My oldest daughter Dylan will soon be 10 (heads up on maternal nervous breakdown and cliche ponderings like “How does time go by so fast? coming your way in September).
Since Dylan is about to reach this momentous age, I figured it was finally time to explain how babies are really made. Like not the, “Mommy and daddy went out one night. They both drank too much Jäger and in the morning there was a baby in mommy’s belly!” version.
I made one attempt at the sex talk about a year and a half ago by purchasing two books, “Where Did I come From?” and “It’s Not the Stork.” While some parents might view these books as a conversation starter, I viewed them as “doing the job for me.”
At the time, Dylan didn’t have a lot of interest and the books got jammed under the bed.
But I pulled them out this week and read “It’s Not the Stork” to Dylan and her younger sister Summer. I had to include 7-year-old Summer because there is no way Dylan would keep this shocking information to herself and I didn’t want the details to be miscommunicated to her sister.
I tried really hard not to laugh when I read things like this… “When grownups want to make a baby, most often a woman and a man have a special kind of loving called ‘making love’ – ‘having sex’ – or ‘sex.’ This kind of loving happens when the woman and the man get so close to each other that the man’s penis goes inside the woman’s vagina.”
And there’s a picture…
Great bedspread for the special kind of loving!
As soon as I finished the book, I said to my girls, “So that’s the scoop. Any follow up questions can be directed at daddy. Good night.” Seeing how Rick was conveniently at work, an avalanche of commentary and questions came my way.
“That is DISGUSTING,” Summer shared immediately.
“I’ve never seen you and daddy go to bed naked. Are you naked in bed? When are you naked?”
“How do lesbians have a baby?”
“Do you have to be married to have a baby?”
I tried to answer these questions the best I could in the simplest of ways – letting them lead the discussion because I read that’s how the qualified parents do it.
Since that night, there haven’t been any more questions but I told the girls they can ask me anything, anytime.
And I figured if my girls can wrap their heads around the fact that Mommy and Daddy really did this, then maybe for a few more years they’ll keep believing that Santa Claus flies around the whole world delivering gifts. Because both scenarios seem pretty crazy.