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Becoming a Woman: Puberty and Adolescence. Puberty Most girls enter puberty between the ages of 10-15 with the average age of menarche at 12 Most girls.

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Presentation on theme: "Becoming a Woman: Puberty and Adolescence. Puberty Most girls enter puberty between the ages of 10-15 with the average age of menarche at 12 Most girls."— Presentation transcript:

1 Becoming a Woman: Puberty and Adolescence

2 Puberty Most girls enter puberty between the ages of with the average age of menarche at 12 Most girls enter puberty between the ages of with the average age of menarche at 12 “Fat Spurt” – girls gain on average 24 pounds at this time around the breasts, hips, thighs and buttocks. “Fat Spurt” – girls gain on average 24 pounds at this time around the breasts, hips, thighs and buttocks. 120 % increase in fat gain while boys gain muscle mass. 120 % increase in fat gain while boys gain muscle mass.

3 Menarche Refers to the first time a girl Refers to the first time a girl starts to menstruate starts to menstruate mid 19th century Britain, the average ago of first menarche was years old whereas today the average age is 12 mid 19th century Britain, the average ago of first menarche was years old whereas today the average age is 12

4 Factors in Early Menarche a) Nutrition – undernourished girls have delayed menstruation but girls today are over nourished a) Nutrition – undernourished girls have delayed menstruation but girls today are over nourished b) Hormones in animal food products, pesticides and plastics of bottled water lead to more estrogen beign absorbed by young girls and starting to mensturate earlier. b) Hormones in animal food products, pesticides and plastics of bottled water lead to more estrogen beign absorbed by young girls and starting to mensturate earlier. c) Exposure to sex, pornography, provocative dress etc. may prime brain to earlier sexual maturation c) Exposure to sex, pornography, provocative dress etc. may prime brain to earlier sexual maturation

5 The Conspiracy of Silence culture of silence and embarrassment around menstruation culture of silence and embarrassment around menstruation heighten girl’s insecurities, maintain secrecy and shame and perpetuate negative views about menstruation. heighten girl’s insecurities, maintain secrecy and shame and perpetuate negative views about menstruation.

6 Most girls taught about menstruation as a negative rite of passage Most girls taught about menstruation as a negative rite of passage

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9 Menstrual Pain refers to painful cramps in the abdominal region refers to painful cramps in the abdominal region could also include headaches, nausea, fatigue and pain in the lower back and upper thighs could also include headaches, nausea, fatigue and pain in the lower back and upper thighs estimates range from 50-75% of high school and college age women report menstrual pain estimates range from 50-75% of high school and college age women report menstrual pain leading cause of young women’s absence from school or work leading cause of young women’s absence from school or work

10 Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) variety of symptoms that may occur a few days before menstruation and include headaches, breast soreness, swelling in some body regions, increased sensitivity to pain, acne, various psychological reactions such as depression, irritability, anxiety and lethargy. variety of symptoms that may occur a few days before menstruation and include headaches, breast soreness, swelling in some body regions, increased sensitivity to pain, acne, various psychological reactions such as depression, irritability, anxiety and lethargy.

11 Why PMS? 1- Psychological factors such as anxiety and strong endorsement of traditionally feminine gender roles and; 1- Psychological factors such as anxiety and strong endorsement of traditionally feminine gender roles and; 2-Cultural factors such as our cultures belief that PMS is a well established fact and the emphsis on biological explanations. 2-Cultural factors such as our cultures belief that PMS is a well established fact and the emphsis on biological explanations.

12 Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) Symptoms: depressed mood, anxiety, mood shifts, irritability, anger, difficulty concentrating and staying focused, fatigue, loss of energy, overeating, food cravings, insomnia, or oversleeping, and physical symptoms such as weight gain, bloating, breast tenderness or swelling, headache, and muscle or joint aches and pains (APA, 1994). Symptoms: depressed mood, anxiety, mood shifts, irritability, anger, difficulty concentrating and staying focused, fatigue, loss of energy, overeating, food cravings, insomnia, or oversleeping, and physical symptoms such as weight gain, bloating, breast tenderness or swelling, headache, and muscle or joint aches and pains (APA, 1994). currently treated with antidepressants or anti-anxiety drugs. currently treated with antidepressants or anti-anxiety drugs. genealogy of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is historically rooted in the hysteria. genealogy of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is historically rooted in the hysteria.

13 Rodin (1992) has noted that “although the discourses describing ostensible causes of hysteria changed over time… a woman’s sanity was consistently tied to her reproductive system and her role in society. This connection persists today in the contemporary disease category of PMS” (Rodin, 1992, p. 51). Rodin (1992) has noted that “although the discourses describing ostensible causes of hysteria changed over time… a woman’s sanity was consistently tied to her reproductive system and her role in society. This connection persists today in the contemporary disease category of PMS” (Rodin, 1992, p. 51).

14 Menstrual Joy!!! “How might it have been different for you if, on your first Menstrual day, your mother had given you a bouquet of flowers And taken you to lunch, and then the two of you had gone to meet your father to the jeweler, where your ears were pierced, and your father bought you your first pair of earrings, and then you went with a few of your friends and your mothers friends to get your first lip coloring; and then you went for the first time to the Women’s lodge to learn the wisdom of women? How might your life be different?” (Judith Duerk, Circle of Stones). (Judith Duerk, Circle of Stones).

15 Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom Dr. Christiane Northrup Dr. Christiane Northrup we receive and process we receive and process information differently at different times in our cycles and rather than seeing this as unstable, diseased or as a problem, we should learn about our cycles and pay attention to what our bodies are telling us. information differently at different times in our cycles and rather than seeing this as unstable, diseased or as a problem, we should learn about our cycles and pay attention to what our bodies are telling us.

16 rather than looking at the extra sensitivity of ‘PMS” as bad, crazy, diseased, pathological or needing to be fixed, we can look at it as internal system that is warning us that something is wrong in our lives and to pay attention to it. rather than looking at the extra sensitivity of ‘PMS” as bad, crazy, diseased, pathological or needing to be fixed, we can look at it as internal system that is warning us that something is wrong in our lives and to pay attention to it. The increased sensitivity is a gift of an insight. The increased sensitivity is a gift of an insight.

17 Breast Development teasing teasing embarrassment about comments made at school or by family embarrassment about comments made at school or by family Anxiety about growing up. Anxiety about growing up. Anxiety about not having the ‘right breasts’ not big enough etc. Anxiety about not having the ‘right breasts’ not big enough etc. unwanted sexual attention unwanted sexual attention Girls that mature earlier date more, are sexually active earlier and tend to engage in ‘adult behaviors’ like smoking, drinking and sexual intercourse at earlier ages. Girls that mature earlier date more, are sexually active earlier and tend to engage in ‘adult behaviors’ like smoking, drinking and sexual intercourse at earlier ages. negative implications on academic performance negative implications on academic performance

18 Body Image and Physical Attractiveness Eating Disorders and depression Eating Disorders and depression excessive concern for weight has been tied to eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. excessive concern for weight has been tied to eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. Those who perceive the pressure to be thin, are dissatisfied with their bodies and have a lack of social support are the most vulnerable to negative media images and the most likely to develop an eating disorders. Those who perceive the pressure to be thin, are dissatisfied with their bodies and have a lack of social support are the most vulnerable to negative media images and the most likely to develop an eating disorders. Girls have higher rates of depression beginning at age 13 Girls have higher rates of depression beginning at age 13 Early maturing girls (those who reach menarche before the age of 11 have the highest rate of depressive symptoms. Early maturing girls (those who reach menarche before the age of 11 have the highest rate of depressive symptoms.

19 Friendships and Relationships girls self esteem is highly related to the quality of their friendships girls self esteem is highly related to the quality of their friendships Silencing Silencing adolescence and even adult women silence themselves or are silenced in relationships rather than risk open conflict and disagreement that might lead to isolation or interpersonal violence. adolescence and even adult women silence themselves or are silenced in relationships rather than risk open conflict and disagreement that might lead to isolation or interpersonal violence.

20 “ adolescence is at time of disconnection, sometimes of dissociation or repression in women’s lives, so that women often do not remember- tend to forget or to cover over- what as girls thy have experienced and known” “ adolescence is at time of disconnection, sometimes of dissociation or repression in women’s lives, so that women often do not remember- tend to forget or to cover over- what as girls thy have experienced and known” struggling over speaking and not speaking, knowing and not knowing, feeling and not feeling struggling over speaking and not speaking, knowing and not knowing, feeling and not feeling “Are these losses of voice and relationship necessary, and if not, how can they be prevented?” “Are these losses of voice and relationship necessary, and if not, how can they be prevented?”

21 Girls Relational Aggression

22 Group Work a) What actions can parents and teachers help to enhance the self esteem of adolescent girls? a) What actions can parents and teachers help to enhance the self esteem of adolescent girls? b) Design a ritual in which to mark a girl’s first menarche? Who would be involved? What would you do? Where would you go? Say? See? **** Please hand in your ritual as designed by your group next week. Each member of the group who participated in designing the ritual will be given the participant/assignment mark for this week. You only need to submit one ritual for the whole group. b) Design a ritual in which to mark a girl’s first menarche? Who would be involved? What would you do? Where would you go? Say? See? **** Please hand in your ritual as designed by your group next week. Each member of the group who participated in designing the ritual will be given the participant/assignment mark for this week. You only need to submit one ritual for the whole group. c) Have you known early and later maturing girls? What kinds of stresses did early or late maturation contribute to their lives? c) Have you known early and later maturing girls? What kinds of stresses did early or late maturation contribute to their lives? d) Pretend you have been asked to give a lecture to a junior high school girls about puberty. What information would you provide these girls? What information would you omit at this time from your lecture? d) Pretend you have been asked to give a lecture to a junior high school girls about puberty. What information would you provide these girls? What information would you omit at this time from your lecture?


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