It is at times like these that I must throw up my hands in disgust and ask the ever burning question: “why in hell’s bells must parents teach their children the unappealing names for our anatomical parts?!?” I never, ever want to hear the word “vagina”- not even from my gynecologist, much less from a child! It was bad enough that our son learned the word “penis” in kindergarten. At least I had him going with “bladder pouches” for testicles till the first grade…..
I will elucidate. Several years ago, I was on a lunch “play date” (since it involved no wine, it doesn’t really merit the designation) with a couple of mothers and our kindergarten daughters. As our meals arrived, one of the sweet little blondes at the table announced quite loudly- as if discussing the weather- that her “vagina itched.” Had I been fortunate enough to have alcohol in my mouth, I would have almost spit it out. Her mother seemed remarkably unmoved and proceeded to make several unmentionable suggestions to resolve the matter. In her place, I would have sunk under the table till the meal was over.
Once I gathered myself, and wiped the diet coke off my shirt, I looked around sheepishly. And that is when it hit me: “vagina” was a routine word nowadays. No one at the table seemed even remotely phased, including my daughter. Since she had never heard the word, it mercifully did not register. She probably assumed it was a highfalutin word for “elbow.” Let’s hope she never takes it for a spin…. At any rate, being a good decade or so older than the other mothers, I realized that this new generation of truth-telling, hippie-freedom-lovin’, mother-turned-friend was the norm.
Why am I mentioning this today? Because, now, years later, my son whipped out the v-word in the middle of an otherwise pleasant conversation to announce that he had finally learned the word for the “girl penis.” And why is this of particular danger? Ah, good question! Because if there is no vagina, there is no sex. Simple! Now, thanks to the son of an over-eager, all-revealing parent, I have a mildly well-informed son who may soon figure out how the “puzzle pieces” fit together. The fabric of his childhood is coming apart in front of my very eyes!
Nothing a quick trip to the pool followed by ice cream didn’t take care of- deflect, deflect, deflect! However, I may have to start a new national movement to create a more appropriate nomenclature for body parts. I’ll start with referring to the vagina as the “never regions.” And I’m bringing back the bladder pouch!