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tips for talking to your BOYS about puberty

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Last year, my daughter had “the puberty talk” at school. Before that happened I made sure to talk to her about it first. I really wanted that information to come from me so she will feel comfortable talking to me when her body starts to change. We read through the entire Care and Keeping of You book from American Girl and she felt like an expert by the time she had to go through all of the information at school. But guess what? Next year it’s my son who has the puberty talk.
Umm…this is new information for me. I mean, I know what happens to a boy during puberty but I have (obviously) never actually experienced it myself. I’m sure a lot of moms just send their husbands in to have a quick talk and call it good. But I really want to be able to talk to my son about it. Because I want him to feel like he can talk to me if he wants to. Lucky for me, American Girl just came out with a book just for boys–Guy Stuff: the Body Book for Boys.
I read through the book (yes, the whole thing) and I was super impressed. Written by Harvard and Johns Hopkins trained pediatrician Cara Natterson (the same author as The Care and Keeping of You series!), Guy Stuff gives boys the information they need about their changing bodies.  It starts out with the easier topics–healthy eating, keeping clean, handling emotions and works up to the bigger things (yep, I’m talking erections and all that comes with them–even tips for hiding them in inconvenient times!)  I love that it starts slow.  I can start reading this with my nine-year-old and we can take our time working up to the “big stuff”.   Or, if your child is older or experiencing puberty early, this is a great way to bring up the tough concepts!  It also talks about social and emotional issues–kind of a puberty primer!
As you can see in the sample pages, the book is full of diagrams and illustrations.  Dr. Natterson made sure everything is clearly explained and uses language that makes sense to kids of any age.  This book will be a great resource to use when I talk to my son and also one I will keep in his room so he feels like he’s able to consult it if he is ever feeling unsure.  I’m so thankful to have added this book to our home library! Will you be having the puberty talk with your son soon?  How do you think Guy Stuff: the Body Book for Boys will help that conversation?

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