Welcome To Your Period

Welcome To Your Period

A Frank, Funny and Age Appropriate Guide for Pre-Teens

Hardie Grant Egmont is thrilled to announce the launch of Welcome to Your Period, the ultimate menstruation manual for pre-teens (9-12 years) from Yumi Stynes and Dr. Melissa Kang, guaranteed to make girls feel comfortable and confident about their period – whether it's already started, or is just around the corner.

Hitting shelves on 1st August 2019, Welcome to Your Period takes the weird, mortifying and messy out of getting your period for the first time by offering candid advice on how to handle this bleeding business like a boss!

Stynes, the co-creator of award-winning ABC podcast Ladies We Need To Talk and Kang, a practicing physician specialising in adolescent health and the longest running voice behind Dolly Magazine's iconic advice column, Dolly Doctor, together bring big-sisterish wisdom, fun and medical insight to guide pre-teens through all they need to know about Aunt Flo.

Demystifying everything from cramps to what to do with a used tampon, giving practical advice on surviving your period at school, at sleepovers or during sport, Welcome to Your Period is a complete guide. It features medical information, advice, case studies, first-person accounts and questions from real teens in a shame-free zone - setting readers up to become the ultimate period boss.

"When I was younger, I longed for a resource like Welcome to Your Period. It answers questions that I might have only asked in a whisper, if I dared! Looking at the pages, I feel emotional - thinking how grateful my 12-year-old self would have been to have a book to take me through everything that happens when you get your period. I hope young girls use the book to feel armed and empowered and confident to take it on!" says Yumi Stynes.

Welcome to Your Period comes as a response to the growing period activism movement and covers environmental, intersectional and cultural knowledge about menstruation.

Dr. Melissa Kang commented, "Women around the world feel passionately about breaking the stigma surrounding periods and we're proud to be contributing our advice and knowledge to help make it a positive experience for as many girls as possible."

Publishing as a pocket-ish size paper-back book, Welcome to Your Period features eye-catching illustrations by Jennifer Latham and comes with a super cool WTYP pouch and a shopping list with all your essential items for that time of the month.

Written by two exceptional women, Welcome to Your Period is the ultimate guide to periods for pre-teens who have more questions than they're willing to ask and their parents who don't know where to start.

Welcome to Your Period
Hardie Grant Egmont
Authors: Yumi Stynes and Dr. Melissa Kang
RRP $19.99

Interview with Dr. Melissa Kang

Question: What inspired you to write Welcome to Your Period?

Dr. Melissa Kang: I answered hundreds of questions about periods when I wrote for Dolly Doctor over 23 years. Dolly was a magazine for young teens that was hugely popular in its day, and it was around for almost 50 years! The 'Dolly Doctor' section included real questions sent by readers from all over the country. I answered five to 10 questions every month, but had to keep my answers short, and didn't have any space for diagrams. Welcome to Your Period was the perfect way to answer pretty much every question that ever came my way, and more. It includes illustrations that helps to explain some of the trickier things, when a picture can tell you much more than words. Yumi Stynes is a clever, funny, experienced media personality who is also a mum of teenage girls. We had lots of fun together writing this book – I did lots of medical fact-checking but also wrote about some of my own experiences as a teenager. Having three daughters (and a son) myself was also a huge inspiration – they were my close critics over those Dolly Doctor years.

Question: What questions does the book answer?

Dr. Melissa Kang: Questions like what a period actually is and why it happens, how different period products work, how to deal with parents, what to do if you leak, managing sleepovers and school camps, and also what you can do if periods are affecting your health and daily life. We look at stigma, period poverty and periods and the environment too.

Question: What is your best piece of advice for handling our lady business like a boss?

Dr. Melissa Kang: You're in charge of your body – so, get to know and love it – it's with you for a long time! Knowledge builds confidence.

Question: Can you share some period advice for parents of pre-teens?

Dr. Melissa Kang: Know yourself first. How do you feel discussing periods (and puberty more broadly) with your pre-teen? If it's awkward for you, why? how might you be able to manage that? Being comfortable yourself will make it all much easier – sometimes that will involve rehearsing what you want to say, or even just admitting that you find it a bit awkward and having a laugh.

In the book, we want all pre-teens and teens to see periods as both something amazing and wonderful, but also something completely natural. Periods are just one part of the incredible changes that happen to the body during puberty, so putting them into that perspective can be helpful. There's a lot of anxiety about WHEN you'll get your first period, and while it's something that can and should be celebrated, it can also put the focus on just this one event. So, parents can talk about all the other things that happen – getting taller, heavier, hairier, stronger.

Being a good listener – we often think we know what pre-teens and teens want and worry about, but we could be missing something. We might dismiss something as 'trivial' when it means a whole lot more to our pre-teen.

It can be helpful to refer to other things - such as this book! Sometimes talking about 'something' or 'somebody' else makes a conversation easier – eg 'have you learned anything in school about periods?' or 'do any of your friends talk about periods?'

Question: How did you go about co-writing with Yumi Stynes?

Dr. Melissa Kang: It ended up being very easy and easy-going. We met a couple of times to talk it through. We created a shared document online and started with an outline of sections and a bit of introductory writing. When we realised we were on similar wavelengths – with content, tone, but with our own style – we just got on with it. We gave each other feedback along the way. The publisher looked at the initial draft which helped us then structure the rest.

Interview by Brooke Hunter

Welcome to Your Period
Hardie Grant Egmont
Authors: Yumi Stynes and Dr. Melissa Kang
RRP $19.99