When my oldest son was about five months old during a diaper change, he discovered that he had something between his legs that mama would clean every time he peed. I guess curiosity got the best of him because he slowly reached his hand down to his penis and grabbed it. I wasn’t shocked and try to ignore what he did. I didn’t use a cutesy word for it like calling it his “pee pee.” I said what it really was. I said to him when he grabs it, “THAT’S YOUR PENIS!” Yes, I said it that excitedly too. Ever since then, my oldest son refers to his penis as a penis. I know some parents are a little embarrass about saying their child’s “private” part by its correct name but in my opinion children have a right to know the correct terminology of the “private” parts. There’s shouldn’t be any shame in it.
When my oldest son started walking and learned to follow me into the bathroom, he notices that mama’s anatomy below was different from his and daddy’s. He would say, “Mama has a penis” I would correct him and say, “No, Mama has a vagina.” Then he would repeat the word “vagina” as ga-gina. I know some moms wouldn’t even dare tell their son that they have a vagina. Well ma’am, I do have a vagina and I don’t think it’s anything wrong with tell my son that I have one.
Fast forward to two weeks ago, when my oldest comes into the bath he’s trying to see where my pee is coming from. He’ll say, “Mama’s peeing from her butt!” I tell him, “No, I’m peeing from my vagina.” Then he would repeat the word “vagina”. I had a bright idea. I will tell him the difference between boys and girls. I said to him, “Boys have penises. Girls have vaginas.” Then my son would repeat it. “Boys have penises. Girls have vaginas.
Then I asked him, “Mama has a…”
“Your little brother has a…
“You have a…”
“Daddy has a….”
Then my son said the funniest thing, “Daddy took his penis to work today.”
I said to my son laughing, “I hope he took his penis with him. I hope he didn’t leave it here.”
Last night, my husband had his friend’s family over. My husband friend has two daughters. When they went to use the bathroom my son said, “The girls went to go potty. They’re peeing from their vaginas.”
I told him, “Yes, they are peeing from their vaginas.”
Although, the girls and their mother didn’t hear him say that, I wonder what they would think if they did? I guess part of me was a little embarrassed because I was thinking of what other people might think of my son knowledge of girls anatomy. It’s not like he seen a picture of a vagina. I think he barely see mine vagina judging how hard he tries to find it. On that note, why should I care about what other people think? I don’t want my son to be ashamed of his body or thinking that girls have penises too. Not only I believe teaching the correct name builds confidence in children, it gives the opportunity to teach them about good touch and bad touch and how no one should touch their penises or vaginas. If our children aren’t embarrassed about pointing out or knowing about our private parts, then we as parents shouldn’t be embarrassed to say them.