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There seems to be a lot more acceptable words to describe a boy’s naughty bits (or, more accurately, bit) than the girly counterpart.  We settled on “tinkle winkle” and “widgey” for our boy.  There was no real science to it. It wasn’t like we put as much thought into it as we did in naming our actual children.  There was no Googling involved, it just felt right…

Then, we had a daughter. Inevitably, our son came to question why his sister didn’t have the same pork soldier (sorry, I mean, tinkle winkle) that he did. This question was posed to mummy and it went something like this…

Son: “Mummy, does my sister have a tinkle winkle?”

Mummy: “No, she doesn’t have a tinkle winkle sweetie, she is a girl and girls don’t have tinkle winkles”

Son: “So, what is that?” *pointing at his sister’s “region”*

Mummy: “That’s her fairy. Boys have tinkle winkles and girls have “fairies”.

Son: *looks confused*

Mummy: *smug face, thinking she has successfully deflected awkward question*

Me: *on overhearing this, looks confused*

So, the name stuck and it has been our whole family’s go to description for all girls’ lady parts.  I have no idea how to explain to our son what the tooth fairy is.

You might think this is a common situation.  Child asks parent about their private parts. Parent makes up stupid name – “wee man”, “moo moo”, “pee pee”, “foo foo”, whatever you prefer. Everyone is amused. Someone writes about it on a website.

However, I found out that there are a group of, what I can only describe as, nutjobs who don’t play this game.  I learnt this after meeting a friend for dinner one night. Let’s call this friend “Susie” for the sake of anonymity and potential public backlash. Susie also has children and we got talking about this whole amusing situation when kids ask you about the names of their nether regions.  We laughed about it and when I quizzed her about what she had told her son when asked the same question, I swear she looked me dead in the eyes and uttered the word “vagina” with a wry smile. And, she wasn’t joking.

WHAT?! Why would you do this?! “Why would you want your kids saying “vagina””? I asked her incredulously.

Susie looked at me with the same wry smile, “because it is accurate” she explained.  You don’t say.

I know the anatomically-correct lobby out there support the argument that it’s the correct description. I know that! I just don’t want my kids to use the “V” word at nursery.  “My foo foo is wet” sounds infinitely better than the alternative coming from my two year old daughter. And, don’t get me started about vulvas.

I’ve since banned Susie from talking to my children.

Candid Daddy: Awkward Question #1: does my sister have a “tinkle winkle”?

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I am a father of three young children (boy, girl, girl - in case you were wondering). It took a while to get to this stage, spanning around five years of trying for children and suffering the heartache of miscarriages before having our son in 2012 via IUI and subsequently "naturally" conceiving our two daughters in 2014 and 2016. It's been quite a trip. From my experience so far, the path of fatherhood has had its mix from silky smooth to belligerently bumpy. Some days, I feel like a parenting titan, successfully conquering all child generated challenges with ease and deflecting all awkward child queries effortlessly. Other days, it feels like I am a tired and superfluous man-thing who, at times, struggles to repress an inner Hulk-like rage and urge to sell the children to my in-laws. Irrespective of how smooth or bumpy the parenthood path is on any given day, the one thing that is always a constant is that I know I am ridiculously lucky. Having kids is a privilege and an absolute blessing. Sometimes, I have to remind myself that these little alien creatures are just exploring and testing out the boundaries of the world and it's not anything personal. Even if, at times, they drive you to the point of questioning whether being waterboarded with Calpol would be more preferable than having to endure the kids' incessant nagging. I understand it might be.​ So, about that vasectomy...

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