odd comment from 5 yr old son, not sure how to respond. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 04:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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so we were out at an IPTV event in our hometown today and While we were walking my son tells me that his penis gets big when he sees boys that look and sound like girls.  I responded with an ok but reminded him that we dont talk about our penis in public and we could talk when we got home.  how do I respond to him?  Im not against LGBT people or anything I have friends who are lesbians, but it does make me rather unsettled at the thought of my own kids, mostly because of the fear I have of how others would react.  Am I just overreacting?

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#2 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 05:39 PM
 
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At age five, I wouldn't talk too much about the 'boys looking like girls' part, but focus more on the normal body function- yes, boy's penis's sometimes get large when they are happy or excited (or whatever words you think work best). He's probably more curious about how his body works than anything else.

 

I know some children are aware of their sexual orientation as young as five, but I am not sure how common it is. I think you'd need a little more information than that one comment to conclude he is gay, though! Kids say a lot of stuff.

 

I think it's always a good idea to normalize all sexual orientations by being friends with GBLT people and talking about different relationship combinations. If he is gay, those conversations will go a long way toward helping him feel supported. If he's not, then he'll be better prepared for living in a diverse world.


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#3 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 05:40 PM
 
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I have a 6yo DS, who has commented several times that his penis gets big sometimes. I don't know that he's ever mentioned specific situations that cause it (especially considering that he's not having sexual attractions at this age) but it's common for kids of his age to get random erections and to comment on it.


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#4 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 06:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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He mentioned it to my husband at dinner, and he told him,"oh thats normal it's what your penis is supposed to do, its called an erection." that was the end of the conversation, my son got distracted by the avocados I was cutting up.  Although his dad didn't catch the part about boys that look like girls.  Its been bothering me since it happened, way more than it should.  but it is way to early for it to really be in response to anything, right?  He mentioned it to my husband because when he brought it up after we had gotten home I told him to ask his dad because I didn't really know that much about penises.  I'm sure I just need to drop it.   

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#5 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 08:37 PM
 
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Not that it really matters for how you go forth with things, but I'm curious if 5 year olds can accurately identify sex as readily as adults? Like I know a 3 year old will say someone is a girl because they have long hair, or a man because they're wearing a uniform (even if the uniform has a skirt!).

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#6 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 08:48 PM
 
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Unless you make a big deal of it, I think it'll just pass. I think it's likely that one time he noticed it when he happened to be with a male friend that he thinks is girl-ish for whatever reason. Or maybe he heard someone talking about boys who look like girls and he's testing out what power that particular phrase has. 

 

Oh, and also, what Sapphire Chan said. My daughter loudly called a male friend with a huge beard "Girl Man" because he was wearing a Sarong. Thankfully he was a friend, and he thought it was hysterical. I remember my brother calling his 1st grade teacher Mr. at the beginning of the year. Woman wearing a dress, very feminine earrings, breasts, female voice.... but she had short hair and he equated that to male in his world view. 


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#7 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 09:05 PM
 
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honestly, i would take it just that he likes girls... that his penis gets big when he thinks they are girls.

 

unless this starts happening again, i would totally let it go from my mind if i were you.


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#8 of 28 Old 01-09-2011, 09:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wild Lupine View Post

I know some children are aware of their sexual orientation as young as five, but I am not sure how common it is. I think you'd need a little more information than that one comment to conclude he is gay, though! Kids say a lot of stuff.

 

I think it's always a good idea to normalize all sexual orientations by being friends with GBLT people and talking about different relationship combinations. If he is gay, those conversations will go a long way toward helping him feel supported. If he's not, then he'll be better prepared for living in a diverse world.


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Several months ago my son (age 6) and I had an interesting conversation.  He said his teacher mentioned her husband was a police officer, and referred to ‘him’.  My son said he was surprised because he thought his teacher was married to a lady.  (I asked him why he thought that and he said he didnt know why, he just did.)  He then told me he would like to marry a man when he gets older.  I didn’t ask him why, just told him he can marry whomever he wants.  But I sort of wish I w/h asked him why because I am curious what he would say.  I guess we’ll see how it turns out.  (A few years ago he was planning on marrying his sister!)
 

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#9 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 05:48 AM
 
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My 5 yo has never mentioned anything about his privates, but he does say he wants to marry our dog when he grows up because he loves her so much and he tells her "I love you, wife." So... I think it's a bit early to draw any conclusions from this!

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#10 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 07:06 AM
 
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  He then told me he would like to marry a man when he gets older.  I didn’t ask him why, just told him he can marry whomever he wants.  But I sort of wish I w/h asked him why because I am curious what he would say.  I guess we’ll see how it turns out.  (A few years ago he was planning on marrying his sister!)

 


Oh, I wish you'd asked, cause I suspect the answer would be something like "so I can ride in his fire truck!" lol.gif

 

 

 

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#11 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 07:24 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Qestia View Post

My 5 yo has never mentioned anything about his privates, but he does say he wants to marry our dog when he grows up because he loves her so much and he tells her "I love you, wife." So... I think it's a bit early to draw any conclusions from this!


LOL - Love it! When we were about that age, my (female) cousin and I pledged to get married when we grew up. In our case, it was because we wanted a beautiful wedding dress, but couldn't imagine marrying a yucky boy. ;)

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#12 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 07:57 AM
 
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Originally Posted by ElliesMomma View Post

honestly, i would take it just that he likes girls... that his penis gets big when he thinks they are girls.

 

unless this starts happening again, i would totally let it go from my mind if i were you.



It sounds more like this to me also....but I wouldn't worry about it either way!


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#13 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 10:15 AM
 
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I really wouldn't read anything into it. He's 5!

 

Having said that, this is a good reminder that you may need to work through any concerns you might have about your children being gay. Not because your son's comment means anything, but because you never know how things will turn out.


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#14 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 11:20 AM - Thread Starter
 
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obviously I was totally overreacting.  Thankfully i had the peace of mind to not say anything to him about it.  Reading every ones comments reminded me that he also wants to marry one of his cousins, as both my sister and myself did when we were little..different cousins that is.  I'm glad he feels comfortable enough with us and his body that he could bring it up, even though he is only five.  Lord knows there was never any of that talk in my house growing up!!  Thanks everyone.

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#15 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 03:28 PM
 
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obviously I was totally overreacting.  Thankfully i had the peace of mind to not say anything to him about it.  Reading every ones comments reminded me that he also wants to marry one of his cousins, as both my sister and myself did when we were little..different cousins that is.  I'm glad he feels comfortable enough with us and his body that he could bring it up, even though he is only five.  Lord knows there was never any of that talk in my house growing up!!  Thanks everyone.


Yes, at 5 my dd wanted to marry her brother, her best friend (female), the boy who lives behind us on the block.... I'm not reading too much into any of that!

 

 


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#16 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 03:55 PM
 
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I agree with the PP that noted you might want to work through your fears regarding how your son will be treated if he is gay, better to do it long before he makes any public delcarations about his sexual orientation.  Children certainly know who they are "attracted to" at five, even if that attraction is not yet developed into sexual attraction.  I certainly knew at that age and my DD shows a strong ongoing preference for marrying one particular childhood friend consistently for the last three years (she's six) regarding said friend as the person she "loves" and "wants to be a family with" and "will be parents wtih."  So there is that. Anecdotal of course. 


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#17 of 28 Old 01-10-2011, 04:26 PM
 
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My friend and I started a "gay" club when we were 6...no boys allowed! LOL  Kids take in so much information and process it in so many different ways that there's really no assuming anything by his comment. 


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I think it's bound to happen to all of us that our child will say something that just throws us, not only because of the content of what was said, but because of what it reveals to us about ourselves. Don't beat yourself up for having a knee jerk reaction to something and needing some time to sort out your feelings about it.

 

You did well. Your husband did well. (I admire his matter of fact response to that statement. I would not have been able to be that casual about it.) It's OK to be thrown by a parenting situation and pass the buck sometimes.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qestia View Post

My 5 yo has never mentioned anything about his privates, but he does say he wants to marry our dog when he grows up because he loves her so much and he tells her "I love you, wife." So... I think it's a bit early to draw any conclusions from this!



SO adorable!

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#20 of 28 Old 01-11-2011, 07:46 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Snowflake777 View Post
Having said that, this is a good reminder that you may need to work through any concerns you might have about your children being gay. Not because your son's comment means anything, but because you never know how things will turn out.

 

OP even though you dodged the bullet i think snowflakes advice is very sound. 

 

I have been very active in LGBT community because of a couple of my friends. I am not gay but I have seen how much it tears up my friends not to have support from their family. after one of my friend's committed suicide i became a part of LGBT to talk to parents or siblings who have a hard time accepting - unfortunately mostly its been religious reasons. 

 

and never underestimate any children and dont blow off what they say. it could be nothing, but it could be something. i know quite a few children who knew their sexuality at 6 and announced it loud and clear - whether hetero or gay. 


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#21 of 28 Old 01-11-2011, 01:03 PM
 
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and never underestimate any children and dont blow off what they say. it could be nothing, but it could be something. i know quite a few children who knew their sexuality at 6 and announced it loud and clear - whether hetero or gay. 


DS is 6 and has always been very clear that he's going to marry a woman. He has announced his engagement to his stepsister, the (female) dog, and me. We've made sure he knows that we don't care whether he falls in love with a man or a woman and that sometimes men love women and sometimes they love men, etc. So while this may be a product of the fact that he's never had any real interaction with gay couples, it wouldn't shock me in the slightest if DS was hetero, despite the fact that three of his four parents are queer. Regardless of the nail polish, eye shadow, flowered jeans, and baby in a sling that he wears regularly. Sheepish.gif


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#22 of 28 Old 01-11-2011, 05:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Qestia View Post

My 5 yo has never mentioned anything about his privates, but he does say he wants to marry our dog when he grows up because he loves her so much and he tells her "I love you, wife." So... I think it's a bit early to draw any conclusions from this!



That's adorable!  My 5 yo wants to BE a dog when she grows up.  LOL.


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#23 of 28 Old 01-11-2011, 07:22 PM
 
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I echo the others about working through your feelings more. It's hard not to wonder about this stuff when our kids make comments, I know. Plenty of kids do know their sexual orientation at this age (I know I did), but I think you're going to need more to go on than that one remark!

I also just wanted to give you a thumb.gif for working hard to do things differently than your family when you were growing up. It's awesome that your son feels comfortable enough to talk about things like this with both you and your husband, and kudos to your DH for handling it so matter of factly.
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#24 of 28 Old 01-12-2011, 11:34 PM
 
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DS is 6 and has always been very clear that he's going to marry a woman. He has announced his engagement to his stepsister, the (female) dog, and me. We've made sure he knows that we don't care whether he falls in love with a man or a woman and that sometimes men love women and sometimes they love men, etc. So while this may be a product of the fact that he's never had any real interaction with gay couples, it wouldn't shock me in the slightest if DS was hetero, despite the fact that three of his four parents are queer. Regardless of the nail polish, eye shadow, flowered jeans, and baby in a sling that he wears regularly. Sheepish.gif

 

right on M. one thing for sure. he is gonna make a great father to his baby.


dd is not sure. and she keeps her options open. when prop 8 failed in Calif. she cried. 'but mom what if i want to marry a girl. why cant i marry a girl if i want to.' 

 

i love that about her. that she doesnt take it for granted that she WILL marry a boy. who knows. she might be bi. (honestly the best way to go imho - the whole world is your potential partner rather than just half the world smile.gif )

 

all i've told her is that i dont care who she marries. she just has to have children - whether her own or her partners or adopted. i would love to see her as a mom since she has always had a v. nurturing streak even before she could walk. 

 


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#25 of 28 Old 01-13-2011, 12:20 AM
 
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I had a boyfriend at age five. We held hands every day while we walked to kindergarten together. That was all for physical contact and at the time, it was very matter-of-fact for us. Anyway, I did know that I wanted a male partner then, and the only changes that happened later on were that I thought that I wouldn't ever want to have a partner at all, but then met my dp, who is male, and we married.

 

As for my children, it came as a big surprise to three of my sons this past year, that I would not be available to marry them all when they are men. lol.gif They were genuinely disappointed and thought that I would make babies for them to raise too. I thought they were joking, so I wasn't as gentle as they needed initially, but I made up for it in a hurry. Now they're super curious about all the possibilities for partners, and they argue over who will get my Moby wrap for their babies. My three year old wants to be a woman until he births his babies, and then he'll be a man, and breastfeed. He is also checking his sister daily when I change her diaper to see if she's going to turn into a man, or she'll do that after she births a baby, which he's not convinced isn't just waiting in there for her to get big enough to "let the baby out." Lol.

 

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#26 of 28 Old 01-13-2011, 05:44 AM
 
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5 year olds are funny. One of my DDs was really into Barbie and had several, but she only had one Ken. She also felt the need to pair everybody up into to couples. To solve the problem, she declared, "most of the Barbies are lesbians anyway, so I don't need any more Ken dolls."

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#27 of 28 Old 01-13-2011, 10:35 PM
 
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5 year olds are funny. One of my DDs was really into Barbie and had several, but she only had one Ken. She also felt the need to pair everybody up into to couples. To solve the problem, she declared, "most of the Barbies are lesbians anyway, so I don't need any more Ken dolls."

 

That's awesome! :D
 


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#28 of 28 Old 01-24-2011, 12:33 PM
 
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when i was little i wanted to marry the girl next door because she had the most amazing barbie dolls.... lol

i wouldn't worry too much about it. he is still very little. you have plenty of time smile.gif

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