My daughter started to stimulate herself when she was 1 year old. It all started when we changed her to a forward facing carseat. She would move her legs up and down and get all sweaty. She would care who was watching. I mentioned it to her doctor who just said it was a habbit of self stimulation. She started doing it while sitting in a basket or when sitting at the end of a chair. She continued this behavior until she was about 3 years old because I took her to the doctor for a "clicking hip syndrome" (unrelated condition). She thought her hip clicked because she would do that "thing" with her legs (thats what we call the self stimulation). I told her that the doctor doesn't want her to do that and if she didn't stop they would have to take off her leg. I know a little extreme but it worked for almost a year. Now she is 4 and a half and started doing it again....all day long. I've tried putting her in the corner but she keeps doing it. I even tried talking to her about it and told her that it was wrong for her to do that. I asked her why she does it and she said it tickles. I feel really bad punishing her because she is a really good child but I just don't know how to get her to break this habbit.
I don't know about the clicking in her leg. Has that gone since she stopped masturbating? I don't think that would have anything to do with masturbation. But masturbation is normal. It feels good. It consoles and relaxes. Teach her you understand but she must do it privately. If she continues to do it in public view, punish her for that, but not for masturbating. I believe she will get the picture.
Thanks. The clicking hip doesn't hurt her, it's kinda like popping your knuckles. She had the habbit of clicking it all the time but sine she seen a specialist she only does it once an awhile. They said it's nothing to worry about. I guess it could cause arthritis in that area later in life. Who doesn't have that when they get older though.
I will talk to her about masterbating in private. She is such a swee girl. I guess I shouldn't be too worried about it. After all, it could be something worse. At least she is healthy.
Children who are bored or anxious are the most likely to masturbate.
If you can rule these two things out - keep her really busy with exciting activities, or work on anxiety, and that doesn't work, it's time to tell her this is embarrassing and private behavior.
I agree with Liquid. If she won't stop this, it's time to tell her to do this privately - and on no uncertain terms. She will be the object of ridicule and teacher conferences in kindergarten if she doesn't understand she needs to stop doing this publicly.
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