Our family loves “Modern Family”. It’s fun to have a prime time show we can all watch together that isn’t a singing competition.
Thing 2 especially loves it, I think, because it’s the only non-Disney or Nickelodeon or singing show she’s allowed to watch.
There’s been a few episodes in the past 2 years that have come dangerously close to opening up a can of worms I wasn’t really ready to open with her (remember when the kids walked in on Phil and Claire? Or when Phil found out Haley wasn’t a virgin?), but thankfully it’s either gone over her head or she pretended it did (because she, too, wasn’t ready to get into the worms).
Until last week.
*Before you read this I should give you a small disclaimer of sorts and should probably tell you that our family is most definitely not the “be careful what you say there are children in the room” type of family. We’ve let way too many inappropriate jokes and comments fly out of our mouths over the years, waaay before our kids were old enough to understand what we were saying. Whatever. They’re funny and well-adjusted kids. I think.
Additionally, we’ve always been the parents who’ve told our kids, “If you’re curious about something or have a question, ask. There’s nothing you can say that will embarrass us.”
And believe me, they have.
Since Husband was working late and Thing 1 was doing her never-ending homework, it was just me and my 11 year old little buddy snuggled down on the couch, ready for some good “Modern Family” laughs and a little bonding.
30 seconds into the show, Phil discovered a box of condoms in Haley’s bag, and let me tell you, we bonded.
After about 5 seconds (which seemed like 5 minutes) of debating with myself whether or not to pretend I also had no clue what they were talking about, I had to acknowledge the fact that she’s in middle school now and probably hearing things a whole hell of a lot worse than what I was about to tell her (but I do not want to think about that). And so I decided to use ‘Modern Family’ as a springboard to dive into a long and probably way too involved discussion (my poor, poor little girl) that started innocently enough with, “Do you know what condoms are?” but somehow branched out into –
*a brush up course on how babies are made (we had to disclose that a few years ago when she was playing barbies and one was pregnant and she asked Thing 1 how the barbie got pregnant and Thing 1 called us in a hysterical panic).
*discussing how sex isn’t really just something people do when they want to make a baby but something 2 people who love each other very much and are totally committed to each other decide to do (“EW!!…..grooooossssss!!!”...but then looking at me like I was a total idiot for thinking she didn’t already know that).
*discussing how while IT IS THE SMART CHOICE TO WAIT UNTIL YOU ARE MARRIED to have sex, many, many people do not which is a terrible choice because the boy who told the girl he loved her so she would have sex with him will most likely dump her and break her heart because he told her he loved her and she will cry for 6 weeks and eat 17 boxes of Ding-Dongs.
*how you aren’t mature enough as a teenager to make such a big and important and potentially life-changing decision and how there is a legal age for voting and drinking and gambling for that very reason but somehow they can’t enforce sexual activity but they totally should (and then I paused to make a note to myself to write a letter to my congressman…and to pour another glass of wine).
*how many 100% of the people who make that choice will end up with a terrible and tragic disease that causes warts on their vaginas which they will then have to explain to their future husband (and which will probably make him run for the hills) or will end up with a baby that their parents WILL NOT RAISE and will prevent them from finishing college and traveling to Europe with their friends and living it up in their 20’s.
*what ‘birth control’ is and how it is not effective. EVER. (see above)
*how sex seems gross and icky and unimaginable right now but one day as she gets older and matures it won’t and that there will be people in her very own school (hopefully not for a few years) that will be making the choice to have sex.
I was on a roll, I tell ya.
And then I said, “…but those aren’t the nice girls. Those are the skanky girls. Girls like that are….”
and she immediately chimes in with
Uh, okay. I think she’s got a handle on it.