Seeing Sanitary Products For The First Time In Blended Family; This Dad is Learning How to Manage Teenage Girls

A stepdad recently moved into a new home with his three sons, which brought an unexpected dilemma. Was he wrong for telling his stepdaughter to hide her sanitary products?


middle aged man choking

Blended families often cope with many adjustments in order to make their new living situation work, like changing homes, schools, and schedules, among other things.

However, this newlywed husband faced an unexpected challenge to his married bliss: how to deal with his stepdaughter’s period. Should a teenage girl have to hide her sanitary products from the eyes of her stepbrothers?

He Didn’t Know Much About Raising Girls

middle aged man scowling

As a father to three sons (aged 18, 16, and 15), this Redditor was not a novice to parenting. But after marrying his new wife and her 19-year-old daughter moved into his home, the husband discovered he still had much to learn about raising teenage girls.

Getting To Know Each Other

teenager giving thumbs up

In his online post, the Redditor prefaced his dilemma by describing their overall relationship: “My stepdaughter’s a really good kid, and she’s a good influence on my sons, I really enjoy having her around.”

Neither the stepdaughter nor the boys are in contact with their other parental figures, the husband explained, so all children primarily reside in his home. Their present living situation requires that all four teenagers share a bathroom.

They Share a Bathroom And Have Some Problems

teenage boy confused

Before the current arrangement, none of the boys had ever lived with women, let alone shared a bathroom with one.

“They had short visitation periods [with their mother] when they were younger but never longer than an hour, so living with two women has been unusual for them,” their father explained.

The Period Products Are on Show

teenage boy shutting eyes

Due to this inexperience, the eldest son soon approached his father to complain that “his stepsister disposes of her used sanitary products in the trash can they share, but doesn’t use a toilet roll or sandwich bags to disguise what they are.”

The husband did not see anything wrong with their discomfort and even agreed: “My sons are teenage boys and don’t want to see their stepsisters’ period products on full display.”

He Confronted The Stepdaughter

middle aged man chatting to teenager

According to the husband, he chose to address the subject on a night when his stepdaughter was home, completing some of her university coursework.

Having heard his wife mention that the stepdaughter was on her period, the husband perceived the moment as a ripe opportunity to rectify any issues.

“I told her my sons were uncomfortable and asked her if she’d mind putting her used products in diaper bags or flushing them down the toilet,” he recalled suggesting.

The Stepdaughter Got Angry

woman questionsing

Not only did the young woman refuse to comply with his request, but she also laughed in her stepfather’s face.

“[She] told me it was rich coming from a man who ‘sheds like a gorilla’ and has produced ‘three skid-marking sons’, which I thought was just an unnecessary attack,” the husband protested. “I’ve been nothing but nice to the girl, and it’s hardly a comparison.”

The Stepdaughter Stood Her Ground

woman unsure upset catastrophizing

When the father of three insisted that his “sons shouldn’t be subjected to her unhygienic products if it makes them uncomfortable,” the stepdaughter had plenty to say in return.

“She went on to lecture me about how tampons can’t be flushed and that it’s bad for the environment if she uses diaper bags for everyone, which I think is just an excuse.”

He Told His Wife

woman cant believe what she just heard

Although the man reminded his stepdaughter that his word was law in his house, the reproach fell on deaf ears. Equally unsympathetic was his wife, who was subjected to a retelling of the encounter in the evening.

When he asked his spouse to intervene, she “told me I was being ridiculous and that her daughter has had her period for ten years and knows what she’s doing.

When I told her [that] it was making my sons uncomfortable, she said my sons needed to get a grip and turned over and went to sleep.”

The Husband Didn’t Feel Understood

middle aged man arms folded

“This is a genuine issue to me, and [my wife] didn’t care enough to have a discussion about it,” the husband griped in the conclusion of his post.

“Both of them have told me to stop being so silly, but I don’t see how I’m being unreasonable when it makes my sons uncomfortable.”

Social Media Reacted to The Story

social media likes

Unfortunately for the new stepfather, commenters were only too eager to helpfully point out exactly how unreasonable he was being.

“Sorry, but what? I’m a guy and realize this is ridiculous,” reads the top-voted comment. “You need to help yourself and your sons become better men and accept that it’s a natural process.”

Social Media Reacted to The Story

sanitary products

“LISTEN TO YOUR WIFE, AND STOP TRYING TO MANSPLAIN HOW TO HANDLE PERIODS. The fact is you don’t know how to handle periods or period products. EDUCATE YOURSELF,” kindly suggested another Redditor.

The Husband Admitted He Was Wrong

middle aged man laughing

To the husband’s credit, his final update showed a willingness to admit wrongdoing and repent.

“Not even two hours after I posted this, my wife and stepdaughter gathered my sons and me and gave us a full intensive ‘periods for pricks’ course, PowerPoint and all,” he revealed. “It was a hoot; they made an interactive quiz and everything. My sons and I learned a lot and apologized to my stepdaughter.”

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This article Husband Asks Stepdaughter to Hide Sanitary Products From His Sons was produced and syndicated by TPR Teaching. Photos are from Shutterstock. Reddit: Source.

I'm an Irish tutor and founder of TPR Teaching. I started teaching in 2016 and have since taught in the UK, Spain, and online.

I love learning new things about the English language and how to teach it better. I'm always trying to improve my knowledge, so I can better meet the needs of others!

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