I want to get off the Straight Talk Express when it stops at the Sex Ed station

The other night, Jammy turned to me, pointed to his testicles (I was giving him a shower) and said, "Mama, I don't understand what this part of my winky is for. What does it do and what's inside it?"

Oooooookaaaaay....... let's run through all the possible things I could have said:

1) Well, that's called a scrotum. It holds your testicles.
If I say this, I'll need to answer all the inevitable follow-up questions ("What are testicles? What is sperm? etc.. etc...). I wasn't quite ready to follow the Straight Talk Express to its (pardon the pun) sticky conclusion, especially to a 4-year-old boy.

2) Ask your daddy, he's a boy like you so he knows.
If I say this, I'll look stupid and he'll think mama doesn't know anything. No thank you.

3) You don't worry about that, you'll find out when you're old enough.
It's a bit like Sarah Palin hiding from the press, isn't it? How easy it would be to just refuse to take questions -- but I'm not Sarah Palin and I couldn't do it. We've always been pretty open about our bodies and I'm happy that my kids are comfortable enough to ask me any kind of question. No, it's too much of a copout -- I have to give some kind of answer.

4) I don't really know, let's get on the internet and find out.
It's also tempting to say this, because I figure but it makes it less easier for me if I read someone else's words to the kids. Of course, it's still a cop-out (or a delaying tactic, at best).

In the end, I blurted out a combination of #1 and #4: "Those are your testicles, honey, and you know how your veins hold blood? Well, your testicles hold some kind of liquid that makes boys boys. Hmmm, I'm not really doing a good job of explaining it, am I? So let's go borrow a book about the body from the library and we'll look this up."

Boy, am I a loooooser. An incomprehensible answer and a delaying tactic (because of course, after the shower, Jammy forgot all about it). I need to get better at answering these kinds of questions because they're coming at me faster and faster. I don't have any experience in parent-child sex talk (as a parent and as a child) but I do know that I want to answer their questions honestly, in an age-appropriate manner. I'm bookmarking this post because I love the way Sarah E. answered her sons' questions -- direct, brief, humorous, in a way they could understand. Sarah, I might have to quote you directly the next time my kids ask me about this stuff.

1 comment:

Gattina said...

Hahaha ! Fortunately my boy didn't ask me that ! Real difficult to answer !