Advice on books to help me open conversations with almost 11yo DD on body changes/period/etc? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 04-12-2010, 11:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We have a funny dynamic....I am very immodest, and DD1 was always the same. She and I still go chat with each other when the other is in the tub, etc. She will be 11yo next week. Her dad and I are divorced so it was just she and I for years until I remarried. She and I have a pretty good relationship and good communication. However, I suddenly see this same dynamic I had with my mom. I was attachment parented, really warm loving parents, mom would answer any questions I had, etc. But she never started those conversations. I was MORTIFIED to start them. IN 5th grade we had the school sex/period/boy/girl thing and wanted to go home and talk it over with mom but was so embarassed. I see my daughter and I talking about everything, but not body stuff. I guess I always thought that since we are SO open about everything else, and because she chats with me a lot about most anything, that she would bring it up. I had this HOLY CR@P moment today when I realized she was 11 next week, is tall, with hips, weighs 90lbs, and she could be starting her period sooner rather than later. I noticed about 4 hairs in her pits tonight.

I am admittedly not great at starting those convos, and when I try she gets a little embarassed but I can tell she wants to talk. I think she picks up on my anxiety about it? And truly, I have no qualms talking to her, I am just not sure the right way to do it.

Any advice on some books I can get to kind of use as a starting point? She likes books, like to read and absorb info and process before talking.

Thanks!
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#2 of 10 Old 04-13-2010, 10:00 AM
 
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From the American Girl line of books I reccomend The Care and Keeping of You as a basic "what's happening w/my body"sort of book. I think that there is an "Our Body, Our Selves" book (forget the exact title) that may fit the bill as well.

Good for you that you are being so on top of this!
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#3 of 10 Old 04-13-2010, 10:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by karne View Post
From the American Girl line of books I reccomend The Care and Keeping of You as a basic "what's happening w/my body"sort of book. I think that there is an "Our Body, Our Selves" book (forget the exact title) that may fit the bill as well.

Good for you that you are being so on top of this!
Thanks. I feel a couple years late, lol. With toddler and baby on the way, my 11yo is my easy one and I am trying hard not to let her get lost in the background of parenting since she is pretty self-sufficiant.
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#4 of 10 Old 04-18-2010, 08:54 AM
 
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I have an dd about to turn 11 this month too, and I've been thinking about the very same things! And I also have a 1 year old. I'm searching other threads for more books, because we already have the care and keeping of you. I'm really seeing this 11year birthday as a big thing all of a sudden.
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#5 of 10 Old 04-19-2010, 04:15 PM
 
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"The Period Book"
"What's happening to my body book for girls" (there is one for boys, too)
"It's so Amazing!"
"It's Perfectly Normal"
"What's the Big Secret?"

Oftentimes, if we have open communication with our kids, we just expect them to ask questions about puberty and sex and then are surprised when they don't!! Some kids just don't ask, for whatever reason. These books are a great help to have either to read together or just leave out so they can find them and read on their own. Let them know they can ask any questions they have. I find reading them together really helps, though.
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#6 of 10 Old 04-20-2010, 02:41 PM
 
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Check out "Changing You" by Gail Saltz. It was informative & has goofy illustrations that my son thought were really funny, so that helped break the tension. My only complaint is that the book has a forward & afterforward to parents (talking points, etc.) that I wish was removable/on a separate sheet instead of being part of the book itself. Not that there is anything on it that I'd want to keep from my sons, it is just that it is meant for parents, not the kids . . . you'll see what I mean if you look at the book.

My DS has been really open to discussing all kinds of sex topics, which stunned me. And rest assured, if you are open about it, it does get easier! I don't even blush anymore.
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#7 of 10 Old 04-22-2010, 10:30 PM
 
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I personally think " The Period Book" was by far the best one. It explains everything in a language that your 11 year old can understand and gives you ways to cope when certain things happen [such as bleeding through, etc.] and good ways to keep track of your cycles. My mother actually bought me this book when i was about 11 also [though i didnt even start til i was 14] and i'm 19 so its not too old of a book either.
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#8 of 10 Old 04-23-2010, 12:38 AM
 
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The Care and Keeping of You from American Girls is proving to be a gentle, generally trauma free way of introducing the subject to my 11 year old dd. We are reading a few pages at a time as her health book(we homeschool). I'm open and willing to talk to my dd about anything she needs but still....it's awkward
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#9 of 10 Old 04-29-2010, 10:21 AM
 
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I also liked the American Girl "Care and Keeping of You" book. Dd's not really into the dolls all that much (she's 11 1/2) but she loves the books, and after flipping through that book I thought it was a good one for her. She, too, is very self sufficient and she has NO qualms about asking me questions. I mean, none. My mother was very hands off with me and I got easily embarrassed, so I'm doing my best to answer all her questions openly and honestly without making *her* feel embarrassed.

Incidentally I've found conversations in the car to be easier than a sit down/face to face conversation.

Em, married to Alex, mom to Samantha (11 yrs) and Cullen (5yrs) and Maybe (5/16/2010) Trying to grow 4,000lbs of produce on .2 acres. See my blog!
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#10 of 10 Old 04-30-2010, 04:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by emnic77 View Post
I also liked the American Girl "Care and Keeping of You" book. Dd's not really into the dolls all that much (she's 11 1/2) but she loves the books, and after flipping through that book I thought it was a good one for her. She, too, is very self sufficient and she has NO qualms about asking me questions. I mean, none. My mother was very hands off with me and I got easily embarrassed, so I'm doing my best to answer all her questions openly and honestly without making *her* feel embarrassed.

Incidentally I've found conversations in the car to be easier than a sit down/face to face conversation.
Good call on the car convo. I ended up getting her the "Care and Keeping" book last week. I let her be with it and she read it end to end. Next week is the schools "take the boys in one room and girls in another room" explain puberty, etc episode at her school. They bring home a bunch of stuff to discuss with parents, so i figure we can plan some time together after that and hash over any questions she has.
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