A mother’s intuition is almost never wrong. I knew the question was coming.
“Mom, how are babies made?”
We are not a family that has shied away from the answer, or intended to, in this case. The older children (ages 6 and 5) knew where babies came from, but we had not gone over the mechanics of it all, so to speak.
We had watched many a video of babies growing inside mother’s wombs, and I had been waiting for the next question, but it hadn’t come.
Until one day they were playing Minecraft. And the pigs are some carrots.
You know where this is going, don’t you?
I decided it was time. Sure, this wasn’t going to be the only conversation – there would be many others, but it was time to delve into the nitty-gritties.
Because if they are asking, they are thinking about it. And if they are thinking about it, they will find out from somewhere else. And somewhere else is not a place I want them to look for answers, especially today.
Here are my three favorite resources for beginning or continuing the conversation with my elementary age children.
1. This video: We Are All Miracles
Since my daughter shows a real curiosity about how things work in our bodies and devours encyclopedia, I set aside some time to show them this video. I kept it age appropriate, waiting for them to take it to the next step. “There’s a little bit of daddy and a little part of mommy” was enough to keep them satisfied for a little while. And they loved watching the baby form, which is where most of the questions erupted until I had to pause the video and answer them.
2. This book: God’s Design for Sex
This is the first in a series of 4 books and Amazon just told me that I purchased this book in 2011. I guess I was prepared! But I wish I had bought more than the first one. Nevertheless, it helped to be able to read the book as a story to my curious six year old daughter.
In it, a little boy asks the questions she has asked in the past. Every page has a picture. My favorite part? That information came from the boy’s parents, not strangers or friends. I will be buying the rest of the books in the series.
3. Another helpful resource: Anatomy for Kids
This deals specifically with anatomy and can be especially useful for changing bodies when the children get a little older. I have not used this yet, but do plan on having it as a resource. The website also includes some activities the children can do that are related specifically to each book.
Some caveats, of course. Some children will ask sooner (or later!) than others.
My daughter is very curious about biology, as I mentioned before. My son, just 16 months younger, couldn’t care less about it. I took the lead of the one most interested to teach the rest.
And most important: you might be surprised at how easy it is when you get going.
We have, from the time they began to talk, used the right anatomical terms. It just made the conversation much easier.
Don’t freak out and it won’t be embarrassing, scary or dramatic. As my husband said, “Talk about it, then ask them what they want for lunch.” Okay, full disclosure, I was freaking out a little and had to call him at work for emotional support.
But, most importantly, don’t evade it or shy away from it.
My greatest joy, after the tiny freak-out session, was that they had asked me and I had an opportunity to tell them the truth before anyone else had fed them lies.