Let’s face it. Speaking to your child about puberty is probably not something you want to do. There are many reasons for dreading this conversation. You might feel embarrassed about the subject matter. You might not feel that it is appropriate to speak about puberty. You might be concerned about the affect the conversation will have on your child. These are some of many reasons for why talking to your child about puberty is difficult. There are many, many more reasons. However, this does not mean that you should not speak with your child about puberty. Think about their position. Do you remember what it was like when you first went through puberty? Do you remember the difficulty of the situation, the confusion, perhaps the anger? It might have happened a long time ago, but this does not mean that you cannot sympathize with someone suffering through the situation. As a child, you probably experienced great fear as your body underwent some major changes. Hormones also changed, altering your moods and social habits. You probably started to see the world in a totally different way. All of these things and more occur to someone when they begin going through puberty, and as it continues for several years. So even if you feel very uncomfortable about speaking with your child about puberty, you probably know that it would be a good idea to do so. This is also the case because your child will secretly appreciate the fact that you did this. They will know that you care about them and that you are interested in their life. This will be particularly important as they move into puberty and start to try to break away from you. Set a standard for open communication with your child. In many ways this will be a standard of love and interest that will persist with them for the remainder of their lives.
Discuss body changes with your child.
What is the most difficult thing about puberty? Is it the hormonal changes? The social changes? Perhaps it is not quite being an adult but also not really being a child either. There are many difficulties that young people face when they deal with puberty. A major difficulty is the obvious changes occurring to the body during this time. Certain parts of the body will develop and change. This will lead to changes in appearance. Hormonal changes will drastically alter their moods.
The most important thing to remember when speaking to your children about body changes experienced during puberty is that they are natural. Help your child to know that what they are experiencing is a normal part of life. It is nothing to be embarrassed about. It is something that everyone goes through. Explain why the changes are taking place. You might even detail some of the hormonal changes occurring in the body. Help them to understand why it is a good thing for them to experience this type of change.
When you speak to your child about body changes make sure to do so in a serious manner. You do not, however, want to make them nervous or scared. A joke or two could help to make the situation a little less serious. Allow your child to ask questions and to ask about your own experience of puberty. It will probably be important to have a parent or person there who is of the same sex as the child. Finally, make sure that your child knows that they can come to you at any time and ask about puberty.