Why do kids masturbate

Masturbation in Preschoolers - Tufts Medical Center Community Care

What is masturbation?

Masturbation is self-stimulation of the genitals for pleasure and self-comfort. Children may rub themselves with a hand or other object. Masturbation is more than the normal inspection of the genitals commonly observed in 2-year-olds during baths. During masturbation, a child usually appears dazed, flushed, and preoccupied. A child may masturbate as often as several times each day or just once a week. Masturbation occurs more commonly when a child is sleepy, bored, watching television, or under stress.

Why does my child masturbate?

Occasional masturbation is a normal behavior of many toddlers and preschoolers. Up to a third of children in this age group discover masturbation while exploring their bodies. Often they continue to masturbate simply because it feels good. Some children masturbate frequently because they are unhappy about something, such as having their pacifier taken away. Others are reacting to punishment or pressure to stop masturbation completely.

Masturbation has no medical causes. Irritation in the genital area causes pain or itching; it does not cause masturbation.

How long does it last?

Once your child discovers masturbation, he or she will seldom stop doing it completely. Your child may not do it as often if any associated power struggles or unhappiness are remedied. By age 5 or 6, most children can learn some discretion and will masturbate only in private. Masturbation becomes almost universal at puberty in response to the normal surges in hormones and sexual drive.

Will masturbation cause problems later in life?

Masturbation does not cause any physical injury or harm to the body. It is not abnormal or excessive unless it is deliberately done in public places after age 5 or 6. It does not mean your child will be oversexed, promiscuous, or sexually deviant. Only if adults overreact to a child’s masturbation and make it seem dirty or wicked will it cause emotional harm, such as guilt and sexual hangups.

How can I help my child?
  1. Have realistic goals.

    It is impossible to eliminate masturbation. Accept the fact that your child has learned about it and enjoys it. The only thing you can control is where he or she does it. A reasonable goal is to permit it in the bedroom and bathroom only. You might say to your child, “It’s OK to do that in your bedroom when you’re tired.” If you completely ignore the masturbation, no matter where it’s done, your child will think he or she can do it freely in any setting.

  2. Ignore masturbation at naptime and bedtime.

    Leave your child alone at these times and do not keep checking on him or her. Do not forbid your child from lying on the abdomen and do not ask if his or her hands are between the legs.

  3. Distract or discipline your child for masturbation at other times.

    First try to distract your child with a toy or activity. If this fails, explain to your child: “I know that feels good, and it’s okay to do it in your room or the bathroom, but do not do it in the rest of the house or when other people are around. ” By the time children are 4 or 5 years old, they become sensitive to other people’s feelings and understand that they should masturbate only when they are alone. Younger children may have to be sent to their rooms to masturbate.

  4. Discuss this approach with your child’s day care or preschool staff.

    Ask your child’s caregiver or teacher to respond to your child’s masturbation by first trying to distract the child. If this doesn’t work, they should catch the child’s attention with comments such as, “We need to have you join us now.” Masturbation should be tolerated at school only at naptime.

  5. Increase physical contact with your child.

    Some children will masturbate less if they receive extra hugging and cuddling throughout the day. Try to be sure that your child receives at least 1 hour every day of special time together and physical affection from you.

  6. Common mistakes.

    The most common mistake that parents make is to try to eliminate masturbation completely. This leads to a power struggle which the parents inevitably lose. Children should not be physically punished for masturbation, nor yelled at or lectured about it. Do not label masturbation as bad, dirty, evil, or sinful, and do not tie your child’s hands or use any kind of restraints. All of these approaches lead only to resistance and possibly later to sexual inhibitions.

When should I call my child’s healthcare provider?

Call during office hours if:

  • Your child continues to masturbate when other people are around.
  • You suspect that your child has been taught to masturbate by someone.
  • Your child tries to masturbate others.
  • You feel your child is unhappy.
  • You cannot accept any masturbation by your child.
  • This approach does not bring improvement within 1 month.
  • You have other questions or concerns.

Written by Barton D. Schmitt, MD, author of “My Child Is Sick,” American Academy of Pediatrics Books.

Pediatric Advisor 2015.1 published by RelayHealth.
Last modified: 2005-04-14
Last reviewed: 2014-06-10

This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.

Copyright ©1986-2015 Barton D. Schmitt, MD. All rights reserved.

Do You Know Why Kids Masturbate? Therapist Gives 5 Reasons and Top Tips for a Healthy Response Plan

Masturbation. It’s a topic no one wants to talk about--especially in regards to their own kids. Yet it’s something that comes up for many parents. Whether your child is young or a teen, it’s important to pause and consider your response when you find out your child has discovered masturbation.

The essence of this article is to offer some guidance with a few straight-foward ideas: 

  • pump the brakes on quick elimination, 
  • pay attention to what may be driving the masturbation, and 
  • develop a response plan that is wise and effective.  

Be careful with masturbation elimination efforts 

Why would it make sense for my child to masturbate?” An odd question, right? When we discover masturbation we may be more inclined to ask, “How do I make them stop?” 

Efforts to eliminate masturbation can be ineffective and even backfire, inadvertently generating more sexual compulsion. As our children repeatedly remind us - we can’t control them! So of course we can’t make our kid’s sexuality just go away. And they wouldn’t properly mature if we could. 

But this is not to say that we do nothing when we discover our child’s sexual behavior. Responding with wisdom demands that we: 

  • pause our reactions, 
  • tolerate an undesired reality for a moment, 
  • consider our largest values, and 
  • select a solid (though sometimes challenging) course of action.  

Finding balance between control and passivity can be tricky. Geoff Steurer offers counsel to check masturbation without shaming in his article, A Neighbor Boy Masturbates in Front of My Kids! A Dad Asks for Help.

Start finding wise solutions by considering what may be driving the behavior. “Why would it make sense for my child to masturbate?” 

Five common drivers of childhood masturbation

Exploring underlying drives or motivations for masturbation can inform you how best to respond. Here are 5 common drivers of masturbation: 

1. Discovery 

2. Development 

3. Coping 

4. Compulsion 

5. Trauma-Processing

Some of these drivers (discovery, development, and sometimes coping) are considered normal and non-problematic from a psychological or developmental perspective. Some parents have no problem “allowing” for healthy masturbation. Others may believe there’s no such thing. Either way, these points of view will be useful in formulating a wise response that will avoid fueling the very problem you hope will disappear. 

1. Discovery 

Children are built to explore the world around them. Teens and adults too. Like when a baby discovers that the hands they are looking at belong to them! Or kids discovering how much ice cream they can take before they feel sick. Figuring out a new updo for the prom. Swimming lessons. And of course, “whoa, this little thing feels crazy!” 

Many, but not all, young children will discover that rubbing their private parts is pleasurable. Believe it or not even fetuses in utero have been known to stimulate their genitals. 

Sometimes self-stimulation is really as simple as a “body trick” that feels great. Body-discovery is natural and has not been shown to lead to future problems unless other issues become entangled with it (as described below)

2. Development 

In time, self-stimulation may begin to be connected to larger ideas like sex, spirituality, relationships, and humanity. Children will gain more awareness of what is and is not appropriate, harmful, and “normal.” 

From a sexual development perspective, masturbation can be a non-problematic means of expressing one’s evolving sexual nature. It can be a way of working through an understanding of self, sex, and humanity. 

Development involves learning from healthy guilt when our behaviors cause harm or integrating our complex nature to understand when our behaviors are appropriate. 

Again, this type of engagement with sexuality has not been linked to future problems such as sexual risk-taking, exploitation, or addiction.

Many value systems discourage all self-stimulation - even this developmental type of masturbation. If that's the case, thoughtfully use the recommended responses found below to help your child avoid forming a problematic pattern with masturbation and trust that their development will lead to self-mastery and integrity.

3. Coping 

For many children, the discovery of erogenous pleasure eventually overlaps with emotional experiences. 

Sexual stimulation is powerful enough to mood-alter. It may make boredom, anger, sorrow, powerlessness, or insecurities go away for at least a brief period of time. Or it may augment a happy or relaxing day.

The most common way masturbation can regulate emotions is to soothe stress. Sexual arousal can lead to a very relaxed state, especially the euphoria following climax - this can easily be used to take the edge off anxiety. 

Self-soothing may or may not lead to future challenges. Consider a couple appreciating sex after a stressful day. There is no need to avoid the de-stressing nature of sex any more than the de-stressing nature of jazz. The trouble may come if your adolescent begins to over-rely on sexual behaviors for coping. 

4. Compulsion 

Compulsion is any behavior that happens repeatedly despite efforts to avoid or moderate it. This can happen with many different behaviors - picking one’s skin, watching sports, or masturbating. 

Compulsion occurs when desire-circuitry in the brain becomes too reinforced, too rigid, and too disconnected from other brain modules such as the prefrontal cortex (not when desire is “too much”). This is most likely to occur when the behavior is laden with intense emotion such as fear, shame, or desperation. 

If masturbation is compulsive, it may begin to interfere with other valued activities or escalate into more frequent, intense, or risky behavior. 

5. Trauma-Processing 

Another driver for masturbation could be trauma. When sexual abuse has occurred a child, teen, or adult may orbit around behaviors or themes related to the wounding experiences. Though it may seem odd or ironic, it’s natural for any of us to place ourselves into situations or reenact scenarios as an unconscious effort to process through our traumas. 

But, of course, not all trauma manifests as sexual abuse. Non-sexual trauma could also push a child to rely more heavily on whatever coping methods they have developed, including masturbation. 

Compulsion does not necessarily mean trauma has occurred, and trauma does not necessarily mean that behavior will be compulsive. But the two can mix together at times. 


Develop a wise and effective response plan to childhood masturbation

With a better understanding of possible motivating factors for masturbation, we can begin to piece together a wiser and more effective response plan for developing well-being and reducing problematic behavior. 

Responding well to discovery and development

When you sense that your child’s behavior is normative and uncomplicated, then you can trust they are on the road to sexual maturity. What is “normal,” anyway? Check out resources such as KidsHealth.org to review developmental norms. 

Kids can learn to not indulge sexual urges that are harmful or counter to their values. And they can honor their sexual nature by channeling that energy toward vitality, healthy relationships, confidence, and joy - with or without masturbation. 

With young children, self-pleasuring can occur at inappropriate times such as church or parent-teacher conferences. Rather than stamping the behavior out harshly, you can simply redirect. 

Try “hey, let’s be sure to only touch our private parts in private,” or, “please do that in your room or the bathroom where others can’t see.” If the touching is driven by discovery and natural development, most children will quickly break the public habit after just a few reminders. 

This is also a great time to mentally review your child’s level of sexual education. What have you taught them? Do they understand things like basic anatomy, privacy, and safety? As they grow older do they know what sex is, how reproduction occurs, and how sexuality ties into identity and relationships? Do they understand your definition of sexual integrity?

Occasionally drop in nuggets of information and periodically ask questions to start an ongoing dialog. While some kids and teens are embarrassed to have healthy conversations, you’ll find that many are open and interested. Keep in mind that even “normal” sexual development can include mistakes, a bit of turmoil, and weirdness. 

Related: Sexual Behavior in Children: What's Normal? What's Harmful?

Responding well to coping 

Coping is normal and can be either healthy or unhealthy. You can probably reflect and find both helpful and unhelpful coping in your own life. If this is a driver then it’s a good opportunity to discuss effective coping and resolution strategies with your child. 

You may discuss what coping methods your child sees in their own lives (heads up: they probably won’t bring up masturbation). How many do they have? Healthy coping actually has less to do with the inherent nature of the coping activity (good activities vs. bad ones) and more to do with the overall flexibility offered by a variety of activities. Rather than focusing on stopping “bad” coping, try to focus on developing more options.  

If your child only seems to handle stress with video games and masturbation, then self-stimulation will show up a lot, and desperately (and so will Minecraft). But if they have video games, masturbation, reading, music, basketball, going on a quiet drive, deep breathing, positive self-talk, and a gerbil, then self-stimulation is a much smaller slice of the pie - it’ll occur much less frequently and with less intensity. 

Coping helps us get through difficult times without going nuts. But it generally won't solve the original stressor or problem. Sometimes the right move is to face the music, step into the difficulty and create change. This could involve setting boundaries with others, tackling homework, or asking the neighbor girl out.

With some balance, occasional masturbation will not typically lead to problems such as promiscuity or harmful sexual choices. If your value system is aimed toward avoiding as much masturbation as possible, teaching your child or teen how to juggle healthy coping with effective resolution skills can help.

Responding well to compulsion or trauma 

If a child or teen is displaying intensity or “stuckness” or if they are enacting harmful and serious behaviors, then their actions may be stemming from compulsion or trauma.

In the long-term, spend more time addressing the root (the source of the compulsion or the trauma) than on eliminating the behavior. If you’re able to support your child in finding resolution and healing then the need to reach for masturbation will be diminished.

For example, a compulsion may ease up and slow down as your child develops more self-worth (assuming that worthlessness drove the compulsion in the first place). Or the behaviors may diminish as you educate about sexuality and convey acceptance, even of missteps (assuming the compulsion arose from shame about their sexual urges). 

If trauma is addressed - through establishing safety, sharing their narrative, rebalancing power differentials, accountability, forgiveness, etc. - then the need to process their wound with sexual reenactment or rebellion will fade away. 

After the stressors have been resolved there may still be a season of intentional habit-breaking, hopefully led by the child or teen’s intrinsic motivation. This will allow their sexuality to break free of lingering ties to old patterns and resume healthy development. 

As is clear from these examples, this can sometimes be a long and difficult journey. Early on, you may need some boundaries, limits or rules to establish a baseline of safety or distance from acting out. Hopefully these can be collaborated with your child rather than imposed on them. 

Unless the compulsion or trauma is mild, look at getting support. Find a therapist, program, or other resources to move through this process - just be sure the treatment goals do not accidentally reinforce any shame or repression that originally generated the masturbation.

Related: Child on Child Harmful Sexual Behavior Part 1: A 3-Step Path to Prepare Parents

Developing an individualized, effective response plan to childhood masturbation

This article would have been simpler as “3 Steps to Eliminate Your Kid’s Masturbation. ” Balance and nuance always complicate things. And yet addressing our children’s sexuality with wisdom is too important to oversimplify. 

When you discover your child’s masturbation, consider why it makes perfect sense for them to be doing that. That should set you up to develop a response plan that is individualized and ultimately effective at helping them achieve sexual maturity. 

Take these ideas and write down what is driving your child’s masturbation. Then write out the steps you believe will be most helpful in their development. 

6 signs that this is absolutely normal

If you enter “the child masturbates” into the search line, then the results “The child climbs with his hands”, “The child holds his hands in his underpants”, and there is also simply “The child touches the pussy”. That is, we are obviously talking about children of preschool and primary school age, to whom parents do not yet knock on the door of the room before entering. Indeed, child masturbation is a very common phenomenon. Although many adults are seriously concerned and keep asking in parent groups if this is normal. So, yes! This is absolutely normal. Moreover, babies masturbate unconsciously. They just suddenly realize that they have discovered something very pleasant - and they do it again and again, exploring their body in the same way that they explore the world around them. No, this is not connected with any "dirty" thoughts. nine0003

“Masturbation helps children relieve stress, relax, improve their mood, relieve tension and fall asleep faster,” says Nadine Pierre-Louis, family therapist. At the same time, parents often worry that their child will “grow up a pervert” or “he will be sexually humiliated at school” - and other horrors. That is why Nadine Pierre-Louis identified six signs that are inherent in normal healthy children - and there is absolutely nothing to worry about.

Children start masturbating very early

It starts at a very early age, from infancy, and continues as you get older. “The only thing parents have to worry about here,” says psychotherapist Fran Walvis, “is setting adequate boundaries. It is necessary to explain to the child that it is normal to please yourself, but you need to do this not in public places, but in your room or in bed.

Babies rubbing against things

Yeah, parents often get frustrated when they see their baby rubbing against their favorite pillow or teddy bear, but that's okay! It is familiar favorite things that give babies a sense of security and comfort. Again, all parents have to do is explain to the child that these things need to be done alone, at home, when no one sees you. And you need to say this, not chastising the child, but as if gently discussing. nine0003

Children themselves understand that this is an intimate process

Despite the fact that psychologists often advise parents to explain to children the concept of personal boundaries and make it clear that you cannot masturbate in front of strangers, most children are already aware of this. Moreover, if a child of conscious age, despite all the conversations and explanations, continues to do this next to adults or peers, this may indicate that he is being sexually abused, or he has some kind of psychological problems. In this case, parents should contact a child psychologist to try to gently find out what is happening with the child. nine0003

“Masturbation is a completely natural process until it becomes public,” explains psychologist Sabina Mauro. - This is often the behavior of children who have experienced sexual abuse or have been involved in any acts of a sexual nature. It is also possible that the child is suffering from intrusive thoughts related to masturbation. This can be corrected with the help of psychotherapy.”

The child leads a normal social life

Everything is normal until masturbation begins to replace communication with peers. A psychologically healthy child plays a lot, walks, communicates with friends - and sometimes masturbates in his bedroom. “You only need to worry when the child has suddenly moved away from friends and began to spend much more time alone, in his room - this is an alarming sign,” says Nadine Pierre-Louis, a family therapist. In no case should you shame a child or scold him! The main thing that parents can do is to offer the child a lot of new interesting activities outside the home to switch his attention and help him learn to relieve stress. nine0003

The child does not masturbate to cope with severe stress

In general, masturbation is one of the ways to have fun alone. But in children suffering from stress or experiencing psychological trauma, this can turn into a kind of defense mechanism. And it doesn't have to be sexual trauma. With the help of masturbation, children unconsciously calm themselves, worrying about the divorce of their parents, the death of loved ones, or even moving to a new city. Children may also masturbate when they are upset or scared. If parents notice that a child has similar tendencies, it is better to contact a child psychologist to help them cope with stress. nine0003

Other things to keep in mind for worried parents:

Interest in masturbation does not lead to early sexual development and early onset of sexual activity.

In no case should you scold or shame a child if you caught him doing this.

If you are still concerned and it seems to you that the child masturbates too much, it is better to contact a child psychologist, rather than threaten punishment.


Is it normal for a child to masturbate at the age of 5? How will this affect him in the future? Sexologist and child psychologist answer

While masturbation in adolescence is a natural process that speaks of a person's puberty, masturbation of a 5-year-old child raises many questions. We learned from a sexologist and a child psychologist what to do for parents who are faced with such a situation.

At what age can children and teenagers start to masturbate

Anna Mokiyevets


– Masturbation itself is a natural action, but it is important to understand why the child resorted to it. nine0003

If we exclude diseases and anatomical abnormalities, then the appearance of masturbation indicates puberty - the stage of sexual development. Such masturbation begins during puberty (from 13-14 to 18 years).

Or masturbation is an adaptive-compensatory mechanism: acquaintance with pleasant sensations from stimulation of the genitals occurs before puberty (from 8 months to puberty).

• Infant masturbation.

Babies and children under two years of age examine their body, legs, arms, genitals, grasp them, pull them. They develop an interest in various bodily sensations, they stick their fingers up their noses, play with their genitals, and scratch their ears. At this age, masturbation is getting to know the body. nine0003

Child masturbation.

Children from two years old masturbate to get positive emotions. In itself, masturbation is not something bad or harmful, but it testifies to the trouble of the child's nervous system, his unstable emotional state:

• children are emotionally and physically discharged in this way;

• enjoy;

• soothe themselves (before going to bed or during excitement, the child reaches for the genitals). nine0003

Often, masturbation, as well as more common childhood habits (finger sucking, nail biting), helps a child cope with stress.

Also, children can get acquainted with bright bodily sensations ahead of time by accident. For example, due to tight clothing, when climbing a rope, riding a horse or cycling. But sometimes children are introduced to masturbation or told about it by older or more developed children - say, during the game.

• Teenage masturbation. nine0058

Masturbation associated with the onset of puberty appears from 10–15 years of age.

In 2004, Naw Magazine (Toronto City) surveyed an unspecified number of female respondents in a gender preference survey of their own free will.

The results showed that 55% of women started masturbating between 10 and 15 years of age. And often masturbation began much earlier: 18% already by their 10th birthday, and 6% - when they reach their 6th birthday.

Why do children start masturbating at an early age? nine0007

– First of all, you need to understand the reason for early masturbation. It can be physiological :

  • tight or uncomfortable clothing, synthetic underwear irritates the groin area;
  • non-compliance with intimate hygiene: when a child's intimate organs sweat, he willy-nilly scratches them;
  • excessive attention to the hygiene of intimate organs. Adults often and strongly wash, rub children, thereby causing physiological reactions;
  • Slapping a child on the buttocks and other physical punishment provokes a rush of blood to the groin area, contributing to the excitation of the child. nine0096

The reason may also be psychological :

  • difficult emotional situation in the family. The child finds any way to calm himself in a tense atmosphere;
  • lack of attention, care, participation of parents. In a family where “not up to you”, the child withdraws into himself and looks for a way to get good feelings, which he is deprived of;
  • excessive strictness and restrictions also push the child to look for independent ways to distract from feelings of uselessness and dislike; nine0096
  • any strong childhood suffering and experiences can lead a child to engage in masturbation.

If suddenly the baby feels that masturbation brings pleasure, while reducing anxiety, then such activities can become regular. This is a kind of panacea for stress and problems, only now he will be doing this consciously and intentionally.

Is it better for the parent to ignore the situation or start a conversation?

- If you catch a child masturbating, in no case do not scold, do not frighten, do not shame your child. Don't hurt his emerging sexuality. Also, do not focus on masturbation excessive attention: the child should not feel that he is doing something bad.

Don't sexualize child masturbation: a 5-year-old child doesn't want sex, but attention, care and security. So give him just that.

If masturbation is episodic and you have not noticed a child's interest in the genitals before, try to distract the child's attention, carefully remove your hands from the panties, stop the frictional movements without frightening (take it off the bike, chair). Ask what happened to him or her in kindergarten, what he or she feels or wants now. nine0003

If masturbation has become a periodic phenomenon, then there has been a fixation on pleasure. Like any habit, it lends itself well to correction, but here everything depends on you and your participation.

Tell your child that there are sense organs, there are internal organs and there are intimate organs that are not customary to show or touch in society. If such a desire arises, you need to go out so that no one sees it, because when we go to the toilet, for example, we always close the door, or we go in our underwear, and not naked, no matter how hot it is. nine0003

To solve the sexual problem, several recommendations can help:

  • be careful when bathing: do not linger on the genitals, devote as much time to the hygiene of intimate places as to other parts of the body;
  • watch your child's clothes: they should be loose, underwear should not rub and cut into the skin;
  • talk to the child and analyze your behavior: you may not notice excessive severity, incorrectness, inattention to the baby; nine0096
  • offer him an interesting activity, try to direct his energy in a different direction. When a child is carried away, he will not have time for “pranks”;
  • teach him to formulate his desires and label overwhelming emotions with words. Such a tactic will allow the baby not to accumulate emotions inside himself and give them a decent outlet;
  • watch how the child falls asleep: it is better to gently accustom him to sleep on his side, and place his palms under the cheek;
  • Do not forget about folk methods: for example, at night before going to bed, give the child a glass of warm milk or a soothing decoction, such as chamomile. nine0096

If you calmly treat your baby's exploratory interest in relation to the genitals, then the child will calm down and his interest will weaken. Only when you notice that masturbation is becoming a problem, compulsive or persistent, contact a sex therapist or sex psychologist. On their own, not only children are unable to cope with this, but also their parents.

But in adolescence, masturbation is the norm of psychosexual development. If you abruptly entered the territory of a teenager and saw or realized that he was masturbating:

  • exit immediately;
  • pretend you didn't see anything;
  • To avoid such situations, knock before entering a teenager's room.

There is no need to talk about anything with the teenager unless he starts the conversation himself.

If a child starts masturbating at an early age, does this mean that in the future he will have perverted sexual desires?

- No, there is no direct connection between masturbation and sexual fantasies. nine0003

What should a parent do when a child (or teenager) is masturbating?

Olga Goma

child psychologist

– It is very important for parents not to react violently and emotionally to a child's masturbation: as soon as children see such a reaction, they become even more interested in this process. Therefore, it is best to talk with the baby, sort it out and explain what the genitals are, what they are for, and so on.

If you scold a child for masturbation, this may lead to the fact that in the future he will have some questions in his sexual life. He will begin to feel shame, will not be able to be liberated. But it is very important that a person is not ashamed of his body, not ashamed of the fact that he can enjoy. nine0003

Therefore, among other things, children need to be told that sex is not only for the birth of a child, but also for enjoyment. So the baby will understand that everything is fine with him.

If a parent caught a teenager masturbating, then he just needs to quietly leave the room and pretend that he did not see anything. At this age, their body is only their business: they are in the process of puberty, in the process of learning about themselves.

In this situation, parents can no longer do anything: all issues related to puberty (sex, masturbation, wet dreams, menstruation, erections) should be discussed by children and parents before adolescence. This is necessary so that teenagers understand what is happening with their body, and are not afraid or afraid of any reactions. nine0003

If we see that a teenager is masturbating to porn, then we can try to talk to him about it, if we haven't done it yet. It is necessary to explain that porn is not something that actually happens in life: people may not have such genital organs (in the film, as a rule, everything is very exaggerated), that in life sex does not happen so spontaneously, that sometimes it is necessary devote much more time to foreplay. That is, the child must understand that such films are not about life.

At what age should you start talking about this topic with your child? nine0007

– Already at the age of 3-4, children understand the difference between boys and girls, and it is very important for them to voice it: “These are the organs of boys, and these are the bodies of girls”, to show by the example of illustrations in books about sex education.

Gradually the child will begin to ask where children come from. The task of the parent is to tell exactly as much as the child can put in his head: "From my mother's tummy. " If the child asked the next question about how he got there, explain it like this: "Daddy's seed got inside, the baby developed there," and so on. nine0003

I would recommend discussing all these points with your child before school. Indeed, in the lower grades, all children have mobile phones, and every second second grader has already seen porn: they just google “naked aunt”, “sex” - everything they hear from someone. And it is very important that in these searches the child does not accidentally stumble upon pornography and see everything in a format that the parent would not like.

Before the age of 8-9, it is already necessary to discuss menstruation with girls, and erections and wet dreams with boys, so that children understand what is happening with their body. nine0003

As a rule, at the age of 9 a child is either already ashamed to talk about it with his parents, or he already knows everything from his peers. But what exactly he knows, we cannot say: perhaps his ideas are absolutely distorted.

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