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Changing bodies, body hair, and menstruation are all a part and parcel of our human body. There is nothing to be ashamed of or to feel uncomfortable about it. We as parents, always try to dodge the conversation whenever our kids bring it up. They must, however, understand it because they will have to come across it at some point. Even if bringing this up makes you uncomfortable, there are other ways to incorporate it into general conversation.

If you do not know where to start or what to talk about, you are at the right place. I’ll be your guide for the day and make you talk, ‘the talk’ 

Where to start?

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You might be in a hurry to get things started. But you have to start somewhere, and your child may already be interested, and it is your responsibility as a parent to feed that curiosity. By the age of 6-7, children have a basic understanding of periods. If they ask a question, seize the opportunity to provide them with credible information on the entire subject. If they don’t bring it up, it could be because they aren’t comfortable discussing it with you. As a result, it is in your hands to calm them down and bring up the subject naturally, because they must be aware of the menstruation cycle in any case.

How to talk ‘the talk’? 

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Before starting off, bear in mind that it is simple biology that your kid can handle. Do not shy away from the conversation and lay out the facts according to your child’s level of knowledge. Let them know that the menstrual cycle is just a normal part of life and it’s no big deal. If they question you about period products they see, give them genuine answers and make sure you use the right terms to describe private parts and not silly alternate words. If they feel uneasy hearing it from you, there are multiple resources available online and books for children that shed light on changing bodies. 

Do boys need to know it too?

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Umm,  I believe the answer is a given concerning my gender-neutral language throughout the article. Not once did I mention ‘girl’ and made sure I stressed the word ‘child’ over and over again. So yes – a big yesss, boys must know about it too. After all, they attain puberty as well, isn’t it? But just not in a way we do. It is a general awareness you are making and why would you wanna rule them out? If you want your male children to be supportive and empathetic towards their significant female individuals, include them in the whole period talk. Get rid of the mentality that it is ‘just for girls’ once and for all.

It’s high time we lift the taboo, and put an end to the period talk being a topic of shame. The stigma around it has reached the highest point and the consequences are faced by none, but women. Normalise the talk, bring it to the table of discussion and deal with it as a simple biological process. Break the taboo, and bring a change in the society.

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Junia Shalom

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