Friday, 25 September 2009

Let's Talk About Sex, Baby!

AS SOON as I saw the couple sprawled on the grass I knew it meant trouble.
We’d come to the park to play on the swings and whizz down the slide, not watch teenagers make out.
‘Get a room,’ I muttered as my little girl toddled off to explore the playhouse.
My six-year-old son was transfixed. ‘What are they doing?’ Deme asked. I took a deep breath.
‘Er, looking for something they’ve lost,’ I lied. But he wasn’t buying any of it.
‘No they’re not,’ he said, rolling his eyes. ‘They’re kissing. Why’s he lying on her though?’
I tried to wing it. 
‘They’re playing a squashing game,’ I ventured. Deme raised his eyebrows. ‘They’re practising horizontal dancing,’ I went on. 
Deme shook his head. ‘I know, Mamma,’ he said in a bored voice. ‘They’re tired from so much kissing and just want to relax.’
I smiled. ‘That’s it,’ I said, steering him towards the climbing frame. ‘How did you get to be so clever?’
All day I kept Deme distracted, knowing a giant can of wiggly worms had been opened.
I was right. The moment there was a silence at dinner he blurted it out. ‘Dad, do you ever get tired of kissing Mamma?’
I already knew the answer to that one. We’ve been together 13 years, married for nine. Our last sexy snog was circa 2003 when lack of sleep and stretch marks became a contraceptive.
‘Er, what do you mean, Deme?’ Alexio asked, confused. I hadn’t had time to fill him in on the teenager’s open-air groping session.
‘Well do you ever have to lay down on top of Mamma?’ he continued.
Alexio nearly chocked on his spaghetti. I did a quick one of our looks – the evil eye – so he knew to change the subject fast.
But it was obvious Deme was growing up quickly. We wouldn’t be able to put off having that chat for much longer.
‘There’s no way I’m telling him,’ I wailed as soon as Deme went to bed. ‘I’m his mum. I just couldn’t.’
This was a father’s job. ‘I’ll tell Anais when she needs to know,’ I promised. That got me off the hook for another seven years.
‘OK,’ Alexio agreed. ‘I’ll teach him all about sex this weekend.’ I grimaced, making a mental note to be out of the house when the talk happened.
Our son needed to know all about the birds and the bees. But it meant he was growing up too fast. And I wanted, like all mums, to keep him my little boy forever.
All week I dreaded the approach of the weekend. Was Deme going to be different somehow when he knew where babies came from?
‘What are you going to say?’ I quizzed Alexio. He shrugged. ‘I’ll just say what comes into my mind,’ he said. I frowned.
Alexio was Italian and had been educated by nuns. I could imagine what their sex lessons had been like – all ‘not before marriage’ else you’ll go blind or be burned at the stake. This was going to hurt him a lot more than it hurt Alexio.
That night, Deme came out of school, looking very pleased with himself. ‘I know all about kissing and stuff,’ he announced.
Alexio and I looked at each other, worried. We’d left it too late. Now he’d found out from someone else. ‘Who told you?’ I demanded.
Deme smiled. ‘My friends,’ he said. ‘The big boys.’ I closed my eyes, dreading what they’d said.
‘Tell us then,’ I whispered. There was a pause as we waited. Deme puffed out his chest.
‘Kissing’s not just for boys and girls,’ he said. ‘If you kiss a boy it’s called Gage and if a girl kisses a girl then she’s a Toni.’
I could feel the air rushing into my lungs, hear my heart beating once more. ‘Oh, yes, very good,’ I mumbled as Alexio looked even more confused.
Sex education in the playground? I think Deme needs a few more lessons.


  1. What is a gage? What is a Tony? OMG I feel as though I may have missed out on a vital part of sex ed...

  2. That's OK, he'll be available for private tuition or you come to one of his seminars!