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Changes: Talking To My Tween about Esss EEEE Exxx

Posted May 18 2009 11:54pm

I can’t even say the words. I can’t begin to type or tell you the discomfort I have talking to my daughter about puberty.

Why? Uh, because I’m human. If there’s one thing you should know about me, it’s that I’m fallible. I’ve talked to her. I’ve given her the facts of life, intercourse, menstruation, puberty, hair, smells… I literally cannot write in complete sentences. Every conversation is punctuated with blushing, and I refer her to Granny. “Please, ask your Granny.”

Today the email came. You know the one. It’s from the Science Teacher and it outlines the Fourth Grade Sex Ed Cirriculum. I showed it to my husband, and he just laughed, “talk to your daughter.”

“Talk to your son!” I replied. Because we’re adult like that.

If this is sounding familiar, I’ve got a solution. If it’s sounding unfamiliar, and you’re actually totally comfortable talking to your kids. Well, congratulations, you’re a better woman than I.

I remembered that my girlfriend Michelle had come for a visit. She was so funny, she showed up with this box and was like, “Listen, I know you think it’s lame, but you might really want to share this with Jane.” She went on and on and gave me the sales pitch for Changes.

Since I want to be sure that my ten year old daughter has the sex education information I want her to have, I really needed to sit down and have a focused conversation with her. I whipped out the Changes box and as I stuttered and stammered I said, “Hey Jane, Michelle wanted to know what you think of this. Can we take a look together so I can report back to her?”

Jane and I flipped through the pages of Changes. When we flipped through the (very short) book about the changes that she could expect, we were both a little flustered. We’d talked about it before, but in passing, and in a much less pressured manner. My daughter knows your period gets your body ready to make a baby, but it’s a much easier discussion to have when there aren’t little pimples on her nose and body odor is about to become an issue. This is my life. This is happening now.

Jane and I spent about 40 minutes reading and talking. She’s very excited to become more of a young lady. She’s enjoying the journal and the perfume sprays. I am not a fan of the sprays, but I realize my daughter may need more than words to express herself.

I’m grateful Michelle. Thank you for bringing us Changes. It’s not the greenest product in the world, but every mother needs to have this discussion, and we need to have this so many times, and so many ways. The combination of a journal, a book and perfume really worked in this household, and my daughter and I had discussions I’d otherwise have missed.

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