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Parents Furious After Their Daughter Explains Periods To Her 12-Year-Old Brother Because He’s ‘Too Young’

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Redditor ohlordwhyisthishere is a 15-year-old young woman living with two brothers.

The drama began when her 12-year-old brother, the youngest, had a question about an item in their shared bathroom.

When the parents expressed outrage over how she dealt with the situation, she visited the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit, where she asked:

“AITA for explaining periods to my brother?”

The Original Poster (OP) wrote:

“I have two brothers (17 m[ale] and 12 m[ale]). This happened a few days ago, but I really need a second opinion.”

“I share a bathroom with my brothers, and the other day I accidentally left a box of tampons on the counter instead of putting them away. My younger brother asked me what they were, and I said that they were tampons.”

“Queue him being very confused, and my older brother and I realising that he knows nothing about any of this stuff. We decided to give him a basic rundown of the female reproductive system and he seemed okay with it.”

“That night, he mentioned to our parents that we told him about periods and they got pretty upset. My mom said that he’s way to young to be knowing about this and that it was inappropriate for us to be telling him.”

“As it turns out, they’re planning on opting him out of Sex Ed. at his school in the spring because he’s, in their opinion, too young.”

“I can kind of see where they’re coming from, he is their kid after all and I definitely could have just said that the tampons were ‘feminine products.’ However, this is something he would have to learn at some point and that wasn’t going to happen if they didn’t let him go to sex ed.”

“I’m not really sure, did we seriously overstep a boundary here? AITA?”

“Edit: For those people saying that this is obviously fake because I haven’t replied to comments or something, no, I went to bed. I was sleeping. Calm down.”

Strangers on the internet were asked to declare one of the following:

NTA – Not The A**hole
YTA – You’re The A**hole
ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
NAH – No A**holes Here

A majority of Redditors declared the OP was NTA.

“NTA- WTF? How is a 12 year old learning about sex and periods harmful? What’s harmful is trying to prevent a 12-year-old from learning about things that are completely normal and natural and giving the impression that these things are gross.” – yoginerd76

“Many people have started having periods at 12, so I fail to see how 12 is also too young to educate the people who won’t get them…” – Emmaborina

“That’s absolutely ridiculous! A LOT of people have their period before 13. You don’t just get to DECIDE that an arbitrary age is ‘old enough’ because you (the parent) feels comfortable. Kids need to know in advance.” – Ashesnhale

Some female Redditors attested to having their periods around the same age or younger and stressed the importance of early sex education.

“I was tenth birthday on the dot too. I was dressed for my party in a royal blue romper and it was ruined, 1980. My parents were very conservative and the only thing my mother told me was I was a woman now and could get pregnant.”

“You want to talk about F’d up! I recently told her that this was ridiculous and she doesn’t remember.” – memetunis

“Agree. I was 12! What a weird thing for parents to want to hide from their almost teenager.” – fiannalove

“Chances are the kid already had his first wet dream and/or is masturbating. It’s such an important subject to tackle before they are old enough to experience it, I hope OP will made sure he gets all the knowledge he needs.”

“Else he will end up like one of those guys mocked online because they thought periods can be ‘held in’ or that is comes from your butt.” – Trania86

“I got my first period on my 10th birthday. This boy is going to class with girls who will start and who have started already.”

“It’s important he (and others his age) is aware of what is going on around him. Education prevents bullying surrounding the topic and prevents girls who start early from being ‘othered’ as they learn to deal with these changes.”

“Starting this education now will also prevent the ‘just hold it in’ kind of mentality we see far too many teenagers and grown men exhibit.”

“Plus, education is always valuable so long as it’s not harmful or inaccurate (which this conversation was neither of those things).” – Silver-Thing2724

“Agree NTA. I got my period at 10 after a crash course in the reproductive system weeks before. 12 is certainly not too young for a boy, or anyone for that matter, to receive the same biology lesson. Good for you for taking charge.” – 1nv3rs3d

“If a girl is old enough to have a period, then a boy is old enough to know what it is and what it means. NTA for sure.” – jeanakerr

“NTA. He isn’t too young, and there is nothing inappropriate about menstruation. If your parents want to hide this from him, they shouldn’t have him sharing a bathroom with a person who menstruates.” – LunaBlue48

“This is the most annoying thing about it, precious little 12 year old boy is ‘too young’ to know about periods, but boo boo if you’re a girl and have no choice in getting your period at 8, 9, 10 etc.”

“All boys and girls should be taught about periods by about age 7, I don’t give a damn, it’s not a big deal, it’s not dirty, it’s not a mature topic, it’s as natural as taking a dump and we all know that even the Queen does that.”

“Parents need to stop raising ignorant boys and terrified girls because they miss out on having the conversation early enough, and schools should step up to fill the gap WAY sooner.”

“OP, please keep teaching your brother about ALL of it, masturbation, menstruation, sex, contraception, STI’s, consent! Otherwise your brother will become an unknowing rapist, victim, father or incel by the time he reaches 20. He needs this from you.” – spuffyx

“NTA. I was dealing with HAVING a period by age 10, but sure, let the precious snowflake 12yo guys evade even knowing what they are cause that’s obviously too much for them to handle. God.”

“It’s a bodily function, nothing more, nothing less. Your parents are ridiculous and you did just fine.” – tory2048

“My mom never told us anything. I got my first period in the lineup going to gym class, I was wearing white shorts. People were so mean and I was humiliated.”

“My mom dared ask the teacher if she could take her time because she had some errands to do, which my teacher said absolutely not and get your butt down to the school right away.”

“That, stuck with me all this time. So, when my eldest turned 9 I explained it all to get put a clean pair of underwear and a pad in a Ziploc and off she went. She was sooooo prepared. I think parents owe this to their children.” – aberdeennova

In an update, the OP wrote:

“To answer some questions: My older brother and I did mandatory Sex Ed in 5th grade, but my younger brother’s was cancelled due to the state of the world.”

“We also both did Sex Ed in 8th grade. I have no idea why they would opt out only him, but it’s probably a youngest child thing.”

Overall, Redditors gave their approval for how the OP handled the situation.

Written by Koh Mochizuki

Koh Mochizuki is a Los Angeles based actor whose work has been spotted anywhere from Broadway stages to Saturday Night Live.
He received his B.A. in English literature and is fluent in Japanese.
In addition to being a neophyte photographer, he is a huge Disney aficionado and is determined to conquer all Disney parks in the world to publish a photographic chronicle one day. Mickey goals.
Instagram: kohster Twitter: @kohster1 Flickr: nyckmo