Queen: I can’t sleep.
Slim: Want me to turn on the radio?
Queen: No, I want you to tell me a story.
Slim: What kind of story?
Queen: Any story. I don’t care.
Slim: When I was little, I asked my mum where babies come from. She said I was too young to know. Then I asked my dad and he said “babies are a product of two people that needed something from each other”. So I said, “Needed what?”. He said, “Maybe they needed to feel seen. Maybe they needed to feel loved. Maybe they need to be human.”
Queen: And then what?
Slim: Then I asked my grandmother. She said babies come from God. They’re his way of making sure no one really dies. I remember her saying “Through our children, we are reborn”.
Then I went to my older brother and asked him. And he said, “Nobody knows, we’re just born. That’s it. Now leave me alone”. I wasn’t satisfied with that answer, either, but I ran out of family members to ask, so he got the last word.
Queen: So who was right?
Slim: None of ’em. Babies come from f*cking. Plain and simple.
This short scene is from an award-winning movie, Queen & Slim. A must watch.
Where do babies come from? Oh yeah, f*cking.
When Slim was a kid, he was told half-lies about how babies came to life. Certainly, I don’t expect Slim’s family to tell him babies were made from fucking. The F word is an X-rated word and it’s wrong to be said to kids. But they’re better ways to make Slim understand the evolution of babies.
Kids grow up with so many unanswered questions. That’s why you see kids aged 7–15 do weird and awkward things just to give answers to their curiosity.
Personally, I think if you’re doing anything and you can’t explain it clearly to a 7-year-old, you’ve failed in life. When a child is curious and asks you a tricky question, you then tell the child “when you grow up you’ll understand”, you’ve failed as an adult. Telling kids this as a result of kids growing up in a rush to taste adulthood. They can’t wait to understand and do the things you told them they’ll understand when they grow up.
These days there are a lot of loosed kids out there because nobody gave answers to their curious questions. Nobody mentored them properly. Nobody told them what adulthood looked like.
When it comes to sex education, as adults, we need to be more open and comfortable when talking about it with kids. In Nigeria, parents act like sex education should be taught in the 20s. They make seem forbidden to talk sex education with kids.
Children should be taught to refer to private parts by their proper names. Penis, vagina, and breast are not bad words. Those are the proper names and trying to hide it sends a message that they can’t discuss those body parts.
Using the proper names sends the message that discussing certain parts of their bodies is safe and appropriate. Furthermore, if the child knows the correct names for body parts, the child will be able to communicate properly about their body with you or others, such as doctors, if necessary.
When a child asks, “Where do babies come from?” ask the child what they think. This will help you in understanding what the child already knows. Then you can clearly explain by providing as much information as you’re comfortable with. For example, “To make a baby, a man’s semen and a woman’s egg join together”.
You could explain that this occurs when a man and a woman engage in sexual intercourse, in which the man inserts his penis into the woman’s vagina. It’s also a good idea to explain that sexual intercourse is something that adults do when they both want to, not something that children do.
It’s never too soon to discuss sex with a child. At a young age, talking about sex, sexuality, and bodies will help a child realize that sex and sexuality are healthy aspects of life.
When a child is young, having open and transparent conversations will make later conversation easier. These early conversations also lay the foundation for children to make better sex decisions at a later age.