View Full Version : Help with names for body parts
08-22-2006, 09:40 AM
This is a strange topic but I need your help. I have a 2.5 year old (33 months) DD and she is our only child.
At this age what do you call "private" body parts? Right now this is what I call things:
bottom or toushie for her rear end
"girl parts" for her "private" area
I haven't really addressed "breasts" yet
She has seen both her dad and I naked...we refer to daddy as having "boy parts" (we try to keep her seeing us to a minimum).
I really need your help with "breasts" and "girl parts". I know this is a strange question but I myself am alittle uncomfortable with the "proper" names myself. Plus at 2.5 I don't know that she needs proper names (or does she)?
TIA for any help on this delicate topic. :oops:
08-22-2006, 11:32 AM
Does the private parts terminology work?
Being a nurse I always told them the name regardless. A penis was a penis and testicles were testicles and breasts were breasts. I said it just as if he asked me what his arm was called. I said it matter of factly not drawing a lot of attention to it. I guess I didn't want to make a big deal of it. It is what it is. I don't tell him is leg is a called woo woo so I didn't give any other names to his other parts either. :?
Now I had a few interesting moments in their younger days when they would say the proper name in front of others. There were giggles etc.. but I figure it is their problem not mine. At least mine knew the proper name and weren't ignorant or ashamed. We had to have discussions of course along the way as they aged when it is appropriate to discuss our private parts( I did tell them which parts are considered private, by name) and when it isn't. They learned. I think they are well adjsuted today! :lol:
08-22-2006, 01:01 PM
I think Leslie is absolutely right...I try to go with proper names as much as possible. If, as unthinkable and scary as it sounds, anything would ever happen to my child, I would want them to be able to tell me, doctors, poolice, etc. what happened where.
I say penis and testicles with my son. When he saw the dog roll over and pointed, "What's that?" I tokd him...it is his penis." I don't have a girl, but I plan on using vulva. I guess I don't feel like anything should be an issue...like Leslie said, if people snicker, that is their problem.
I know everyone is different, but I don't see why even on here when we are talking about our bodies why we don't say vulva, vagina, clitoris, etc. instead of "down there" with an :oops: GOD MADE THOSE PARTS WHY ARE WE ASHAMED?!?!?! Down off my [soapbox] now, sorry.
08-22-2006, 03:20 PM
I'm not at this point yet... but I think when the time comes we will use proper body part names. Part of my thinking is with my Child Abuse Resistance Education training- that if "God forbid" my child had to tell me or another adult about inappropriate touching they could accurately describe where without confusion.
I also think that it takes away some of the "uncomfortability factor" by calling a spade a spade so to speak.
08-22-2006, 06:52 PM
I am not trying to be flippant or make fun, but when those of you who are uncomfortable with the "real" or "proper names" for the body parts God gave us, then how on earth are you able to go to the doctor and describe any problems?
Would your husband go to a urologist and says his "pee-pee" hurts...or would you go to the doctor and say you think you felt a lump in your "pillows" ?
Some people may be uncomfortable with the words, but they are just as much a part of the body God gave us as heads, shoulders, knees and toes. The more we try to change the proper names because we are uncomfortable, the more we confuse our kids, in my opinion.
I am sorry if I offend, but doesn't it just make sense that right from the start our kids know what is what? If they know a breast is a breast and a penis is a penis, then wouldn't it be easier to explain when they hear something bad? Then when your kids hear other kids or even adults being rude and disgusting and ask you what a d**k is or what t*ts are, then you can tell them that is what bad people call their penis or breasts and is makes God sad to use words that aren't right.
08-23-2006, 01:46 AM
My son will be 2 soon and we are teaching him the proper names for genitals - he knows he has a penis and so does daddy and I've told him I have a vagina but I don't think that word has sunk in yet. If I have to take him into the ladies room with me and he gets a little too curious about mommy's parts I just move his hand away and say, that's mommy's/that's mine/that's private.
We have lots of words for butt - toushie, heinie, behind, etc and instead of breasts somehow my girls ended up as boobies which is his favorite word as he is still nursing.
08-23-2006, 08:20 PM
I have used tee tee and no no spot up til now...my boys are 4... I do think the proper names should be used, but I have to say that I tried saying vagina to my four year old son when he asked, "mommy, where do you pee-pee?" I couldn't even get the first syllable out before I began laughing...I felt like I was going to get in trouble saying vagina to a 4 yr old. I simply couldn't get it out... It was quite comical... Penis is not such a big deal, I guess because they are boys. I even found myself closing the bathroom door laughing at myself and practicing saying vagina, vagina, vagina.... I was beet red and blushing!!! :oops:
08-23-2006, 09:34 PM
But, women don't use their vagina to urinate...we use a urethra. We wouldn't even need to use the word vagina until we talked to them about the "birds and the bees" so there is no need to use it with a 4 year old. I guess this is another reason why I think we need toteach our kids what is what on our bodies, but again, that is my opinion and we can just agree to disagree.
08-23-2006, 09:42 PM
ITA with using the proper names; someone had a good point about "vagina" not being used or visible so we go with vulva which has been turned into "bulba" and a penis is a penis. I do find I use bum/butt and boobs more than I would care to- I've called breasts breasts but have never referred to the gluteous maximus as such :lol: I did say anus when my son inquired about the hole in his bum...
08-23-2006, 11:13 PM
I think I am going to voice an opposition here. I think if you are comfortable with using the proper names then go for it. I plan on using pee-pee or tee-tee or whatever until my children are a little older. I just cannot see my 4 year old going around saying these terms. I am a former social worker and have heard the argument that it is important to know the proper terms, but at the same time, if something happens they have anatomically correct dolls and kids can point to the parts and whether they use the correct word doesn't make a difference. Also, many parents do feel the way I feel and don't won't their children being taught by other children terms they aren't comfortable with. So, that is my opinion, just thought I would share.
08-24-2006, 07:43 AM
I must admit, this thread has helped me out. I have been trying to decide what to teach my dd. Vulva will be my word of choice, it doesn't seem offensive in any way. We will stick with boobies (actually she calls them boo boos, if she hurts her knee its a boobie) until she's a few years older.
08-24-2006, 08:01 AM
All of this is true about the vagina thing...sorry to sound so ignorant...just wanted to share a laugh I had when trying to say the anatomically correct names when caught off-guard... Anyway, I think I will continue to say tee-tee and no-no spot for now too. They will learn the "proper"names soon enough...and when the time comes, we will teach them. Personal pref...I am with you Emily Rose Jewel
09-15-2006, 10:19 AM
I really want to be comfortable using the real names, but I just can't seem to get over my own hang-ups :oops: ! I used to babysit a little boy and he watched while I changed ds' diaper and asked "Is this his p**is?" (see, I can't even type the word), and I was completely shocked to hear it come from a 3 year old! I know its silly, but dh and are perfectly comfortable with "wa-hoo" "hoo-ha", etc.
09-15-2006, 12:16 PM
I started out young with my girls. While I'm changing Tory's diaper, I tell her we need to wipe off her vagina and her butt. I did the same with Audrey. I don't think that it's so bad to have other nicknames for the parts, though, like "pee-pee" or "tushy", though. I just say what naturally comes from my mouth. Other names might be easier for you to say, or for the kids to say.
Your kids should see you comfortable with how you say the word. Otherwise, they'll get the impression that there's something negative about the parts. So, if it makes you more comfortable to say girl/boy parts instead of penis or vagina, I don't think that there's anything wrong with that. The kid will still be able to say that a stranger touched them inappropriately, and that's the only reason for them to know what to call their 'parts' right now.
09-15-2006, 04:11 PM
When I first posted this topic I had NO idea of the responses I would get. You all have been very helpful. Since DD is not quite 3 we are going with pee-pee (sometimes she says "girl parts") and bottom. When we get to the "birds and bees" stage then I will use the correct lingo. For now, I'm going with what is most comfortable for our family. I greatly respect and admire all of you, this is just a personal hang-up of mine and I don't feel I'm damaging her in any way.
09-15-2006, 05:49 PM
Women's vagina's are inside of their bodies.
We do not wipe our vaginas.
We do not urinate from our vaginas.
What many women on here are using the word vagina for is our vulva.
I guess once again, that is why I make the point that if we do not teach our children the correct and proper words, then even as adults they will use the wrong terms.
Please don't think that I am saying it is not okay to use things like private parts or pee-pee or hoo-hoo or whatever...those are fine and we also use them and if that is what you and your children are comfortable with, GREAT!! I just think we need a healthy balance of what is comfortable and what is proper.
09-15-2006, 08:24 PM
We do not urinate from our vaginas
I actually took care of young girls in labor who had no idea that they had two different places: one for urinating and one for having babies etc...It was quite shocking that one could end up pregnant and still not understand their own body. :?
09-15-2006, 10:37 PM
This is a little off topic, but along the same lines...my grandmother got pregnant as a teen and she literlly did not know how. When her grandmother told her that "the baby would come out the way it went in" she finally understood. That was in the 40's, but I think there are many young girls out there in similar boats...parents that are too ashamed, too ignorant or too naive to think they don't have to talk to girls about their bodies and what can happen just amaze me. I don't believe that being honest and open with your children about the risks of sex always leads to them having sex...but let's not start a debate about that here and get way off topic. Probably should not have even gone there, but I did. Sorry...