For the past few weeks, I have been following a YouTube web series from YFilms, which has a title that had initially been frowned upon even by me!
I’m talking about the cute and heartwarming web series on sex education called “Sex Chat with Pappu and Papa”. In a country where even uttering the word “sex” is a taboo, this series makes you feel that it is really nothing to be ashamed of, as far as having a healthy discussion on sex is concerned. The makers portray this fact very beautifully through the conversation between Pappu, a seven-year old boy, and his Papa, played by Anand Tiwari.
So we have this Watsa family, which is just like any other Indian family, with a little boy, his father, his pregnant mother, a happy-go-lucky Dadi, and a comically conservative Dadaji. But what is special about this family is that, when Pappu pops an innocent question about anything sexual, his Papa explains it in the simplest way possible, without rebuking him, or just telling him that he doesn’t know the answer. After all, who is comfortable explaining masturbation, pregnancy, condoms, periods and homosexuality to a seven year old? Thankfully, Anand Watsa is!
But Papa knows that Pappu is too small to grasp all the intricacies of sex. So, although he uses clever analogies to explain everything, he does use the appropriate terms involved, so that his son is not misguided in any way. He explains masturbation through the popular childhood poem of Jack and Jill, and how sometimes Jack, or even Jill, needs to play alone when the other is not around. When Pappu is curious seeing his pregnant mom, Papa is on his toes to demonstrate how it happened through the example of file transfer via a USB chord. When Pappu mistakes condoms for candy, he explains that sometimes the ‘file transfer’ isn’t desired, and that is what condoms are used for. When Pappu thinks sanitary napkins are for wiping his ‘nosy’, both his parents come forward to make its function clear to him. And for the final episode of the season, which was uploaded just yesterday, I actually had to fight a tear away when Papa explained the concept of homosexuality through the example of left and right-handedness – how it is something beyond your control! In this episode, even Dadaji comes around and gives his blessings to Anand’s gay friend and his partner. Moreover, Anand tells Pappu that whether he is straight or gay will be clear to him in his teenage years, which shows he is actually okay if his son turns out to be gay.
So this might be far-fetched for some, and might be welcoming to others, like me. But I can vouch for the fact that this web series has given me serious parental goals, that is, when/if I do become one. Although most people have showered positive comments in YouTube, some argue that the child is too young to be told about sex. I pondered over it for sometime, and I thought, why not? Aren’t seven-year-olds nowadays surfing the internet? Aren’t they likely to stumble upon a porn site by mistake one day, and then get all puzzled because no one will tell them what that was?
In my opinion, there may not be any particular age when you should sit down with your kid and lecture him/her about the facts of life. What you should do is assure your child that no matter what questions they have, even if it’s embarrassing, you are the first person they should come to. Tell them that you are the best person to satisfy all their curiosities, and that the internet or the peer group isn’t the correct encyclopedia. And then you should have answers like Anand Watsa, answers that won’t mar the innocence of your child, but make him/her aware and wise at the same time.
In case you haven’t watched any episode of this wonderful web series yet, here’s the link to the first one:
And in the meantime, if you have any more questions, #ApnePapaSePoochho ! 😀