I knew I wouldn't be ready when the day came to talk to the girls about sex. I had no idea it would be today during homeschool lessons, and I totally botched Phase 1 of Operation: TTYKAS. I was hoping to send them to their Aunt Chris for The Talk. She's really good at those kinds of things and I, most decidedly, am not. I've been mulling it over, planning to peruse Amazon for some incremental books on how to present everything in a developmentally appropriate way, but today, Nourit found the word in a word search and the floodgates are now open.
A couple weeks ago I had the brilliant idea to create a word search to help Nourit practice her spelling words. The have some nifty little sites online that will formulate them for you if you just input your list. I'm pretty certain that S-E-X is not a long-A word, but she found it this afternoon in that randomized square of letters, right between B-R-A-V-E and A-F-R-A-I-D. The moment she said "sex", giggled, and asked, "What does it mean?" I became very A-F-R-A-I-D. When she and her little sister started chanting the word, I became downright terrified.
"I'll tell you later." I mumbled. (Later, like, in a few years...)
"No! Tell us now!" yelled Avi. "Sex, sex, sex. Oh, I hope the word doesn't slip out of my mouth at dance class today!" (Rotten child.)
"NO!" I practically shouted. "You can't say this word to any of your friends. See, it's like telling them that Santa Claus isn't real. It's up to the parents to decide when to talk about it. So, no saying that word in front of anyone!"
Then it occurred to me. Where had they heard this word before and how did she know it meant something, well, important? I mean, they do know all the words to Gangnam Style. At least, all the non-Korean words which would be..."Sexy La-a-dy." Or perhaps they overheard me whispering to another mom that Mike and I had pretended like our computer was broken when a (very innocent and darkly lit) sex-scene came on in the PG movie we were watching with them about Mozart's sister. I tell you, we are worse than teenagers giggling about sex.
At that point, I went to the room where Mike was composing and clued him into the situation just in time for Avi to waltz into the room and ask him what it meant.
"It's like Essex. The county where Nanny and Papa live. Get it? Es-sex." Nice try, Dad. I rolled my eyes as Avi relayed the new info to Nourit.
"...and we can't tell anyone because it's where they live - in EsSex - and bad guys will come and steal their jewels."
"But that doesn't make sense." countered Nourit. She's bright.
At that point, I took a deep breath and figured I'd bite the bullet. "Okay, it's something that happens between a man and a woman who are married to make a baby." Nourit's eyes lit up. "Oh, so I can have sex with Lukas and Oscar since we're married and Avi and Ming Ming are married, and they can have it, too, and we can all have babies!" Aaaargh! (Side note: I had recently heard rumors that Nourit was married not only to Oscar, but to Lucas, too. This was confirmed when she received a Valentine's card from Lukas with a picture of all three of them on it. We've told her time and time again that that is not allowed in this country.)
I said, "No! Absolutely not!" and then left it at that. I realllly was not ready for this conversation, and left it with a threat that they were not to talk about it to their friends. Really, this homeschooling thing is for the birds. Aren't they supposed to get this information AT school? From a trusted source (their friends' older siblings) in an established forum (the playground)?
Soon after, Avi left for dance class (please, God, don't let her say the 'S' word in front of the other 4 and 5 year olds. Especially not in front of the teacher who has a teeny reputation for getting angry at her class for talking, which I totally get and do not fault her for, as she has Avi in her class.) Nourit comes up with a silly grin and asks me to tell her more. "What else do you know about it?" I countered. "Um, that a man gives his germs to a mom by kissing and they have a baby." Yeah, I told her. Something like that. Did she want to know more? No, she said. It was too scary.
Yeah, for me, too.
The only thing more embarrassing about talking about sex in front of my kids is talking about sex in front of my parents, so Dad, just pretend like you didn't read this post.