“My name is Qudrah. I grew up as a child from a broken home. I didn’t have the opportunity to live with my parents like most of my mates did.
My mom and dad got separated when I was a baby. I lived with my maternal grandmother in the early years of my life before my dad came to take me from her, almost forcefully.
When I was six years old, my dad took me to live with my aunt, my father’s elder sister and that was where I started my schooling. I faced many challenges because my aunt was not accommodating. I stopped blaming her for all the maltreatment I experienced while living with her when I realised that not everyone could love other people’s children as theirs, even though I am a daughter to her immediate biological brother.
One morning, after years of severe maltreatment, my school called my father to pick me up from her house due to the beating she gave me the day before. The beating was so bad that I almost lost my left eye.
Shortly after I started living with my father, I started my monthly periods.
I was on my way home from school the first time I experienced it. I noticed something in my pants that was different from urine. The only reason I didn’t freak out was because I had been taught about menstruation and puberty in the first year of high school. To some extent, I was mentally prepared for it. I went home quietly to clean myself up without telling anyone, but after some months, it stopped coming for 3-4 months. I didn’t know why and in fact, I wasn’t bothered.
I remember how a concerned classmate called me aside and told me I was due to start wearing a bra.
Not that I didn’t know, but I was shy about wearing it because of the thought that my classmate would laugh at me.
I can’t forget how I saved money to buy my first bra because I couldn’t tell my dad I needed a bra.
Although my father is a great dad, some factors couldn’t make me talk to him freely.
Firstly, I was getting to know him. Actually, we’re just getting to know each other.
Also, my dad didn’t create a platform to make me feel I could discuss anything with him. Till date, no one sat me down to explain things to me except for the information I got in the classrooms. I just had to figure everything out myself. The journey was lonely, and I do not wish it for any girl out there.
It could have been much better and enjoyable if I had someone to put me through, especially my mother.”
—Story of an African woman.
Does this story sound familiar? Hmmm…
Even though a lot of pubertal girls grew up with their mothers or a designated mother-figure, they still had a lonely walk into womanhood. This is not something you want your girl child to go through, and I am sure you would do anything positive to make the journey fun, exciting, and less stressful for your daughter.
HERE ARE 5 ADVANTAGES OF PREPARING YOUR DAUGHTER FOR WOMANHOOD:
- It helps her understand the scientific basis of the physical transformation that happens during puberty.
- It helps to boost her confidence.
- It gives her a strongly positive body image.
- It equips her with the ability to face the challenges of adolescence.
- It reminds her of her duty to worship Allāh with a clean body and pure soul.
The best way to achieve these is by making use of resources specially designed for Muslim girls.
With early education, your daughter can be prepared for a deeper conversation as she becomes an adolescent. She would feel free to ask questions and express her concerns.
This will make her more comfortable with what’s happening to her body and reduce any potential anxiety she might develop to a minimal level.
The good news is that I have written a book, DEAR DAMSEL, to serve as A DETAILED GUIDE FOR ADOLESCENT MUSLIM GIRLS
This book talks about everything your girl needs to know about her body changes, mental health, internet usage, and other contemporary issues affecting young people.
This book is a heart-to-heart conversation between a loving mother and her adolescent daughter. This mother understands that many parents of preteens and teenagers find it awkward to talk to their daughters about sexuality and personal care. She shares these discussions as an ultimate guide for all adolescent Muslim girls. She demystifies the female reproductive system in a way that can be understood by a 9 year old. Parents and guardians can easily replicate these teachings with their daughters, in a sensitive and non-judgemental manner. Every topic in this book is well-referenced using the Qur’an, authentic hadiths and current medical literature.
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