Big Girl is eight. She looks it. Tall, yes, but skinny and straight and flat as a board. Not a curve in sight. Some of her friends, however, may be eight, but they are eight going on 17. When I look at them I see little girls with hair under their arms (they make fun of each other about this — that’s how I know) who also need to wear bras. I will not take time here to rant or complain about this sad fact. (You can read previous posts where I rage on about BPA and hormones from cow’s milk causing premature puberty. Not to mention obesity.) I will say this, though: The entire situation makes me extremely sad.
Last night my husband and I spent some time discussing when I needed to have “the talk” with Big Girl. My husband pointed out that, since her friends and classmates are developing, the talk should probably come sooner rather than later. I am completely torn. I want to provide her with good information, but I also want to avoid scaring her. And I want her to be a kid for as long as she can be. My kid is a worrier. As soon as I tell her that someday she will bleed once a month…well, she won’t just take the information in and file it for future use. She’ll ruminate and worry about it. Then again one of my best friends was nine when she got her period. Still, I was two months shy of 13. She could have a similar experience. Heck, I would be thrilled if she could postpone it until she was 14 or 15. (It could happen. One of my friends was almost 16 when she got hers.)
After weighing all the pros and cons we decided to wait until she is in fifth grade, the doctor says she’s going into puberty, or she starts asking questions — whichever comes first. Some people will disagree with me. I know that, but in this case I hope my delay is really a gift of time — time to be a kid for just a little while longer.