Where babies come from

I’ve talked about sperms. I’ve talked about eggs. I’ve talked about body parts in the best way I know how. I have been determined to raise girls who are comfortable with their own biology, educated, and above all, accurate. Even if it’s not always easy.

I thought I was doing a pretty good job. Until a few days ago, when my youngest daughter reported to me with great glee, just how babies are made.

Well first the sperm from Daddy and the egg from you got together and then I became an egg. Then I hopped right into your butt, and then grew into your belly. When I cracked open, I came out and that’s how I became a baby.

Um, wow. You hopped into my butt?

Yes.

So the egg was outside my body and then…hopped right in?

Yes.

And so you think that you were like in a chicken egg? One that cracks open and you hatch?

Yes.

Hm. Where did you get that one from, Sage? The kids at school? Julia? Nico?

No! Grandma!

Grandma? Grandma who is so interested in accuracy that she handed out tampons at my third grade birthday party? Somehow I don’t think that’s true.

{35 Comments}

35 thoughts on “Where babies come from”

  1. I think I would check with Grandma to verify the accuracy of the kid’s retelling. I’m just sayin’.

    –The mom who was all set for the kids to have Friday off of school, based on her 5-year-old’s assurance that Friday was a vacation day, until she came to her senses and asked the teacher. Nice try, mister!
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  2. So funny. I haven’t gone into that much explanation but my oldest knows she grew in my stomach, but thinks she came out of my belly button. I’m not quite ready to correct her.

  3. When I was pregnant with my second, my eldest (2 yo then) started asking me where did the baby come from, so I told her that Dad gave me the baby, so she went to her father and told him : Dad, you know that baby you gave to mom? Well she ate it!
    (I later on read the same story in a funny/joke website 🙂

  4. Tee-hee!
    I took our pediatrician’s advice and only give the information they ask about, no other. Then I take my sister the psychoanalysts’s advice and say something neutral like, tell me what you know about babies/tampons/etc.

    Leads to some amusing swallowed laughter.

  5. That just may be the best “where do babies come from” story I’ve heard yet… Maybe she saw some of that awful Arnold Schwarzenegger movie “Junior” and was inspired? Because I’m fairly certain he *was* carrying that baby somewhere in the vicinity of his butt… 🙂

  6. Loved the story. Now I’m upset that I wasn’t invited to your 3rd grade birthday party (or, if I was, I don’t remember it)!

  7. I’m currently pregnant with my second and when we told the news to our almost-4-year-old she really just wanted to know how in the world a baby can come out of my butt. My explanation went terribly awry somewhere along the way.
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  8. That is awesome 🙂 When I was pregnant with my youngest, my oldest didn’t really care how the baby got in my tummy, just how the baby would get out. She told me that when the baby was ready to be born, my belly button would pop open and the baby would crawl out. I ended up with a c-section (but wasn’t planned at the time my oldest told me this!)
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  9. You are officially my hero. I’m a 100%, unadulterated coward about talking about these things with my kids. We still call everyone’s parts “front heiny” and “back heiny”. It’s further complicated by the fact that I have a boy and a girl and my Amelia wants to constantly cover why it is hers is on the inside and his is on the outside. I practically passed out the other day when I had to explain to her that the hole in the front of the underwear was not a wardrobe malufunction, but an intentional piece of undergarment design…and why he needed it…or make that WILL need it because he still pees sitting down. All I’ve managed to explain about where babies came from is that babies are in Mommy’s belly and the doctor has to get them out. She thinks all babies have to be cut out (though neither of them were). I’m a big, fat, chicken but I know eventually I’m going to have to explain it. I might need a Prozac first.
    Alyssa S recently posted..The day I lied to my 6 year old about the Easter BunnyMy Profile

  10. I managed to freak my son out by letting him read the “Where did I come from book?” You and daddy really did that? But then we explained he was actually created via IVF. Now he gloats to his little brother that he got the better deal 🙂 Think he remains in blissful denial about how he got out.

  11. I’ve got a VERY inquisitive almost-4-year-old. As a classmate’s mother’s pregnancy progressed she had a few questions. I answered them. Then she asked — loudly, at dinner with my in-laws, “If the baby is in her belly, how will it get out?”

    I explained. My father-in-law looked desperately at the floor, wishing for some hole to open up. My mother-in-law said, “Well, you’re very honest with her” in a somewhat judge-y way.

    I take the approach recommended to me by several child psychologists I know and our pediatrician: Answer what is asked honestly. Don’t over inform. If you’re struggling to answer, tell them. Ask neutrally what they know and correct assumptions/inaccuracies gently. Rinse, repeat.

  12. I was pregnant with my youngest when my daughter was in 1st grade. She went the midwife appointment with me and they did the Strep B test. The next day during Share, she told her class that her mom was pregnant and that the midwife had to put a qtip in my butt to make sure the baby was growing.

    *sigh*
    Zak recently posted..UGGHSMy Profile

  13. When I was pregnant with my youngest daughter, I’m pretty sure my older girls thought that if they spoke loudly and clearly into my belly button, the baby would hear them just fine. It was like the preschool version of open mic night.
    Janel recently posted..Ms. UnderstoodMy Profile

    1. Uh, think Nate thought that too. He was always saying to my belly, “Don’t listen to Mommy’s terrible music! Ignore it! Help is coming soon!”

  14. I love this! We take a very similar, very open and honest approach. Last week I had to go to the doctor and there was a poster of female reproductive organs on the wall. Charlotte goes right up to the doctor and announces to her what is what (ovaries and uterus, mostly, she just pointed to herself for vulva) and the functions of said body parts. The doctor was enthralled lol.

    The problem is that because the doctor showed so much interest, Charlotte has taken it upon herself to inform the entire public population within two miles of her at any given time ALL ABOUT reproduction…and pap smears. I pretty much can never go grocery shopping again. Sigh.
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  15. Hilarious, absolutely hilarious.
    When I was still pregnant with n°2 I once ran into an aquintance at the grocery store, who had her little girl with her. The girl (three years old at the time) loudly asked if I was pregnant and when I answered in the affermative she procedeed with ‘Does this mean you had sex?!’ . Loud enough for anyone within a 20 mile radius to hear. Everyone around us burst into laughter at the same time.
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  16. Apparently, my 10yo nephew was very curious about my c-section scar with #3, and asked my sister-in-law if he could see it. She said no. He then asked if he could see her scar…to which she also replied no, as she’d had a stage 4 episiotomy.

    Then he asked the inevitable…how did we all 4 get out then?

    To which my niece, then 8, replied, “Graham, you know how when you watch a horse poop and his bottom goes from really small to really big when he’s going? That’s how.”

    Kind of genius, really, and she saved the day. That was that. He totally got it.

    That Sage, she’s something. I love seeing how it’s all going down inside her brain!

  17. Haha! This was a hillarious post! I love reading your stories…

    Brought up in an Asian family, no less a conservative one, I would like to be able to be open and frank with my kids one day about ‘the birds and the bees’ and of course.. one’s genitals.

    Lol. I really hope I won’t blunder through it when the time comes. Till then..
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  18. My 4 yr old was recently intrigued by a newborn baby in the next booth over at a restaurant. Finally she asked how our baby came out of my tummy – first time to ask it, of course it was in a public place! Trying to keep it PG I said that I pushed it out.

    “Out your bum, like poop?”
    “No, out of my vagina, not my bum.”
    “WHAT???!!!”

    Her horrified exclamation was heard throughout the entire place. Then silence as she thought about that new nugget of information.

    A few minutes later she had one follow up question.

    “Does it hurt?”

    I waffled quickly on how much honesty was due – I didn’t want to traumatize her (any further!).

    “Yes. It hurts (I decided against describing it since the unexpected non-medicated birth is still rather fresh in my mind!). But you get a baby afterwards so it’s okay.”

    So far, no follow up questions about how that baby gets in there in the first place!

    1. Yep we’ve talked about hurting. Thalia once said when she was little, “I never want to have a baby because it hurts.” And I promised her that the second you fall in love with that little thing you never remember the hurt.

      (Little white lie.)

  19. I recently had a similar discussion with my daughter at which point she said babies are made when a mom and dad concentrate REALLY hard on how much they love each other. Admittedly, they’re pretty sheltered when it comes to *whispering* s-e-x.

    I want them to learn about all of that from MTV like I did.
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  20. Oh my GOSH!!!!! That was hilarious!!!!!!!!!!!!! Kids have the darndest imaginations.

    P.S. I love that you are so open about this stuff with your girls. My mother didn’t necessarily shield me from it. Rather she’d get a video at the library to tell me about the male and female body and how babies are made cause she was too uncomfortable to do it herself. But then when it came to the topic of sex all I got was, “that’s bad, don’t do it”. I hate that mentality! I’m starting my kids young to be comfortable with their bodies. Just like you said! 🙂
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  21. You make me smile with this lovely story…. I remember when grandma told me that I am already pregnant because she saw in my face the glow upon those falls, and wow! She’s right…. 🙂

  22. For some reason, this explanation totally reminds me of the one the little girl in Knocked Up came up with. Your daughter cracked out of the egg though. The girl’s mom from Knocked Up had her butt fall off so the baby could come out. I think you got the better end of the deal.
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  23. Heh. I think this is awesome. I explained to my now 4 yr old about her C-section when I was pregnant with my 2nd and showed her the scar. (We haven’t gotten to sex yet). I told her we were hoping that is not what we would have to do with her little brother.

    One day she was playing doctor with my belly and listening to it and all kinds of things like giving it a thousand shots (aw, so sweet, right?) She laid a towel on my belly and I said “What are you doing?” “Getting the baby out.” Next thing I know she is slashing at my belly with a (fake) sword!

    I was a little bit in shock. Now she knows he came out my vagina. Which I think is a win.

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