I Want Other Adults to Undress My Daughter

by doodaddy on November 6, 2008

I know, controversial title. But it’s true. Hear me out.

20081105-101

Higher than my puny biceps can manage.

We went on an outing yesterday with Mikey Mike and Emmeline. Now we’ve been hanging out with these guys for — what, over a year? — and so Boo is completely at ease with them. Mike feeds Boo, tosses her in the air on demand, and plays goofy puppet games with her. And to the extent of my physique (which compares poorly with Mike’s, sad to say) I try to do the same with Emmeline.

Then we came to the point in the day (this happens every day) when Boo wanted to switch completely from her morning outfit into the backup from my bag. (Truth be told, she’d rather have remained naked, but there was a lot of broken glass about so I only let her go barefoot for twenty minutes or so. Yay, tetanus vaccine!)

As we were changing, I thought to myself: Gee, I really should have Mike do this.

So… why? I mean, apart from wanting to get out of the chore myself?

Here’s the deal: we’re fast approaching the day when Boo will be entrusted into others’ care for long periods of time. One day, no doubt, she’s going to pee those morning pants and no parent or grandparent is going to be nearby: the preschool caregivers or the trusted neighbors will pitch in. Mike himself is one of our backups should we go into labor early.

And Boo, tragically, is going to need to know what’s right and what’s wrong in those situations.

So if we get Boo comfortable undressing (or pooping or bathing or doing anything else “private”) with the help of other trusted adults, people we know well, and in our presence, then the ultimate conversation about — may the saints preserve me — boundaries won’t completely scare Boo into poop retention and dress-up phobia. I know that there are a lot of things to fear out there in the big world — but one of the worst bugbears, I’ve always felt, is anxiety itself. Fear hurts.

And so we’re habituating Boo to other adults in all settings. Although, glancing again at that picture and thinking back on some of Boo’s exploits, it would appear that an excess of fear isn’t one of her problems.

Share and Enjoy: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • email
  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Bloglines

tagged as in community,fears,friends,man date ·

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Orlund November 6, 2008 at 12:26 pm

Umm..ya..that got me thinking just a little. You covered a two really important things: 1) You have to find people you really trust 2) you need to teach children what is appropriate and what is not.

Although knowing someone for 1 year is not that long.

Reply

cryitout November 6, 2008 at 2:11 pm

And the guy sounds like a total asshole anyway.

Reply

Ben Murphy, TheFatherLife.com November 6, 2008 at 7:19 pm

Catchy title! For real, good topic and good reasoning… -B

Reply

BugFrog November 6, 2008 at 9:19 pm

Boo likes to fly! Lil Froggy still likes to fly too! (no big drops yet) He figured out since I can’t thrown him any higher, he’ll jump off of higher stuff and I can just catch him. How thoughtful. At 45+ pounds, I’m starting to just give him more controlled, but yet still firm landings.

So back to your point… I struggle with how to teach those things. This wasn’t in the manual we got from the stork.

Catchy headline, tho. How will that show up in your weird google searches? 🙂

Reply

Kelley November 7, 2008 at 9:57 pm

Dude, reason #247 why you are a better parent than me. I dressed Boo every single day until his first day of kinder. When he had an accident. And punched his aide for trying to change him.

Yeah. You seriously need to get her to be OK with it. Those kinder and day care mums talk.

Reply

doodaddy November 8, 2008 at 10:21 am

@BugFrog – How old do you have to be before starting hang gliding lessons? You’ve got all those mountains around…

I actually picked words I thought would *avoid* naked baby searches… although I’m sure I’ll get some, the last post I did — years ago I had one called “Live Nude Girls” (about naked babies at the beach) which is still one of my top 3 hits.

So I just added an add to that page. If I’m going to disappoint pedophiles, I might as well make four cents a month on it.

g.

Reply

doodaddy November 8, 2008 at 10:22 am

@Kelley – Yikes. And I can just see Boo punching someone, too… not the best way to make a good first impression!

Reply

Robert November 10, 2008 at 11:23 pm

I would just suggest that everyone involved has the same take on discussing private matters. In an age where fathers get arrested for being around their own naked children all it would take is ‘Uncle Mikey helped me take my pants off’ in the wrong ear and then you’re all in a mess.

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: