19 May, 2010

ADVANCED PLANNING (NYC Moms Blog - Book Club Post)

Reading a book about puberty, periods, breast development and "the first time" when your daughter's only 15 weeks old... crazy or brilliant?  I'm choosing the latter.

Honestly, I was not sure what I expected from The Body Scoop for Girls, Dr. Jennifer Ashton's delightfully spirited book on those oh-so-awkward years somewhere between childhood and adulthood, but I found myself right back in high school wishing I had this book 15 years ago.

As I turned each page, I was launched forward a decade from now when my own daughter will be experiencing the amazing, confusing, wonderful, awful time of puberty and self-discovery.  And my reading was peppered with laughter as I thought of her ever-loving father trying to field answers to those confusing questions and offering her the timeless advice to "go ask your mother".  I wonder what she'll be like as a tween, as a teenager, as a young adult - making hard decisions, and forging her own path in this world.  And I must admit, being reminded of those embarrassing first few periods, those uncomfortable sex-ed classes, and the pressures to "do it" before I was ready have really made me think about the challenges my daughter will have to face as she grows up.

I've always heard about how mothers (and fathers!) want the best for their children, want to be able to support them, want to be able to make their pain go away when they're hurting.  And now I know what that feels like.  I'm truly looking forward to being able to have those difficult conversations with my daughter.  And I'm also scared to death.  I suppose I'll tell her my own stories of having to wrap a sweater around my waist when I unexpectedly started my period in the middle of math class, feeling left out when a group of my friends lit a joint in one kid's attic and then teased me because I had the courage to just say no, and how my heart ached and ached for what felt like an eternity when my high school boyfriend broke up with me because I wouldn't have sex with him.  And I'll tell her about my less-than-ideal choices as well, like when I was caught making out with a guy I liked in the music rehearsal room at school, and when I threw up all over someone's front lawn the first time I drank one too many strawberry daiquiris.

However, there is one line from this book that really sticks with me:  "The truth is, girls are smart. Given the right facts, they usually make smart choices."  Oh, how I hope this will be true for my daughter.  (And for her mother!)

Disclosure: I received a copy of The Body Scoop for Girls by Dr. Jennifer Ashton to read and discuss as a contributor for the Silicon Valley Moms Blog. The thoughts and opinions expressed above are my own.

Dr. Jennifer Ashton is a Board-Certified Ob-Gyn, who specializes in Adolescent Gynecology. At Hygeia Gynecology, her private clinical practice in Englewood, New Jersey, Dr. Ashton has emphasized a return to old-school medicine with a new-age approach. You can purchase your own copy of her book from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders, and Indiebound.

Click here to check out other posts inspired by this book.


  1. Brilliant, absolutely brilliant.

    Thanks for participating in the SV Moms Group Book Club!

  2. As the mother of a 2 2/1 year old...I agree, it's brilliant...and share your hopes.

  3. Anonymous20 May, 2010

    Remember the book my mom gave me? "What's happening to my body?" Thank God for that book- b/c let's be honest, sex-ed never taught you the stuff you really wanted to know but were afraid to ask. All praise to Moms and Dads who can have frank, honest conversations with their kids!