Secret Girls’ Business by Fay Angelo, Heather Anderson and Rose Stewart is a book for younger girls that provides them with simple and age-appropriate information about puberty.
Secret Girls’ Business by Rose Stewart, Fay Angelo and Heather Anderson was published in 2003 but, despite being 10+ years old, the book has not dated at all. The authors come from a very hands-on background. Fay comes from a teaching background, Heather is a Sexual Health Nurse/ Sex Educator and Rose is a teacher and School Psychologist. So they are dealing with this stuff everyday.
There is also one for boys, Secret Boy’s Business, and one for older girls, More Secret Girl’s Business. They have also published the next step in books, The Secret Business of Relationships, Love and Sex.
Secret Girl’s Business is a great first book for talking to girls about puberty. The authors wrote it for younger girls who are showing the signs of early puberty, which means that the language is simpler and the content is non-sexual. So you could use it for girls as young as 8.
So, what’s inside this book?
Secret Girl’s Business covers a wide range of topics that are relevant for girls who are first learning about puberty.
It starts off by explaining that we all change as we grow older, and that an important stage of change is about to happen ie puberty. It explains why puberty happens, what it means and when it usually happens.
The book then explains what changes happen. It starts off with the listing the changes that happen to girls and boys, reminding us that boys too go through puberty and that some of their changes are similar (and different) too.
Secret Girls’ Business then gets into what specifically happens with girls during puberty. Breasts are discussed. It talks about the differences between the shapes and sizes of breasts and the changes that happen to them. The need for support (bras) is discussed and the fact that sometime it can all be a bit embarrassing. All very factual, which is what young girls need.
Hair is then talked about, in that it will start to grow in new places and vaginal discharge will start to occur. Periods are explained: when they happen, why they happen, and how to know when you have your period. It talks about mood swings and things you can do and how you might feel funny and stuff.
What to do when your period starts. Not flushing pads down the toilet, washing your hands. It does talk about tampons because as I have said girls do want to know about them, even though they may not be ready to start using them. And it talks about a period kit as in what you need in it, and where you can buy menstrual products. You can learn more about which menstruation products to buy your daughter here.
The book then finishes on a positive note, congratulating them on knowing about the forthcoming changes and how they can start to get ready for their first period. It is a really nice simple book. I love the fact that it specifically targets young girls, in that it provides much simpler, easier to read and more visual content, that is perfect for this age group. Most puberty books contain a lot of information, information that can be overwhelming when you are younger. But also overwhelming for us parents, especially when sexual content (such as STIs and contraception) is included, as younger girls are usually not yet interested in this stage of life.
The next level, More Secret Girls’ Business, covers the same information but adds in more details about the emotional and social changes of puberty. It also talks about sexual feelings and masturbation.
So, Secret Girls’ Business would be the main book that I recommend for young girls. I love the simplicity and the fact that it tells girls what they need to know without overloading them with too much information.
Secret Girls’ Business by Fay Angelo, Heather Anderson and Rose Stewart, is the perfect book to get for younger girls who are either curious or are starting to show early signs of puberty. It tells them what they need to know without scaring them or overloading them with too much information.
You can watch my video review of Secret Girls’ Business here.
There are a lot more sex education/puberty books out there, that talk about a range of other topics.
You can find them listed in this new FREE parent resource: Sex Education Books for Children: a Parent Guide.
Make sure you go and check it out. It includes a lot of sex education books that will make talking about sex (and other tricky topics), a whole lot easier!
And before you choose a book, like Secret Girls’ Business by Fay Angelo, Heather Anderson and Rose Stewart, you want to make sure that it is the right book for you and your child! There are a lot of books out there and what is right for me may not necessarily be the right book for you!
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