I dont know if it is normal that they do that, but my 1 year old son has been grabbing himself EVERY time I change him. He has been doing that pretty much since he could do stuff with his hands. I dont like him doing that, but my husband says every boy does it. I really dont know though.
Dear Brit, I found this article and thought you might benefit from reading it.
Hope it helps!
Masturbation in childhood is a normal behavior, which most commonly begins at 2 months of age and peaks at 4 years of age and in adolescence.
During the first year of life infants discover and explore parts of their bodies. This early activity is more exploratory than autoerotic. Autoerotism is the technical term used to refer to self-gratification obtained through stimulation of one's own body, especially stimulation of one's genitals. By five or six months, many infants appear to enjoy pulling their ears or sticking their fingers in them. Some explore their genitals at this age as well. Levine (1957) reported that after six months infants gradually discontinue playing with their ears. Galenson and Roiphe (1974) reported that most boys began genital play at six or seven months of age, while most girls began at ten or eleven months. For their sample of infants, genital play among girls tended to disappear within a few weeks of onset, but boys continued casual play with additional visual and tactile exploration of the genitals starting at about eleven or twelve months of age.
An important distinction can be made between genital play and masturbation in infancy. Infants in the first year of life generally are not capable of the direct-volitional activity required for the behavior that we call masturbation. Any more or less random play with the genitals is nonspecific activity and should be labeled as genital play and not as masturbation. Genital play need not end with the end of infancy...
The link : http://www.ipce.info/host/martinson/chapter2.html
From what ive read its normal for babies to do this. I know my daughter is a wk shy of her 1st birthday and the past few months she has touched her private areas while im batheing her, i just ignore it its only natural they explore their bodies.
Oh yes, that is normal, I have seen that in babies, as soon as the diaper comes off to change him his hands goes there, he's just exploring himself that's all. I never thought of that as masterbation. That's normal for babies to do. :) That part is always covered so they want to explore it when they get the chance.
Yep, very normal. My 3 year old still plays with himself. He doesn't even seem to be conscious of it. I will tell him to pull his hands out of his pants sometimes and he does. Usually I distact him and that works.
i have to agree with you. this question annoys me, as well as many others on this board. kids are kids. they are going to explore and do things we don't understand, because they are learning everything about themselves and the world. just like papermoon said - my son is 10 months old and everytime his diaper comes off, his hand automatically goes down there. in the bath as well. it is up to the parent to decide when it is and isn't a problem and it scares me that a majority of the parents on here cannot tell the difference between the two.
Your child is not masterbating! A child is curious and they discover things. This is the only reason they are touching themselves. This disturbs me that you would even ask this about your baby. Hello!! Do you think it's normal for a baby to play with his hands when they discover them? God come on now wake up!
Hy hun, Okay well 1st let me just say Babies do not masterbate.... they are just exploring there love below. they are just learning and growing. Thats all it is. my 2 kids have done ther before but never masterbated.
I beg to differ that babies do not masturbate. When I was pregnant with my now 9 year old son, I was having an untrasound done and the tech told us as she showed us that he was masturbating and that was how she knew he was a boy until he finally moved his hand and we seen his penis.
If you have never experienced it you might not understand but my daughter has been masturbating since she was 9 months. I'am very capable of distinguishing simple exploration of genetles and masturbation. I wish this was not true, believe me. But When I read all the ignorant comments made I felt it was important to post a comment. My daughter is turning 3 next week and Im still struggling with this issue and looking for professional insight. If anyone has found some helpful info or articles on the subject please let me know. I know her masturbation is not sexual but something she has discovered that makes her feel good. I distract her as much as possible, but when in the car she is using her car seat strap. I get so frustrated but try not to make her feel scolded. I hope as she is comunicating with me more I can explain to her this is a private activity but we are not quite there yet.
My baby plays with herself as soon as her clothes are off down to the diaper and then she goes in her diaper and fondles with herself. She is 15 months and when I move her hand she tells me to stop, but it appears to comfort her cuz she does it more at night. I'm not sure what to call it, but I knows she likes to do it..
Well YES babies CAN masturbate! The doctor at the hospital just told us, that that was what our 9 month-old daugther was doing and has been doing since she was 2 month old. We have been trying to find out what was "wrong" with her for several months now and noone knew - not our child--nurse (don't knoe the word in English) or our family doctor, so finally we got her examined at the hospital. The thing is - she's not playing with her genitals - she is just doing som rythmic strange movements while moaning and tightening her muscles and tucking her legs up towards her belly. She gets all red i the face and warm and sometimes sweating. It's usually when trying to fall asleep, men sometimes also when awake (lying on back or side) We thought it might be some stomach problem or sleep association, but i turned out to be masturbation. The doctor tóld us not to try to stop her. It will go away by itselt some day.
A lot of talk on here about genital play vs masterbation - obviously there is noticable intensity when it is something other than genital play. I have seen this in a child and it was masterbation accompanied by facial contortions and a determination to continue. As time went by, they were having orgasms at a very young age. I was told this was normal and it continued into adulthood and the child is a normal happy healthy person. In my opinion, the physical components were all there and they were just discovered at an early age. I don't know about "phases" but it makes some sense to me that they would have no reason to stop once they discovered a pleasurable experience. The cat was out of the bag you could say.
I recently witnessed a similar thing with my neighbor's daughter - age 16 months - in her car seat. It's a rather shocking behavior to see isn't it? Again, she was told by the physician it was normal.
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