When I Grow Up, I'm Going To Marry My Daddy!

Or so I thought when I was four years old.

My mother was trying to explain sensitive matters of love and sex to me, stemming from some random question I asked her about her newest pregnancy. To be certain, she could have told me she ate a magic cookie sprinkled with pixie dust and it put a baby in her belly, and I would have been satisfied, and understanding of her silly tales when I got older. But, Good Woman that she is, she decided she should explain things to me.

And so she sat me down at the kitchen table that sunny afternoon, while I snacked on Swiss Cheese Crackers and a glass of milk. She cleared her throat. I grinned at her. Honestly, I’d probably already forgotten my question by then, but she was Determined. She was Ready. It was time for a Talk. She cleared her throat again.

“When mommies and daddies love each other, they have sex. Having sex can make a baby.”

I nodded and kicked my feet under the table. She told me to settle down. I obeyed. “Do you kiss a lot when you get married, Mommy?”

She cleared her throat again. “Yes. When two people love each other very much, they kiss a lot. And they might make babies.”

“I know! I saw!”

My mother turned bright red. “You saw* what*?”

“When you kissed Daddy. I saw little tiny things moving from his mouth into yours, and they went down into your tummy, and now you will have a baby!”

My mother’s lips get tight and she smiled at me. She looked like she’d had enough for today. “Yep. That’s how it’s done.” Good Woman though she may be, she obviously wasn’t ready for this talk with her young daughter.



“Can you marry a girl?”

“No!” She spluttered. I laughed.

“I want to marry a girl!”

My mother turned red. My father returned home from work. He came into the kitchen and kissed my mother. I giggled. Babies were being made, right in front of me, and everything. Then my father kissed the top of my head. I wiped my hair off.

“Can I only marry a man?”

“Yes.” My mother looked relieved.

I had to think about this one for a while. My mother finally got up to put some supper on, and my father was washing his hands in the sink. I didn’t know any men. All of my little friends were girls, I only knew my uncles, who were five or six years older than me, and could be mean, one old, old drunk uncle who frightened me, and the only grandfather I had had been disowned years before I was born. My father’s father died when he was two. Finally, I came to the only logical conclusion.

“When I grow up, I’m going to marry my Daddy!”

The room was silent. My mother stifled a giggle. My father dried his hands off and said, wryly, “Not in this country.”

I kicked my feet under the table again. I remembered my father had kissed the top of my head when he came in. I touched my hair.

“I have babies in my head,” I said.

So, what were your familial misconceptions as a child?
(This ought to make for a great sequential thread sequence, now that I think of it.)

My Mother Has a Lie-Detector aka Your Tongue Turns Purple When You Lie

I was raised on a very strict no-white-sugar diet. No gum, sugared drinks or candy. (Why? You ask? Did I suffer some horrible metabolic disease? Does diabetes run in my family? No. My mother simply wanted to win a bar bet with her best friend that she could raise a child without sugar. She’s like that sometimes.)

I was about 5 years old, and still a sugar-free kid at home. Of course, I snuck sugary treats whenever possible at my friends’ houses. One friend in particular, whose brealfasts consisted of Sugar Smacks served in chocolate milk (no, I’m no kidding), with Tang on the side and perhaps a Pop-Tart for desert - Deanna was always good for a fix.

She sets me up with a grape lollipop. We snuck around the side of my house, and took turns enjoying the pseudo grape flavored goodness. Literally took turns, first her, then me, off the same lollipop. Germs, shmerms.

My mother, not being a complete and utter moron, heard little sugar crazed banshee girls giggling their asses off, and called me to the door to see what was going on.

I nonchalantly wander over, buzzing like a chainsaw. “Have you been eating candy?” She asked. Of course I denied it. “Stick out your tongue!” she demanded imperiously. Of course I did, and promptly found myself cut off from my dealer and kept inside for the rest of the day while Deanna went home to enjoy a healthsome lunch of grape jelly and butter on white bread with Kool-aid and a Snickers bar. I was kept inside all week, in fact, for lying to my mother.

And I remained in awe of my mother’s powers for at least three years: Mom can tell when I’m lying, because my tongue turns purple when I lie!

Let’s go back to sex. That’s always fun.

When i was 6 or so my dog had pups. SIX of em! There were a mix of shorthairs and longhairs and of course, some were male and some were female.

A few days after the pups were born (and boy was that icky to watch) i was trailing after my father in the garden. “Daddy”, I enquired, “How do you know which are the boy puppies and which are the girl puppies?”

My slightly flustered father (who, to be fair, had probably expected to be having this conversation with his son, not his daughter) replied “Um…well it’s just the same as with people”.

I was completely satisfied with this answer and it took me literally YEARS before i realised that he probably wasn’t advising me to differentiate gender in dogs based solely on length of fur. :smiley:

Mine aren’t as good, but here goes. My family lived in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and we used to visit my maternal grandparents in Goshen, Indiana, oh, once or twice a year, I guess. As a kid, I could tell when we were in Indiana because Indiana has toll roads, and we’d go through the toll booth. Only instead of toll roads, I heard “toad roads.” For at least a couple years, I thought that we had to pay to go on the highways that had a lot of toads living in the ditches along the road.

Similarly, my brother heard the word brakes as bricks, and he thought that when Dad wanted to stop the car, he pressed on the brick pedal, which caused bricks under the car to press on the tires and slow the car down. Which is impressively similar to how brakes actually work.

On a different note, I grew up in a Mennonite church. (well, not literally, but you know what I mean) It was a very liberal Mennonite church, but still, I got a lot of anti-sex messages. One day after church when I was probably about 8 years old, Mom and one of her friends were looking over the list of dishes that people were bringing to a potluck dinner. Mom noticed a desert called “Better than Sex Chocolate” something-or-other. Mom said something to her friend to the effect of, “They must have misnamed that; no desert is better than sex!” I was completely confused - chocolate was delicious, whereas sex . . . well, since everyone at church said having sex was bad, how good could it be?

Now that I think about it, there are a couple guys that, I think a chocolate dessert would’ve been preferable to sex with them. :slight_smile:

I can’t remember asking, but I do remember the answer.

My mom blathered on about the man putting the “seed” into the woman–and somehow dancing(probably “holding close” or hugging) came into it, and belly buttons.

(I always imagined the waltz scene in the Disney movie, Cinderella, and I pictued men and women floating around the dance floor planting seeds into the woman’s belly button.) My small brain ( I was under 5) kinda said huh? at that–because the belly buttons were all covered up with clothes!

But each time I saw a woman with a tube top or similiar on, I nodded knowingly to myself–she was trying to get a seed!
Yep–I turned to drugs when I was a teen…

When I was about 3, maybe younger, I believed that at age 10, a person finshed school, got married, and ahd babies, simply because 10 is a 2-digit number (and probably as high as I was able to count at the time)

Another time, (perhaps I was 4?) my folks were discussing Hurricane Donna (c 1955) and after listening to what they endured, I asked Dad “Did you die?” When he finished laughing, he said “Yes” …

And people wonder why I’ve been in therapy so long :smack:

I too wanted to marry a family member when I was 4 or so.

My siblings are many years older than I. When I was about four, my brother was in high school, and I thought he was the handsomest thing ever! It took alot of explaining from mom about why I should set my matrimonial sights elsewhere.

Now you just want to marry a sugar daddy.

Already did. :stuck_out_tongue:

(Well, I have no job, he pays for everything I do, and all I have to do is keep the house clean and put out… granted, I’m still in immigration limbo, but you could make an argument for calling him my “sugar daddy”.)

I was in 2nd or 3rd grade and I asked my Mother, I have no idea why because I was looking at baseball cards when I asked, why people got married. She said that when they loved each other very much they woud decide to get married.

I said “Oh. Then when I grow up I’m going to marry you.” She laughed and asked “What about Daddy? I’m already married to him.”

I replied “I don’t know. Maybe he’ll go away.”

She laughed again and said “We’ll talk about this later.” Of course, we never did but for some reason I remember everything about that moment.

Does it count that I though that my mother was the smartest person around because she could answer all my questions, and then I found out how much stuff she just made up.

Is this to old to resurrect? Mods if so, accept my apologies and close as necessary.

Anyway, it’s worth risking retribution to recount a conversation my niece (7) and nephew (5) had with their mother, my sister-in-law:

Niece: I came out of your tummy?
SiL: Yes, that’s right.
Niece: I remember. It was very cozy.
SiL: If you say so.
Niece: I remember. It was red and warm and lovely. And I remember coming out.
SiL: Do you? :eek:
Niece: Yes, and just before I came out, I saw a little seed still in your tummy, and that means you’re going to have another baby.

  • Pause -
    Nephew (over the other side of the room, indignant): That wasn’t a seed, you silly goose, that was me! Why didn’t you bring me with you so I’d be older?!

When I was 17 a classmate in high school insisted she could remember being born, and she told the whole story, neuropsychology be damned.

I don’t recall how old I was when I broached the subject with my mother, but she, being uptight about sex and terrified that I’d be some kind of* loose woman* :eek: told me that when a man and a woman were in love and got married, God gave them a baby.

I was very confused when I heard about unmarried women having babies - how did they manage to fool God?? :confused:

Needless to say, when my own daughter asked, she got as honest an answer as I could give her according to her age. I didn’t want her growing up as confused as I was. But I try to keep it in context - I was born in '54 and my mom was a victim of her upbringing. I can’t imagine what her mother taught her.

This was pretty much my understanding of how conception occurred when I was 3 or 4.

I had seen pictures of sperm in a book; sperm look kind of like tadpoles, so therefore they must be about the same size. Of course, the mommy could feel the tadpole/sperm passing into her mouth and being swallowed when the daddy kissed her and gave it to her. Just one tadpole/sperm per kiss, mind you. That was all you needed for baby-making purposes.

Heh. I used to think I would have my choice of two potential husbands when I grew up, my baby brother or my cousin Raymond.

After all, I had observed that married couples generally had the same last name as each other, and they were the only two boys I knew with the same last name as me…