Mastering The Talk

by Jenna McCarthy
Originally Published: 

“I asked dad how you make a baby, but he said you’d be mad at him if he told me,” my nine-year-old announced matter-of-factly the other night.

I honestly didn’t even know where to start with that one. (But for the record, I would have given him three blowjobs in a row to take that one for the team.)

“Well, for one thing, I wouldn’t have been mad at him…” I started.

I wasn’t trying to deflect. Sure, I’d been dreading this conversation (is that bad?) but I certainly wasn’t going to avoid it. After all, my kids told me all the time that I was the “coolest mom they knew” and that they “could talk to me about anything.” I could say the words penis and vagina without giggling. I was almost positive.

“What do you already know about making babies?” I asked her, wondering if I’d have to start by undoing a bunch of playground damage.

“I know there’s a mommy seed and a daddy seed but I have no idea how they make a baby,” she told me. The poor kid looked incredibly sad about this.

I gave her a hug.

“Okay, so it’s like this: The mommy seed lives inside her tummy, and the daddy seed lives inside… well… inside him. When they decide they want to have a baby, the daddy plants his seed in the mommy and the two parts come together to make a baby.”

To self: Nailed it!

Sort of confused face. “But how does the daddy seed GET to the mommy seed?”

“Oh. That.” It’s just a word. You can say it. “The penis.”

Horrified look.

“What about the penis?”

“His seed comes out of his penis.”

“And goes where?”

To self: You were given this information once and it did not in fact kill you. She can handle it. Just spit it out and get it over with.

“The daddy puts his penis inside the mommy’s vagina so the two seeds can come together.”


“But… why?” she demanded.

“That’s just the way it works,” I explained. “It’s kind of a weird system when you think about it, huh?”

She nodded like a bobblehead with ADHD.

“How long does the penis have to stay in there?” she wanted to know.

“Not that long,” I told her, because she was starting to look worried and also because, well, it’s true.

“I don’t want to do that,” she said, again clutching her tiny middle.

“Then you don’t have to,” I told her.

She didn’t ask if it hurt.

She didn’t seem to make the connection that her dad and I had obviously done that at least twice.

She didn’t ask what happened if the penis accidentally fell into the vagina when you weren’t trying to make a baby.

So all in all, I’d say that was a pretty successful chat. Score one for mom.

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