Our Teens, Ourselves

via Our Bodies, Our Blog, where Melanie Holmes describes how her mother gave her older sister a copy of Our Bodies, Ourselves to her oldest sister, and then “instructed each sister to hand down the book to the next.”  When Holmes’ daughter turned 10, Holmes bought an updated copy of “Our Bodies, Ourselves” to read together “We covered the basics; I wanted her to know what her forthcoming menses would mean.”

Since I study the history of adolescent health, I know that one of the founders of the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective, Ruth Davidson Bell Alexander,  published a guide for teens called Changing Bodies, Changing Lives: A Book for Teens on Sex and Relationships.  The first edition was published in 1980. Although the title emphasizes teenage sexuality the book also describes “the many physical and emotional changes that occur during adolescence.”  The book has been updated several times, and the most recent edition was released in 2008. 

So, I’m wondering why mothers choose to give their daughters the adult version of Our Bodies, Ourselves instead of Changing Bodies, Changing Lives.  Are they unaware of the teen version?  Or do they find the information in OBOS better?

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