Our children know us better than we know ourselves. Unless we are psychotic or capricious, they know what makes us mad, happy, satisfied and downright disgusted. They also know how to push our buttons, and have memories like elephants for stuff we would rather they’d forget. Ironically, they can’t seem to remember to take out the trash, change their underwear, bring all their books to school, so they call you in the middle of the day to just drop everything and deliver them.
Years back, I remember asking my mother a very inappropriate question, “Did you and Daddy have sex before you got married?” She paused and said something that burned a hole in my memory: “I needed to try what I was buying.” With that mental picture emblazoned in my mind like a thousand not-so-splendid suns, in retrospect, I wish I’d never asked.
Now with four kids of my own, I know my daughter might feel, at some point, comfortable enough to ask the same question. Saying I was a virgin won’t fly; she was born before I met my husband. It won’t work on the others, either.
Since I’ll be faced with the same dilemmas, I’ve prepared a quick-and-dirty list of possible questions and good answers to shut things down before they know too much.