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"Mom, Where do babies come from?"...Parents tips for how to start this conversation:
I wouldn't start the conversation, because very young children usually ask this question on their own, and asking shows they're capable of thinking about it and interested (in other words, ready). If they don't there's always a way to "inspire" their asking, by bringing up a relative or friend who is expecting a baby (or even mentioning that someone who looks "very pregnant" on television "must be having a baby").
Again, though, most little folks ask at around three years old or so.
My approach was to answer my three-year-old's question by explaining that babies "grow inside a lady in a special sac meant just for that". (My first child was adopted, so I didn't used the words, "mommie's tummy". Also, I wanted to mention the sac, because little kids can sometimes imagine all kinds of outrageous things if they don't understand that the baby is in a "special place" - rather than someone's "stomach".)
As it happened, none of my children asked how the baby got there until they got to be around five. So, I let that part of the story be left untold until they asked. If I had been asked before they were five I would probably have said, "I'll tell you another day." (Right or wrong, I happened to believe that really young preschoolers just can't digest too much information at one time. Even when parents tell very young children some things, the littlest ones can get confused anyway.
By the time they were five they had already known about how unborn babies grow for quite a while. The question about how they get started growing came naturally, and answering a five-year-old was not a big deal and not as likely to cause confusion. One of my sons pressured me with the question I was hedging on; and when I answered actually said, "What'd you tell me THAT for?!!" I said, "Because you MADE me tell you!" I guess that taught him about that advice for lawyers about never asking a question to which one doesn't already have the answer.
To me, though, even if answering the question doesn't necessarily go as smoothly as we would like, it just seems to kind of make sense to wait until the child asks (because, in general, that's a sign he's ready to know - at least a good part of the time, if not in my son's case).
Parents tend to make more of this question than is necessary. As a rule, answer questions with no more than two sentences. Your child will only ask as many questions as he or she is able to understand, in the context of the issue. The simple answer is always best. The answer to this question is, "From a Mommy's tummy." No more, no less. If the child is old enough to ask more, they will. If not, there is no need to provide further information. Here is an example from my own experience. I was pregnant with my daughter, and my 3 year old niece said, "Aunt Kerrie, did Uncle Jeff put that baby in your tummy?" My first thought was to respond with, "WHERE is your mother?!?!" Instead, I took a deep breath and said, "Yes, I guess he did." She replied, "I knew it!" and went on about her day.
It doesn't have to be a biology lesson. Just answer each question simply and honestly. They'll guide you along.
Kerrie Wheeler, LCPC
Personally, I found out myself. My parents didn't care much about what I knew. They didn't explain pregnancy; I saw it at a science museum, and knowing that you take pills to stop them from happening, up until I was ten, I thought that as soon as a woman married, she got pregnant every month, and if she chose to keep the baby, she would not take any pills. Then, the idea of unmarried woman and teens having babies popped up, and I searched online. I found out, and sort of left it there.
I seriously thought men give birth to baby boy and women give birth to baby girl.. LOL
I'm only 11! But... I asked my mom when i was about.. 6! But she just said "ASK ME WHEN YOU'RE 18" I laughed and thaught to myself, "I KNOW IT'S SOMETHING TO DO WITH HER BELLY" LOL but only because she told me that. Later on when i was 10 I saw my first PG-10+ movie But they were talking about something i did not understand. I asked my mom what they were talking about and she said "i don't know honey" But i knew she knew it. So i did something i regret... I LOOKED IT UP ONLINE... this is (unfortuanately) what i found out: Babys come from their mom's tummie from the daddy more. He sticks his um... his well, uh... "Hotdog" in the well, lady and it sorta happens of like 9 months and then well, POW! you have a baby... But if i was a dad i would just leave that detail til' about 17 But you don't wanna tell them that soon because it's still way too young to be a parent. But i know whats good for me, so i won't even think about being a parent until i'm 26 So my awsnser to tell kids is probably: "IT'S SOMETHING SPECIAL THAT PEOPLE WHO ARE MARIED DO WHEN THEY LOVE EACH OTHER..." But don't awnser this question to them unless they're over 7!
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