Our Story Begins:
The First Moon Party?
There’s been a whole lot . . . and I do mean a whole lot of discussion on the interwebs this week about The First Moon Party.
A company called “Hello Flo” – I didn’t make up the name, go with me – created a marketing video that must have worked. It has six million views already and I’m writing this on Tuesday. They are a sort of gift box to help you through your period. The gist of the ad, just so you know, is that a teenage girl is the last in her social circle to have her period. Girl fakes her period . . . mom finds out . . . throws a fake party to celebrate. The First Moon Party.
Here’s the ad:
That said, let me be the first to take the ridiculous back just a tiny notch and go to the sublime. My wife, before she passed away, was around for at least one of my daughters to get her first period. The difference between her upbringing and my daughter’s was stark. My mother-in-law did, I kid you not, want to look at this as some rite of passage. That succeeded in making my wife, already uncomfortably bloated, cramped up and grumpy even grumpier.
So when my oldest daughter got her first period my wife did what I think was a brilliant move. She didn’t make a huge deal of it. “Okay, well, you knew this was going to happen eventually,” was sort of the mentality. “Here’s what we do . . . ” and that was pretty much it. My daughter has since applauded her mother for not making a big deal of things. She had friends whose mothers did. My daughter once looked at me and said “it was like mom said “well, you got your period. What do you want, a medal? We all get it. You know what to do.” We laughed because it’s likely not too far from the truth.
Related: Life Lessons: Abbi Manoucheri
But I had to contend with my middle daughter and her first period. Yes, I had my oldest daughter to help. Having your Dad tell you how to use a tampon or what have you is, without a doubt, awkward at best. Might even be a little creepy. Her sister helped with the mechanics of it all, so to speak. But I dealt with the other stuff. My daughters seem to have split the genetic lottery when it comes to menstruation. My oldest gets horrible cramps and what she calls “irregular period.” My middle one gets the PMS. Horribly. Angry, moody, judgmental spoutings come my way even with trying to help. My wife had both and it was horribly difficult for her to bear. The difference is, I am Dad, not husband to these girls. Where my oldest taught her sister the mechanics I had to teach her the other stuff. Have some old, not as pretty underwear for those weeks. Here’s what to use to get stains out. Don’t be embarrassed to ask me to run the washer immediately.
I also informed them both, by the way, that words are my living. Period, uterine flow, menstrual cycle, maxi-pad…I can say them all without flinching. You need panty liners? Tampons? Tell me. I’m not afraid to get in line at the store and buy them.
Most important . . . they still have the lesson from their mother: no, this isn’t a battle. This is life, real life. You don’t get a “period day” from work nor is there sympathy – much as it is very well deserved at times – for women facing that time of the month. Their mother’s help still rings through . . . though it’s still with some help from their Dad.
What about you? What do you think of the First Moon Party ad? Is it funny? Are you offended? Sound off!