Whether you experienced it yourself as a young girl, heard about it from your friends, or merely cringed as you watched the scene play out in your favourite TV sitcom, the puberty talk is something we can all relate to and learning about the ‚Äòbirds and the bees‚Äô is a necessary part of growing up. Nevertheless, for girls especially, it can be seen as an embarrassing or even taboo subject. From my own memories of this period (no pun intended) of my life I remember it being quite a simple and embarrassment-free learning curve; Mum had given me a book entitled something like ‚Äòwhere babies come from‚Äô when I was still a little girl and then we brushed up on the finer details about periods, pads, tampons, etc. when the time came. However, for many families and girls this process can be a lot more difficult to navigate!
Recently, a company named Lammily‚Äìwho are well known for producing a ‚Äòrealistic barbie‚Äô with cellulite, acne, scars, and real human proportions‚Äìhave designed an educational pack to accompany their dolls which aims to help young girls learn about menstruation and all it entails. Entitled “Period Party,” the pack includes an educational leaflet, a pair of knickers for the Lammily Doll, and a set of reusable stickers in the shape of pads and liners, as well as a calendar for young girls to track their own menstrual cycle. The Period Party has received a great deal of really positive reviews from parenting experts, newspapers, and also from parents themselves. Whilst the majority of reviews seem to support the product and many believe it has assisted young girls and their families to feel more comfortable in talking about periods openly, there are some critics! A few parents feel that at the stage when puberty hits girls are too old to play with dolls and to give the child the doll at a younger age would be inappropriate, and some even feel the pack makes fun of the menstrual cycle.
In my opinion this pack is a welcome addition to the seemingly small number of tools available to aid parents and young girls when it comes to discussing puberty. The idea of a doll experiencing her period advocates the view that menstruation is a perfectly normal and natural process which all women experience during their lifetime, and allows young girls to get to grips with it in a hands-on way. Of course it won‚Äôt be suitable for everyone, and some parents may feel it doesn‚Äôt work for them or their children, but let‚Äôs be honest: what learning resource does work for everyone? Nickolay Lamm, the creator of the Lammily Doll, believes Period Party can provide opportunity for ‚Äúopen and positive conversations about our periods‚Äù and, for me, that can only be a positive step for young girls.
Girl Museum Inc.