Sunday, February 10, 2013

Conversations with my Teen & Tween Daughters

Caution:  If you are a person of the male gender, you may find this post uncomfortable.  Proceed with discretion.  Or better yet, do not read this at all.  

I am pretty open with my kids when talking about life and all its intricacies.  Blunt, in fact.  I just don't see any reason to evade the questions.

When I was pregnant with my youngest, my oldest was about 5.  Being an exceptionally bright and precocious 5-year-old, she obviously wanted to know how the baby got in there and how it was going to come out.  I delicately explained the process, being as simple and vague as possible, leaving the subject open to more questions if she wasn't satisfied.  But I think she got the idea, and, being sufficiently grossed out, she didn't ask me any more questions for about 5 years.

When she reached around 10, with the other 2 close behind her, I figured it was time to start talking about "the changes."  You know, the subject matter that made every. single. person. squirm in their seats during health class.  I don't exactly remember learning about all this stuff, but I think it would be quite shocking for a kid to hear about it all at once.  So I tried to be delicate and explain it in such a way that makes it seem beautiful and a natural process of growing up. "Hey, you're going to start getting a period every month for the next 40 years.  It's messy, it's painful, and it will make you cranky for about 1/2 of your life."
My girls have been schooled.

Last night, they were asking me how long PMS lasts. I laughed and said, " It depends on who you ask."

I looked to my husband to elaborate. He usually tries to avoid such conversations by covering his ears and curling into a fetal position.  However, this time, he was able to give this insightful response"It's kind of like the 12 days of Christmas.  You get something new every day."

Ah, we're ready for adolescence, I believe.

However, we may need some advice in a few more years.  I will be turning to you, because my husband will in the corner, sucking his thumb.

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