We have never had an American Girl doll.
Number 4 has never really been into dolls, and Number 5 would love one, but they’re just way too expensive.
So I don’t know that much about them, but I’ve always been under the impression that they were really meant for girls who were around Number 5’s age. Like the 5, 6, 7 year-olds. Or at least I’ve thought girls that age would be more interested in playing with them and having one. Maybe I just associate them with girls Number 5’s age because she’s my girly girl who likes to play with dolls.
Anyway, somewhere along the way we acquired this book:
I have no idea where it came from or who gave it to us, but Number 4 has been reading it up in her bed at night. I didn’t think much about it. I mean, it’s an American Girl book.
She’s talked to me about a couple of the things in the book. She showed me all about the hair page:
It talked about getting gum out of your hair and what happens if you get lice.
She asked me what my skin was like when I was a teenager after reading about the face page.
She made sure I knew that I should be brushing my tongue when I brush my teeth.
It was a cute book, and I was glad she was reading it.
The other day, I heard some commotion coming from upstairs. There was some yelling coming out of Number 3, 4 and 5’s room.
I went upstairs to see what was going on.
“MOM! NUMBER 4 IS LOOKING AT PICTURES OF VAGINAS!”
What? Where the hell was she getting pictures of vaginas? Did she have her Kindle? Had she found something she shouldn’t have on You Tube or something? It was a school night, so she shouldn’t have even been using it.
I went into their room.
“Number 4, what are you doing? Give me your Kindle. What happened to that American Girl book you were reading?”
“I am reading the American Girl book!” Number 4 said to me.
I walked over to where she was in her top bunk.
She was telling the truth. I asked her for the book, and she handed it over.
I opened to the page she had been reading.
Holy. Fucking. Vaginas.
“MOM! NOW WHEN I GET MY PERIOD I’LL KNOW HOW TO PUT A TAMPON IN!”
Oh. My. God.
“Shut UP!” yelled Number 3. That’s so disgusting!
“And MOM!” continued Number 4. “NEXT SUMMER I’M PRETTY SURE I’M GOING TO START GROWING MY BOOBS!”
“Um, what?” I asked her.
“LET ME SHOW YOU THE BOOB PAGES!”
Wait. The ding dang American Girl book has vagina and boob pages???
She showed me.
First of all, who the heck puts a tampon in smiling and with their eyes closed? And do most chicks brush their teeth and dry their hair topless? Put a damn shirt on, Kit Kittredge.
I suppose I should feel really irresponsible for not knowing what the hell she was actually reading about.
But to be honest, I’m really just grateful that now I don’t have to explain periods to her.
***Editor’s note, October 2017*** — I actually like this book very much. I was just kind of caught off guard at first! It explains things very well, and if you are the sort who feels super uncomfortable talking to your kids about this kind of stuff, then you might find this especially useful. Click below to get it (affiliate). This is a revised version which may not have the vagina pics in it, but is perfect for your elementary school student 😉
(oh, and don’t worry — I have no problem talking to Number 4 or any of the kids — about periods or anything else their body does — and I did NOT leave that to the book 😉 )