Puberty is one of the scariest times of a girl’s life. Fortunately, the experience can be made into a positive one with the right words. Your daughter’s first period signifies her entry into womanhood, and she would need the necessary guidance and wisdom to understand her changing body. Fortunately, a properly written letter would be able to convey just the right words.
Writing a letter to your daughter on her first period gives her the words of wisdom she needs to hear. Importantly, the letter has to discuss how getting her first period is a natural and beautiful process. After reassuring her, discuss the matters she needs to understand such as the different menstrual products, different flows, and tracking her cycle.
This article will list important talking points when writing a letter to your daughter on her first period.
What to Include in the Letter
There are different ways to impart words of wisdom to your daughter when she gets her first period. While some might find a heartfelt conversation to work, some parents would rather opt to do it in writing. Here are some things you should consider adding:
One of the first things you need to explain is that periods are completely natural. On average, girls get their first periods at around 12 years old. However, everyone is different, and your daughter might get their first period earlier or later.
Depending on the extent of your daughter’s education, they should already have an idea of what’s going on with their bodies. However, it is still a part of a parent’s duties to help reassure them that what they’re going through is completely normal.
There are different ways to explain to your daughter why this happens. Some might go for a more biological and technical route, explaining that menstruation occurs as the uterus sheds its lining every month. There are others that might want to explain it in a less technical way, simply explaining that it’s her body’s way of letting her know that she’s growing up. Either way, it’s a natural part of her life.
In addition to telling your daughter how natural it is, it’s important to portray having periods as a beautiful thing that should be celebrated. It is not uncommon for girls to get bullied because of their periods. Due to the stigma and shame that can accompany bullying, your daughter might look at menstruation as a negative part of her life.
On the contrary, getting her first period is something that should be celebrated as it is a milestone signifying her growth as a woman. Although teen girls begin to be significantly self-conscious about periods, it is important to empower them early on that getting their period is something to be proud of.
Getting down to the brass tacks, it’s important to talk about menstruation products. There are a wide variety of menstruation products available for purchase and discussing each kind can allow your daughter to decide which one is right for her.
Most teenage girls would begin with maxi pads. Explain that not all maxi pads are created equal, and that some maxi pads are stronger than others. Teach her that they are meant to be changed, the risks when they’re left on too long, and how they should be disposed of.
You can also talk about tampons and how they are safe to use. However, you should reassure her that she can try using a tampon when she’s ready – no one’s rushing her. Tampons can be painful for some, so you shouldn’t force her to use them just because you do. Include in the discussion how they need to be changed every four hours, the risks of leaving them too long, and how to dispose of them.
While explaining why some menstrual products are advertised to be stronger than others, explain to her as well that some flows will be heavier than others – and that it’s normal too. Let her know that the first couple of days of getting her period are usually heavier while the following days will get lighter. It’s important she understands this concept so that she can determine which products to consider.
However, it is important to also explain that there’s such a thing as too much. A significantly heavy flow can be an indicator of a more serious underlying condition and that if her menstrual product is filled in an hour, she needs to let you or a doctor right away.
Tracking the Cycle
One of the most important things to include in your letter is that your daughter needs to learn how to track their cycle. On average, a typical menstrual cycle takes 28 days long. However, the cycle has been known to range between about 21 to 35 days. It is different from one woman to another; thus, it is important for your daughter to understand that she has her own cycle to be familiarized with.
Make sure to write that understanding the cycle is key for her to prepare herself. When she learns the frequency of her cycle, she can then begin to expect it and prepare accordingly. You can share your own tips on how you prepare for yourself. Some women always have at least one maxi pad around with them. Some mothers even tell their daughters to bring two: one for themselves and one for a friend in need.
However, it is also important to let them know that other women may not be regular at all. When girls begin to get their periods, their cycles can be relatively irregular at the beginning. While it evens out in most, some women live their lives having irregular cycles. This is normal for the most part but seeing a doctor can always make sure that there is no underlying cause for the irregularity.