Maureen Turner: We Are Family


When I Hit Puberty

Will It Be The Same for My Daughters?

I remember in grade 6, despite my efforts to wear baggy sweatshirts, a boy named Ian referred to me as ‘Chesty Morgan’. I didn’t back then, nor did I today (until I Googled it a moment ago) know who or what his reference was about, other than to say I had a large chest.

That was the same year that another boy (Darrin) made note of the hair on my legs. Light in colour and wispy fine, like any young girl, but I was mortified.

That evening, I went to the bathroom cupboard and found my mom’s razor, I lathered soap on my legs and I watched as the blade removed the blond wisps from my sun kissed legs.

I had my first boyfriend that year, and when I say boyfriend, I mean we met after school and ran cross country together (that’s not a euphemism). He once gave me a very innocent peck of a kiss, but shortly after that I had one of my friends tell him that I didn’t want to be his girlfriend any more.

That was the beginning though, that was the year of so many changes, both emotionally and physically… and I’m sure hormonally (sorry if I was a bitch).

In grade 7, my mother finally convinced me that I did, in fact, need a bra (I was a C cup). It seemed my body had no regard for the pact I had made with my girlfriend never to have boobs or get my period.

By grade 8, I had full body curves, I was shaving every day, and I had a real boyfriend. The kind Bender talks about in The Breakfast Club “Over the bra, under the blouse, shoes off... hoping to God your parents don’t walk in”... That kind of boyfriend.

Our daughter started grade 6 this week. I wonder who will be her first kiss? Has she had her first kiss? I tease her about how big her boobies are getting, I know the boys are noticing. She mentioned shaving her legs the other day... it’s all so familiar, and yet I still have no real idea what advice to give her or how to help make these next few years any easier.

I hope I say the right things.