child psychologykidstoddlers

Toddler Is Humping Stuffed Animals

Mom With Violated Stuffed Animals writes,

How do I handle my humping two year old girl ? It has started to happen on our couch during family time with favorite stuffed animals and even larger plastic toys. She is still in diapers. I know this is a normal phase, but do I ignore it/what can I say to let her know the couch isn’t the place? Help! 

no, i love you more

no, i love you more

Dear MWVSA,

Good question and a common one!  Your little girl is behaving totally normally.  It feels pleasurable to hump her stuffed animals, so she does it. Good for her for figuring out how her body works.   If you just let her keep doing it in public, though, she won’t learn the difference between what we do in public and in private.  So, you can say, “Moving your stuffed animal like that is for private.  I know it feels good, and you can do it, but it is private so you only do it in your room, and not when anyone else is watching.” Say this in a normal conversational tone.  Do not say, “Oh my God stop being so disgusting” unless you want her to say that to her partner later in life when sex is initiated.  I know, she’s your little girl, but one day hopefully she will be an adult woman with a healthy sex life and a healthy perspective on sex, and that starts now.

So, to summarize, masturbating is normal for children and adults, and it’s important not to make your kids feel ashamed of getting pleasure from their own bodies.  But it’s also important to teach them that this is a private activity.  Also, this is a good jumping off point to start teaching your daughter the correct names for parts of her anatomy, e.g. vagina, butt, etc.  In addition to showing her that her body is natural and okay, this can also ensure that she knows how to tell you if something is ever wrong with her private parts or if she is ever touched inappropriately.  If you want books on discussing bodies and sex with kids, here’s one.

Thanks for writing in, and I hope your daughter humps happily and privately in the future.

Till we meet again, I remain, The Blogapist Who Saved This Post Till Wednesday Because It’s Hump Day.

———–
Order Dr. Rodman’s newest book, 52 Emails to Transform Your Marriage and order her first book: How to Talk to Your Kids about Your Divorce: Healthy, Effective Communication Techniques for Your Changing Family

This blog is not intended as medical advice or diagnosis and should in no way replace consultation with a medical professional. If you try this advice and it does not work for you, you cannot sue me. This is only my opinion, based on my background, training, and experience as a therapist and person

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2 Comments

  1. Carolyn
    May 29, 2016 at 3:49 am — Reply

    Holy moley! My daughter started this a few weeks ago and I freaked out. I didn’t know where to start. Who to ask. Or how to ask. So thankful for articles like these to help first time mommas like me feel ok and comfortable with these moments thrown at us. So glad I’m not the only one

  2. Belly
    June 12, 2020 at 5:34 pm — Reply

    My little girl humps and since she was about 1 year old. I didn’t know how to engage with her about this nor how to talk to her about it that would be appropriate at her age. Thank you.

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