“Do I have a uterus?” my 3-year-old wants to know. “Yes!” I tell her enthusiastically. “When you’re an adult, if you decide to have a baby, it will grow in your uterus.”
“So I have a uterus all day?”
“Does Daddy have a uterus?”
This is the sort of conversation I have daily with my precocious and gynecologically-inclined preschooler. I assumed my pregnancy would interest her — I just never imagined how much. Almost every night we play “Let’s pretend I’m being born.” She climbs inside my nightgown and snuggles there until I dramatically announce, “The baby is coming!” Then she wriggles out, landing on my chest, where she pretends to be swaddled. I don’t hate this game. It’s cozy.
Despite frequent readings of When You Were Inside Mommy and What’s in There? (I don’t know — a spaghetti squash?), my daughter continues to have many, many questions about reproduction. I try to be as honest as possible without overwhelming or scaring her. We use real anatomical words and facts. So if you have a playdate with us, ready or not, she may tell your child that babies come out of the vagina. And sometimes she adds her own insights.
“Then the nurse has to make sure the baby doesn’t get stuck in the hair.”
She is talking about pubic hair, which she finds vaguely offensive and sees as a impediment to a successful birth, despite my best efforts to correct her.