Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Icky bits: 0 Vagina: 1

You may remember this post, in which I had a little run-in with Bossy Daycare Lady about what words we use to refer to our genitalia. On a side note, thank god we got out of that institutional daycare and into the hippie-green-organic-local foods-yoga lady daycare. Until you have kids, it's hard to appreciate how stressful it can be to feel like you're stuck with a daycare that's out of line with your values. And once you have a chance to switch to one that is in line with your values, you realize how much the old one was really bothering you.

Anyways... Back to the icky bits.

So my stepdaughter is in first grade. They're beginning a unit on anatomy (like the skeleton, muscular structure, etc), so yesterday her teacher introduced the unit by asking them to name some things that are in their bodies. Of course, it was my kid who raised her hand and listed "a skeleton and a vagina." According to her teacher, none of the other kids reacted to it, and her teacher just calmly added it to the list and moved on. No snickering or blushing or shaming. And to me that's a score. The fact that 6-year-olds can name their body parts for what they are without feeling guilty or weird or thinking it's profanity or comedy or the-one-thing-that-makes-me-super-special is kinda awesome. Maybe the other kids don't know the word. Or maybe the ones who do have also only ever heard it in the same non-sensational matter-of-fact manner as my stepdaughter has all her life. All I know is that this feels like the first step in her developing a healthy relationship with her body and her sexuality. And that's something.

Heaven help us through all the cultural obstacles that await us.


  1. Good for your daughter. I actually had to talk to my sons teacher when she told him not to refer to his penis as a penis. Apparently a cutie name makes everyone more comfortable (sigh).

  2. Anonymous1/06/2011

    Awesome. Maybe when they do get to the snickering-blushing stage she'll be bale to blow it off because of the way you guys have always handled it. Here's hoping!

  3. So sweet! I need more cute kid's quotes today. It's that kinda day.

  4. Lizzay1/06/2011

    That's so great! Remember that Onion article about the "Hoo-haw" doctor? Spot on.

  5. Yay for calling things what they really are! Score one point for feminist parenting.

  6. this is a happy thing to read this morning!