For parents

So, what can you do?

The earlier you start to talk to your daughter about periods, the easier she’ll find it to deal with the subject. She’ll feel much more comfortable asking you questions when she wants to, and she won’t feel embarrassed about finding information for herself - for example, in library books and women’s health websites.

Talking about periods doesn’t have to be difficult or emotional. In fact, it’s best to keep the subject as straightforward as possible. And if you’re a dad, she may - strange as it sounds - find it easier to talk to you about periods than she would another woman.

If you’re a bit embarrassed, one of the easiest ways is simply to talk about the medical facts. You can explain how young women’s bodies change as they get older, and talk about things like hormones.
If you’d like to brush up on some facts, you can find a good introduction here

Younger children especially find biology - ‘where babies come from’ - fascinating, without anything ‘funny’ or ‘rude’ about it.

You can talk to them about simple things as you go about your daily life - like buying tampons or sanitary pads in the supermarket, if you’re a woman who has periods yourself.

If you’re a woman who has had period pain yourself, you can talk to your daughter about your own experience - explaining why you take a pain reliever, or how a hot water bottle helps you feel better when cramps strike.

And - if you’ve covered the ‘basics’ - you can help your daughter to learn more herself, at her own pace. If you have one or two books or leaflets in the house that explain periods, that can be a great help. You can pick up information from a GP’s surgery, a library or a family planning clinic. And you can use websites like this one.

Why women have periods

Why women have periods

As they grow into adults, girls’ bodies change so that they can have children - when the time is right, and if they want to...

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