Dr. Trish Hutchison
How to Talk to Your Daughter About Puberty: A Physician’s Step-by-Step Guide
EPISODE: 93 | DATE: February 23, 2023
“We try to prepare girls and their parents to understand and know what’s happening so they’ll be more prepared.”
I don’t know about you, but motherhood goes in phases of panic and preparation. One phase informs the specifics around the panic and the preparation.
For example, you get pregnant. Then, the research begins. What prenatal vitamins should I take? What kind of birth do I want? What kind of care provider do I want? What should I put on my baby registry? All the questions, all the preparation around the nursery and the buying of the parenting books and all the things.
Then the baby comes, and you move into a new phase: why is the baby spitting up? How do I get my baby to sleep? What kind of nap schedule does my baby need to be on? When do I start solids? What do I start with? How much should they be eating? When should they be crawling? When should they start walking?
Then you move into toddlerhood and find yourself furiously consulting with parenting books and blogs and podcasts about toddler behavior and how to manage it, and developmental stages, and how to navigate them.
Well, first comes marriage (or the relationship or the donor), then comes the baby, then comes: how the heck do I talk to my child about puberty. Ok, maybe not in that order, but the point is: we move from being positively consumed by all the things in pregnancy and infancy and toddlerhood and then BAM! Your child is asking you about boobs and why you’re bleeding from your butt (because they’re in the bathroom with you 24/7, even when you have your period, and they have questions). They may even begin touching themselves and you find yourself flustered trying to find the words to explain to them that we do not touch ourselves in public. And then – oh GOD – how do we talk to our kids about pleasure? And when do we do that? And oh my goodness – when do their boobs come in? And when does their period start? And how on earth do I talk to them about this?
If you feel flustered around talking to your children about puberty, today’s episode is going to be one that you must save and come back to over and over and over again. Talking to our kids about puberty isn’t easy, but it’s necessary. And since we want to empower our children around their bodies – not just because of all the body image stuff they are going to be exposed to, but also for very practical reasons like bodily autonomy and sexual abuse prevention – we need to get comfortable talking about puberty with them. Ok, maybe it won’t be comfortable, but we need to learn to be comfortable being uncomfortable as we learn to talk to our kids about their bodies.
Today, I’m joined by board certified pediatrician and chief medical officer and co-founder of Girology, Dr. Trish Hutchison. Girlology is a digital health platform with our 500 educational videos for parents and their daughters about every topic under the sun when it comes to puberty. Dr. Trish co-founded Girology with her colleague, Dr. Melissa Holmes. Dr. Holmes is a board certified gynecologist with a specialty in pediatric and adolescent gynecology. In short, you couldn’t have two more qualified people running a digital health platform about puberty.
If you have sons, there is Guyology. So fear not – today you will unlock everything you need to know about talking to your kids about puberty. We touch on:
- When you can expect puberty to begin
- Why it’s so important to teach our children the anatomically correct names for their private parts
- Sexual abuse prevention
- Body image and mental health
And so much more. Tune in wherever you listen to podcasts and be prepared to get prepared for these upcoming conversations you simply cannot avoid
ABOUT DR. TRISH
Resources mentioned in this episode
Book: In the Flo by Alisa Vitti
Episode 88 with Dr. Sarah Bren
Book: Consent for Kids by Rachel Brian
Kate Winslet on the dangers of social media
Thank you so much for listening!
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