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Dear Dish-It: Fearing Puberty

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Dear Dish-It,

I’m a guy, and I’m afraid of going through puberty. I don’t know how to tell my dad because I’m afraid of getting “the talk.” What should I do?

Fearful

Dear Fearful,

There really is no reason for you to be afraid of puberty. It’s a completely natural transition that happens to everyone. The best way to avoid having these fears, and maybe even to avoid “the talk” if that’s what frightens you most, is to know what to expect from puberty.

Physical Changes Caused by Puberty

As extra amounts of hormones, called testosterone, produce in your body, you’ll begin to notice physical and mental changes. Let’s start with the physical. You'll grow taller, possibly gain weight and become broader in the shoulders. Your voice will start to break before taking on a deeper tone. And you might even experience zits, increased sweating and the early signs of facial hair.

Mental Changes Caused by Puberty

Along with your physical changes, you’ll also experience mental changes, some of which stem from the physical, such as the extra sensitivity. A lot of guys feel self-conscious about their physical changes and become overly sensitive as a result. If you feel that way, don't worry. That's completely normal. You may also experience mood swings, cravings for independence, troubles sleeping, and a new intensity to your emotions. Things you once liked you now love, and the things you once disliked you now hate.

Seeking Guidance

For some, puberty can be a troubling time. But it doesn’t have to be. Don’t give in to all the negative emotions and remember that you have a loving support system in place to help you. If you’re feeling down, never keep it to yourself. Always talk to someone, whether it’s a close friend, a school counsellor, or yes, even your dad! If you think he’d be willing to have “the talk” with you, it’s obvious that he’d be there for you in times of need. So, Fearful, never be afraid to ask for help and guidance, especially from those closest to you. They’re the ones who care the most.

Have Your Say

Got any good advice for Fearful? Leave your comment below!