Every day in April, I’ll be posting a video about one of the questions in my guide, (Over) 100 Questions To Ask Your Kids About Sexuality. The guide is free and if you don’t have it, you can get it by clicking here. This question is similar to one we’ve already asked our preschoolers. But today we’re bringing it back and we’re asking our school age kids: “Who do you think can make a baby?”
As I mentioned in the first post of this series, it’s useful to revisit the topic how babies are made several times throughout childhood and adolescence because it lets us add a few new details about this relatively complicated biological process each time we talk to our kids. It makes the whole topic easier to for most us adults to teach, and easier for most kids to learn. If you have a school age child, but you haven’t had a chance to talk about how babies are made before now, you might also want to check out the first post about how are babies made. Baby makin’ ain’t basic. I’ve met teenagers and even some adults who are still confused or misinformed about exactly how babies are conceived. While most people seem to know the part where a penis goes into the vagina and a sperm connects to the egg, they aren’t clear on what happens from there. I’m certainly not suggesting you sit down with your school age child and crack open a copy of Grey’s Anatomy. But this question (and the follow-ups, I’ll suggest below), let you take the lesson one important step further. Ask away! So...who can make a baby? A person with sperm and a person with eggs/ova. If your child is open and interested you can ask follow up questions:
How can those people make a baby? With their bodies (penis in vagina sex). They can also get a scientist to help them combine the egg and the sperm outside the body and then put it inside someone’s uterus. Can little kids make babies? No. Some kids have testicles but they can’t make sperm yet. Some kids have eggs, but the eggs have to grow up and get older before they can become babies
Can teenagers make babies? Most can. As we get closer to adults, our bodies start making sperm or our eggs are old enough to make babies.
Can older adults, like grandparents make babies? Most older people with ovaries can’t make babies with their bodies. But many older people with testicles still can.
Can two people with eggs make a baby? Can two people with sperm make a baby? Not all by themselves - they need an egg and sperm. But if they want to become parents they might choose to adopt a baby or a child. They might also find another person to give them sperm or egg that the need.
Take it easy. Even these few details can be a lot, so you may or may not get to all of this in one conversation. That’s fine. Spread it out over a few days, weeks or even months, if you need to. The great thing about diving into this topic when your kids are young is that you have plenty of time to cover it all.