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Ok, this is hard for me to write, but I don't know what to do.

My 4 year old has NEVER been hurt, touched or anything like that. I just want to get that out in the open.

She "touches" herself, plays "sexually" with her raggedy ann doll, and spreads her legs. Is this normal for a 4 year old? What do I do to get her to stop? I don't want to scare her or do anything that will impact her when she gets older.

I've read parenting articles, and they say it's normal. Well, we have 2 other grown men in the house (uncle and grandpa) and it's inappropriate for her to be doing this. Have you gone through this? What do I do? Please help!!!

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Replies to This Discussion

First, don't overreact. All children go through this stage and want you to react. My grandson did and we explained to him he couldn't do those things in public. We allow it only when he is in the bathtub. I understand your concern, but be patient and talk with your daughter. Explore every avenue.
I agree with Debra.  It's normal you just have to tell her she can only do in private.  It's a phase that she will outgrow.

Agreed.  You need to make this a conversation about privacy and boundaries.  Tell her she can play with herself all she wants IN PRIVATE.  She can go to her room if she wants to, but not in front of other people.

 

It is perfectly healthy and normal.  It doesn't mean she's going to grow up to be a nymphomaniac or anything, she's just learned that she can do something that feels good, and like any other bright and curious child she's exploring that.

 

Take a deep breath, you're all going to be fine.

YES, my daughter has always been like this. When she was 4 she would touch herself and I had to explain to her that it was ok and normal. But this is somethgin she must do in private. I explained its ok and it feels good but she must do it in private (her room or bathroom) and she must wash her hands afterward.

 

I remember doing this as a kid and heard it was sooo bad, I always felt like I was doing something wrong. I felt guilt for years because of masturbating. I wish my mom told me that it was ok and I wasn't doing something bad... Now I know it was normal and I hope to teach my girls that this is ok and healthy as long as it is done in private in a safe place.

 

Hope this helps,

Summer

www.supermomblog.com

Although it can be a little shocking; I've read it's a relatively normal behavior. I would simply help her understand the importance of privacy and let her know that it's okay (because it is...) but that it should happen when she is alone.

If you're certain she hasn't been touched or hurt in anyway then I would agree with the other moms...don't panic! My daughter began exhibiting similar behaviors around 3/4 but we later found out that she was being touched by another family member.

Take a deep breath...everything is going to be fine.

Hope this helps,
Latwan

I'm happy to report that since this discussion started, she only had 1 "mishap"! She's been doing very well... Daddy talked to her - Good Daddy! LOL

Thank you for all your advice, which is what we decided on! I'm very proud of her, and am so glad I wasn't the only one who went through this with their child :D

Have a terrific week and thank you all once again!!!!!

Donnelle

The only thing I would add is that this is a good opportunity to talk about who can and can't touch her and where. My daughter had similar behaviors, and I told her that she could touch herself and no one else could, and that she should not touch others' private parts. That's a conversation you can't have too many times.

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