I thought I had a few years to come up with my answer to the birds and the bees questions. My six year old thought differently. The question was sprung just as I was kissing P1 goodnight.
“Mummy, how do babies get inside your tummy?” She said innocently.
She’s witnessed my two pregnancies, seen my tummy go from flat to fat to wobbly over 9 months, she’s been to many scans and seen her little sisters wiggling around but yet she has never asked the question as to how they got in there.
I sort of died inside. I’m very honest with her when it comes to answering her difficult questions. We’ve covered topics such as periods (yup – in a public toilet), the dialysis machine my Nan had, death and even cremation. These are all topics that an average six year old would find quite tough to consume. P1 watched my Nan deteriorate over the years and she learned what was happening.
I know many people disagree with my stance of honesty. People like to sugar coat real situations that children have to learn to protect them. But I really believe kids are a lot stronger than we give them credit for. They want to learn. But the birds and the bees is a totally different subject to teach.
Over the past six years I have come up with many ways to approach this topic. Maybe giving a book like my Mum did, not that that really helped hey, or saying it was the stork that brings babies. When P1 popped the question this evening I stood in silence for a few seconds. She was smiling and had a curious expression. I called for hubby to assist. He’s better at making things more appropriate for younger ears when it comes to life situations.
He laughed, and sat at the bottom of the stairs telling me it was all up to me. Oh god. How was I going to explain sex to a 6 year old?!
“Well, when a man and a woman love each other. They decide they want to have a baby. Then they hug and do something I’ll tell you about when you’re older. And a baby starts growing”
“But I want to know what it is they do”
Obviously I couldn’t tell the truth this time so I sort of changed it. I explained that a woman has eggs in her pvaries and a man has little tadpoles. They join together and create a baby. She seemed happy with my explanation.
I was, am, still firmly in shock. I hope I approached the subject ok? I really hope she doesn’t start quizzing me further. I’ll have to insist hubby deals with that one…