What Do I Do When My Daughter Starts Her Period?

My preteen daughter started her period. What should I do now? How do I approach this conversation with her?

Choose a private location where you can talk without being interrupted. Don’t feel like you must do all the talking. Allow time and quiet space in the conversation for your daughter to share how she is feeling, what she is experiencing, and what questions and concerns she may have. 

To help put everyone at ease, consider beginning the conversation with practical matters. Discuss the use of sanitary napkins, tampons, and having an emergency kit for those times when a period comes unexpectedly. Encourage your daughter to keep a menstrual calendar and reassure her that her periods are likely to be irregular for the first year. Be as knowledgeable beforehand as you can be, but don’t hesitate to say if there is something you don’t know.

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Let this be an opportunity to learn together. Avoid using nicknames for body parts.  Use the correct, anatomical terms such as “vagina” and “menstrual cycle.”  This doesn’t have to become “The Talk” about sex. Let your daughter take the lead. She may just want to know how having a period will affect her usual activities. And what to do when her period comes.

As your preteen daughter continues to grow, you have an opportunity to deepen your relationship with her while focusing on important milestones in her life. For more information about how you can show up and confidently step into your parenting invitation, explore our parenting resources.

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