what she is expressing is a need for more time with her friends and it sounds like she wants you to understand that she needs freedom to make more of her own decisions. There is definitely something different about her today. She even looks a little different.
Suddenly you realize that she has begun PUBERTY! Now your mind begins to race. “What am I supposed to teach about puberty?” you ask yourself. “What do I tell her?”
After talking to lots of moms I understand that this can be a scary time for a mom. Most moms have no clue where to start the conversation and how much detail to give.
I want to help you by providing a series of lessons you can use to teach your daughter. It can be a fun time together and I suspect both of your will learn some new information.
Start with the Basics
For the first lesson, I suggest you teach her these four important female anatomy structures because this is where most of the important changes are happening. This illustration from my book, I’m a Girl, Hormones! will be helpful to both of you in this discussion.
- Ovaries: there are two ovaries and each ovary is filled with eggs. The eggs have been waiting in her ovaries since before she was born to wake up and become active at puberty.
- Uterus: looks like a balloon with a space in the center. It is made of muscle. This is where a baby grows.
- Fallopian tubes: there are two of these. One extends from each side of the uterus out to the ovaries. The fallopian tubes are a pathway for an egg to get from an ovary to the uterus.
- Vagina: This is the tube that a baby moves through to be born.
With this basic foundation, you are ready to move on to the next lesson for another day about the breasts and changes that are happening there.
Again and again I hear moms say they wish someone had taught them this information when they started their puberty.
It will be different for your daughter and you are a great mom to make it happen!
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