Puberty is a very difficult time of life. As the body changes so does the mind. Sudden alterations in body chemistry or physical changes often scare children. This is highly understandable. Most of us remember what it was like to undergo the first major physical alterations associated with puberty. We probably thought that we were becoming insects or something. Just as puberty can be difficult to go through it can also be difficult to speak about. This can be because the subject matter is embarrassing or because someone simply does not know how to talk about it. It can be because of a painful experience associated with puberty. There are lots of reasons to fear speaking with your child about puberty. However, you can also imagine that there are plenty of reasons for your child to be frightened of puberty as well. Because this is the case, you should probably consider speaking with them about the issue. It would also probably be better to speak with them about the issue before it has become a major problem.
A checklist can help you organize your thoughts.
Parents who show their children that they care about them do so partly by talking with them about difficult issues. If you can open a dialogue with your children about puberty you can partly help to ensure that they will be able to come to you in times of crisis. You will ensure that they will feel comfortable about bringing their problems to you. But how do you discuss puberty with your child? Assume that you will be fairly nervous when you attempt to speak to your child about puberty. You might feel perfectly comfortable about it now but you do not know what it will be like when you try to actually do it. Will you be able to speak with assurance and make sure that you will not forget something important?
One way to help yourself go through the process of talking about puberty is to have a puberty talk checklist. A good way to make a checklist is to think about things you would want to know about puberty if you were in your child’s situation. Then think of things that everyone should know. Start with the big stuff and then move to less important things. You will want to cover things like physical and hormonal changes, the emotional changes, and the social changes. Be sure to reassure your child and help them to know that puberty is not a bad thing.
Look at your checklist before you speak with your child. You might want to look at it while you are speaking with them, although it is important to remember that you want your puberty talk to be done in an easy and open environment. You want your child to get the sense that the issue is serious but not so serious that they need to be worried. Do not make the conversation mechanical or cold through only looking at a list. Make eye contact with your children while speaking with them.
Finally, once you have gone through your checklist and finished your puberty talk with your child, do not assume that the issue is now closed for discussion. Puberty takes place over many years and needs to be addressed in various forms. Make sure that you tell your child that you are open to speaking about puberty at any time. Your responsibility to your child does not end with simply passing on some information in a single talk. Continue to speak with your child about puberty and make sure that they are comfortable with what is going on.