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Parenting, Preschool

So That’s Why They Call It “A Boner”

I’m often surprised at the things children will say to you.

I spent most of my youth working with kids in a variety of capacities. During my early twenties, I was a nanny for two young boys who were the most adorable creatures you could imagine. On one particular occasion, we had taken a vacation with their father. This meant that the children and I had our own hotel room and the father, his.

My young charge, who was probably only 3 years old, had just stepped out of the shower. I have no idea what happened in there. I do know that young boys have bodies that will do strange things at random times and that’s just a part of nature. However, upon exiting the hotel bathroom, he came wandering over to me to show me something interesting he had just noticed about his body.

“Zoe,” he said, “Why does my penis have a bone in it?”

I. Um. Well.

Nanny mode kicked in. I began to talk to him about nature and how penises can change shapes when they want to. It wasn’t a bone. It was just a penis being a penis.

He seemed okay with that and wandered away to get himself dressed.

I’d never been asked a question like that. A bone? How did he come up with that? And then it hit me. The kid didn’t need me to educate him. He had just educated me. So that’s why they call it “A Boner.”

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