Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Mommy; where do babies come from?! (CONVO March'09)

First off, you have to know that I've been trying too hard to keep my distance from conventional introductions to such topic but it seems that when one fears something the most, it scurries relentlessly back to him! And so it hit me that I have to put it out there in the universe, as to may be, just may be, they can let me be. Hence, for the sake of exorcising the tedious demons here goes the most boring intro, which by the way you're more than welcome to skip:
Curiosity comes as a natural human trait characterizing healthy observant individuals thus it's very common for children to develop particular interest in the world around them especially their own origin. "Mommy; where do babies come from?!" is thee question we've all asked our parents one day and looking forward to more alike ones from our future children…

That being finally said, I can now breathe lightly and start up the mockery! Smart huh?
Moving on, while deliberately refraining from my previous slip, I want to share with you how I got the idea. Ever since I was introduced to the term Sexology back in 2004, I had this urge to learn how parents, in Egypt, handle such sticky question. Back then facebook ceased to exist thus all I could do was a simple raw questionnaire asking people if they knew what the term sexology meant? Of course I don't need to mention Egyptian's extraordinary abilities to make up stories, so you can probably imagine the type of answers I got. We fast forward to 2009 where facebook remains as human's greatest invention, I was finally able to ask different people of different ages from different backgrounds what did their mothers tell them when asked, Mommy; where do babies come from?!

To list the answers just like that won't convey the awesomeness of the stories; accordingly I shall arrange them according to frequencies. One, being the most and six, being the least used! Enjoy…
1. When two get married, they pray God so hard to bless them with a baby and as soon as God sees that they are good people who got married, He blesses them with a child! (The typical Egyptian story)
2. There's this baby market where only legitimately married couples can enter and buy as much babies as they please. (If only it was this easy)
3. You go to a supermarket, buy a seed, plant it in a pot and when it's all ripened up, it blossoms to a beautiful little baby (Wasn't that how the creepy tiny Thumbelina came to the world?!)
4. When a boy kisses a girl, she becomes pregnant and a baby is born, so don't ever let a boy kiss you. (And people wonder why we have sexophobia!)
5. We went to a pharmacy where the pharmacist pulled out a pill and handed it to me, I took it, you grew in my tummy and nine months later you were born. (Oh My God, the Janice way)
6. Watch "Look, who's talking" (That's really smart!)

Of course that's only as far as kids who have enough guts to discuss such prohibited topic with their parents go as well as the parents who prefer fictional stories over the truth. For there are many who were too shy to ask the question and consequently to this day their parents still brag about their super parenting skills as they never had to deal with that embarrassing moment, if only they know!
Similarly there are many parents who overlooked that question and took their children's shutting up about it as a sign that they let the subject go. Again, if only they knew! Simply because people talk, at school the so called bad kids mix with the good kids and voila the genie is out of the box…
Well, I hate repeating clichés but it's inevitable for me to say that people will eventually get to the info they desperately seek. Whether it's wrong or right, affecting or effecting that's what I personally find important. As many of the people I asked who couldn't bring their natural curiosities to their parents, ended up looking for books, watching movies of which you know the nature of or searched the web for decently portrayed truth. The results of which appear in the form of undeniable scars for life, sexophobia, uncontrollable urges, ruined marriages or unnecessary experiences!

The serious talk
Once again I find myself calling for sexual education which I believe should start from Kindergarten! Yes, that early giving the numerous sexual harassments a child is exposed to from the least threatening people; the maids, the swimming coaches and even the doctors. It shouldn't include much info as not to cause real damage but just emphasis on the fact that no one is allowed to enter a bathroom with you, see or touch the genital area. Send the message out of love, care and religious preaching not out of freaking them out! And so as they grow up they'll start wondering why boys wear pants while girls wear dresses, you can simple mention the different qualities separating boys from girls. Saying that boys are more muncho than girls, they prefer running around, play football and so God designed them for more labor work. While girls are sweet, they walk nicely, love their dolls and so God designed them for being mothers. And so by following this trend, their appetite for more info will be directed to a clearer path making the next best question where do babies come from? But before I tell you what I think should be the answer, many of my friends who kindly replied to my question swore off to tell their kids nothing but the truth and I agree! Yet in an age appropriate manner. How? The three year old child, although asking the exact same question as the 6 year old, isn't looking for the same answer though! So, by asking children questions about what exactly do they want to know, an answer can be given. For example, if from where did you get my sister question was asked, answer with the truth, because I love your father deeply and we did the right thing by getting married and living together forever, God blessed us with you then with her. Fair enough! You see, it all comes down to expressions and level of clarity, use the right words and the amount of info they should know, may be even get them children pregnancy books but never lie so as not to one day be faced with the fact that your drama is repeating itself again in the form of your child!

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