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Beldam Womancare offers education to young girls and women about their bodies

Beldam Womancare offers education to young girls and women about their bodies

Beldam Womancare offers education to young girls and women about their bodies
November 20
14:25 2019

Not much attention goes toward educating young women and girls on their reproductive functions and caring for their bodies, but Beldam Womancare is changing that with classes and individual sessions providing education on these topics.

Beldam is a women’s organization in Dallas started by Laura Prentice earlier this year. Prentice, a Dallas native and former doula, said she has been able to find a community for the services Beldam offers.

“I just started a few months ago,” Prentice said. “I quit my job to focus on it. It’s been going OK so far, reaching out [and] finding a community that’s interested in it.”

Prentice said Beldam is still in the early stages of its establishment and is in the process of getting a physical location. Currently, Beldam hosts sessions at different locations across the DFW area.

“I hold a fertility awareness circle in Dallas at a burn center, so that’s one location,” Prentice said. “There’s a shop in McKinney that hosts some of our classes. There’s a church in Flower Mound that hosts some of the kids’ classes. We’re just making these connections because we don’t have a physical location yet.”

In addition to girls’ and women’s classes, Beldam also offers women’s circles and individual sessions, including yoni steaming, prenatal support, postpartum care and mother blessings. Prentice said Beldam’s goal is to inform women on body literacy and foster community among women.

“My goals are sharing information that I think all women have the right to have, specifically body literacy and just really understanding what’s going on,” Prentice said. “Then I really want to build community among women. I think we’re sort of raised to think we have to compete with each other.”

Erica Pemberton, an applied behavior analysis therapist, is a Beldam client who met Prentice at a local dance class.

“Needing support and expertise, I reached out to Laura,” Pemberton said. “I felt safe reaching out to her because she was so warm and caring, and seemed very knowledgeable. Her support gave me the assurance I needed during that scary time. She then introduced me to her services.”

Prentice has also been working to support and teach women and girls other valuable lessons like self-defense.

“I’ve been collaborating with some other women who are doing things in similar arenas,” Prentice said. “One does a self-defense class for young girls, so we’re hoping to include something like body, menstrual cycle, puberty education as well.”

Carol Noble, a DFW wife and mother of four, discovered Beldam volunteering at a Flower Mound community garden where she met Prentice. Noble said Beldam is an important resource for girls learning about menstruation.

“I see an organization such as Beldam as an important resource to support and expand this education and offer young women an additional go-to if they have questions,” Noble said. “Many teens may not receive this information at all, depending on their family situation and willingness to discuss these issues.”

Many of the classes and individual sessions offered by Beldam are completed in one day. The Mother and Daughter Wisdom class, for example, follows a two-part syllabus. The first part is puberty and menarche and the second is phases of the menstrual cycle.

Mother blessings, Prentice said, are ideal for celebrating and catering to expecting mothers. According to Beldam’s website, a mother blessing “focuses on the needs of a woman as she becomes a mother.” It is not a baby shower. Prentice said meeting other women who performed mother blessings inspired her to start doing some through Beldam.

“I met women who are doing that, and I have started giving mother blessings,” Prentice said. “It’s just, it’s just really special.”

Pemberton said she discovered Beldam and its mother blessings when she faced a difficulty in her pregnancy.

“The Mother Blessing was pivotal in my pregnancy and shaped my delivery into more of a positive experience than I could have ever imagined,” Pemberton said. “I even felt more empowered in my post-partum because of it.”

Bedlam also offers information about alternatives to the common menstrual products like pads and tampons. These products can include menstrual underwear and cups for those who want a more environmentally-friendly product or find that pads and tampons don’t satisfy their monthly needs.

“There are all sorts of different things,” Prentice said. “There’s the menstrual cup, and that’s reusable. There are the period panties, Thinx underwear, a lot of women like those.”

Prentice said there are also women who practice construct conscious menstruation, which is when a woman knows when she will bleed and can go elsewhere and let it flow.

“It’s where you become really in touch with your body and you know when you’re about to release blood,” Prentice said. “And then you just go to the bathroom.”

Charting menstrual cycles is more of what Prentice does with Beldam, teaching women and girls fertility awareness.

“One thing I do is fertility awareness, and that’s learning to chart the menstrual cycle so you know when you ovulate, which can be useful in preventing pregnancy or achieving it,” Prentice said. “But it can also tell you a lot about your hormones. So that’s something that I’m very passionate about sharing with girls.”

Yoni, or vaginal steaming, is another service offered by Beldam, and some women use it as a remedy to vaginal infections and imbalances.

When it comes to opposing views of the education and support Beldam offers to women and the exclusion of services for men, Prentice said there has not been much negative response from critics.

“I have had some people say, like, ‘Why aren’t you including men in your conversations?’” Prentice said. “I guess that’s really the only thing. It hasn’t really been an issue, but my focus is really women.”

Beldam will have a Mother Daughter Wisdom class coming up in December and other classes covering vaginal health and the menstrual cycle in January. For more information on Bedlam’s services, visit

Courtesy: Beldam Womancare Facebook

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Raven Jordan

Raven Jordan

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