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How old were you when you got your first period?

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Part of being a preteen/teenager is figuring out what is "normal" in life.  This being a touchier area for most, I don't mind laying all the facts out on the table.  Mine came when I was on the low end of 10, and I think the average for my age grade was 12.  One friend of mine got hers when she was 13, and the luckiest (from our point-of-view) among us was 15.

I don't know what the average is in this day and age, but I understand that it is younger.  While we're figuring out what's causing this, we can work on the crazy notion that "she's too young to worry about such things".  My father's philosphy was, "If she's old enough to ask, she's ready for an answer," and he was very good at not answering unasked questions.

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Question last updated by Jessica



developing daughters female empowerment first period menstrual shame puberty puberty education

Posted by

Jessica
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14 Answers

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 Hi,

I was 9 and 3mnths.i was really young. My breasts had developed at the age of 9 and I started getting pubic hair and discharge just after my 9th b'day. I was an early bloomer. My friend s thought I was stealing (and wearing) my mum's bras. That was, until, I asked "why the hell would I want to where my Mum's b-r-a?" We use to thing bra was a rude word. We where stupid kids back then... So, it really just depends on how old your mum was. My mum was 14, though.

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Posted by

Carol Oswald
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I started a month after my 11th birthday.

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Posted by

Kai
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I was 12. Luckily I started in middle school, but my sister was younger. She was the only girl in her elementary school that had to worry about it.

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Posted by

Helen
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I was 12 and about 3 days from my 13th birthday

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Posted by

Courtney Waytashek
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 I was 11 x

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Posted by

Ashleigh Patterson
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 I was in 7th grade but I don't remember exactly how old I was when it happened.

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Posted by

Amy S
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 I was 11

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Posted by

Lindsey D.
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I was 10.  I'm in my 30s now and only recently have I started to read about so many others who got their periods at 10 and younger.  No one else among my family or anyone else I knew got it that early so I felt like a freak of nature for years and years.  Since I was so young, no one had thought to teach me anything beforehand so it was a challenge, to say the least.  I'm so glad that we starting to talk about our periods because they're part of life and is not something that we should be ashamed to talk about.  Let's share our experiences because a lot of what some of us think is weird or abnormal, really isn't and myths about what periods are all about run rampant. So keep stepping up and speaking your truth, and encourage others to do the same.

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Posted by

Dee
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I was 10 years old and in Grade 5. I think I was early compared to my friends. I also developed my boobs relatively early and had my best friend accuse me of stuffing my bras when I was 8 or 9 years old (I never did).

It was also unfortunate because our school didn't actually start teaching sexual education until grade 6. So though I did have my mom to talk to about my period, I didn't really know much about what it was until a year after I had already started.

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Posted by

Alice Ayres
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 I started about five months after my twelveth birthday. A lot of girls aroudn that time were, too. Though, luckily, mine started a few days before school ended, unlike others.

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Posted by

Sophia
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 15 years, 3 months.  At the time--I'm 43--I felt so far behind my friends, but now I'm glad because the later you start menstruating, the lower your risk of breast cancer.  I had a friend who was still in elementary school, so maybe 10 years old, and it was really hard for her to be wearing a bra and getting her period at that age.  Then, she was the only one, but now I see lots of girls at my kids' elementary school who are 10 or 11, but look 13 as far as their development.  

My older daughter was 2 months shy of 13.  Younger daughter isn't there yet.  Whew.

My grandmother was 17, and my mother was 16.  There have been studies showing that puberty has been starting earlier and earlier for the past few generations.  I can see it in my own family.  

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Posted by

Julie
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 I got my first period when I was 13. At the time, I was really excited to know that I was officially a woman. However, now I'm 19, and planning to major in vocal performance, so I dread getting my period. I hear birth control can ruin high notes in the voice too, so that's not an option for me. The other thing about periods that suck is that they are a double-edged sword. On the one hand, getting them is a pain physically (they give me cramps, make me feel weak, and give my vocal tone a fatigued quality) and emotionally (the hormones and irritability). However, after you go through menopause it means that you're losing your youthful femininity and becoming an old lady (the decrease in estrogen production can cause a lot of problems in the singing voice depending on the individual's good technique and luck. I pray that my voice will not drastically and negatively change after menopause starts for me, though that's a very long time from now).

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Posted by

Grace
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I got my period a month after my 12th birthday, in 6th grade.

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Posted by

emmazing
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I was probably the last in my class to get mine. Everybody else had gotten their's already and were talking about the struggles with it and what not. When I would tell them I hadn't had mine yet they started going on about how lucky i was and whatnot. I didn't feel lucky, I felt like there was something wrong with me. Then about a week before my fifteenth birthday i got it and boy was it bad. I would leak through the most absorbant pads and it lasted about ten days. Then a couple months later I had my second one. Then nothing for over a year and a half. I really thought something was wrong with me because my sister had had issues and couldn't have children. Then it showed up again a couple months before I turned seventeen and seems to be fine now. The hardest part though was that my friends didn't understand that it was a struggle for me and kept telling me how lucky I was. 

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Posted by

Abigail
1



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