Do The Proper Words Seem Improper

4 min read
Do The Proper Words Seem Improper

“Dad! She wiggled her vagina at me!” yelled Master8.

“What “¦? What did you just”¦? I mean, what”¦?” Words were failing me. Vagina, vulva, scrotum, testicles they aren’t words I want to hear. Even in adult conversation, they’re a little confronting. More-so when spoken by my kids. Doodle, wee wee, boobies: these are the standards at our house. Finally I found my voice and issued a couple of one word sentences. “Please. No,” I told Master8.

“But that’s what a girl’s wee wee is called,” he assured me. “A vagina.”

I mean, on the one hand it’s nice we’re attempting to use the proper names for things now, but on the other hand”¦.

“Just stop,” I pleaded with him.

Usually there’s more supervision between the bathroom and their bedrooms so less time to encourage the use of big uncomfortable words. This whole scenario came about because we were late home, so dinner and baths had us racing to get them done by the kids’ usual bedtime. Baths, in fact, were a production line, with the youngest two in the tub while the older three went through the shower.

And in a house where there’s so many of us and only the one shower, which is in the same room as the bathtub, toilet, washing machines and dryer, it’s not like our kids don’t see each other naked.  I just don’t think they should be using their nakedness to tease each other with.

“It’s not my fault she wiggled it at me,” said Master8.

It occurred to me he was right: I had someone more in far more need of my parenting at that particular moment. I rounded on Miss6.

“Clothes!” I told her. She hadn’t even bothered to wrap the towel around herself was still wiggling her hips in a disturbing J-Lo fashion. “Find some clothes. Now. And don’t wiggle anything at anyone until you’re dressed.”

She raced off, but was back a few minutes later with a solemn look on her face and a sobering question on her lips.

“Daddy,” she said. “What’s the proper word for a boy’s doodle?”

Tracey stuck her head in the room. “Some days you can substitute the word Bruce,” she said before disappearing.

Clearly she was leaving this one in my lap, so to speak.

Standing at the crossroads, I considered the importance of telling kids the truth versus my needing to live in this house and not hear these words coming out of my babies’ mouths. In the couple of seconds after she asked, what came to mind was the old ‘babies are delivered by storks’ myth and all the other nonsense well intentioned parents have burdened their children with over the years in an attempt to shield them from the  perceived nastiness of sex. I reminded myself the time to tell kids about these things is when they ask, regardless of whether or not I’m ready to answer. In the end I did the right thing and put myself a disgruntled second.

“It’s called a penis,” I told Miss6, like I was imparting the Wisdom of Solomon.

I expected more questions and was just reminding myself to say testicles, and not testies, when it seemed our conversation was over.

“Thanks, Dad,” she said, and happily ran from the room”¦

“¦into Master8″²s bedroom, where he was getting changed.

“Look at your peanuts!” she yelled, pointing at his nethers and grinning like a fool.

Yep, that’ll do I reckon.

I’ll deal with Master8″²s low self esteem issues, which are bound to raise their ugly head from this interaction, some other time.


Bruce started his blog because friends and family kept wanting to know how he managed to feed and clothe such a large family while still having fun and being able to afford holidays and beer. He had no idea, but thought if he started writing things down some sort of pattern might emerge. When not at work Bruce enjoys reading, writing, hiding from his children and not changing nappies. He’s recently taken up the cycling challenge with a view to surviving long enough to see all his kids out the door so he can finally sleep in.

Check him out at


About Author

Kate Carlile

Kate brings sexy back to the office as our Administration Manager and all-round most loveliest lady in the world. She is super Mum to four and the SAH...Read MoreM office would literally fall apart without her. Her dream is to colour the world purple whilst travelling around it in a lavender Winnebago! Read Less

Ask a Question

Close sidebar