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Old 11-02-2007, 08:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have observed my 3 yo son masturbating in bed quite a few times. I am still in shock. I mean, it's not like he does it in public, and he usually tells me to go away when I come into his room, but I'm just in shock...
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Old 11-02-2007, 08:58 PM
 
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perfectly normal.

-Angela
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Old 11-02-2007, 09:09 PM
 
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Do you have any specific concerns?

As Alegna stated, sexual (if you can consider it such) exploration is totally normal. Most kids have a real spike of masturbatory behavior shortly after becoming potty trained (and the resulting freedom).


 

 

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Old 11-03-2007, 02:04 AM
 
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Totally normal. And very mature of him to want you to go away. We had to work with dd that enjoying herself was soethign to do in her room prvately. When i taught preschool/prek there was always a kid every year who masturbated to nap. In fact many of them would do it as a comfort thing.
WE just talked to dd that it was something for her to do to herself not for anyone else to do and that it was soemthing to do in private. For a few weeks she would come out of her room and say excitedly "mom! I touched my 'gina in my room all by myself!" Then she would offer to leave the room so i could touch my gina.
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Old 11-03-2007, 04:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I was expecting the responses to say it was completely normal. I guess my response is just to do/say nothing? My friends were absolutely horrified when one of my friends said her friend taught her 4 yo daughter to masturbate. I'm pretty sure that her daughter wasn't "taught" it. But basically in Christian circles, masturbation is a sexual sin, thus the shock.
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Old 11-03-2007, 11:43 AM
 
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Then she would offer to leave the room so i could touch my gina.
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Old 11-03-2007, 12:32 PM
 
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I was expecting the responses to say it was completely normal. I guess my response is just to do/say nothing? My friends were absolutely horrified when one of my friends said her friend taught her 4 yo daughter to masturbate. I'm pretty sure that her daughter wasn't "taught" it. But basically in Christian circles, masturbation is a sexual sin, thus the shock.
There is no shock. It's perfectly normal human behavior. Protect your child from the artificial stigma.

-Angela
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Old 11-03-2007, 03:38 PM
 
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We are Christian and I really don't believe that the feelings on masturbation extend to children. My interpretation of the Christian belief on masterbation is that masturbation is a problem when it interferes with marital sexual relations. If one partner is masturbating rather than engaging in sexual activity with their partner then it is an issue. Children are not masturbating for sexual pleasure, it feels good but it feels good in a comforting way, not in an "I need an orgasm" way.

I would respect the fact that he's doing it in his room and not make a huge deal out of it. If you walk in and he asks you to leave, just leave and don't say anything. If he's doing it in public, just remind him that it's private, for him only, and that he'll need to do it in his room.
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Old 11-03-2007, 06:21 PM
 
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::

Yeah, that went into the "baby book"
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Old 11-03-2007, 10:11 PM
 
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its his and he can play with it if he wants too
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Old 11-03-2007, 10:33 PM
 
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Then she would offer to leave the room so i could touch my gina.
: Oh my word, I'm nearly biting my tounge trying to keep these giggles to myself (nursing DD to sleep).

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Old 11-04-2007, 01:15 AM
 
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Then she would offer to leave the room so i could touch my gina.
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Old 11-04-2007, 01:33 AM
 
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From late twos to early threes DS did a lot of masturbating [lying on hands, rocking-type, weenie grabbing happens all the time, I don't even count that!]. Then it suddenly stopped. He almost never does it.

Our only request was that he do it in his room, but since that meant being away from us, he never wanted to do it there. I noticed in the background of a few pictures grandparents took of baby sister, he is there, doing his thing [fully clothed--you probably wouldn't know what it was if you didn't know]

I must admit I was worried that he was bored or tired or needed something from his environment he wasn't getting. Then I realized he just liked it--so be it!

We figure we'll see the return of it when puberty hits!
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:01 PM
 
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Wow!! I must be completely naive to this subject because I am shocked. I never knew that such young kids would engage in masturbation. Honestly. Dh even thought that it woudn't start till about age eight or nine or so.

My ds gets all happy when he gets an erection and says his peepee (what he calls it) is very strong. But he hasn't made the connection yet apparently (so far as I know).
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:05 PM
 
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Well, really, I don't think you can call what a preschooler does masturbating. There's no sexual componant to it at all. It just feels good to them, like scratching an itch.

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Old 11-19-2007, 08:06 PM
 
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Well, really, I don't think you can call what a preschooler does masturbating. There's no sexual componant to it at all. It just feels good to them, like scratching an itch.
:

But touching of those parts starts pretty early for most kids.

-Angela
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:07 PM
 
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:

But touching of those parts starts pretty early for most kids.

-Angela
Yep. Daniel found his and he's just six months old. He's gifted.

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Old 11-19-2007, 08:27 PM
 
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well, then how is "masturbating" being defined in this thread. I thought masturbating was masturbating despite context. If we are talking about touching that's not masturbating. My boys "touch" themselves (and each other sometimes ) everyday. And have since they were babies. My ds1 especially likes his anus. Masturbating as far as I'm concerned has sexual climax as its goal. That's why this thread has sort of caught me off guard.:
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:31 PM
 
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Yeah, it always catches me off-guard when someone uses that word to talk about a LO touching himself too. But I don't think a three-year-old can masturbate to climax; I think they just touch themselves because it feels interesting (again, like scratching an itch).

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Old 11-19-2007, 09:41 PM
 
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I have seen plenty of toddlers touch themselves or apply pressure in a rhythmic manner. Climax doesn't really happen, but it's pretty obvious their intent.

-Angela
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Old 11-19-2007, 09:51 PM
 
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Totally normal. And very mature of him to want you to go away. We had to work with dd that enjoying herself was soethign to do in her room prvately. When i taught preschool/prek there was always a kid every year who masturbated to nap. In fact many of them would do it as a comfort thing.
WE just talked to dd that it was something for her to do to herself not for anyone else to do and that it was soemthing to do in private. For a few weeks she would come out of her room and say excitedly "mom! I touched my 'gina in my room all by myself!" Then she would offer to leave the room so i could touch my gina.
I agree normal and I was that child in kindergarten who masturbated at nap time.I'm surprised that I don't have sexual issues because i was spanked and ridiculed by my mother whenever she caught me.I was told that I'd be infertile and become homosexual.:

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Old 11-20-2007, 02:37 AM
 
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I completely agree with the PP that said that "masterbating" isn't really the correct term. I'm always sort of caught off guard when I read "masterbate" and "3 year old" in the same sentence, because I don't think what they're doing is that. I don't think they understand that at all yet. Maybe they're exploring or something, but not really purposefully doing it to climax.

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Old 11-20-2007, 10:56 AM
 
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I think of both when I hear "masturbating" because some children just touch but others do it to feel pleasure even if they don't climax. And yes, three year olds can masturbate to climax, so they are included too.

Totally normal though.

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Old 11-20-2007, 02:45 PM
 
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I remember "masterbating" before I hit puberty. I can't remember my ae, but I was younger than 8. My mom always told me not to do it - that it was BAD! Sheesh! I'm glad to hear most other moms are relaxed about it.

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Old 11-20-2007, 07:35 PM
 
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Well, really, I don't think you can call what a preschooler does masturbating. There's no sexual componant to it at all. It just feels good to them, like scratching an itch.

totally, i dont call it masturbating either. they are just touching a part of their body, albeit a part that is private and should only be touched by them or a parent if they need help in the potty or with hegiene.
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Old 11-20-2007, 07:40 PM
 
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I don't have a child (just a baby) but I have to jump in...

As long as he doesn't do it in public, I don't see what the problem is.

If you are morally against *masturbation* (which I wouldn't define as a 3 y.o. touching himself), you can let him know you feel about that later.

I would never discourage a small child to explore himself. I was discouraged in EVERY way -- no talking about my body, no touching, no looking, etc. And it gave me soooooo many hangups I STILL deal with.

I guess that's why I'm opinionated on this subject!
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Old 11-20-2007, 10:20 PM
 
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As an elementary school teacher, I saw lots of masturbators. I called a few moms to discuss it, too--talk about an embarrassing conversation! Guess what? They were almost always kids who were told at home NOT to touch their bodies. Kids are compelled to explore themselves--wouldn't you rather they do it at home?

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Old 11-20-2007, 10:24 PM
 
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My oldest started playing with herself at around three. I didn't think of it as anything BUT normal. I did make a point of making sure she knew that there were certain times or places that it wasn't appropriate.

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Old 11-21-2007, 02:05 AM
 
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The first time i 'caught' my dd masturbating (and yes I would call it masturbating), I was shocked, too. And it was because she was just barely
3. I had NO issue with it, and yet it still weirded me out. Actually, she was with a little friend. They were behind a closed door at a friend's house. I heard some kind of hushed conversation and something to the effect of "yeah, let's DO it!" I knocked and opened the door and there they were, stark naked and touching themselves quite vigorously. I'll never know if I handled the situation perfectly, but I know my main focus was to appear completely relaxed and unconcerned. I don't even remember what I said. I sometimes wonder if I should have left them alone, but I just wasn't ready for that. Later, I tried to approach the subject with her. She got about a 1000-watt smile on her face and told me how great it felt, so I'm pretty sure pleasure was her motivation. That was months ago and I've never seen her do it again (or before, for that matter). I wish I had understood this kind of exploration could happen so early, because I think I would have handled it better if I hadn't been caught off-guard. It was just the shock of seeing my baby touching herself like that. And I have NO problem with masturbation! I'm TRYING to be positive about these things! But I, too, grew up with parents who shamed about this stuff and I'm sure those feelings are buried in there somewhere. I so want to leave my child intact about this stuff.
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Old 11-21-2007, 03:59 AM
 
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Years ago, before my now-6-yo son was born, someone described her son as, "Leading himself around the house by it." (Meaning by his penis). I rolled on the floor laughing, sure that would never be the case around our house.



We just tell them (6 and 4), that it's private, it's theirs, and they need to do that where other people don't have to watch. (Plus, we require hand-washing as well...not to encourage the sense of the body being dirty, but because let's face it, kids need to know to wash their hands when their fingers have been on their penises, around their 'ginas, in their noses, or digging in the chicken coop!)


love, penelope

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