Originally Posted by VisionaryMom
On the one hand, you keep saying "sexual curiosity," but OTOH, you don't want to label what your son is doing as sexual behavior. I think you have to get clear in your mind which you think it is because it can't be "oh, it's normal sexual curiosity, but don't get upset because it's not sexual." You & your friend both believe your own children, which is typical. I don't think it's odd that you think what your son did is normal, and she believes her daughter. TBH, I would not allow my daughter to be around your son, so I don't think your friend is wrong. I'm also afraid that you & your son will lose more friends if this behavior isn't something you can get a handle on, and while you think it's mean, others need to feel comfortable as well.
I don't think the number of incidents and particularly the one story that he made up (if I'm understanding correctly) are within the range of normal. I think that given your son's background at daycare and the other multitude of behavioral problems (as in the long thread in GD), you need to be addressing this pretty harshly at this point. He seems either not to care what you and other tell him or not be able to control himself. You need to find out which and address it.
At the very least, you should seek out a second opinion from a therapist. I'm finding it odd that your therapist knows his history and still thinks all of these things are normal, but then therapists are people, too. They have different opinions, and I think a second opinion may give you a very different result.
My family has a long, sordid history of sexual misbehavior that's all over the map from promiscuity to rape. My cousin, who's now 34, was like your son as a child. He had a higher-than-average number of "experimental incidents" involving looking at others' genitals. He progressed to essentially stalking/harassing girls in high school to finally being sentenced to jail for rape in his late 20s. All along the way his mother excused and said how he was just "normally curious" and then just had "a crush" on the girls and on and on. Now, I'm not saying that your child is destined down this road, but it's what I've seen from the same sort of response from a mother. Where is the line for you? It hasn't been when he made up a genital-showing story about several other kids. It hasn't been when he pulled down a girls' pants without her knowledge/consent/understanding. It's not when he asked someone to kiss his rectum. It's not when he asked another girl to pull down her pants & he pulled his down in a public place with you sitting there. So, when is it? What would indicate to you that it's finally a problem? For me, those acts individually may not be, but when they're added together, they do indicate that he's not headed down a very good path.
Whoa! Lots of misunderstandings or misreadings here.
1) I didn't think it was mean that my friend didn't want her daughter around my son, which isn't what she has decided anyway. (We've just decided not to have them play where we can't see them.) I was upset that she told me about this, then did not answer any calls or voicemails for several days and canceled her plans to attend my birthday party, which was adults only and didn't involve kids. I just didn't think that was a very mature response to not even want to talk about anything and hear what each child said in detail. I wanted to hear her daughter's story and also explain what my son said and talk about how she wanted to handle this.
2) What do you suggest I do about him making up a story? You said that "didn't cross the line" for me, but honestly, while I don't want him to lie and this is probably the first time he's told a significant lie, I don't know what's so bad about him saying other kids pulled down their pants when neither my son nor any other kids were involved and NOTHING HAPPENED. Yes, he was dishonest, possibly to get attention, but nothing happened. He just fabricated a story. Not sure exactly what I should do to give him consequences for that.
3) He did not ask someone to kiss his anus! I am not sure where you are getting that. He asked my friend's daughter to "touch his butt," but not his anus. I am 100% sure of that. There have been other kids at school (boys) asking each other to "kiss my butt," jokingly, to be gross, and clothed.
4) It's not just his therapist who thinks this is relatively normal. I've also talked to other elementary teachers and therapists (my son's teacher, another teacher I know, and a friend who's a therapist) and they say this happens a lot at this age. My son is very open and honest about what's been going on. I wonder how many kids are involved in this but their parents just don't know?
5) I also wonder exactly what you think I should do? I've told him he shouldn't be doing this. What does "addressing this pretty harshly" look like exactly? Yelling? Screaming? We've stopped going to places where he could do this behavior. The only thing I can't control is what happens at school, and it sounds like the other kids are doing this as well. Just the other day he said two boys pulled their pants down at school again, but my son was not involved this time. He just saw them doing it. Honestly, sometimes I wish I could just homeschool him where I could keep an eye on him 24/7, but since I am a single mom, that's not an option for us.