May All Our Kids Have The Tampon Lesson They Deserve A La Charlotte In “And Just Like That"
I remember it like it was yesterday. I came home from school in 8th grade after getting my period for the first time. The conversation went something like this, Mom. I got my period. Her response: Okay, the pads and tampons are in the top cabinet. Yup. That was it, that was the conversation. So much for a tampon lesson. Then again, this was the early 2000s, and she did send me to a parochial school where the health lessons barely stretched three pages on all things puberty and procreation.
Remind me again why it’s so taboo to talk about an experience that approximately 26% of the world’s population experiences on any given day? Can it be uncomfortable? Only if you make it uncomfortable. Do you know what else is equally antagonizing? Trying to figure it all out without a tampon lesson. Or not understanding that different days in your cycle come with various flows or levels of comfortability. (Yes, every leak I’ve ever had, I’m looking at you.) There are so many conversations that should be had around menstruation and reproductive cycles, but we just don’t have them. I mean, unless you’re a cool mom like Charlotte (Kristin Davis), who absolutely nailed her daughter’s tampon lesson in “And Just Like That.”
In case you missed it, one of the best tampon lessons to date was between Charlotte and her daughter. Everything from her nervous energy to explaining different positions was gold. And yes, even turning to Youtube when all else fails, these are the honest, frank ways we should be talking to our kids about their cycle and everything that comes with it.
Some will say it’s cringey and couldn’t even imagine how embarrassing that must have been. Nope. Even though it was spaz-tastic it was done without an inkling of shame or guilt, exactly how it should be. Because the stigma of shame and guilt that shadows most conversations around menstruation is what keeps them from happening. And then, instead, they go to their friends (who might also be ill-informed), and no one gets the facts.
Period Conversations Aren’t Just for People Who Experience Menstruation
I’m the mother of two daughters who will someday have this same experience. And I don’t want it to be like mine was. But here’s the thing, they aren’t the only ones who benefit from having these conversations. Yes, even people who don’t experience a period should still talk about them.
While I don’t have any sons, I do have two brothers, a husband, and plenty of other non-menstruating people in my life. No, they won’t ever personally experience all the things that come with having a cycle but, they still should be aware of the inner workings. When society as a whole understands menstruation, it takes away the stigma, and we can talk about it plainly like we do any other function of the human body.
So thank you, Charlotte, for giving parents a tampon lesson they can relate to. Here’s to open, honest conversations around tampons, menstruation, and everything that comes with that. May you and your child move forward through this phase in their life without stigma while celebrating all the incredible things our bodies can do, period.