There are a million and one slang terms for our "private parts" and even as adults we have our own set of slang terms to use. When my oldest was potty training I wasn't sure how I wanted to go about it, and eventually we settled on the generic and seemingly harmless "pee pee" and "wee wee", partially because I just couldn't decide and partially because I was worried I'd have a two year old walking through the store yelling the word "PENIS" and the top of his lungs.
Flash forward to my fourth (and sometimes most challenging?) child, and this time around I decided to teach her the actual words used for her anatomy. This came about due to her older brothers' and sister's influence, because of which she now calls both male AND female parts "wieners". So, clearly, some clarification was needed here, right?
I started off small, I let her keep wiener for now, but I added in vagina so she could get a grasp of the difference. Except she calls it a "buh-gina" and is REALLY SUPER curious whether each person she meets has a wiener or a buh-gina, as in we will be standing in the checkout lane and she'll start her line of questioning. Allow me to elaborate:
Scene: Crowded time at our local Target, we are in line waiting and there is a woman behind us. Talley decides to be her usual friendly self.
Talley: Hi I'm Talley! And this is my sister and my mom. I'm three. What's your middle name?
All of this is said in quick succession while Talley wildly gestures between me, her sister, our cart, the entire store. The stranger behind us is pleasantly baffled by this overly friendly blonde 3 year old and just says hi and waves. Nods maybe.
Talley: We're buying bathing suits (holds up her "Wummer Woman" bathing suit which she refuses to relinquish from her clutches lest I change my mind and decide to not buy it for her). Do you like bathing suits? Do you like swimming? I like swimming.
The stranger behind us is now completely disarmed and from all indications is now finding the small talk totally charming. She is complimenting Talley on her bathing suit choice and telling her how polite she is. Now Talley jumps in.
Talley: Do you have a wiener or a buh-gina?
Cut to me, struggling to keep the baby in the cart seat, trying to put items on the conveyer belt, and then I hear Talley asking a stranger about her buh-gina. What do you do? You smile and shrug. Maybe hoping the stranger hasn't understood the three year old speak? But she has. You know she has. You know she heard your toddler say loud and clear both "WIENER" and "BUH-GINA". You silently kick yourself for not just keeping it to pee pee and wee wee. What's wrong with pee pee and wee wee? Pee pee and wee wee were GREAT! No one ever got weirded out by pee pee and wee wee. But buh-gina? That's another story. While kicking myself I am also simultaneously patting myself on the back for not teaching her "penis" quite yet.
Look, don't get me wrong, I 100% want my children to feel comfortable and not ashamed about their bodies, and while I do understand the common sense behind teaching them the actual words, I also don't need my three year old asking the barista about their buh-ginas when I'm just trying to get a cold brew, you know what I mean?
So share with us, dear readers, what is your approach to the Pee Pee and Wee Wee conundrum?