What’s in our first period kit and some thoughts about starting

by

First period - what's in our first period kit

There are many commercial first period kit boxes around these days. Which I find quite amusing as, let’s face it, there’s really not a lot to it.

I saw a first period kit that includes such necessary period items as a charm bracelet, cozy socks and even lip balm. I mean, really? Lip balm?

Am I being mean? Is it a thing to remember using your first pad by a memorial charm bracelet? If it is, I’m afraid you have come to the wrong first period kit information source. I am not about the charm bracelet. I have absolutely nothing against girls or mothers who want to mark the first period occasion with a little gift or a borrowed tribal ceremony or even a red-themed party. It’s just not for us.

First period kit - how to pack a first period kit

For my girls, their first period kit contains pretty much the same thing my own did. Only instead of a plastic ziplock bag, we’ve put their kit into a little pencil case. Discreet and sweet.

Mind you, the discreet side of things isn’t needed for my youngest. She is all about the women’s circle of trust. We packed her little kit and into the school bag it went, along with extra extra-undies, a box of tampons and a ridiculous amount of pads. Just in case her friends need them.

She’s 10, in year 6, and so excited. Heaven help us when her first period actually arrives. I wouldn’t be surprised if she makes a PSA at school to let everyone know she’s the go-to girl for all things menstruation. Only don’t say ‘menstruation’. Unlike carrying 27 pads around in your school bag, using that word would be mortifying.

We all ’embrace’ the coming of shark week differently, as ‘mortifying’ pretty much sums up Aunty Flo’s arrival for my elder daughter. She has no interest in the whole lady thing whatsoever. She calls it ‘the situation’ and that’s that. Never to be referred to or mentioned again. Actually I really should get off this keyboard because I think I’m in trouble already… 

Read how Cathy’s twin daughters felt about their first period

What’s in our first period kit

Modibodi undies

Have you tried them? ModiBodi undies are so comfy, environmentally-friendly and washing is a breeze. Rinsing them out under the laundry tap is not gross, I promise. We’re mums, we’ve rinsed out far dicier things!! It’s so easy for girls to just swap their usual undies for a pair of these when the time comes. I can’t recommend Modibodi highly enough (and we’ve tried quite a few brands).

2 x wrapped pads

Because, options. Maybe my girls will feel better with a pad than period undies. I just want them to feel in control, comfortable and loved when their first period comes along.

1 x change of underpants

To go with the pads. A girl likes to be fresh. Or even if she’s chosen to use pads, throw in a pair of Modibodi to back that pad up! A gal can’t be careful enough, especially at school…

A few baby wipes in a ziplock bag

If you need freshening, a baby wipe is a good go-to option. I’ve reminded the girls that they shouldn’t be flushed, but put into the sanitiser or bin, just as they will do with a pad or tampon when the time comes. 

They can pop their old undies into the ziplock bag to bring home for washing.

Hand sanitiser

Lottie is obsessed with introducing hand sanitiser to any occasion. Bit like the lip balm, I guess!?

A Tween's Guide to Puberty Online Program

Michelle Mitchell’s course really takes the awkward out of The Talk.

Some advice for new starters (and their mums)

It’s a big deal, or not a big deal

It’s up to your daughter. Yes, reminder to proud mums everywhere: it’s not up to you how this goes down! The Red Wedding may very well come and go without comment or even acknowledgement. Or you may need to get the brass band, party poppers and hot water bottle ready each and every month. Your girl will be your guide.

Speaking of which: Periods vs Perimenopause: Let’s get ready to rumble

It helps to have a trusted friend(s) at school

A friend is necessary to check for leakages, remind you that you don’t smell and be there if you are suddenly not coping with the massive influx of hormones coursing through your body. A friend is also excellent at screaming, “It’s PERIOD BLOOD, Dave. Not a MURDER. GROW UP, you silly boy child!” across the playground (but that might just be my friend). Talk to your girl about who might fit this important role.

Women's circle of trust for the first period kit

Focus on the health aspect

She will learn about period pain and heavy flows and all of that soon enough. Instead, put the focus on how healthy it is for a girl to get a regular period. Also, see final point below – it’s very hard to go easy on the ‘it suuuuuuuux’ part, but we must.

Books to read: 5 good books about starting your period

Put the monthly thing into perspective

It’s mildly interesting to get one period, rather traumatic to realise they are coming every 28 or so days forever and ever until you die (Note: being 50 is death to girls, so yes, until you die). Don’t panic them, instead talk about how periods help form life’s gentle rhythm. Okay, life’s stupidly-unfair-dumb-shit-fuck-hate-it rhythm.

First period kit - what to pack and some advice about starting

Be hot water bottle ready

They still make Ponstan, which is a comfort for us all. Most girls are going to need a little help most months. If Ponstan is not doing the trick, be sure to make an appointment with her doctor. No, it’s not okay to be bedridden twelve times a year for something that’s supposed to be ‘natural’. Severe period pain is known as dysmenorrhoea and treatment is available. In fact, there is help available for most menstrual hangovers, so help your daughter seek it.

Under no circumstances talk about ‘becoming a woman’

It’s enough to make even the most casual first period getter suck the whole lot back up inside.* (*Sorry about that. Turns out it’s hard to stay on the level when you’re writing about periods.) Plus, a lot of girls are age 8 when the Lady Business comes to call. Bit early for hammering home the lady side of the business, really.

Give her space

You will most probably have to fib a little bit about how joyous you find surfing the crimson tide each month. Your sweet girl has years to discover how much of a life fuck getting your blasted period is. After all, she may actually find the experience less arduous than you have and it’s important to give her space to make up her own mind. 

Feature image by Erol Ahmed; 2 by Mitch Lensink; 3 by Tim Marshall; 4 by Danielle MacInnes

First period kit - and some thoughts on starting

Written by Bron Maxabella

Bron is the founder of Mumlyfe and is so happy to welcome you here. Bron has been writing in the Australian parenting space as Maxabella for more than 10 years and is mum to three mostly happy kids and wife to one mostly happy husband. Mostly happy is a win, right?

We’re very social

More for you

Which period undies are the best?

Which period undies are the best?

You'd be amazed at how many mums have asked me for advice about periods. (Or maybe you wouldn't. Getting the 'period talk' right is a preoccupation of many of us.) And the number one question I get asked the most is, "Which period undies are the best?" I think my...

Dear Children: Here’s an easy way to make your mum feel better

Dear Children: Here’s an easy way to make your mum feel better

Here's the thing, my darling kiddos. You definitely do need to do something to make your mum feel better. Parenting is a bloody frustrating gig. No one does what they say they'll do, when they said they'd do it. "In a minute" is the phrase a mother is most likely to...

Affiliate links

From time to time Mumlyfe uses affiliate links.  It means that Mumlyfe may receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase using the link.  You can find out more about how it works here.

You may also like

Related

This year, I vow to be a better mum

This year, I vow to be a better mum

Parenting teens is hard. So f*cking hard. But it's also delightful. Sometimes I'm so deep in the hard times that I forget about the soft moments. That buried under the knee-deep clothes on the floor, the defiance, the backtalk and 'the face' (parents of teens will...

50+ of the best Christmas gifts for tweens of all ages

50+ of the best Christmas gifts for tweens of all ages

Those lovely little tweenie tweens are equal parts delightful and depressing. No one does he sulk better or holds a grudge longer than a tween. Especially a tween who wanted an Apple watch but received a calculator instead (this may or may not have happened at our...

2 Comments

  1. Eliza

    Ah Bron, I love you. My daughter is a bit younger than your youngest but she is reading all the books (in private!) on puberty. I will try not to tell her how awful I found it, that’s a great point.

    This website of yours is such a needed resource. Thanks again!
    Eliza

    Reply
    • Maxabella

      Pleasure, Treasure. I think it’s a bit too easy to bury the head and pretend our little girls aren’t growing up. Periods are very confronting in that way.

      Reply

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 5 good books about starting your period | Mumlyfe - […] Related: What’s in our first period kit and some thoughts about starting […]

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This