Questions in the Parenting Forum are being answered by doctors from MindWorks. Topics include: Behavioral Issues - Discipline, Emotional Development, Family Issues, Recreation, School Issues, Social Development
I've been catching my son masturbating recently...but never finishing but he really has been getting worked up. When I catch him he stops and covers his erection and I don't say anything. Is this normal or is he experiencing this kinda early?
yes, many children do go through phases of various kinds of self-stimulating. I assume from your tone that you don't see this as a moral problem, but just part of normal body exploration (which is the viewpoint I am coming from). If your son's father is in the household, this would be a good one for him to handle. Have him pull your son aside for a friendly private chat. He should let your son know that touching his private areas is something people do in private, specifically behind closed doors. I would not punish this behavior if it keeps happening in public areas of the house, but direct him to go to his room immediately if you see it again.
Children sometimes use masturbation as a way of self-soothing when they are more stressed, so you will want to look out out for signs that your son is anxious about something. Potentially your son may have been exposed to something inappropriate, so you will want to think about if anyone your son comes into contact with could be demonstrating or encouraging this behavior (babysitter, neighbor, cousin). I would watch him for signs that anything seems wrong, and consult your pediatrician for a referral if you have other concerns.
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