Advice For My Thirteen Year Old Girls

by Julie Cole
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Two of my real life daughters are ages 13 and 14. Out of respect for their privacy, I couldn’t possibly talk about their entrance into teenage-hood. Mabel, however, is another daughter who is on the cusp of turning 13-years-old. When I checked in with the sweet girl, she gave me the go-ahead to publicly share my advice around having a daughter become a teenager!

Mabel

) Don’t allow for period denial.
I *may* know some humans who thought if they didn’t talk about their periods, they would never happen. I don’t know about you, but I didn’t want my girls’ first experience to resemble the shower scene from the movie Carrie. We all remember that one, right? So, I forced “Mabel” to watch an example of how to apply a pad to underwear. I also put together a little kit for “Mabel” to take to school that included pads, clean underwear, pain medication and chocolate (of course). I put all these bits inconspicuously hidden in a pencil case, so no one at school would guess the real contents.

2) Tampons. Introduce them early.
If you’re of the “no tampons” opinion, look away now. I think the sooner you get them using tampons (or even a Diva Cup!), the better. Along with giving them some good instructions, buy some lubricant to put on the tip of the tampon. This will help with a smooth insertion. Yes, I really just did suggest KY jelly for your kid.

3) Steer clear of razors.
A razor will never touch the legs of my dear sweet “Mabel”. Talk open and honestly about hair so that if your kid wants to remove hair, she doesn’t secretly hide away and hack at herself with her father’s crappy razor. I consulted with several of my Beauty School Drop Out friends and they seem to share the opinion that waxing is a far better option than shaving.

4) Remind her she’s the boss of her.
She owns her body. She does with her body what she wants and when she’s ready. My daughter bought Daddy-o a special Father’s Day gift, and I suggest “Mabel” buy the same for her father (which is also kinda me).

feminist-father

Mabel, you’re a teenager and I couldn’t be more proud of the beautiful, smart and adventurous young lady you are becoming. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the teen years hold!

Do you have a daughter heading into the teen years? What have you learned along the way?

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