Telling Tales – “Where Do Babies come from?” or HAVING THE TALK

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

When I had my children I knew that I would be a cool parent. My kids were going to be fully aware that the only thing a stork drops as he flies over our house is something that likely carries the bird flu. When it comes time for “the talk” we-my husband and I- were going to be honest and open for any questions.

From the time my children could talk, I thought it necessary to call a body part what it was. None of the cutesy little names like oo-ah’s and tete’s for my kids. This was all in preparation for the questions they would have later. I was determined to answer those inquiries better than my parents. While I loved my mom, when it came to “the talk” she simply said, “That’s none of your business, Becky. Sometimes you talk too much.” I couldn’t understand what the big deal was. Yes, my parents were raised in a different time -where having the talk meant giving your children brochures and telling them to see the school nurse with any questions- but there had to be a better way.

My decision to be open with my kids was derailed for a short time when I was pregnant with my youngest and my oldest asked me how the baby was going to get out. I knew this was a pivotal moment for my little boy. He was almost 5. I gave him an answer and he was satisfied. No more questions. He was brilliant. The next day I picked him up from preschool. After the teacher buckled his seatbelt, she looked at me and said with an enthusiastic tone, “He was so excited today! He let everyone in the class know that his new brother was going to come out of his mama’s BAGINA.” That should have been my first clue that maybe its better if the stork visits instead of honesty.

When I hear people fret about how they are dreading the talk I don’t understand. I say the more uncomfortable the better. In other words, BRING IT! But this probably has a lot to do with me being so cool. Since my boys are just 10 and 5 I haven’t had to worry about having the talk yet but, what’s the big deal?

I was brought down a few notches recently and it turns out I’m not as cool and cavalier as I thought. While I have been chastising my friends for not talking to their daughters about that inevitable step of womanhood, at the same time I’ve been secretly thanking God that I don’t have to worry about that talk since I have boys.

My boys and I were getting ready for school one morning and as I was combing my oldest hair he said, “Mom, what’s a period?” I thought for a moment about how this could be yet another pivotal moment in his life then answered, “It’s what comes after a sentence. Sometimes you talk too much.”

You can reach Becky Andrews at becky@wilsonlivingmagazine.com This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

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