oooooh, i remember the stupid puberty book. my auntie gave me one for xmas when i was about 10. i was so horrendously embarressed by its existance, and in such denial (i had it in my head that i'd be one of those rare people who just don't get their period, cos their hormones don't kick in) that i hid it, and i refused to even read it until i was about 15 (about 4 years too late for the period info).
i was also petrified by the whole tampon thing. i was very scared i'd get toxic shock syndrome, and keel over and die (or maybe even worse loose all my fingers from blood poisoning and not even be able to manage pads after that). but by the time i was 16, i was soooo sick of what i called 'breezeblock syndrome' (walking around with a wodge of plastic that felt like it was the size of mount everest in your knickers) and on the verge of going to my doctor and demanding a full hysterectomy, that i thought i'd try and get over my repression, speak to my mum about it, and give it a go.
its now 12 years after i quit the pads ... and i'm still not dead *keeps fingers crossed for next month* and i don't have to deal with the sweaty chafing plastic wedgies of doom, or think twice and hold my breath in hope before i stand up after being sat down for ages. yey!