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Body consious 2 1/2 year old boy...

The other day during a shower with my son he explained he can to rub peter (his penis) to make him "big and strong" (boner)- so no more showering with mommy even though thats the easiest thing to do and he cant just run around in underwear because I caught him doing it this morning. And tonight when he was going number 2 on the potty chair he got a 'baby boner' just from going and he said "hey mommy look I can make peter go up and down!" I just told him to point him down to make sure he doesnt pee everywere and finish pooping. Im trying not to make a big deal about it and have him think its wrong, but Im at a loss. Is it normal for a 2 1/2 year old to be THAT body consious? When my husband and I are intimate (the rare occasions) we are in the bedroom with the door locked- so he hastn seen anything sexual to provoke the behavior...Help- my husband just said to tell him if he plays with himself too much peter will fall off....


Asked by szeimetz at 8:41 PM on Mar. 5, 2010 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (9)
  • I actually took a human sexuality class in college last year. We spent an entire class discussing this. Almost 1/3 of children go through a masturbation phase between the ages of 2-4. According to my text and many doctors you are supposed to just tell them that it is okay to do that but if they choose to they must go in their room and shut the door. Tell them saying and doing those things in public is not appropriate but it is okay in private. If you tell them not to do it at all then you may discourage them from learning about themselves and they will be less likely to talk about sex in the future. Making them do it in private also makes them want to do it less because kids that age hate being alone.

    My daughter hasn't hit that stage yet and I don't know how I will handle it when she does but that is what my professor and text book recommend. Hope that helps some!

    Answer by imamommmmyyy at 8:59 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • I wouldn't tell him peter will fall off... I would just ignore it. He'll do what he does. I don't think it's strange for him to be conscious of it, but maybe in your place I would give it its anatomical name rather than the "peter" persona... you don't necessarily want it to become his imaginary friend. So let him touch himself and explore, but if he does it anywhere but in the privacy of the bathroom, bath, etc, tell him it's okay to touch our bodies, but only in private.

    Answer by EmilySusan at 8:46 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • Don't tell him that! Geez! just tell him that's for when you're alone only,and if he must,do it in his room when he's alone

    Answer by TMJ121099 at 8:46 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • that was my husband's idea...Id rather try to explain to him that we dont do that in public and only when we're alone. But I dont want him to be ashamed of it either...incase he has questions for his daddy or whatever later on.

    Answer by szeimetz at 8:55 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • i agree, dont tell him it will fall off, those kinds of things stick in your head. masturbating is normal, yes, even with kids his age. generally by the age of 5 the interest goes away until they become teenagers. when he starts to do it, just say that it is not to do in front of other people and that he needs to do it alone.

    Answer by Des10ed2b at 8:57 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • I personally would tell him he should not touch it nor anyone else. If you allow him to be so free with touching himself them what happens when some pervert wants to touch him? All he'll know is it feels good.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:59 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • I just had something a little like this with my daughter... she has known the word "vagina" ever since she discovered hers (she is very verbal and started saying "what's that called" about EVERYTHING at around 20 months), but the other day she was just hounding me about why her dolls didn't have a vagina. Where's her vagina? Why didn't they make one? So I had to try to explain that those are parts we usually keep covered up with pants because they're private. It's not polite to show them to other people, that's why we don't take our clothes off when other people are around, etc... It's definitely a fine line... you have to let them know what is acceptable behavior without teaching shame ...

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:03 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • i do not agree at all with the lady who said if you tell him not to do it it will keep him from learning about himself and he will be less likely to talk about it in the future.....I told my son about him body and the purpose of it and we always had a very very open much so that he told me when he first had sex and he was about 17 years old. No offense but letting kids masturbate does not teach them about their body, that is your job as a mommy.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:05 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

  • Please ignore ignoramus 8:59. Masturbation does not leave a child more vulnerable to sexual predators. He will not welcome sexual advances of a "pervert" just because he knows that touching his own penis feels good. That is the most absurd thing I have heard today and I witnessed the ridiculous nursing-in-public drama earlier this afternoon. Some people's attitude toward the human body and sexuality in this country makes me want to expatriate... pronto.

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:08 PM on Mar. 5, 2010

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