Originally printed in the pages of Simply Family Magazine’s January 2018 issue.
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Talking about puberty can be well, awkward. And for an adolescent experiencing all the changes that come along with this transition, it can be pretty confusing. A quick internet search will turn up plenty of options for “puberty survival kits” for girls, but what about the dudes? 12-year-old Camden Hutson came up with a solution for the lack of resources for young men: My Dude Box.
Camden’s box is a puberty survival kit for young men who are experiencing and questioning the changes going on in their bodies. With an inventive spirit and a desire to help and relate to others, Camden is already making strides to change the stigma of puberty for boys in Billings and across the nation.
We spoke with the innovator himself to get some more insight into this box for men and the young man behind the box.
Can you tell us about how the products in the kit make puberty easier for boys your age?
The products in the kit are relatable to kids my age. The personal hygiene samples help you figure out what products you like and help you stay clean and feel good. The support cards are reassuring and informative about topics that are happening right now: acne, emotions, talking to someone. The Dude products are a reminder that you aren’t alone, and they help ease the feeling that nobody understands.
What inspired you to start My Dude Box?
I was inspired by the fact that there were no puberty references that spoke my language and realized I needed something better for myself and my peers.
What do you think is the most significant benefit for dudes who use My Dude Box in addition to learning about puberty through parents, school or friends?
My Dude Box isn’t a replacement for talking to your parents, but it is a good place to start to feel like you might want to talk to someone. My Dude Box can help you gain confidence about what you’re going through, and feel like you have someone your age who gets it.
How does My Dude Box help foster open conversations with kids and parents about puberty?
My Dude Box introduces a few initial phases of puberty in privacy, and then you can take your cards and discuss with your parents. It’s a way for kids to feel in control of something that is really sensitive, but important. It’s also a way for parents to break the ice and reach out to have the important puberty conversations.
What have you learned through this process of creating My Dude Box?
I’ve learned it’s important to reach out and help people, even if you’re uncomfortable. It isn’t just me who is struggling, and everyone needs some support. I am really grateful that I get to share My Dude Box. It just really means a lot to be able to make a difference.
Your inventive nature is inspiring! As you enter into your teenage years, what do you hope to accomplish and invent?
I really enjoy helping people. I hope My Dude Box reaches everyone it can. I would like to expand our support services in the near future to help more dudes across the nation.
about the author…Anna Rogers is a transplant from the Carolinas with a background in marketing and graphic communications. She is a wife and mother who loves to garden, cook, and practice yoga. Anna is passionate about travel, which at its core is really a passion for people, as she believes people and community are what truly bring life and beauty into a place