First Period Rituals

First period rituals are used to recognize the step into adulthood.  Family and community members take part in rituals often based on their culture. Some are celebrations, while others are exclusionary.

My First Period Ritual

When I had my first period, my mother did what her mother did to her – she slapped me across my face. It wasn’t a real slap, but rather a tap that didn’t hurt. She explained that it was a Jewish tradition to bring the blood and color back to my cheek. Since then I’ve learned that this slap is a custom without any basis in Jewish law.

The slap didn’t bother me though since my mother mentioned becoming a woman. At the age of 12, I felt proud even though I had no control over becoming so mature. I continued this first period ritual with both of my daughters.

First Period Congrats

First Period Rituals in Other Countries

In India first period rituals contain both parties and separation of the girl from others. The celebration is often shared with other girls in the community where they wear new clothes and receive many gifts. Menstruation isn’t mentioned though; in fact it is a coming of age party announcing that the girl is ready for marriage.

In some parts of India, these girls stay in separate huts until their period is over. They cannot touch food that others will eat and must rest. This may continue into adulthood.

Ghana also secludes girls who have had their first periods. During this time, women teach them about sex, marriage and even birth control. Then the party begins. The chief and community attend. There is dancing and young men come to meet their perspective wives. Their first period ritual is based on education and purity – females must remain a virgin before marriage.

First Period Celebrations

In the United States, there is a move towards celebrating first periods. This can help with the acceptance of menstruation, instead of calling it the curse, for example. For some guidance with this there are kits and books:

First Moon: Celebration and Support for a Girl’s Growing-Up Journey

Coming of Age: From Bud to Flower Menarche Kit by Hemitra Crecraft

Do you have any first period rituals for your daughters?

Affiliate links included

Enhanced by Zemanta
The following two tabs change content below.

Connie Roberts

Professional Blogger
Living in the Tampa Bay area, I'm lucky enough to see beautiful sunsets almost every day. Although life can be difficult at times, focusing on the positive and being with my family is what gets me through.

Latest posts by Connie Roberts (see all)

Want to remember what's going on here? Get more Brain Foggles in your feed reader or in your inbox.

I may receive monetary compensation or other types of compensation for my endorsement, recommendation, and links to any products or services from this blog. This site may contain affiliate marketing links, which means I may receive a commission on sales of those products or services that we write about. The editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. I always provide you with my own thoughts, concerns, and recommendations about the subject matter on this blog. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.


  1. I love learning about cultural traditions. I think it’s fascinating to understand why certain cultures believe certain things and others don’t.
    Great post!
    Caroline Murphy wrote this fabulous post..Win Tickets for South Beach Wine and Food Festival’s Fun and Fit Event!My Profile

  2. I have never heard of this until now. I don’t have any daughters to start this ritual … but it is very interesting to read about. Thanks for teaching me, Connie ….. my brain just wrinkled a little more!

  3. Interesting information about cultural traditions. I had heard of some of these but was not familiar with others. Thanks for sharing.