20 month old, excessive masturbation - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 08-31-2014, 07:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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20 month old, excessive masturbation

I have a situation with my almost two-year-old daughter and I'm at the end of my rope for advice, I was hoping someone could throw some light on this issue.

Since 9 months she has been self-stimulating herself mostly before she goes to sleep and in the morning when she wakes up. She does it when she's lying on her back, she will clutch her diaper or blanket and rub and move her legs up and down. I have consulted with my paediatrician as well as a child neurologist, and got a second opinion form another paediatrician, they all assure me that this is normal behaviour and than I shouldn't worry about it. The thing is it's been going on for so long now! She stopped for about a week last month, and it was such a relief, but now she's started again and it's worse that ever! She will do it in the car, in her stroller... anywhere where she seems to be bored or isn't able to move freely.

It's hard at her age for her to understand the concept of private vs. public behaviour and what concerns me is that she is starting to hurt herself: her private parts are red and swollen and it seems that she can't go to sleep without stimulating herself first, and she does it while sleeping too, she wakes up very tired in the morning. She has a perianal skin tag, I don't know if this is related.... It really bothers me and as a mother I feel that now and then this behaviour is fine, but its getting really out of hand and affecting her general well-being.

My little girl is a happy toddler, she's active, sleeps and eats well is generally we behaved and very smart. I'm a stay-at-home mom and I work from home, which means I'm with her most of the time. I have tried everything to get her to stop and nothing works. I have no clue as to what made her stop for that week but I'm desperate for some advice!
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#2 of 4 Old 09-02-2014, 06:41 PM
 
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What happens when she is diaper less? Is it possible that anything on her actually is irritating her?
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Last edited by Asiago; 09-04-2014 at 03:14 PM.
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#3 of 4 Old 09-06-2014, 08:05 AM
 
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If it's red and swollen, she probably isn't doing it for pleasure and it may be discomfort.

If you're using disposables, have you tried other brands? If you're using cloth, have you tried stripping/changing detergents/etc?

Also- is there any chance it's related to wetness or need to pee? Diaperless, kiddo will hold himself when he needs to pee. Sometimes he'll grab at his diapered crotch as well, although I'm sick and just cannot remmeber if it's a pee signal or a 'wet and uncomfortable' signal. If it's a pee thing, it's not every time, though. If that's a "I need to pee" or "I'm peeing" signal, though, I'd definitely talk to her doctor about making sure there's no infections because it sounds like a sign of discomfort.

Some kids do self-stimulate as masturbation, but remember that just because it involves the genitals doesn't mean it's sexual. When I was a kid, I'd have a problem with itching down there. I still don't know why- my mom just told me not to do it around other people so I think she, like you, assumed I was self-stimulating and didn't realize I was really itchy. I didn't think to tell her that was the case. It sounds like that may be closer to what's going on because she's hurting herself doing it.

If it is discomfort, it makes sense that she does it when bored (when distracted, she can ignore it better) and why she'd be really bad in bed (no distractions) and sleeping poorly.

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#4 of 4 Old 09-09-2014, 07:32 PM
 
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It sounds like a cyclical thing- maybe starting with normal masturbation or a component of diaper rash/irritation but now causing "lichens simplex chronicus" http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/e...cle/000872.htm. If you are open to more medical treatmentand your Pediatrician ok's it, you could try a brief course of hydrocortisone- but totally check with them again (now that is red and swollen) before doing it, if you wanted to go that route (hydrocortisone is very effective but needs to be used very carefully in this area). Focus on breaking the itch and inflammation that is probably there. Some also have good luck with oatmeal, calendula, coconut oil-based products.
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