What Should Be In A First Period Kit?

The first time they get their periods, many girls are simply unprepared. Which is why Kathy Pickus and Terri Goodwin, sisters from Seattle, created Dot Girl's First Period Kit. Kathy's period debuted during a family vacation, and even though their mother was a nurse, Kathy hadn't yet been given "the talk." "I honestly thought, 'OK, I'm dying,' " Kathy says. "It took a full day to tell my mom." Terri didn't have a dialogue either — their brother died in a car accident the week before she started menstruating and her mother was too grief-srticken to communicate. Now Kathy has a daughter of her own, and the sisters launched Dot Girl last December. The $18 kit is a zippered bag with an information booklet, a menstrual calendar, a gel-filled heat pack to ease cramps, hand wipes and three sanitary pads in two sizes. It comes in two colors: Sky blue and (the more popular) peppermint pink.

Dot Girl isn't the only first-period kit out there, but it is the most mainstream and affordable: The $80 New Moon Kit comes with organic cotton washable pads and Divine Goddess Naturals Moon Tea; the $145 Deluxe Birth With Sol kit includes a Menstrual Goddess candle; a $49 "Coming Of Age" kit from Woman Wisdom includes a DVD.

A "my first period" kit is a great start, but why stop there? Wouldn't it be nice if there was less weirdness, embarrassment and trauma around the first period — but more celebrating and chocolate? We went to school with someone who got a tiara and a "Girl, You're A Woman Now!" cake when she first got her period. Personally, we would have liked a period kit that came with Advil, a Snickers and a "Please Don't Talk To Me Today" button, which we would've pinned to our bookbag. What else do young women need?

First-Period Kits Like Dot Girl Help Tweens Come Of Age With Confidence [Seattle Post-Intelligencer]