Gentle readers: Today’s topic could make some of you cringe.  And by “some of you” I mean Jennifer.  And by “could” I mean maybe not.  Jennifer has much more dignity and grace then I will ever muster, but she is by no means a prude.  So we will see, won’t we?

A web site was recently brought to my attention by an MoB regular who has proven over the years to know what makes me tick.  I won’t embarrass anyone by revealing his name, but you can follow him on Twitter at @GKAguirre.  Knowing that I often ponder the deepest thoughts one can think, engage in existential crises on a regular basis, and truly want to foster more meaning in my life, he sent me to a site where sophisticated women like myself can share (and vote) on what they call their vaginas. 

I realize I may never get you back but the link is here.  You have to scroll to the bottom and click the button to see all the nominees.

The list is endless.  And hysterical.  And 98% impractical if you have children

But as @GKAguirre rightly assumed, it did make me think about this issue.  And now so will all of you!

I am going to speak in gross generalities here.  Pleas forgive me in advance for some sweeping statements.

No one – child or grown up – likes to say the words vagina or penis out loud.  It’s even hard for me to write. Vagina sounds so clinical, almost like a chronic condition one has to live with (not entirely inaccurate, but still rather unappealing).  And penis just sounds funny, almost like a silly little man constantly engaged in goofy mishaps (again not entirely inaccurate).

Right or wrong, these words have become so stigmatized that parents make up replacement names for these parts early on.  Okay, well, really just for the penis.  Weenie, tally, pee-pee, peep, birdie.  Adorable!  And certainly gentler than the grown-up names for this appendage (which I do not need to list here for fear that we turn up in questionable Google searches).  But at what age does the young man make the transformation and stop referring to it as his tweet-tweet?  At what age does the Mommy stop referring to it as his tweet-tweet?  I’m thinking for me that time would be about now.  The moments are extremely rare, but every now and then there is a need to inquire about your son’s welfare.  What the heck do I call it without sounding like a scary Mom who won’t let her kid grow up or a scary Mom who sounds like she belongs at a truck stop?  (Jennifer, Terry or Goof Dad – I am counting on a little guidance here.)

Girls and women don’t have this issue because most of us grew up never calling ours anything.  As children, if we needed to make a reference to the part, we would often lower our voice to a whisper and say “my (point, point)”.  No universal name took hold. Consequently, little boys never heard it being called anything, so they are at a complete loss.  Ladies, as a PR pro with twenty years under my belt (pun intended), I would say we lost control of the message. Kudos to the Mooncup website for trying to get it back.

So, gentle readers, do you agree with my theory that this is a more socially charged issue for girls than boys?  Do you have any solutions to this universal problem?  And for you not-so-gentle readers, what the heck do you call it???

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