I read a very funny, and honest, post on Friday over at the Yarn Harlot. Seriously.....go read it. It's the "Really Random Friday" post from 5/7/10 (in case by the time you read this she has posted more).
Apparently, she used the words "breast" and "nipple" in her post the day before, which I read without incidence. Someone, or someones, were offended. I just don't get people. So she posted the next day about how nipple and breast are not dirty words and will not cause anyone to become pregnant or corrupt our youth. "Futhermore," she added (and this is my favorite part),"......I really, really, really think it would have helped if the word nipple wasn't coming up for the first time when we were trying to attach 7 pounds of starving humanity to it." Ha! So right.
This got me thinking about my kids. I breastfeed. I have been pregnant and/or breastfeeding for the last 5 years and for about 2 years when my 10 year old was born. Breasts are for feeding babies. My kids, especially my 10 year old who has watched me nurse his brother and sister, are very familiar with the words breasts, nipples, etc. We call them "mookies" here, just because that's what Flower calls them - ya know, since that's what they're for.
(**I do think it's just fine that breasts can be a sexual thing too, between a husband and wife. I just don't think that is the only use, nor the main use, reason, or purpose, for breasts and I only talk to my children about the intended use God designed women's breasts for - feeding and nurturing the baby.**)
The mookies are well loved around here. My Lovey cuddles them, hugs them, and gives them kisses when I get out of the shower. My Flower tells me how the baby in my belly "needs to come out and have some mookies". It's wonderful that my babies feel so secure and loved and know that this body part is part of what has nourished them.
I remember when I first had my babies thinking of all those questions that new moms think about, especially how I will answer the questions my own babies ask. My children, of course, are curious to know what every body part is called. I tell them about their eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. We sing "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes" (now try to get that tune out of your head). I don't tell them that their eyes are called "peepers" or that their hands are "grabbers". So, I also don't make up words for other parts of their anatomy. A boy has a penis. A girl has a vulva. No, I don't use vagina....but that's because you don't see the vagina. You see the vulva.
The funniest thing ever is Flower talking about penises and vulvas. She is quite chatty these days. She has been interested in the difference between her and her brother since she noticed me changing his diapers when he was a newborn. I think this is normal and natural. She should know that God created two different humans, and that it is ok that we are different and even something to be celebrated. I don't get super in depth with her about this topic just yet. But she is pretty happy just to know this one basic element of boy and girls.
Anywho. Penis and vulva. Flower often likes to tell us all what we have. And she has to say it about everyone when she does. It's sooooo cute. It usually goes like this, "I have a vulva. Lovey has a penis. Daddy have a penis. Mommy have a vuvla. Wobbers have penis. Sum-Sum has vulva. Grandma have a vulva." It is seriously to die for.
She also comments about mookies. I will never forget the morning she woke up and told my husband, "You have mookies. You have little mookies. Mommy have BIG mookies! I have little mookies." All he could say was, "Yep." Of course she followed this with, "You have a penis."
That's my girl.
So, my point in all this is not only to share some kind of funny toddler ramblings with you but also to second the Yarn Harlot in her post about these words not being dirty words. Because they're not. Using these words will not corrupt the world. I don't think they are totally appropriate for every conversation, in every instance. But used the way they are meant to be used, and in context of what you are talking about (the Yarn Harlot used them when talking about the fit of a sweater she was knitting, totally appropriate) they are completely normal and totally fine.
Nipple, nipple, nipple, breast. Vulva. Penis.