Celebrating Your Daughter's First Period
As a modern mother, you might find the idea of celebrating your daughter's first menses a little out-dated or embarrassing. You may even associate menarche or menstruation rituals with negative experiences you had as a teenager, depending on your religious or cultural background. You should not, however, dismiss the option of marking your daughter's first monthly period in a way that feels appropriate to you both. In fact, a first menstruation ceremony may even enhance your relationship, and reinforce her confidence about her developing body and sexual health.
Why Celebrate The Beginning Of Menstruation?
Your daughter's first menstrual bleed is an opportunity for both of you to come to terms with her womanhood and the new responsibilities she faces as a fertile adult. Marking this positive milestone in your daughter's life shows her you are ready to talk about issues such as sanitary protection, ovulation, menstrual cycles and cramps. It is also your chance to dispel any myths or negative attitudes about menstruation that she may have already encountered. Most of all, it allows you to celebrate her new stage of life as a healthy and much-loved young woman. Of course, the type of celebration you hold depends on you, your daughter, and perhaps also your family's religious and cultural traditions.
Creating Your Own Menarche Celebration
If you are not sure where to begin, together you could research ancient and contemporary menarche rituals, aspects of which can easily be adapted to suit you both. In some cultures, for example, women retire to a special area to rest during their periods. Perhaps it would be fun to organize a girls' retreat or sleepover, with music, food, and small gifts for your daughter to treasure? Also, could you use certain foods and symbols that represent menstruation or fertility in your own culture? For example, red wine, eggs, or even the moon? Could you incorporate a practical element, for example, a lesson in massage to ease cramping? With a little investigation, you will find a wealth of possibilities for a warm, loving and culturally-appropriate event that your daughter will remember for the rest of her life.
Whom To Invite
Whether you are holding a private ceremony just for the two of you, or a gathering of close friends or family, you should reassure your daughter and respect her wishes. No matter how close your family is, she might not want siblings, male or female, or other family members to be involved. While it could be very beneficial to invite older and younger women to share their menstruation experiences, if your daughter is too shy, a private, intimate celebration can be equally meaningful. Try not to lose sight of the goal - for her to enjoy this event and look back on it with fondness. All this takes is a little imagination, but most of all, good communication.