Recently I was put in a tight spot by a friend. All thanks to my darling 4.5 year old's ever so curious and imaginatively exploring mind.
My friend was a little uncomfortable when my son showed interest in her daughter. Like any curious boy he did not want to leave the room when her daughter was changing.
Her hubby scolded my son and asked him to leave the room! My son came home crying with the complaint. But he never mentioned the exact reason but mentioned that he was not allowed to stay in the toy room, 'cause for him it was the toy room that was more important than his daughter! I talked to my son and made him understand that since they were expecting guests, they did not want the toy room to be dirty and so the uncle had scolded him. Which was enough for the innocent little mind. He left happily to play again. I too forgot the incident as it was a no-brainer.
Two weeks later my friend calls and hesitantly repeats the incident also mentioning that her hubby and another friend's hubby both had scolded my 4.5 yr old!
I tried to brush it off as a normal thing for any one to react in the stressful situation that they were in at that time.
But I lost my cool, when she advised me to make sure that my son does not ask embarrassing questions out of the house to anyone else!
Now, that's when I asked her to come out clear and asked her what exactly had happened that day. She told me about my son wanting to be in the room where her daughter was being changed into another dress.
I asked her if it were her daughter asking similar question, how would she act? She very coolly said that she would make her daughter understand why she should go out of the room! So I asked her, why did she think my son deserves to be treated differently? They are same age, then why should he be scolded and asked to leave the room instead of being explained.
Also I was not able to understand how was he WRONG? All kids especially between 4-15 have hundreds of queries that are boggling in their minds. They are simply curious as they do not have certain body parts that they obviously see in females. They want to know why girls dress differently. Why they have different hairstyles? Why they play with dolls and why they are in the kitchen etc etc.
I will never ask my kid to stop asking questions! It proves he is definitely much more intelligently curious or curiously intellectual than most other kids. Yes, I will have to pre-empt and provide right information to his so called not so comfortable questions to others. Also he does not go and gets contorted truth about certain questions.
I am thankful to my upbringing that my parents have always answered my queries. Although I would like to mention that in our generation we were not as curious due to lack of exposure! But with TV, movies, cartoons and changing faces of the society, I think we have to accept the changing nature of curiosity in the kids too. Also having lived abroad and all over the country has definitely broadened my mind and reactions.
Body parts, physical changes and sex are some of the tricky subjects that my generation took a long time to understand. But that same thing is not expected of current kids. They are not at all bothered to see a kissing scene as they know it's a way to show affection. I still remember there was a debate in my house as to should us kids be allowed to watch the movie " Love Story" as the name itself was scandalising to the parents. But we did go and now I wonder what was there to cause such a hullabaloo then!
Smooching may be a little more trickier but that too can be explained as special kissing form when you want to marry that person. That is all it took for my sons to continue playing.
They do have various questions why females do not have willies and why males do not have boobs.
Which again is very simple for them to digest that because they are girls or because they are not boys! I do add a little more information, so that they are happy with the answer for a longer time, by mentioning the function of boobies to them. It's been more than a year that they have asked any more question with respect to boobs or willies. Another not so easy to answer question was literally hair raising! Now all it took me was a simple explanation about the nose and the need of hair in the nostrils. The fact that my kids are aware of bacterias and dust too well, it was easy for them to understand how hair prevents them from entering the nose. The same is then applied to any other body part without going into any more detail.
I am preparing myself for next set of questions which is related to sex. I have already read a lot of sites and books and talked to mothers with older kids regarding the topic. Unfortunately, not a person came up with good answer. Until my sil from US came and stayed with us. Her daughter had been asking her what is it that happens in that special HUG, that a baby arrives!
She was obviously trying to evade the question for a long untill, her daughter came back from school and told her that she knows what happens in that special HUG ! My sil was shocked and asked her to explain. Her daughter was very calm and showed with her fingers!!!! Now that was definitely gross for a 10 yr old to do, but when the source was revealed, my sil was very thankful to the school. They had organised a health camp and the counsellor had explained to the kids about the process using a few pictures.
Now the question is how many of us Indian parents are willing to reveal to a 10 yr old.
My dilemma is that I will have to be explaining about the birds and the bees to may be 5 year old!!!!
I will also have to depend on my creative mind and on the spot wits that I am very proud of 🙂 .
The day I am asked this question by my kid, I will definitely blog it here, for all the parents who find themselves in tight spots by their kids.
Meanwhile, I am sure that I will never scold my 4.5 yr for asking a question.
I will not laugh at his curiosity.
I will not make fun of his imagination.
I will not show that I am uncomfortable by his questions.
I will not entertain anyone asking me to chide my child because they are uncomfortable!
As long as the birds and the bees are around the flowers and the fruits will bloom …
As long as the flowers and the fruits are blooming, the birds and the bees will flutter by….:) 🙂 😉Some of the good sites that I recommend are as follows:
10 Tips for Talking With Your Kids About Tough Issues
1. Start early.
2. Initiate conversations with your child.
3. …Even about sex and sexuality.
4. Create an open environment.
5. Communicate your own values.
6. Listen to your child.
7. Try to be honest.
8. Be patient.
9. Use everyday opportunities to Talk.
10. Talk about it again. And, again.
Madhurie Singh says
Desale Swapnil says
I liked the way you handled this issue. Your focus on RIGHT Parenting is appreciable and thanks for starting this website/blog. Its indeed helpful.