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Where do babies come from? Response to 4yoDD

(31 Posts)
SerenavanderWoodsen Mon 17-Aug-15 15:15:26

My 4yo DD just asked me where babies come from shock. Crikey, I wasn't expecting to have to deal with that question for a good few years. I was completely taken by surprise and might have muttered something about 'coming from Mummys' tummies' and then swiftly changed the subject.
I always read on here about how you should always give honest, age appropriate responses to these type of questions. So WIBU to respond as I did? If so, how should I have responded? She's 4 FFS!

ChanandlerBongsNeighbour Mon 17-Aug-15 15:18:45

I told my four year old DD that daddy planted a seed in mummy's tummy which grew into a baby and when they baby was ready mummy went to the hospital where the special doctors and nurses help the baby out. So far, that has satisfied her.

Pedestriana Mon 17-Aug-15 15:20:36

Not had that one yet but I'm expecting it fairly soon.

DD has a toy pig (female) which has nipples marked on its tummy. She just picked it up and said "what are those circles mummy?"
I told her they were nipples, that was where her piglets could get milk to feed. I told her many animals can do this, including humans.
No more questions.

I just try to keep it simple, factual, and light.

I remember in my childhood that we never really asked such questions/anything of this nature was dealt with with much cringeing and embarrassment.

I shall find out what books the library have which cover this and make sure we get some out when the questions come, so we can have something to talk about.

SerenavanderWoodsen Mon 17-Aug-15 15:32:53

I think that's the thing Pedestriana, we were never told anything when we were young and I had wanted to deal with it really maturely! I was just taken by surprise (which is stupid considering how inquisitive bloody nosy DD is grin

SerenavanderWoodsen Mon 17-Aug-15 15:33:27

Oops strike through fail blush

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Aug-15 15:43:33

I used to watch a lot of wildlife programmes with the kids. That really helped and it was interesting to watch anyway.

I always swore I would be honest with my kids, as my Irish Catholic parents would never talk about things like that.

Until one night when Coronation Street was starting and my (then) 4yr old DS randomly piped up with, "Mum what's a lesbian?"

I said, "It's a breed of cat, son"

Why the actual fuck I said that, I genuinely don't know?? confused

He just caught me on the hop and the Coronation Street cat was walking across the rooftops, as the show started grin

I put him right after that obviously!

SerenavanderWoodsen Mon 17-Aug-15 15:55:30

Brilliant Worra grin
I think I need to work on some standard responses to likely questions <adds Lesbian to list> and without pissing myself laughing

Balanced12 Mon 17-Aug-15 16:03:58

My 4yo DD follow up question was how does the baby get out, I still haven't give her an answer, any ideas? What is the truthful 4yo answer ?

WorraLiberty Mon 17-Aug-15 16:04:26

I thought I'd better set him straight, just in case he asked the neighbours if he could stroke their lesbians blush

Or informed them their lesbians have worms...

DoJo Mon 17-Aug-15 16:15:48

I told a version similar to the one ChanandlerBong mentioned when my son asked when he was about 3. He then asked how the baby got out and I explained that women have a special hole for babies to come out of between their legs. He was satisfied with that, but now that I am pregnant he is asking more and more and hopefully has a rough idea of what goes on (although he hasn't asked about the mechanics of how it got in there yet!).

Thurlow Mon 17-Aug-15 16:23:05

Simple and factual, definitely. I told my 3yo that babies live in mummies tummies, so far she hasn't asked how they get there, though she knows not all mummies have babies in their tummies all the time.

Same with periods - she is an inveterate follower into bathrooms so has seen me change pads -- despite my best efforts to distract her and look at something else-- and just accepted that it is ok, it's just something that happens to mummies once in a while.

As for how babies get out, that's one benefit of a cs! DD has seen the scar so I told her that's where the doctor helped her pop out. She thinks it's brilliant. Of course, I'm just setting myself up for a longer discussion there about vaginal births, but we'll cross that bridge when it happens...

avocadotoast Mon 17-Aug-15 16:29:28

Worra grin

My friend bought me this book when I was pregnant (she's a reception teacher, I think it was half-joke half-"keep this because you'll need it in a few years"):

It's actually really good! Plain speaking, factual, gender neutral, no frilly nonsense.

mikado1 Mon 17-Aug-15 16:33:27

I thought I was super cool and modern when ds 3yo asked how we would 'get this baby out?'-I was completely honest and he accepted it without question. Why then was I surprised when he asked how it got in the following day! I started mumbling about eggs and seeds. I was all set to make more sense the next time and I did, only to be blindsided by 'How did daddy put the seed in? '!!! I drew the line at this (rightly? ) and 'in a special way' sufficed... for now! !

AwfulBeryl Mon 17-Aug-15 16:43:13

grin at the lesbian breed of cat, it's funny when they catch you unawares.
I found the the baby talk came in 3 stages - where they come from, how they got out and how they got in there.
All of which I explained in a factual child friendly way and felt like I had (for once ) scored a parenting goal, but they never seem happy with the basics and want to know how and when the bones and skin grow, when the nose grows, how the sperm knows what to do Yada Yada Yada...the list of questions are endless, and they're so eager to ask the next question that they don't even listen properly to the basics explanation, so I'm not so sure I have ticked the sex / baby talk off the to do list after all.

OpposableThumbs1 Mon 17-Aug-15 16:53:32

My DD is 4.4 and I have just told her I am expecting DC2. In preparation I bought a book called 'It's not the stork'. So far it is proving to be very useful and is satisfying her curiosity. We have spent a lot of time going through it together in the last few days.

SerenavanderWoodsen Mon 17-Aug-15 16:53:56

Oh thanks avocado I'll have to check that out.
I suspect I'll get asked the same question again very soon due to my ducking of the question. I must be better prepared next time!

OpposableThumbs1 Mon 17-Aug-15 16:56:55's+not+the+stork

BarbarianMum Mon 17-Aug-15 17:05:07

I just told mine the truth. Seemed simpler and it was.

campervan67 Mon 17-Aug-15 17:06:08

The best advice I ever read on MN was to answer exactly the question they have asked. So 'where do babies come from?' 'mummy's tummy'. With my DC the 'how did the baby get into mummy's tummy?' question came a bit later on, then the question about how daddy's seed got into mummy's tummy came even later. Now, age 7 and 5, they know all the basics, I think.

As for how the baby gets out, surely the honest answer is the only one to give!? 'through your vagina'. Or, if you must, through your minnie/foo foo whatever word your DD uses. My DD was completely fine with this! It did prompt a lot of questions about if it stretches, does it hurt etc!

FirstWeTakeManhattan Mon 17-Aug-15 17:11:28

DD1 asked around the same age. I tell a version of the truth. Babies come out of mummy's tummy. If pressed, I explain that your body does an amazing, miraculous thing that only happens when you're having a baby, so that your body/vagina/whatever you call it to DC, stretches and changes to allow the baby to come out and then your body goes back to normal like fuck it does

We haven't dealt with how the baby gets there yet grin

So mainly true, bit of room for wonderment, not too graphic.

Pedestriana Mon 17-Aug-15 17:43:57

Thankfully DD has no issue with the concept of children having two mummies/daddies or children being different skin tones to her. We're in a reasonably rural area but it's becoming more culturally diverse, and between my friends and DH's I think we cover all other bases of things that questions are likely to be asked about smile

LokiBear Mon 17-Aug-15 17:45:20

My 4 yo asked the same thing. I told her that that daddy puts a seed in mummy's tummy and then mummy grows a baby. She asked how the baby got out. I told her the mummy pushes the baby out of her floof (which is what we call the female parts in this house!). She asked how the baby grows so I showed her a youtube video of the egg splitting then becoming a baby. (I skipped over the sperm meeting egg as I didn't want to have to answer the question of how the seed got in mummy's tummy.) I was caught off guard and winged the whole conversation, but I'm glad I was honest because she accepted it really well. She loved watching the baby grow too.

NobodyLivesHere Mon 17-Aug-15 17:46:56

I would have just said daddies have seeds, mammies have eggs and the two make a baby in mams belly. Mine were well aware of the mechanism by 4.

TheCunnyFunt Mon 17-Aug-15 18:00:03

Someone put this on here a few years ago and I copied and saved it for when my DD asks the question. I think it's a really good explanation-

Where babies come from
To make a baby, you need a seed from a man, an egg from a woman and the special bit in a woman's tummy called a womb.

Usually, the baby's daddy gives the seed and the babys mummy gives the egg and womb, and they all live together as a family.

Sometimes the mummy and daddy don't live together and so the baby can have two houses! Sometimes the baby only lives with one parent. Sometimes the people who first made the baby can't be a mummy and daddy so the baby gets new parents.

Sometimes two ladies are in love and so a kind man gives them a seed, or maybe two men find a kind lady to give them an egg and let them use her womb.

Sometimes the mummy or daddy need a kind person to give eggs or seeds or let them use their womb because the mummy or daddy have a problem with theirs.

Sometimes a woman and a man even make a baby by accident! When you grow big enough to make a baby, you can get medicine that stops you having a baby until you want one.

All sorts of different things happen, and babies end up in all sorts of families, isn't that lovely!

No matter what, there always needs to be an egg, a seed, a womb and someone to love the baby, but there are lots of ways to do that, just like there are lots of different families.

Pico2 Mon 17-Aug-15 18:00:09

My DD is 4. I've explained that the daddy has a seed and the mummy an egg. I think that the egg bit is vital as you wouldn't want them to think that you are just an empty vessel. I've also explained that the eggs have been inside me since I was born, so everywhere I've been, the eggs went too. I said that bit as DD was very upset that we went on safari before she was born and thought we must have left her behind. I've also done a bit of discussing genetics - that the instructions to make DD came in the seed and the egg so some of the instructions come from DH and some from me. We've then discussed the ways that DD looks like me and DH.

We've also done how babies get out - CS and VB - as I've had one of each.

She hasn't asked how the seed gets in, so I haven't answered that.

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