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Added August 01, 2013

From WebMD: How to Talk to Your Parents

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WebMD Feature

By Camille Peri

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario, MD

If You Really Can’t Talk to Your Parents

You need to talk to your parents about some things, like curfews and rides. But maybe you don't like to turn to them for personal or social advice. You might be surprised if you give them a try.

“Nobody is going to care about and love you with the intensity of your parents -- even when you‟re trying to push away from them,” says Kathy McCoy, MD, a former feature editor of Teen magazine. “As intense and wonderful as friendships can be -- and some of them are for life, but most of them aren‟t -- you can count on your parents when your friends might flake on you.”

Talking to your parents doesn't mean you're acting like a kid again. "You can ask their opinion and you don‟t have to accept everything they say," McCoy says.

Talking Tip 1: Engage in Small Talk

Try to talk to your parents a bit every day about little things -- the dog, your baseball game, what‟s for dinner. This keeps you connected, so moving on to a big topic isn‟t so difficult.

Talking Tip 2: Send Out “Trial Balloons”

When you want to talk about a difficult subject, sometimes it‟s easier not to dive in headfirst, McCoy says. “You might say, 'Most of my friends are having sex,' or even ask your mother, 'Do you remember what it was like when you were just starting to change? Did it feel like everyone else was growing up faster?'”

Talking Tip 3: Know What You Want to Accomplish

Do you have some bad news to break to your parents? Do you need their permission to do something? Or do you just want them to listen to you, without offering any advice? Try writing down for yourself what you want from the conversation. That will help you let your parents know what you need.

Talking Tip 4: Consider Talking to One Parent

If it‟s difficult to bring up a touchy topic like sex, discuss it with the parent you feel most comfortable and open with.

Talking Tip 5: Pick Your Battles

Conversations always go better when they don‟t become fights. “If everything is a crisis or battle, you and your parents will get „battle fatigue,‟” McCoy says. “If you go along with their limits most of the time, then ask for an exception -- to stay out later or do something new, for example -- you have a much better chance of having them say 'yes.'”

Talking Tip 6: Pick the Right Time and Place

It's not a great idea to give your parents bad news when they‟re rushing off to work. Talking in the car when you're doing errands can be a good time. And if you‟re angry, wait until you cool off.Go for a run, cry, or hit a punching bag or pillow first.

Talking Tip 7: Listen When Your Parents Talk

It's tempting to dismiss your parents' opinions. But if you give them time to tell you what they think, they‟re more likely to listen to you. Try the “five-second rule”: Everyone agrees to wait five seconds after another person has finished talking before responding.

Talking Tip 8: Find Other Adults You Trust

In some cases, it just may not be possible to talk to your parents. Maybe your mom can‟t be there for you because she has her own troubles. Or your dad is not even willing to listen. One of your parents may not even be around. In that case, find another adult you trust – like a favorite aunt, a teacher, or a counselor. The most important thing is to have a reliable adult that you can turn to when you need to talk.

SOURCES:

Holmes, M. Girlology: A Girl’s Guide to Stuff That Matters, Health Communications, Inc., 2005.

Drill, E. Deal With It: A Whole New Approach to Your Body, Brain, and Life as a Gurl, Pocket Books, 1999.

Kathleen McCoy, MD, psychotherapist, coauthor, The Teenage Body Book; Florence, Ariz. (520) 509-6724.

Kidshealth: “Talking to Your Parents -- or Other Adults.”

Pfeifer, K. American Medical Association Girl’s Guide to Becoming a Teen, Jossey-Bass, 2006.

Seventeen: “Talking to Your Parents About Sex”

Emily, Davis, Calif.

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario, MD on August 12, 2011

© 2011 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

WebMD Content may not be published, copied, broadcast or redistributed without the prior written authority of WebMD.

Access all of WebMD’s health content at www.webmd.com

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22
comments so far
MySweetOreo
MySweetOreo
Posted July 29, 2014
I don't want to talk to my parents about this (stuff).Even after reading this article I'm still scared it just to awkward.And boys have it so easy.
danielaQ
danielaQ
Posted May 12, 2014
@gymnastgal13. I get why you are embaressed but you shouldn't be!!! Your mom went through the same thing. But if you are too embaressed then try this: if u have a CVS pharmacy,Walmart,target,etc really close to u that u can walk,go!!! Tell ur mom you need like pencils or paper for school. If u have a sister thany can drive,tell her to take u. Or tell a close friend to buy them for u. You can also tell your aunt,sister,or grandma.
sirenpup101
sirenpup101
Posted August 10, 2013
@gymnastgal13: Why be embarrased? But I get it. Maybe you can text or email her. I know it's embarassing, but you'll look back on it in a year and be like, "Why was I so scared?" If you really just can't say it, say you need to go to target or mejer for something and pick up some stuff on your way out. Good luck!
Summer is my name
Summer is my name
Posted July 25, 2013
Help plz I still feel uncomfortable talking to them and I don't have alone time with my parents I have 2 younger sisters and an older brother and my mom is pregnant I been having discharge for the last 4 days what should I do
musiclover2002
musiclover2002
Posted August 08, 2013
I never have alone times with my mom or dad becouse i have a baby bro and two little sisters
GatorWhereItsGreater
GatorWhereItsGreater
Posted January 24, 2013
gymnastgal13 you're over thinking it most likely! Your mom is a female she knows how you feel. Just say what you need. Think of it this way would you rather bleed out in school or ask your mom for pads? Trust me! it's not as hard as it may sound!
gymnastgal13
gymnastgal13
Posted September 16, 2012
im 13 and i just got my period yesterday ... it sucks. all i have is panty liners and idk how to tell my mom. why is it so important for her to know? i want to tell her so bad but im embarrassed
Truffles1
Truffles1
Posted July 05, 2012
Thanks this was great advice
sweetsani16
sweetsani16
Posted July 19, 2012
whenever i talk about this my mom doesnt like it when i talk about period
iiRainbow
iiRainbow
Posted September 02, 2012
Thanks This Helped So Much Now I Know What 2 Say :) -iiRainbow OUT
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