I have always been very open and truthful with my daughters when it comes to sexuality, puberty and womanhood.
I have shared the process, the wonderful things about it, and yes, the not so wonderful things about it and have helped to make them aware, thoughtful women when it comes to sex and relationships.
However, there have been some amusing steps along the way…
My older daughter was about five and very verbal and curious about everything! Her younger sister was only two at the time and still a toddler with all of the oversight that requires from a parent. They both loved to swim and we were fortunate to be living where there was a neighborhood pool, so we practically lived there during the very hot, dry Texas summers.
After our mornings at the pool, we would come home and have a bit of lunch and then all three of us would jump into a nice, warm shower together. This way I could keep a tight rein on my toddler while helping my older girl wash her hair and keep the soap out of everyone’s eyes! Needless to say, my older daughter became aware of the differences between her body and mine and asked about it.
I believe strongly in giving children the facts without a lot of baby talk and pet names for genitalia, etc. and so I told her about puberty and how our bodies change in our teens to become ready to have babies.
She was fascinated!
I warmed to my subject and told her how amazing things would begin to happen in her hormones and brain and that all of these things were pre-programmed by God and nature just so our species could continue.
She finally asked if Daddy’s body was anything like mine. She had noticed the obvious differences, so again; I was frank and told her how boys’ bodies change for the very same purpose. I told her about hormones and how they work and cause different effects in the different sexes.
She was very thoughtful as we rinsed and dried ourselves off, and finally, wrapped in fluffy towels as I combed out her beautiful hair, she asked, “How do you make a baby?”
Well, I wasn’t quite ready to have her picturing her father and me in this scenario, but I wanted to be transparent so I described the process of making a baby and having the baby. It was couched in very correct medical terms but she got the general idea and the look on her face as she realized that a baby would have to come out of her and where that would happen was priceless.
She scrunched up her little face in thought for so long, that I started to worry just a bit.
Finally, she got a resolved expression and said authoritatively, “Well, that is just disgusting. I want babies, Mommy, but that sex stuff just sounds icky. Can’t they put me to sleep for that, and I can just wake up with a baby??”
She was a little confused by my hysterical giggling, but I couldn’t help it! She was just so darned cute and I gave her a really big hug.
I told her that she might change her mind about the “sex stuff” some day, but not to worry about it right now. She had years and years before it would even be an issue and we could talk about it whenever she wanted to.
Womanhood: What a mixed bag to have and to explain!