This is normal, right? - Mothering Forums

View Poll Results: DS found his penis!
Its fine and normal- don't try to stop it 138 97.18%
Its probably fine, but limit diaper free time until it passes 2 1.41%
Call the baby shrink. Abnormal! 0 0%
Some other option- explain! 2 1.41%
Voters: 142. You may not vote on this poll

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#1 of 30 Old 03-14-2010, 09:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I thought it was normal, but DH wanted me to post a poll. So here goes!

Within the last month, DS (13 months) has found and taken a great interest in his penis. When his diaper comes of, down his hands go. I have no problem with it- not any more than I would if he wanted to play with his toes or his elbow all the time, but DH is concerned (not really sure what exactly concerns him.. he's not being very forthcoming about why exactly it is strange to him)

We try to give him diaper free time at least a bit each day. I think its good for those parts to get some air. But all he wants to do during diaper free time is yank on his penis. I figure this is something he'll get over (or at some point, far in the future, at least do in private )

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#2 of 30 Old 03-14-2010, 09:25 PM
 
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Totally normal - and really, this is just the beginning.

I have 3 DS's, but my youngest, who is almost 3 is like obsessed wih his penis. I thnk it's his favorite thing to play with!

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#3 of 30 Old 03-14-2010, 09:26 PM
 
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It's perfectly normal. Chances are he's found it before you just didn't notice (as in it's behaviour that has been documented in utero). Kids find body parts and they find that some body part feel good when you play (or yank) on them.

I suspect what is happening with your DH is that he either was raised in a household that demonized that sort of thing, or the vigorousness with which your DS does this is a little unnerving. Or both.

Also, no use trying to limit the chances until the behaviour passes because... well, it would be a looooooooooong wait. He'll just learn that it's better done in privacy.

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#4 of 30 Old 03-14-2010, 09:27 PM
 
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My almost three year old starting taking a GREAT interest in his penis when he was about 9 months old or so and hasn't let up at all yet. I vote totally normal. We have a rule that he can't play with his penis in public, or while he is nursing, but otherwise, he is free to do what he wants with it.

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#5 of 30 Old 03-14-2010, 11:24 PM
 
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I was going to vote "normal", but hesitated when I got to the "don't try to stop it" part. I'm with the others who think it could be a VERY long wait until he stops playing with it, but I don't think there's any problem with gently redirecting him and slowly teaching him it merits some privacy.

For example, my DS liked to play with it on the potty. I started gently removing his hand and "blocking" his acess to it with the book we were reading. But if he finds it otherwise during diaper free time, well, I figure it's like you said - no worse than playing with an elbow or feet...

I guess what I'm trying to say is that there is a middle ground.

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#6 of 30 Old 03-14-2010, 11:43 PM
 
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Our boyo found his months ago, and he pulls on it awfully hard! Doesn't seem to faze him, though -- I think the foreskin must be super stretchy (he's not circumsized). It's only been a problem so far when he has a poopy diaper and his hands head south...

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#7 of 30 Old 03-14-2010, 11:48 PM
 
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I said it's fine and normal, but I'd try to gently guide the behavior a little bit, as far as when and where. I wouldn't expect a 13mo to "get it" for quite a while, of course.

Becky, partner to Teague, SAHM to Keagan (7yo), Jonah (2yo)
 

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#8 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 12:25 AM
 
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Totally normal. Normal at 13 months, normal at 13 years, normal at 113 years.

Jen, journalist, policy wonk, and formerly a proud single mama to my sweet little man Cyrus, born at home Dec. 2007 . Now married to my Incredibly Nice Guy and new mama to baby Arthur.
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#9 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 02:07 AM
 
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My 4-month-old found his the other day. I mean, maybe he didn't really notice is as anything special, but he was reaching down there grabbing stuff with his grabby little hands. I agree that it's normal but I am planning to redirect him, not so much because it's his penis but because I don't need him reaching down there whenever his diaper's full of poop.

Erin, mom to DD (1/06) and DS (10/09)
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#10 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 03:28 AM
 
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I say don't worry about it until he's older. Now at nearly five it's a little weird, and dh is having the talk with ds about privacy for that sort of touching. It's not a big deal for our household for baby's to touch themselves. He's really only going to be naked in front of you, right?

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#11 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 03:37 AM
 
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OP, I have a girl so I'm not much help. But your post made me laugh. Visualizing a toddler running and yanking in the joy of diaper free time All I can say is "Boys".
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#12 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 04:00 AM
 
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this thread is funny. I think it is normal.

And it's not just for boys either! This past summer my 2 y/o discovered her girly bits and had a grand old time absentmindedly playing with herself while watching T.V. DH thought it was a little weird but I reassured him it was fine. She seems to have grown out of it. Unfortunately though, she recently discovered her anus...ewww. That we're trying to discourage because I'm not too keen on having her touch me with little butt fingers.
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#13 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 04:31 AM
 
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OT:

anyone ever see that Dana Carvey bit...NAKED TIME!!!!!!

I love that one...

Rebekah - mom to Ben 03/05 and Emily 01/10, a peace educator, and a veg*n and wife to Jamie.
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#14 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 05:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curiouscanadian View Post
I was going to vote "normal", but hesitated when I got to the "don't try to stop it" part. I'm with the others who think it could be a VERY long wait until he stops playing with it, but I don't think there's any problem with gently redirecting him and slowly teaching him it merits some privacy.

For example, my DS liked to play with it on the potty. I started gently removing his hand and "blocking" his acess to it with the book we were reading. But if he finds it otherwise during diaper free time, well, I figure it's like you said - no worse than playing with an elbow or feet...

I guess what I'm trying to say is that there is a middle ground.
Yeah I guess I end up here, too.

Although if he was doing it very frequently, I might suspect some stress too.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#15 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 11:22 AM
 
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I would just leave him alone, and ignore it. If it hurts, he'll learn pretty quickly, and stop doing what hurts. But I think if you start trying to redirect it, at that age, all you're doing is drawing attention to what he's doing. I think that encourages him to continue the behavior, not for the curious innocent exploration it is, but because it draws attention. You can easily make it into a much bigger deal than it really is, by making that part of his body "special." It's like any other habit a child has-- nosepicking, tics, etc. In trying to make it stop, your strategy can backfire on you by reinforcing the habit. It's better just to act as if it's no big deal, no more than playing with his toes or his hair or his ears.

I think the time for teaching a child that genital exploration is best done in private doesn't come until later-- I would start that at around 3. At that age, a child has some impulse control, and is starting to develop a sense of bodily modesty (which of course takes MUCH longer with some kids ), and some sense of propriety about socially acceptable habits.

FWIW, all three of my kids, once they were free of diapers, developed a very intent interest in handling their genitals. DS was almost totally absorbed in it for a week or two. The shiny-new fascination wears off (a bit) and they move on to other things. They'll still do it, but not all darn day like they do at first.

Also, for a boy, this constant handling of the genitals is the natural way that they start to help their foreskin to separate and become retractable. It's the way the penis is designed to work-- that it feels good to handle it, and so a boy does, and the handling is the gentle, natural way that retraction first happens, as a boy gets older.

As for DH-- my DH sometimes blanches and has to leave the room, especially when DS pulls his penis out to twice it's natural length and then turns it 180 degrees. But honestly-- if it hurt, he's stop all on his own. He's not stupid.

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#16 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 11:34 AM
 
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It is not just a boy thing either. My DD has lots of fun in the bath. Daddy is a little disturbed by the whole thing, but we don't try to stop her unless she is intent on grabbing herself before I get all the poop off while changing her diaper.

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#17 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 11:36 AM
 
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Yeah totally normal. When DS was around 2 1/2 or 3 he went up to my cousin who was visiting and pulled out his penis and said " look, pretty cool weiner huh?" We had a good laugh. Now at 3 1/2 he isn't AS obsessed about it but I think even for men there is some sort of obsession with it.

~Katie~ married to J, mom to DD- A 13 yrs ,DS- L 7yrs , and my little nursling DD2- R 5yrs.

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#18 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 11:39 AM
 
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My son is 11 months and started doing this when he got control over his hands. He's always playing with it. Sometimes the grabbing/yanking makes me cringe but DH assures me that if it hurts he'll stop and it's all part of the learning process...

So yeah, normal. When he gets older teach him about privacy and you'll be fine.

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#19 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 01:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post
But I think if you start trying to redirect it, at that age, all you're doing is drawing attention to what he's doing. I think that encourages him to continue the behavior, not for the curious innocent exploration it is, but because it draws attention.
thats kind if what i was thinking
Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post
Also, for a boy, this constant handling of the genitals is the natural way that they start to help their foreskin to separate and become retractable. It's the way the penis is designed to work-- that it feels good to handle it, and so a boy does, and the handling is the gentle, natural way that retraction first happens, as a boy gets older.
ok, thats good! thanks!

and to the pp with the "pretty cool weiner" story,

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#20 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 04:29 PM
 
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oh yeah, ds looooooves his penis, anytime his diaper is off, that's the first place his hands go. Like someone else said, I only redirect him when he's grabbing handfuls of poop.

Claire, mommy to Robbie (8/23/08) and Brena (4-22-11) and wifey to Joe
 
 
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#21 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 05:30 PM
 
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Normal. Just ignore it for now. When he's a little older, you can have the talk about "that is for private time not public", like I have to remind my 4 yr old just about every couple of hours! I try to keep ds2's diaper on a lot myself, but not cause he's playing with his penis--cause he's always taking it off to run around and pee on things.

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#22 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 09:04 PM
 
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Totally normal. We think DS asks to sit on the potty now just to prolong the amount of time he gets to play with his penis.

That said, we do limit it only because he has a tendency to get himself really red and irritated - he's got eczema so I'm sure that's part of it.

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#23 of 30 Old 03-15-2010, 09:09 PM
 
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Completely normal. He'll um ... go through the same thing again in around 12 years ... kinda ;-)

"I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind. Some come from ahead and some come from behind. But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!" - Dr. Seuss
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#24 of 30 Old 03-16-2010, 11:34 AM
 
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Yup, DS loves his too. He even says "penis" - since he was like 11 months old!? I am actually surprised at how immature I am about it. I try to stifle my giggles. But I think it's so funny. I've told DH he needs to handle all things penis-related.

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#25 of 30 Old 03-16-2010, 01:47 PM
 
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Given how vigorously my daughter plays with her clitoris and uhm is forceful with her vagina I never understand why people act like this is a boy thing.

Genitals are AWESOME! I probably won't worry about privacy much until closer to three.

My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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#26 of 30 Old 03-16-2010, 03:12 PM
 
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[QUOTE][I'm not too keen on having her touch me with little butt fingers/QUOTE]



My Lord. Laughing out loud.

Our 2 year old DD likes to play with her bits too. I ignore it for now but will eventually teach to do so in private.

But, we draw the line at digging at her bum... mostly because she LOVES sticking her hands into DH's mouth for some insane reason. YICK!

Trin.
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#27 of 30 Old 03-16-2010, 11:21 PM
 
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MadMamicita,
My DS found his penis around the same age. I asked my mom when she thought this would pass, and she said, "Oh, when he's about 65. It's totally normal!" LOL
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#28 of 30 Old 03-17-2010, 07:49 PM
 
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lol I think it's very normal. My son found out it was fun to play with around maybe 4 months? His dad says, "that's what happens when you keep it covered with a diaper all the time!" We try to let him have as much diaper free time as realistically possible without ECing.

Any I also agree its not just a boy thing. My 3 yr old daughter is always grabbing herself and looking and pulling. We just kind of ignore it since it only happens in her room when she is getting dressed.
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#29 of 30 Old 03-17-2010, 10:29 PM
 
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Girls here, but the exact same thing. We call it "fiddle-faddling" and say that it's perfectly fine, but it's something we get to do when we have privacy, not in public (including the dinner table etc. etc.). Didn't stop them from doing it with gusto until about age 2.

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#30 of 30 Old 03-18-2010, 05:09 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinuchkin View Post
Girls here, but the exact same thing. We call it "fiddle-faddling" and say that it's perfectly fine, but it's something we get to do when we have privacy, not in public (including the dinner table etc. etc.). Didn't stop them from doing it with gusto until about age 2.
My DD age 3 has recently discovered something she's named "bubbing". Short for rubbing one's bottom, generally on things. I emphasize privacy and by yourself. No bubbing in public or on other people please.
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