***WARNING: Contains anatomical references and some prepubescent humor***
Another new discovery for Little Champ, besides balloons and rolling across the room and even Henry the cat, is something he found during our many visits to the diaper changing table.
Now, after working at a preschool/nursery and having two brothers who are 8 and 16 years younger than myself, I am not very phased by boys’ discovering their boyish anatomy. So I just let him be while I changed him, wincing when he would grab with a stronger-than-what-I-would-deem-comfortable grip.
One day, he had an exceptionally messy diaper, and it was at this moment that it would have been favorable for me to have four hands. I was holding his legs up with one hand, and was removing the diaper with the other before a bigger mess would be made. But then, to my horror, his little fist plunged right into the sludge.
“Don’t touch your—THAT!” I cried, not knowing what to refer to it as, since LT and I had never discussed it.
Startled, he began to raise his hand up to his mouth.
“Aaaiiiiiiiiiiiyyyyaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!” I freaked out and karate-chopped his hand away.
After lots of wipes, hand sanitizer, disinfectant, and whimpering, the fear of Hepatitis was gone and germaphobe in me was appeased.
Now I give him a toy and slap a wipe on his little boy parts before he can go all Christopher Columbus down there.
But here’s the question to parents, and here’s where it gets awkward (if it wasn’t uncomfortable enough already): Do you use the anatomically correct words for your kids, or a euphemism or cute nickname? Do you just avoid the subject all together? My family was a nickname family, but I don’t want that turning into some awkward experience for my son when he realizes that 1) other people don’t call it that, or 2) he has no idea what other people are talking about. On the other hand, it would also be awkward for my child to use one of the “correct” words in public.
Yet this is coming from a person who has played, on numerous occasions, the game where you take turns saying “penis” louder and louder until someone wins by screaming it the loudest and freaking out a whole lot of innocent bystanders. Like they do in (500) Days of Summer. So if he did yell it out in an inappropriate time or place, I’d probably just laugh, apologize, and be shunned.