The moment when a child recognises that a parent has body parts different to them can be an awkward – and hilarious – ‘teaching moment’, as Sean Szeps, co-host of Mamamia‘s parenting podcast, The Baby Bubble, revealed recently.
“Speaking of penis, Cooper and Stella have discovered mine,” Szeps announced on this week’s episode to his co-host, referring to the 16-month-old twins he has with his husband, Josh.
“I’m on Fox discovering his own,” she said, revealing that her baby has an “obsession” with exploring his body as all infants do – although she notes he does it with a “grin on the face.”
Szeps told listeners that the subject of sexuality could be uncomfortable for those not raised where discussion of the topic was open, but his approach was more pragmatic.
Listen: Sean Szeps explains his approach to explaining genitalia to his kids on the Baby Bubble. Post continues after.
“I’m at home with the children every morning by myself,” he explained. “So if I want to shower before I go out, I have to shower with them.”
The dad-of-two said he knew some parents would suggest putting the children in a playpen while he was in the bathroom, but Szeps said that wasn’t the way he wanted to handle things.
“I bring them down into the bathroom, I bring a bunch of toys with me, I shower, I come out of the shower, and in that second when you’re drying yourself off, those couple of seconds, for many, many months nothing happened,” he explained.
“They just played with their toys. But recently, they’re walking and more interested and can kind of talk… they’ve started to look up and point at it.”
Szeps said he was wondering how he should handle the situation, and, stressing that this is his experience as a parent only, and not expert advice, he admitted that his initial reaction was to not “freak out.”