When do you have "the talk" — The Bump
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When do you have "the talk"

When do you have your first conversation with DC about inappropriate touching? I've mentioned in passing to Liam before that no one should touch him inside his underwear unless it's to wipe his bum after he's used the potty, but I didn't make a big deal about it and I'm sure he doesn't remember. I would want him to know it was wrong and to tell me if anything happened, but I'm not sure at what age he could even comprehend what I'm trying to tell him without just being silly and thinking it's a game. Thoughts?

He's so innocent right now, he has no idea bad things happen or bad people exist, I wish I could just freeze him this way forever :)

Rachel & Bill 9-10-05, Liam Andrew born 5-30-08 (formerly lakebride05)
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Re: When do you have "the talk"

  • I wonder the same thing.  I also casually brought it up to Natalie when I first took her to preschool but I'm not sure when a more serious conversation is appropriate.
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  • We frequently tell Jocelyn that only mommy and daddy see her private parts (including her bottom) and that no one else should see it. Yesterday she had no undies on and wanted to go outside and a neighbor was out and I told her she had to put underwear/pants on because Mr.XX could not see her booty. And she repeated it and seemed to understand, but who knows. We're in a stage where she wants to be naked all the time, so I am sure it is confusing. I hate even thinking about that. I still have memories of being in elementary school and someone coming in teaching us never to play "hide the penny" with an adult and going over all that stuff, it must have traumatized me enough to be imbedded in my brain forever.
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  • Well, with Nate being in daycare, it wouldn't be appropriate for us to tell him that only mom & dad see his penis/bottom. Obviously he goes to the bathroom on his own, but there might be times he needs assistance still (especially if he has to wipe). Also, I have no issue with my family or close friends helping him in the bathroom if I have my hands full, and my parents give him baths sometimes when he spends the night.

    We haven't talked about it at all yet. I feel like at this age, he would demonstrate inappropriate behavior if something inappopriate was happening to him. If someone at school calls someone a name, he comes home and repeats it. So my hope is that right now, I would get a sense of something not being quite right. Of course that doesn't prevent anything from happening in the first place, but I'm not sure that I could prevent it if someone I really trusted was going to do something to him right now anyway. It's not like him saying no would stop something bad from happening, as awful as it is to think that.

    I think that we would start having those talks more when DS was going to be outside of our controlled environments (home, daycare, my parents' house), probably before kindergarten and beyond. I think it becomes especially important when kids start playing without supervision and doing playdates/sleepovers without their parents around.

    There's a book called "Protecting the Gift" that talks a lot about violence against children. I haven't read it, but I've heard good things about it.

     

  • I think another related conversation that's important to have is one that says something like "whatever another adult tells you, don't keep secrets from mommy and daddy".  A predator will do their best to convince/scare a kid into keeping abuse and precursors to abuse (like slipping him/her candy, letting them get away with things) a secret.  I think about those kinds of talks quite a bit and LO isn't even here yet... too many cops in my family I guess.
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  • We have talked about it with the girls, but not so much with Jeremiah.  We didn't have a long serious talk about it, just that no one should be touching their girl parts except Mommy/Daddy or a trusted adult helping them potty (which isn't necessary most of the time) or the doctor.  The last time one of them was at the doctor because of some girl issues, the doctor even talked to them about making sure others weren't touching them there.  I was a bit shocked that the doctor mentioned but it was done in such a way that I was ok with it.

    I think ECU is right...they will probably tell you about it.  A few months ago the girls were playing a version of freeze tag where the kids had to crawl between the other kids legs to unfreeze them and one of the little boys was touching their girl parts (I'm pretty sure it wasn't on purpose, just happened because of the nature of the game) and both of them talked about it with me later that night.  They were both very uncomfortable with it, but they did feel comfortable talking about it with me.

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