Talking to Your Pre-Teen about Their Changing Body
Is your pre-teen going through puberty? If so, talking to your pre-teen about their changing body is as important today as it was when we were kids. The only problem is some of us didn’t hear about menstruation and sex from our parents, but rather from our friends.
Today we live in a different world than when we were teens. With so many diseases and problems facing our teens, it’s important they are given the knowledge and answers to the many questions they may have concerning their bodies. If you have a teen who is going through these changes, here are some tips for talking with your pre-teen about puberty as well as the thoughts and feelings they are experiencing as a result.
1. If you are comfortable discussing puberty with your teen, then find a few hours in a quiet room so that you can freely talk about the subject and answer all of their questions and concerns.
2. Purchase several books on the subject of puberty and offer them to your child to read. Then ensure you are available to answer any and all questions.
3. Direct your child to go online, where there are many teen sites which answer questions on puberty and body changes.
4. Be honest with your child in every aspect of this subject.
5. If you are feeling uncomfortable, remember your teen is as well.
6. Discuss menstruation and how the cycle works.
7. Discuss how the onset of puberty also encompasses breast enlargement, additional hair growth, and hormones.
While our parents couldn’t or wouldn’t discuss these topics with us, you now have the opportunity to break the taboo chain once and for all and openly and lovingly so that as the changes occur, your child is not frightened or think there is something terribly wrong with them.
Remind your child how unique he or she is, and that everyone develops in different ways and at different times. While one of your child’s friend may develop breasts earlier than your child, assure them it has nothing to do with them but that physical changes in the body is different for everyone.
Another way to present it as a positive change is to celebrate your child’s first menstruation by taking the whole family out to dinner. Rejoice in the fact that your child is growing and will soon become a woman. In this way, your child will view these changes as positive ones and accept them more readily.