Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Chinese Version of the "Birds and the Bees"

I was hanging out with a friend a couple of days ago, just screwing around, wasting time. My friend has a belly button ring, so I was joking around that she was hampering her reproductive organs.

This might not make sense for my western readers....but in China, when kids ask the world-wide question: "mommy, where did I come from", they are told, the belly button. This answer, although weird, seems like a very natural choice now. This is what my parents told me when I was young.

When this topic came up, I continued to ask what my friend's parents also said to her. She responded with: They told me that they found me in a dumpster. (我是在垃圾里面检出来得。)

What?! What are Chinese parents thinking? I know it is hard and uncomfortable to talk about sex with a kid so sometimes, flat out lying is not too bad.

However, Chinese customs have gone way beyond this. Parents, instead of doing the "birds & bees" story tell their children that they were adopted. Not only were they adopted, but their previous family threw them out into the trash, only until your parents rescued you.

What a fucked up thing to say.

Come to think of it, my parents told me that I was found in the trash too...


Anonymous said...

Don't over react. I was told so by my parents and I know a lot of people who have heard same story from their parents too. One thing I can assure you is it doesn't have any side effects like you may have imaged. That was how we lived and some may continue to live in this way.

Mike said...

trust me, i'm not over reacting. I was told the same thing when I was a kid by my Chinese parents.

What I am saying is that this is a very interesting cultural thing. No western family would every say this to their children.

In terms of mental depression and effects, who really knows...

Anonymous said...

I also think I remember my parents saying the same thing, and my grandmother told my mom the same thing, as well as saying my aunt came from a weed.

Anonymous said...

Your story is so funny. My mom told me that my brother, sister and I were picked up by her from different city park entrances. One of us came from the entrance of the city zoo.