How To Talk To A Girl About Her Period

How to talk to a girl about her period

How to talk to a girl about her period

My daughter brought home a book on periods the other day. She read it cover to cover in one sitting,

I remember my Mum buying me a book by Clare Rayner back in the day. I can’t remember reading it far too interested in Mallory Towers no doubt. I have always had a habit of avoiding the more troublesome aspects of life like periods and boys. Mum used to do her best sending me for her “nappies” out of the drawer even when I was very little. She was aware she was an older mum and so tried to be modern about matters like sex even suggesting I should go to the GP for the contraceptive pill on my 16th birthday. I remember being horrified at the idea and telling her so. I had no intention of having sex ever – if a knight turned up on a white horse, fair enough but otherwise no deal!

I am working my way through the book on periods. Chatting to my husband, it turns out her knows far more about the mechanics of it all that I do. I remember being intrigued as to the state of my hymen when I was little. I seem to remember reading dire warnings that tree climbing could break it. I might not have wanted sex but I was quite the little tree-climber.

How to do I feel as my little girl grows up?

I can see her excitement at the idea of getting her period. I remember those days well and the conversations at school. “Have you started yet?” and all that.

I was 13 when the milestone came along and for some reason I kept it secret even from my Mum initially. She sussed it and asked me outright. She then sent Dad off to get a cake “because your daughter has become a woman”. I have always been quite impressed by how she recognised it as a milestone to celebrate. After she died, I found out from my Auntie that Mum had telephoned all the family to let them know. My Auntie said she did it in a way “as if you were the only girl who had ever had a period”

Like most girls I suppose, I started using sanitary pads and then moved onto tampons. My daughter has already whisked me off to the supermarket to buy sanitary pads so she is prepared. She even got a free tin to carry them in. Now that is progress! Not only that but we know about special pants for when you have your time of the month.

I know it is weird but I don’t like the idea of her using tampons. I remember Mum being the same with me.

There is also that worry that growing up means getting hurt and me not being able to protect her from that. I don’t want to see my daughter in physical pain from periods. Worse, I don’t want her to have her heart broken by some idiot boy.

Whatever I may think or feel, my daughter is growing up. Yesterday, a boy walked with us all the way home so he could stay with her chatting away. She was flirting telling him a pack of half-truths that made me and my son giggle. Anyone who knows me will know that it is most unlikely that my daughter would be a netball champion but out this line trotted yesterday to impress the boy.

Ah well, at least when she starts there will be cake!

Do you have any tips on how to talk to a girl about her period?


Award-winning writer, blogger, social media consultant and charity campaigner. Social Media Manager for BritMums, the UK's largest parent blogging network Freelance clients include Firefly Communications and Save the Children UK. Works with brands on marketing projects. Examples include Visit Orlando, Give As You Live, Coca-Cola and Kodak. Cambridge Law graduate with many years experience working across three sectors in advice, media relations, events, training and project management. Available for hire at affordable rates.


  • Hannah

    I never got cake! My mum did tell my dad in hushed excitement which he found a little odd and awkward and I still feel very highly embarrassed by! I know when it’s midges turn ill do the same but perhaps without her near by to save the embarrassment! Oh and there will also be cake!

  • Carol

    Our 14 year old daughter would be mortified if I told her dad that she had started her periods a couple of months back. She read the books but would not discuss them. I did her shopping in preparation towels she said defiantly not tampons. L just didn’t want to grow up as she was enjoying her childhood too much and I suppose she saw it as a big transition into adulthood.
    As for boys – They’re all idiots and she is not interested unless it’s Niall out of One Direction.

    • Nigel

      This is such an important subject and dads should be having this talk with their daughters great advice thanks for linking to the #fortheloveofblog

  • Jeannette @autismmumma

    There is a great book that we’ve been using “Hair In Funny Places”, unfortunately sooner than I’d have preferred but that is the joy of Mother Nature for you.
    She sounds like she’ll cope, it’s never nice having to think of school and periods.
    As long as she realises that it’s nothing to be ashamed off and all girls will go through it, however big and brash they may seem.
    Cake will definitely help!

  • Sarah MumofThree World

    Aaagh! I’m dreading these conversations and this time. I’m quite pleased I have two boys to ‘practise’ on before my daughter reaches puberty. I think it’s sweet that your mum told the whole family and was so proud. It’s good to see those milestones positively and I hope I’m able to do that when the time comes.

  • Izzie Anderton

    Having twin daughters, I’ve had many a conversation about periods over the years and some of them were hilarious. Our daughters grow up too quickly and I guess it’s good to be organised!

  • Talya Stone

    Great advice! I think it’s important to start early. We are quite open in this house and my daughter has seen me changing my sanitary pads and tampons whilst chatting to me in the bathroom numerous times. I’m a big believer in drip feeding information rather than having a big chat, but either way communication is key! Thanks for linking up to #ForTheLoveofBlog Kate.

  • Louise

    We’ve got a while to go before those conversations are needed. I love that your mum bought you cake to celebrate – I don’t remember much discussion about periods at home – most of the conversations I had about them were with friends at school. It’s good to be more positive and open when it comes to talking about them though, #MMBC

  • Kim Carberry

    I have been pretty open with my girls about periods. They knew what to expect when it was their time. I feel the same about tampons. I am not keen on my girls using them and thankfully they are good with pads at the moment.

  • Jayne

    Aw, it’s nice that your daughter can be open with you and know what to expect. It should be that way. As you know I have boys, but we are really open in our house and I think it is equally as important to educate them on these topics too when the time is right. Periods shouldn’t be taboo.
    Have a lovely weekend. x

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