WHAT'S HAPPENING TO MY BODY? by Lynda Madaras

WHAT'S HAPPENING TO MY BODY?

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Warm, comfortable attention to the changes of puberty in girls, designed to ease the way for mother/daughter discussion and to keep communications open during difficult times. Madaras, author of the meticulous Womancare sourcebook, has taught ""health"" for several years at her adolescent daughter's school; here, she synthesizes classroom concerns and comments into material easily understood by eight- or nine-year-olds and up. Beginning with an overview of puberty, Madaras looks at ""Changing Size and Shape""--with strong words on learning to love one's own looks rather than longing to look like the current fashion ideal. (""As you may have noticed. . . few of us actually look like this."") Moving on to body development, she not only explains breast development, but offers help with buying bras, breast self-examination (a good idea to get used to), and uncomfortable feelings (from hiding in oversized sweaters to wondering how-come nothing has shown up by age 14). Past the exterior physical changes, she describes the menstrual cycle; puberty in boys (so girls won't be mystified by what's happening to their classmates); and sexuality. There, she tackles some of the hardest subjects--crushes, homosexual feelings, decisions about sex, birth control, rape, incest--with the aim, again, of provoking discussion between mother and daughter rather than conveying her own point of view. As Madaras explains in her funny, touching introduction for mothers, no amount of talking or teaching ""will magically deliver your daughter from the psychodramatics of puberty or. . . automatically erase the tensions that so often exist between parents and their adolescent daughters."" But in reading Madaras' review of the facts together, mothers and daughters may indeed become closer to one another, and more relaxed.

Pub Date: July 18th, 1983
Publisher: Newmarket--dist. by Scribners