The Vagina Monologue

This week I was minding my own business in the kitchen (looking at facebook and secretly eating a biscuit, under cover of dinner preparation) when I overheard what sounded like my 4 year old and her 6 year old cousin shouting “vagina” at each other. It was like that game of “bogies” that Dick and Dom used to play in public places. They were gradually getting louder and louder, and laughing more and more hysterically. It soon reached the point where I could ignore it no longer. So I stifled my own giggles, put on my serious face and went over to the childcare front line. The conversation went something like this:

Me “What are you shouting?”

6 YO “Vagina!!!!!!!!”

Me “Oh. (I think I was still secretly hoping they were shouting the names of heart conditions at each other, I was all ready to contribute “myocardial infraction”, but it was sadly looking unnecessary.)

Me “Do you know what a vagina is?”

4 YO is sniggering behind her hand and looking very pleased with herself with her new grown up vocabulary. However as she realises that she has absolutely no idea what it means, the smile starts to slide of her face, to be replaced by the slightly sheepish look of a Land Rover driver in Primark.

6 YO “Issy said it today at school, it means “bottom”.

At this point I am torn. The 6 year old is my niece. In many ways I treat her as if she was my own, however she is not. So I think that totally gets me out of having to explain the intricacies of the female anatomy to her. However I don’t really want her telling people her arse is a vagina. Equally my own daughter is now slightly confused about what a vagina is, and is highly likely to go into school and ask her long suffering teacher to explain it to her.

Where do we go from here? In our house they are called girlie bits, winkles, bums and boobs. I have read books where they discuss the importance of telling your child the correct anatomical names for their genitals. But to be honest, the word scrotum makes me snigger behind my hand. How on earth can I possibly be expected to explain this to my children with a straight face? And there’s just something a bit odd about hearing a 4 year old saying “penis” it just seems enormously inappropriate. So what do you do?

Clearly, the answer is that you say the following –

“Righto, ok then not to worry”  Then walk back to the kitchen in a haze of slightly uncomfortable middle class glory.


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    1. Ha ha that’s so funny, I probably would have done the same! I have two boys, so haven’t yet had to assign a name to the “girly parts” (penis is just willy in our house). I have wondered what I would call “it” if I had girls…I’d like to think that I’d be mature enough to give it it’s anatomically correct name (strictly vulva for the visible bits), but like you I think I’d be a complete schoolgirl about it!

      1. Willy is socially acceptable. It isn’t awkward or embarrassing, yet all vagina based names are utterly abhorrent. How does that work?

    1. Oh, this is too funny!!!!!!!!! I love your posts so much!! I would’ve totally done the same! I too, cringe at the ‘correct’ words for bits and bobs, and have also read that we SHOULD be using them, but I…just…can’t!! I have 2 boys, and my husband started a thing of calling their willys ‘Wilburs,’ which due to the fact that they are now confused as hell by the british gas adverts, and there is a boy called Wilbur at the nursery my oldest has just started at, has turned out to be a bad decision…! They have me what I call my ‘thing that isn’t a Wilbur,’ but I still haven’t said the V word! Oh God, I just want to put off these conversations for ever!
      Thanks so much for sharing with #bigpinklink!

    1. Haha Great post, made me giggle! Growing up my sister and I called a vagina: a minnie, it’s what my mum referred to as, and it seems polite enough 🙂 xxx #BigPinkLink

    1. lol I love how you wrote this post, I feel like I could be standing there listening to the whole exchange! Kids are so funny when they learn a word – it could be worse than vagina! I think I would have done the same as you, just back away… #fridayfrolics x

    1. My six year old is obsessed with the word ‘willy’ at the moment. We were on our way to dinner at mu mums over Easter when I actually had to have the conversation “please can we not talk about willys balls or poo at the dinner table.” He asked me the other day if I knew what a ‘widgie’ was. I thought he meant wedgie. But no, apparently a widgie is when your willy gets stuck to your balls. It’s very educational being a mum of boys!!! Thanks for linking up to #fridayfrolics

    1. Abandon ship! Abort! Abort!
      I’d have done the very same thing!
      My Boys asked me what my bits were called recently and I panicked. I should have run away but I just blurted out “its my Foof!”. I mean, what kind of word is that?! Foof?! Pathetic. I wish I’d said vagina…Atleast it sounds like it’s more worthy of respect.
      Lush post!

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