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When it’s that time…

As much as we attempt to live in the present, sometimes we can’t help but think about the future. At times we actually find ourselves predicting prospective events to prepare as much as possible for positive outcomes.

Exposure, building tolerance and preparation in many instances have been the key to our success but we thought this particular situation may be more challenging.

We assumed that Madi technically becoming a woman may potentially be a traumatic experience. We still don’t really know how much she understands, she prefers not to wear underwear at the best of times and who knew when, where or how she would react when it happened?

So, approximately two years ago when Madi was around ten years old and still at onsite therapy, we decided to implement and a pre period program to start exposing and preparing her for this significant event.

We initially began a pad tolerance program. Practicing placing ultra thin panty liners in her underwear and wearing them for an increasing time. We then progressed to artificial colouring, disposing and replacing them.

We created a social story that we read intermittently with basic conversation but were really unsure of how much information she was retaining or actually understood.

We also purchased a few of pairs of the practical period friendly Modi Bodi underwear to have on hand ready to wear when necessary.

We were pretty much prepared as possible but anxiously unsure of how she would react to the reality.

Recently, every time she mentioned a sore tummy or seemed unsettled or emotional, we questioned whether she was developing.

We are so grateful that it happened when we were all at home together in lockdown, enabling us to comfort and support her as much as possible.

I noticed a stain on her dress mid online therapy session and reacted accordingly.

Afterwards, we were more emotional than her because of the significance of the occasion. What getting your period actually means and reflecting on Madi’s future.

We have considered prevention possibilities if it becomes too overwhelming and discussed options with our GP and Paediatrician but will see how it all plays out.

She was relatively unphased and responded really well! She required basic verbal reassurance and reinforcement to wear her special underwear the whole time while she was bleeding and could take them off when it stopped. A couple of Panadol, a warm wheat pack and a chocolate treat.

We recorded the days on the calendar which she already likes to cross off each day and will look into using one of the tracking apps on her phone.

We will obviously continue to monitor the situation moving forward but honestly, she handled it like a champ! Our little girl is growing up…

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