How should we respond when our daughter plays with herself?
March 3, 2013 3:03 PM Subscribe
She's only a toddler, is this a problem and, if so, how do we handle it?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (51 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Our daughter is 19.5 months old. She's remarkably intelligent (knows most letters, can navigate and iPad with ease, and can count to 7... Don't know why she stops there.). A few months ago, we noted that when she was in the tub or when we were changing her diaper, she'd reach down and touch herself. We told her that it's a "vagina", so soon afterwords, whenever the opportunity arose, she would point or touch it and say "'gyna!"
Lately, it's not just a quick gesture. A few times in the tub she seemed to be playing a bit. A couple nights ago I heard an odd noise on the monitor and I went in to find her hands in her diaper and a dazed look on her face. I darted out of the room, and told my wife, who didn't really seem to care. We have a disagreement on how to approach this. She said that occasionally she's witnessed it, and just ignored it, and thinks that we should only make a stink if she does it in front of people.
I just don't think it's right, but I'm scared that if I make a big deal or scold her, it could have negative effects down the line. I was raised Catholic, so I know what repression can do, but I can't help thinking that... I don't know. She's a baby girl. Its not something I think baby girls do.
She doesn't do it a lot, near as we can tell, but it seems messed up that she's doing it at all at this age. Am I wrong?