Women are inadequately taught about their bodies, and the older I get the more frustrating I find this problem.
The piecemeal education we receive from our society, culture, and parents teaches us to normalize pain or medicalize the solution. As a result, many of us are fully grown in our bodies yet still trying to figure out ‘how does this thing work, anyway?’
Women’s bodies in public spaces tend to get the most attention when at the crossroads of debates—to hijab or not, female bodies used in marketing and so forth. But what is always missing is fundamental conversations about basic female biology.
Having a complex, life-giving womb, even in its pre-pubescent state is significant. It is not a burden or curse, and every girl should know this. This article is meant to help you with your first period talk with your daughter.
Womanhood and Femininity
In re-educating myself about womanhood, femininity, and the biological realities they entail, I know that I want to give my daughter a fuller, more comprehensive understanding of puberty and beyond.
I had imagined for years how I wanted that first period talk to feel, but now it was time to formulate that feeling into words–I wanted to give here words that are clear, concise, and natural without gore, drama, or awkwardness.
Since my daughter loves nature, I explained to her that women have wombs much like birds make nests. Our nest becomes a warm and cozy landing each month. But if there is no baby to inhabit the womb, it sheds.
That shedding should be effortless; however, some women find it difficult and challenging for a number of reasons. To catch “the residue” of the emptying nest, women may wear pads or use menstrual cups to prevent their clothing from being soiled.
With our first period talk under my belt, I know that this conversation about our female bodies needs to continue with my daughter. As she witnesses changes in her body and inches closer to womanhood, there is so much more that I want her to know.
1 – I want her to know that the female body is an amazing sign of God. It is Creation and Creativity manifest, mercy and grace embodied, and the most miraculous act of nature that she may ever intimately witness.
2 – I want her to know that her body is both a guide and a witness to how she cares for her mind, vessel, and heart.
3 – I want her to know that her cyclical design is not incidental and that she too was fashioned with order, harmony, and seasonal variation.
4 – I want her to know that she can have periods without pain or premenstrual symptoms (PMS), as effortless as the waxing and waning moon.
5 – I want her to know that her body is designed for many things including pleasure with purpose and should never be offered to another without the sanctity of union, mutual consent and shared enjoyment.
6 – I want her to know that there is no perfect body and the only things that add beauty are the path of spiritual purification and good works.
7 – I want her to know that femininity does not equal weakness and masculinity does not equal strength. Both qualities can co-exist irrespective of gender.
8 – I want her to know that appreciating her God-given beauty is gratitude, not vanity.
9 – I want her to know that she need not wait for anyone else to compliment her, buy her flowers, write her love letters, or any other act of affection. Until she knows her own worth, no amount of flattery will convince her of it.
These are just a few of the truths I want my daughter to know about herself, but guess what? Every girl deserves this education and every mother needs to be informed enough to give their daughter this empowering information and heart-to-heart conversation.
If you are a mom who has not or still is discovering these truths for yourself, I implore you to check out the upcoming course, Deepening the Feminine Connection.
Too many women are wandering in their bodies without direction and understanding. We deserve better and our daughters do too. Let’s shift the conversation and bring about change.