Mission Sanitary Napkins and Periods

It was the final match between India and Australia. Radhika, Rohan and their five-year-old daughter Simran and six-year-old son Rahul were sitting in front of their television screen waiting for the match to reach its conclusion. Not that Simran and Rahul took any joy in watching cricket but since mummy and daddy were hooked to the screen, they decided to sit back. Break time had a lot many advertisements and one of them happened to be that of sanitary napkin. Where both the kids had seen advertisements of sanitary napkins before, for some strange reason, Rahul asked his mom – What are periods and what are sanitary napkins?

 Before Radhika could answer, Simran had a ready answer. “Bhaiya, they are diapers for big people.” This really did not go well with Rahul, who snapped back, “But then only older girls are shown. Mummy, would Simran need to wear diapers even when she becomes older?”

 What do you do?

Radhika’s first reaction was to ignore the question and pretend she hadn’t heard it. But then she knew if not today, the answer had to be given someday since sanitary napkin ads pop up at regular intervals and a lot many shows have them running all the time. It did not go well with her to put off the question with a simple – it is for big girls or when you grow up, you will understand. After all, girls getting periods is no taboo.  And the question was put up in a better time and place. What if the same question came up at a time when either of the two had caught Radhika wearing a sanitary napkin (most of the time, her little munchkins followed her to the loo) or if at all she had stained her clothes of commode and missed noticing it, only to be noticed by them!

 But then how do you explain this to a five and six year old and specially when you don’t want your son to look at girls differently or want your daughter to feel ‘different’ than her brother?

Talk-Specifics-Your-Child

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 Mission Periods Explanation

Read on to find out what Radhika had to share and how we too can use the same explanation should we have our little one asking about periods and sanitary napkins.

 Radhika: You know how kids are born?

Simran:  From their mummy’s tummy!

Radhika: Do you know how pigeons give birth to their children?

Rahul: I know! They lay eggs, the eggs hatch and the baby comes out

Radhika: Well done, Rahul. Now, let me tell you a little secret. Mummy and all other girls when they grow older also get eggs in their tummy. Though there are no babies in these eggs. The baby comes only when the angel wants them to come. Rest of the times, the eggs come out and they create kind of a mess with some blood. So to ensure that the blood does not spoil mummy’s clothes or the carpet when she is sitting, she needs a sanitary napkin that they show in the ad. All the blood is collected in the napkin which then has to be thrown when it gets full.

Rahul: But what about the baby?

Radhika: I told you na, that when angels do not want a woman to have a baby, the eggs break. If they do not break, then the eggs develop into a baby.

Simran: Wow! How old do I need to get to get the eggs, mummy? And then even I will have a baby if the angel wants me to?

Radhika: Well, yes. But then make sure you don’t tell this secret to your friends now. The angel will not like it. She may get upset with you and then your eggs may not get converted into a baby

 Rahul: But mummy, this is not fair. Then how will men ever get babies? That means I will never get a baby!

Radhika: Of course, you will. When you marry, the woman you are married to will have eggs in her tummy na,

Rahul. And yes, the angel will not let the egg turn into a baby if the woman is not married. So without a man, no woman can have babies and without a woman, no man can have babies.

 Rahul: Oh, yes!

 Radhika: So now, we have a deal. You will not talk about this to your friends or in front of someone. Okay? Angels are very secretive about this and they do not like anyone talking about it. Only when you are a little older, will we talk about it again, okay?

 For now, this was good enough information for both the kids. Their inquisitiveness was met with some information.

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