10 Ways Moms Have Seriously Screwed Up the First Period Talk With Their Daughters

teen girl plugging her ears

It's a time every girl remembers: The moment they became a "woman." That first period is a time of discomfort, new beginnings, and tons of questions. And some moms handle the explanation of the first visit from Aunt Flo better than others.


You can either send your daughter off to school in hopes that the middle school nurse handles "the talk," or sit her down and decide to start the education at home. Sometimes it'll go well.

Other times? Not so much.

We asked moms about how they taught their daughter (or how their moms taught them) about their first period, and learned exactly what you shouldn't do when having the "your body is changing" talk. 

Here are 10 cringe-worthy period talk fails from real women:

  1. "She got me some pads from her stash and then told me forcefully, 'Don't let any boys kiss you, you hear me?!' So for a few years, I thought that's how you got pregnant. Why else would she be so angry and demand no kissing?!"
  2. "She bought me Are You There God, It's Me, Margaret ... and that was about it."
  3. "My mom was, and is, the biggest prude. She handed me a stack of little booklets that were printed the year I was born when she decided the time was right to teach me about the changes my body was making. Her face was beet red; she was sweating and shaking and was so nervous that I would ask her a question. We sat on my bed when she did it, then she patted my leg and almost bolted out of the room after I accepted the books. Then, she got to the door, turned and told me that if I needed more information, to seek help at the library."

    More from The Stir: 8 First Period Horror Stories to Make Your Teen Daughter Laugh

  4. "Apparently, my mom was a chicken. She decided she needed to be drunk -- and not just tipsy -- stumbling, slurring her words, incoherent babbling when I got the period and sex talk all rolled into one. It was ridiculously uncomfortable, inappropriate, and way more information that I needed at 11 years old."
  5. "She took some ketchup, squirted it on a pad, and told me that's what my period would look like. Like most girls, my first one was more brown than red, so I thought I had just pooped my pants for a week. It was mortifying in its own way."
  6. "She gave me a box of Tampax, the instructions that came with the tampons, a protractor, and sent me to the bathroom. I had to figure out how to put it in at a 45-degree angle while she waited outside the door."
  7. "My mom sent me to school -- I went to a Catholic all girls' school -- and told me to ask the nuns if I should have any questions."
  8. "We sat on my bed, she refused to look me in the eyes, and then told me that a 'hole opened up' in my body, by my 'pee hole' and would squirt out blood. I asked her if blood would shoot out of me, like a rocket, and lift me off the ground. My mom laughed and said, 'yes!' That was not the time for sarcasm."

    More from The Stir: 6 Ways to Make Your Daughter’s First Period Less of a Pain

  9. "She didn't have time to give me the talk before I got it, but as soon as 'Aunt Flo' appeared, she called my grandmothers, my aunts, my cousins, neighbors, and friends. I thought we'd have a Ya-Ya Sisterhood moment with candles and a seance. And she never actually explained it, but Grandma did make sure to call me and welcome me to 'womanhood.'"
  10. "I remember this so vividly. She said, 'You may be bleeding, but you won't be dying... unless you have sex.' Scared the crap out of me for a good while."

How did you explain periods to your daughter? How did your mom explain it to you?


Image via DarkBird/shutterstock

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