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Mothering › Child Articles › Got Any Embarrassing Parenting Moments??

Got Any Embarrassing Parenting Moments??


Kids have no filters. At nursery school pick-up, they’ll point out to their teacher that you didn’t wash your hands in the bathroom, or they’ll ask you loudly if a woman with a bit of a mustache is a man.


Eight years ago, before I was a parent, my four-year-old nephew shouted angrily at me in a public men’s bathroom, “Stop sticking your finger into my tushie!” (I was not, though, perhaps, I was wiping too thoroughly.)


More recently, though, my own son, Noah, woke up to the fact that I had hair on my body and that he didn’t. A developmental landmark, to be sure. Unfortunately, though, his fascination was not so much with my legs, or arms, or chest or even my beard. He was consumed by the fact that, amazingly, he had no hair down below – on that part of Michelangelo’s David that kids stare at – and I did.


He was obsessed, and demanded a viewing and a comparison at any possible opportunity. I don’t believe in making any bodily parts or processes taboo. For example, when little two-year-old Benjamin wants to inspect the goods before we dump his potty, absolutely. (I do draw the line when he wants to use it like play dough.) So, when Noah wants to view my hairy David, I go with it.


This came up recently at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, in Hadley, Massachusetts. Noah already loved the bathrooms there – not only are the walls tiled with images from Carle’s classic Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? but the urinals are etched with flies AND they have the cutest little mini toilets for the under-seven set.


We were in a crowded hallway of parents and kids headed to the craft room, when Noah realized he had to pee. Already excited for a trip to this bathroom to search for the blue horse tile, it hit Noah that he’d also have a chance to … “Daddy, I have to pee, and I want to see your hairy penis!!” In his jubilation, he lingered on the last two words, so it sounded like “hairyyy  peeeeeniiiiis.”


Noah’s shrieking glee drew the full attention of the museum’s throngs of crafting parents and tots. All I could do was nod, smile, and offer a curt wave. But, of course, everyone there had kids too, so they understood perfectly.



photo credit: FreeDigitalPhotos.net



Brian Leaf

About Brian Leaf

Brian Leaf is the author of Misadventures of a Garden State Yogi. He lives in Western Massachusetts where he is an avid meditator, yogi, dad, and husband. You can follow his parenting adventures and misadventures on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Misadventures.of.a.Yogi.



Comments (3)

My 3-year-old once shouted "Look Mom, it's a ghost!" upon seeing a Muslim woman in full head covering/dress at a crowed mall once.
that is fantastic, thanks for the laugh :)
Funny story! I would love to visit that museum. Anyway, my story...when my daughter was 2 and learning to use the big toilet, I would make a big deal about it when I had to go and she would watch me. You know, "Oh, Mama's going pee pee in the big toilet! Yay!" Well, we were at a family wedding and staying at the mother of the bride's (my husband's aunt's) B&B. It was the morning after the wedding and I had to go ummm...#2. So I made a big, enthusiastic deal about it. After finishing my business, we exited the guestroom to find my husband's cousins, aunts, uncles, bride, groom, etc. gathered together on the veranda nearby our room. As we approached, they all looked up at us...and my dear daughter declared, "Mama did a BIG poo!" I nearly died.
Mothering › Child Articles › Got Any Embarrassing Parenting Moments??