I bet you can remember getting your period for the first time or when your little boobies started to grow and everything they accidentally hit HURT so bad! What about growing hair in all the places or shaving for the first time?
I remember shaving for the first time like it was yesterday.
I was maybe 8 or 9.
I went to the bathroom after dinner and my dad left his razor out. I don’t know why but I had this urge to try it… the only problem I was pretty much hairless. I still don’t have much body hair these days actually… But when you are the wild child you just look at your eyebrow and think I could shave off a little and be fine. I ended up shaving off about ½ of an already lightly existing brow. My dad laughed so hard at me that he dropped corn and mashed potatoes out of his mouth (he was still eating).
My parents didn’t really discuss those things with me though. I knew what my body parts were, how babies were made but unfortunately they didn’t really discuss what’s involved when you start shaving/getting your period/consensual/nonconsensual sex.
As I grew up and figured these things out on my own experiences and with the help of friends. When I became a mom, I knew I wanted to be as open, informative and open-minded with our kids. The cute toddler stage is fun but developing individuals, molding/influencing them and guiding them to be awesome people… this has been the most rewarding.
Johnny and I are very open with our kids. Our idea is nothing is left unsaid, unheard or unexplained. We believe that communication is such an important trait that creates a strong individual and family.
Alexis knows that she is beginning to go through puberty. She is very aware of her body, and takes great pride in caring for her body. Her grandmother bought her first sports bra and they had this little bond moment over picking the right fabric/straps/colors. So when Alexis came to me and said, “ I think I have enough hair to shave….”
At first, I thought… “Damn, you do… but you’re 11” but then as she looked at me with pleading eyes as I tried to eat my slice of pizza, I thought “There really isn’t an exact age to this is there?
Yes, she is a brand new 11-year-old, but if we are being honest, she’s more mature than most 18-year-olds I meet these days. Here is just another opportunity to teach her another responsibility of puberty. Teach her the right way to shave, not to share razors and let her own that right of passage the way I know she can.
Things that make me think “slow down… you’re too young”, I am realizing how hard it can be hard to break free of those odd social norms. I also realized that I want them to know themselves and if they feel like a decision is upon them, I want them to advocate for themselves… so long as they’ve asked the questions, done some research or can intelligently advocate for themselves.
So Alexis came up to me told me she did some research.. and that its just hair and she wants it gone…
How TF else should I respond to that?! I was and am proud of her response… so I told her she could.
This is THE moment I have been waiting for… “molding” her into the person she becomes… because in that moment I gained her trust and further became a person that can be a resource and confidant.
So I will answer any questions and teach her the rules of life… happily!