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Abigail Grotke
Silver Spring, MD
email: missabigail at missabigail dot com
twitter: @DearMissAbigail

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Miss Abigail has a collection of over 1,000 classic advice books, spanning from 1822 to 1978 and covering a variety of topics, from love and romance to etiquette and charm. The collection sparked the idea for this site, then a book, Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating, and Marriage, which has inspired an off-broadway production of the same name!

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Posts Tagged ‘puberty’

Oh, Woe is You

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

upsets only make matters worseEveryone’s got ’em . . . but maybe these words from Lois Pemberton’s classic The Stork Didn’t Bring You will help in your personal search for clear skin.

1965: Oh, Woe is You

Saddest of all the adolescent crosses to bear, and one that often leaves big mental as well as physical scars is ACNE. Very few boys or girls escape it, though some have milder and shorter sieges than others. woe is you!It does seem unfair, and why it’s necessary no one knows ~ though maybe it’s just one of nature’s strange character-molding devices. Best you can do is keep your chin up and know that acne does depart eventually for good.

You may, of course, feel self-conscious over it and plan staying home when you want terribly to go some place special. Well don’t. Don’t let it destroy your confidence and composure either.

If you’re a complete mess with a bumper crop from the start, have mother take you to a dermatologist, follow his advice, and apply his medications to the letter. Be sure to use only your own prescriptions and don’t fool around experimenting with stuff that worked for somebody else. Everyone is an individual case, reacting differently to different treatment. What worked swell for Joe or Jane may just prove poison for you.

If, however, you’re just one of the “regulars” with a normally healthy spattering, while you’re putting up with the unsightly spots and curbing the desire to bury your head in the sand till they subside, you can help yourself a lot. First of all, avoid being emotional about its appearance. Upsets only make matters worse, stirring up the circulation and increasing rather than decreasing the number of bumps. So keep calm, stay away from mirrors, and steer clear of company that insists on reminding you of it. . . .

A very good thing to bear in mind is: Those bumps don’t show to others nearly as much as you imagine they do. Because you are extra conscious and sensitive of them, you may feel they look big as all outdoors. They aren’t pretty; none of us likes to even see them, much less have them. Medical science is doing lots to straighten them out in the way of new treatments and diet; and perhaps, someday, acne won’t even be a part of growing up. But until then, there isn’t much more you can do.

Source: Pemberton, Lois. The Stork Didn’t Bring You: Sex Education for Teen-Agers. New York: Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1965.
~ pp. 115 (drawing), 117-18, 120-21 ~

Unstick Me From Seventeen

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

she yields to the pressure of opinionQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I am seventeen years old and have hardly no experience with other kids my age. I am a girl but I feel so unfeminine and not pretty. It ruins everything when you’re stuck like this. What should I do?

Signed,
Lolita

A Dear Lolita:

Wow, Abigail, is that you? Oh, sorry, I thought you were me as a teenager speaking. You are not stuck, you are just seventeen. Things will get better. Personally, I had to wait until my thirties for things to really pick up, but it’s been worth the wait. I turned out okay, don’t you think? Here are some thoughts from our friends Evelyn and Sylvanus Duvall on growing up at your own pace. It’s from their 1962 book titled Sense and Nonsense About Sex.

1962: How Much Is Popularity Worth to You?

A considerable body of evidence indicates that the effort to be popular is overshadowing the real education and development girls need to become happy, creative women today. So much energy is put into getting into the social whirl that girls have little time or strength left for the study and reflection that are required to reach full maturity as persons.

Many a girl is trapped early in her teens into thinking that getting boys’ attention is the most important thing in life for her. She yields to the pressure of opinion that being popular with the fellows is necessary in order to feel adequate as a girl. She learns early in her high school career that getting into activities is one way to social success, and so she rushes from one thing to another in an effort to keep up with what she thinks is expected of her.

The girl who grows up at her own pace enjoys fellows and girls in her own way. She belongs only to those clubs that appeal to her; she associates with people she enjoys, regardless of whether they are ‘the big wheels’ or not. She may not have a date every Saturday night. She may prefer going to church Sunday evening to going out on the town. She isn’t afraid of studying and getting the grades that she merits. She doesn’t mind being ‘a nice kid’ because she knows deep within herself that being the most popular girl in high school may not be worth all it costs.

Many of the world’s greatest women were not particularly popular through their school days. They started out shy and retiring, seriously studying their lessons and slowly developing the talent within them. They didn’t try to force themselves into premature commitments or activities. But they laid foundations during their teens on which they could build through the years.

A parallel can be drawn from hothouse flowers forced to bloom in time for the holidays. Horticulturists have been able to bring lilies to market in time for Easter, poinsettias for the Christmas trade, mums for football games, and colorful displays in time for Mother’s Day. But although these flowers bloom in time for market, they rarely can be transplanted successfully into the home garden where they might thrive through the years.

Why should girls be forced into early blooming, and lose the chance to mature slowly for the rich full years that lie ahead of them as women, wives, mothers, and persons in the modern world?

Source: Duvall, Evelyn M. and Sylvanus M. Sense and Nonsense About Sex. New York: Association Press, 1962.
~ pp. 62-64 ~

One More Inch to Grow, and Counting

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

you cannot help being tall or shortQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I am eighteen years of age and my problem may seem very petty, but to me it is a great deal. My father is six feet tall and my mother is five feet and three inches. I am five feet nine inches tall, but it is very difficult for me to accept the fact that I may never reach my father’s height. I still have about six months to go until I turn nineteen, however, and I am going to try my very best to gain as much height as possible. My father suggests I swim, which I did and in the past and put on an inch in a month. My question is, do I still have a chance of at least putting on two more inches if I swim? I do not have that sense of inner satisfaction until I can get somewhere close to my father in height. It’s a burning desire within me to show him that I can still do it.

Thank you,
Sid

A Dear Sid:

Wow. Quite a dilemma you have there, young man. In my humble opinion ~ and I know I’m not your father, but you did come to me for advice after all ~ five feet nine seems awfully close to six feet. Please promise me that you’ll spare yourself the struggle to gain height and just be.

The following is from a 1950s health textbook titled You’re Growing Up.

1950: Accept Yourself

As your body grows and changes, so must your thoughts and feelings about yourself grow and change. Then you will be able to regard yourself as you really are – to accept yourself and to make the most of your personality. . .

Think over your own friends. Do you choose them because of their height and weight, or because they are friendly, interesting, and pleasant?

Look at the boys and girls who are liked in your school and in your neighborhood. You will find that this group includes both tall and short, slender and stocky. . .

You will discover that body build and success in life’s activities show no relationship. You cannot help being tall or short. But whether tall or short, it is possible for you to be happy, healthy, and successful in some undertaking of your choice.

Source: Shacter, Helen, Gladys Gardner Jenkins, and W. W. Bauer. You’re Growing Up. Chicago: Scott, Foresman and Company, 1950.
~ pp. 41, 44 ~

Growth Hurts

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

the gawky stageQ Dear Miss Abigail:

Heeeeelp! I’m less than five feet tall and I’m already fourteen. How can I get taller without subscribing to these Internet programs. The prices are high and I don’t think I can afford it. My younger brother is taller than I am and I’m ashamed because I’m sooooo small. Please help.

Signed,
Tiny

A Dear Tiny:

I must admit I’m not familar with those Internet subscription growth programs. It all sounds a bit suspicious to me. Not to mention the fact that you appear perfectly normal, according to Lester Beck’s Human Growth: The Story of How Life Begins and Goes On, which was written in 1949. Dr. Beck was the “guiding spirit” behind the 1950s sex-ed film titled “Human Beginnings,” so he seems pretty trustworthy.

1949: Growing…Growing…Grown!

When they are ten or eleven years old, girls start growing more rapidly, passing boys in both height and weight. This ‘growth spurt’ lasts until they reach thirteen or fourteen. Thus girls become physically mature about two years sooner than boys. This means that most girls of twelve and thirteen are bigger than most boys of the same age. Then it is the boys’ turn. At twelve to thirteen, they start outgrowing their clothes at a surprising speed. By fifteen, they are equal to girls in size.

This is the period known as adolescence. In girls adolescence usually begins at the age of about twelve to thirteen, in boys at about fourteen to fifteen, and continues until they have reached maturity. Though the growth rate now slows down for girls, boys keep growing rapidly for another year or two. The time just described is the second period of rapid growth which occurs in all people. The first period, remember, came immediately after birth.

No two children, however, grow at precisely the same speed. Just as all human beings differ in appearance and behavior, so they differ in the way they grow. Take three fifteen-year-old boys, for example. One may still look like a child, with his straight slim build and small-boy features. Another may be in the gawky stage. Yet another may look like a grown man, even though he is just starting high school.

Growth also produces great differences in build. While one young girl is short and slender, another may be short and plump. Again, some boys and girls are tall and slender, others tall and heavy. Similar differences in shape and size can be seen in any group of adults.

At about twenty years of age, the average boy is five inches taller and fifteen pounds heavier than the average girl. By this time ~ the late teens or early twenties ~ physical maturity has been reached. At eighteen, girls are fully grown, while boys continue growing a little taller up to the age of twenty or so.

Source: Beck, Lester F. Human Growth. New York: Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1949.
~ pp. 25-28 ~

Strange Beliefs About the Menses

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

the mysteries of menstruation are manyDr. Edward Podowsky’s Sex Today in Wedded Life was written “for the average man and woman,” in the guise of this fictional tale:

“This is the story of Mr. and Mrs. William Carter who, at the very beginning of their married life, sought and obtained sexual information which proved of the utmost value to them in their married life. . . . They had many questions to ask; and the doctor did his utmost to answer these questions adequately and in simple, easy-to-understand language.”

I think both men and women will find this very interesting. And if I can save just one woman from salting butter during that “special time” of the month, my life will be complete.

1947: Strange Beliefs About the Menses

‘Today,’ said Dr. Carlton, ‘I will tell you something about the menses, a very important physiological function of all women.

‘In the Assini region of West Africa there is a taboo which forbids mentruating women to cross the river, even in a canoe. We find a sort of vestige of this superstition in Europe. Breton seamen assured a traveler that a ship’s compass will not tolerate the proximity of a woman having her periods. When such a woman is nearby the magnetic needle becomes untrue.

‘It is reported that among the Arabs the ban on coitus during the menses is so strict that the law says: “The judicial testimony of a man who has cohabitated with his wife during her menstrual period will not be acceptable.”

‘The following belief is widespread in Belgium, both in Flemish and Walloon regions: “During the menstrual period a woman must not salt butter, make preserves of vegetable or jams, etc.” In the Bas-Maine district of France certain housekeepers, if they receive female visitors during the delicate processes of cooking quince jelly and learn that these visitors are menstruating will deliberately show them out. . . .

‘There have been all sorts of silly superstitions in regard to the monthly periods. First this periodic flow was attributed to the moon. Even when it was noted that in a great many women the menses did not coincide with the moon, the belief still persisted.

‘In all ages people have been pleased to ascribe malevolent properties to the menstrual blood. It is supposed to have occult, mysterious qualities which prevent the fermentation of bread and alcoholic beverages; or cause spoilage of meats, or disturb certain liquors. . . .

‘Menses may be replaced by vicarious bleeding; that is, bleeding that arises from other parts of the body. It is not uncommon for women to have their menses replaced by nose-bleeds. . . .

‘Dr. Barnes reports the case of a young woman who menstruated through her nipples. Dr. Lermoyez reports the curious case of a girl who menstruated through the right ear.

‘The mysteries of menstruation are many. Many unusual tales are connected with this normal monthly occurrence.

It is the first definite sign of sexual maturity in women and for this reason has given rise to many strange and unusual stories.’

Source: Podolsky, Edward. Sex Today in Wedded Life. New York: Simon Publications, Inc., 1947.
~ pp. 115, 118-20 ~

Wherefore Art Thou Puberty

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

you may have to resort to booksQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I have an embarrassing question. I am sixteen and I haven’t gone through puberty yet. What’s wrong? Do you know? Please, I hate it! Thanks.

Signed,
Justin

A Dear Justin:

Don’t be embarrassed, young man! I believe that Gladys Cox, author of Youth, Sex, and Life,can help ease your teen angst. According to her, you’re completely normal. At least in when it comes to puberty.

1946: Puberty and Adolescence

Puberty is the time when the sex organs are reaching maturity ~ when the production of ripe ova and sperms from the sex glands begins. It marks the end of childhood, and the subsequent period of transition to manhood or womanhood is known as adolescence.

Puberty in girls begins at about the age of fourteen, and in boys a little later, at about the age of sixteen; but in both sexes it may occur two or three years earlier or later than usual. In both sexes rapid growth is taking place at this period, and mental and physical changes ~ the secondary sex characteristics ~ develop that change the girl into a woman and the boy into a man. The powerful sex hormones or “chemical messengers” of the sex glands, and an increased amount of the secretions of other glands, are circulating in the blood, affecting the whole body and mind, and it takes some time for harmony to be restored.

Puberty and adolescence, then, are times of great physical and mental strain. It is not uncommon for periods of restless activity to alternate with times when the slightest effort, mental or physical, is irksome; and grown-ups who lack understanding are apt to become irritated with these spells of what appear to them to be sheer laziness ~ when the young people sit about crouching over story books or just day-dreaming.

This apparent laziness is, of course, due to the fatigue of mind and body when a great deal of energy is being used in growth and adjustment to the physiological changes that are taking place.

It is during adolescence that the sympathetic understanding of parents, teachers, and older friends can be of the greatest value. If you yourself are passing through this difficult stage, if you are perplexed by the unaccountable moods and emotions that overwhelm you at times, don’t think that it is the world that is wrong; it is just the same old world that you knew in the happiest moments of your childhood. It is you yourself who are developing. There is probably just as much happiness ahead of you when your body and mind has made its great adjustments and settled down to harmony again.

Don’t be afraid of talking freely with your parents. Really understanding parents won’t force your confidence ~ but they will meet you more than half-way if you show that you need their sympathy and help. The older generation often understand far more than you suspect, and they are only too anxious to help you; but they, too, suffer from a certain shyness and reserve, and you must do your part in breaking this down by offering your confidences.

If, unhappily, your parents fail you, there may be older relatives or friends, or the family doctor or clergyman, who will step into the breach; or you may have to resort to books. Here let me warn you that some people and some books, even when they have every intention of being helpful, may be worse than useless to you.

Source: Cox, Gladys M. Youth, Sex, and Life. London: George Newnes Limited, 1946.
~ pp. 149-50 ~

Please Make My Zits Go Away!

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

hardly visible to the naked eyeQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I have a bunch of zits on my forehead that never seem to go away. I use pimple-fighting creams and scrubs but they never go away! What can I do to make them go away? Why won’t they go away in the first place? Is there a cream out there that would actually work for my face?

Signed,
Krystal

A Dear Krystal:

Somehow I am sensing that you would like those zits to go away. This bit of advice about those horrible beasts comes from a recent acquisition written by Professor Jefferis and J. L. Nichols. The complete title is: Search Lights on Health: Light on Dark Corners. A Complete Sexual Science and A Guide to Purity and Physical Manhood. Advice to Maiden, Wife, and Mother. Love, Courtship, and Marriage. And that doesn’t even cover half the book. I love it.

Now back to this pimples thing. Let me just remind you that I am not a doctor, and this is old, old advice, containing many terms that I don’t even know how to pronounce (what is potash, anyway?). So promise me you won’t rub carbolic acid on your face without consulting a dermatologist first. And one other thing ~ FLESH WORMS … eeewww!

1911: How to Cure Pimples or Other Facial Eruptions

1. It requires self-denial to get rid of pimples, for persons troubled with them will persist in eating fat meats and other articles of food calculated to produce them. Avoid the use of rich gravies, or pastry, or anything of the kind in excess. Take all the out-door exercise you can and never indulge in a late supper. Retire at a reasonable hour, and rise early in the morning. Sulphur to purify the blood may be taken three times a week ~ a thimbleful in a glass of milk before breakfast. It takes some time for the sulphur to do its work, therefore persevere in its use till the humors, or pimples, or blotches, disappear. Avoid getting wet while taking the sulphur.

2. Try This Recipe: Wash the face twice a day in warm water, and rub dry with a course towel. Then with a soft towel rub in a lotion made of two ounces of white brandy, one ounce of cologne, and one-half ounce of liquor potassa. Persons subject to skin eruptions should avoid very salty or fat food. A dose of Epsom salts occasionally might prove beneficial.

3. Wash the face in a dilution of carbolic acid, allowing one teaspoon to a pint of water. This is an excellent and purifying lotion, and may be used on the most delicate skins. Be careful about letting this wash get into the eyes.

4. Oil of sweet almonds, one ounce; fluid potash, one drachm. Shake well together, and then add rose water, one ounce; pure water, six ounces. Mix. Rub the pimples or blotches for some minutes with a rough towel, and then dab them with the lotion.

5. Dissolve one ounce of borax, and sponge the face with it every night. When there are insects, rub on flower of sulphur, dry after washing, rub well and wipe dry; use plenty of castile soap.

6. Dilute corrosive sublimate with oil of almonds. A few days’ application will remove them.

Black-Heads and Flesh Worms. This is a minute little creature, scientifically called Demodex folliculorum, hardly visible to the naked eye, with comparatively large fore body, a more slender hind body and eight little stumpy processes that do duty as legs. No specialized head is visible, although of course there is a mouth orifice. These creatures live on the sweat glands or pores of the human face, and owing to the appearance that they give to the infested pores, they are usually known as “black-heads.” It is not at all uncommon to see an otherwise pretty face disfigured by these ugly creatures, although the insects themselves are nearly transparent white. The black appearance is really due to the accumulation of dirt which gets under the edges of the skin of the enlarged sweat glands and cannot be removed in the ordinary way by washing, because the abnormal, hardened secretion of the gland itself becomes stained. These insects are so lowly organized that it is almost impossible to satisfactorily deal with them, and they sometimes cause the continual festering of the skin which they inhabit.

Remedy. Press them out with a hollow key or with the thumb and fingers, and apply a mixture of sulphur and cream every evening. Wash every morning with the best toilet soap, or wash the face with hot water with a soft flannel at bedtime.

Source: Jefferis, B. G., and J. L. Nichols. Search Lights, or, Light on Dark Corners. Naperville, Ill.: J. L. Nichols & Co., 1911.
~ pp. 111-13 ~

Mother Knows Best

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

in confidential relationsQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I’m going through puberty and I don’t know how to talk about it with my mom, yet me and my friends talk about it all the time. Is it wrong? What should I do?

Signed,
Deeply Confused

A Dear Confused:

I’m sure your friends have interesting things to say about puberty, but I think you should trust your mom and open up to her about what you’re going through. Heck, she was a girl once, too, and I bet she knows a little bit about the subject. Here are some thoughts about parents and their role in educating their kids (I know, kinda preachy and boring, but heck, it’s from 1910). It’s from Education in Sexual Physiology and Hygiene, written by Philip Zenner.

1910: The Teacher

The parent should be the ideal teacher. After a few years of preparation with lessons of reproduction in plants and birds and the like, the mother might tell the story of mother and babies when the child is about eight years old, an age when it is especially curious, and when it is likely to get misinformation from its companions.

As the child gets older it should receive other necessary lessons at the appropriate time; for instance, the mother teaches the girl about the menses, motherhood, social disease, and a pure mind; the father the boy about seminal emissions, self-abuse, continence, and social disease.

One great advantage of parent as teacher, is that the child is likely to make a confidant of him and not go elsewhere, when seeking information on these subjects, a benefit to the child which can scarcely be overestimated. For the child should be in confidential relations with some one to whom it turns freely for advice in such matters, and it is fortunate indeed if that confident is a wise parent.

So clearly, the parent might be the ideal teacher. But for the purpose he must be wise and discreet, equipped with knowledge, understand and be in sympathy with his children, and be willing to do his duty by them.

Source: Zenner, Philip. Education in Sexual Physiology and Hygiene. Cincinnati, Ohio: Robert Clarke Company, 1910.
~ pp. 112-13 ~

To 34B or Not to 34B

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

the fullness of womanhoodQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I’m a twelve-year-old girl who has started going through puberty. My breasts have been developing faster than most of the girls in my class. I’m already bigger than my mom. She told me that if I started wearing a bra now I would probably wear a size 34B. She thinks I should start wearing one now, but I don’t think so. What should I do?

Signed,
Illana

A Dear Illana:

Listen to your mother, young lady! This is the perfect reason to have them around ~ who else is going to tell you to start strapping your boobs in? I remember the day my mom first took me bra shopping. I was horrified, but ultimately it was the best thing that could have happened. I was more comfortable, and so was everyone around me. In any case, this excerpt from Evelyn Millis Duvall’s Facts of Life and Love for Teen-Agers should help you think about all of these bosomly issues. Good luck!

1956: Breasts and Brassieres

Breast development is apparent quite early in the girl’s maturing. As her breasts become larger and fuller a girl is sometimes sensitive about such obvious signs of growing up. For a short time she may want to avoid tight dresses that reveal the new lines of her developing bust. Fashions that decree straight, boyish figures for women add to a girl’s self-consciousness about the full lines of a mature bosom. More normally, however, styles recognize and accent the natural form and figure of women. Fortunately many girls are proud of these signs of growing up and learn to wear clothes that enhance rather than play down the ripening lines of maturity. Some girls, impatient with the course of nature, add to the curves of the breasts by using what are popularly known as ‘falsies’ ~ rounded forms that fit over the breasts and make them appear rounder and fuller than they really are. If a girl is concerned about her breast development, she will do well to consult her doctor rather than resort too quickly and uneasily to makeshifts. Given time enough, nature usually endows a girl with the fullness of womanhood that is suitable for her.

Selecting brassieres that give some support without being uncomfortably binding is relatively easy these days. Bras come in many sizes, measured in inches around the largest circumference of the bust; for example, 30, 32, 34, 36, are popular sizes. The bra should fit snugly without feeling tight when a girl breaths, laughs, or bends over. The fullness of the breast is accomodated by varying cup sizes of brassieres. The A cup is for the small breast, the B cup for the medium full breast, the C cup for the full breast, and the D cup for the very rounded breast. Many fabrics and styles are available, from the sheerest nets and laces to the heavier cottons. Some uplift quality is usually desired. Easy washability is imperative. Straps which have a strip of elastic at front or back usually wear better, without pulling out, than those with fixed, inflexible ends. The same holds for the fastenings at the back. A piece of elastic at least an inch or two in length adds considerably to both the comfort and the wearing quality of the garment.

Source: Duvall, Evelyn Millis. Facts of Life and Love for Teen-Agers. New York: Association Press, 1956.
~ pp. 7-8 ~

How Do I Explain Puberty?

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

one of the most interesting things a body doesQ Dear Miss Abigail:

I want to explain to my daughter what puberty is. Could you help me go about it?

Signed,
Nancy

A Dear Nancy:

In our continuing saga of “vague and slightly scary old advice to help teach children about sex and puberty” (see this other question), I bring you a little chat between a mother and daughter. Jane, “now eleven years old” has some questions that are probably similar to your daughter’s. Dr. Edith Hale Swift wrote Step by Step in Sex Education in 1947 for “those parents who feel their responsibilities and are perplexed about a proper approach to the subject of the sex education of their children,” so I’m sure it will help. And by the way, “Bert” is Jane’s brother.

1947: What’s In Those Machines?

JANE. (talking to Mother in a women’s restroom) What’s in those machines? I saw a woman drop a nickel in one and pull out a roll of something.

MOTHER. A gauze pad.

JANE. What did she want it for?

MOTHER. To soak up a flow that women have, once in a while, from the vagina. I have some pads home on my closet shelf in a box marked ‘Sanitary Pads.’ You see them in drug store windows frequently.

JANE. Why won’t toilet tissue do?

MOTHER. Because the flow lasts from four to five days, and the woman needs to protect her clothing.

JANE. When will I have to wear one?

MOTHER. When you have changed into a young woman ~ in two or three years. I’ll tell you all about it some day. Changing a girl into a woman is one of the most interesting things a body does. But we have a dress to buy now for a certain girl I know. What are you laughing at?

JANE. I was just remembering about Bert last Christmas, when we went shopping with Aunt Harriet for your presents. She wouldn’t let him buy those pads, at a special bargain. He said you used them somehow ~ he’d seen the boxes. But Aunt Harriet said he’d better buy something you didn’t really need, something pretty for the house. Remember how he bought the bed lamp?

MOTHER. I must explain to him, then, and also thank Aunt Harriet for steering him toward the lamp. I just love to read in bed.

Source: Swift, Edith Hale. Step by Step in Sex Education. New York: Macmillan Company, 1947.
~ 92-93 ~