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  1. #1
    Euphoric ! kidlove's Avatar
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    Hands Down pants!!!!!!!!!!?

    I have a 2.5 year old child in my care. She is adopted and came from a bit of a rough start, for the first few months of her life she was quite neglected, and may have some other delays due to her genetic background.She seems to have a about 6 mo. delay. She is now adopted into a very loving home with two great parents. However, she has a terrible habit of putting her hands down her diaper at nap time and during her sleeps at night. I have addressed this with her parents for many dif reasons, 1) its a dirty place to put your hands! 2) its a bad habit to have. just a little yucky!!!!! They have tried to pin her pj's shut at night, put her in a onsie. we have all talked with her, telling her it's "yucky" and "no,no" She is not extreamly vocal but IS very smart, she knows she is not supposed to do this and will hide under her blanket in order to have her hand down there, I havde checked on her during nap and if she heresme come in the room or as soon as she sees me she pulls her hand out really quick and gives me a grin, so I know she knows its not ok. Every time I lay her down for nap I look right ta her and clearly say, "your hands go up here" and gently place her hands up near her chest, then I say "not down your pants, thats a no no!" she nods as if she understands, and yet multiple times per nap I will check and she has her hands down there again. Does anyone have any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Euphoric !
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    It's quite normal and I think if you ignored it she would stop sooner but it's getting her attention and some kids just do things out of spite .... I have a 3 yr old boy that does it although he doesnt put his hands inside his diaper but he does fall asleep with both hands in between his legs

  3. #3
    Euphoric !
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    kidlove, I'm afraid I would be like you and trying to get her out of the habit. It doesn't seem normal to me. If she needs soothing there are better things, like maybe singing? I'm not judging anybody else's opinion, just saying that I've never run into anything like that before.

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  5. #4
    Expansive... Play and Learn's Avatar
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    Yup, it's natural for some kids to do this. Like an above poster said, they're learning about themselves. I would just let it go, as she's not bugging anyone but herself at naptime. NOW....if she's doing it during the day, and it's visible, then I would be at her!

    You'll usually see most kids 'playing' with themselves during bath time or when they're getting changed.

  6. #5
    Euphoric ! Inspired by Reggio's Avatar
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    Ya my suggestion is that you give her a private place to do it and let her be ~ this is a perfectly normal behavior that all human beings do at some point in their life ~ it is not dirty, it is not a necessarily a bad habit to have as long as you are not doing it 'in public' .... honestly sexuality is something we are innately born with and both male and females of all ages and stages 'masturbate' and those who do not do it when they are 'awake' most definitely will be doing it their sleep because it is a 'human need' ... do not take my word for it google it there are studies that show that ALL humans beings have orgasms even celebrate ones who do not engage in masturbation while awake ~ they will have dreams that bring them to arousal in that part of the brain responsible for it

    I have worked in the field for over 20 years and have seen children as young as 8 months 'masturbate' by rocking back and forth as their diaper 'feels good' to them as their eyes gloss over and they do it until they reach that relaxation stage ... and like all stages some children go through a 'short phase' of it and others longer!

    I would also be careful sending the message to the child that it is a 'dirty' thing to do because well you are molding a child's future sexuality there and sending them the message that they are 'dirty' to be enjoying something like that which can due a lot of harm down the road

    Like everything else we teach children we need to teach them that there is a 'time and a place' for this .... just like farting at the dinner table is rude so is touching yourself in public or explaining it is not safe to do when you hands are not clean and so forth.
    Children construct their own intelligence. The adult must provide activities and context, but most of all must be able to listen. Children need proof that adults believe in them. Their three great desires are to be listened to, to understand, and to demonstrate that they are exactly what we expect."
    Loris Malaguzzi

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  8. #6
    Euphoric ! mimi's Avatar
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    I have a child whose belly button must be available for stroking when she naps. She will also play with it when she's upset or tired. I have a 4 yr old boy that just likes to hang onto his penis through the outside of his pants. He always looks like he is moments away from peeing himself. He does this ALL the time. Good point from Reggio about not calling the genital area dirty. When ever I change a poopy diaper I never express an attitude of yuck or stinky. I congratulate on a job well done as I don't want to give a negative impression about the genital area. Of course the kids always handwash after touching themselves in their privates, I just equate this to washing our hands after playtime or after lunch. With the older kids passing gas, I just tell them to go into the washroom when they feel the urge. Again, it's not bad though it is a private act.

  9. #7
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    I have to agree with Reggio and all the others with this. Especialy about sending the message to the child that it is a 'dirty' thing but also to ensure we are teaching them it is a private act that belongs to her.

  10. #8
    Euphoric ! kidlove's Avatar
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    Thanks Momof4 I do appreciate your outlook. I too have never had this sit. before and I have had almost 60 kids come through my door. I do however think it really is just a "comfort", none the less....a little dirty. Have to remember she shares a crib with other children and her little hand is stinky!!!!!! eeeewwwweee! I have to take her out and wash her up. not cool! I just feel it is a bad habit to allow her to continue.

  11. #9
    Euphoric ! kidlove's Avatar
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    Reggio: I really think this is not a "sensation" thing, she is not old enough to have any sexual sensation, I do believe she is placing her hand in a warm and comfy spot just as a pocket or in their warm hair on their head. I just feel that it is a little dirty especially concidering she wears a diaper, her hand could come out with urine or fecies on it. I do explain to her that her butt is dirty and it is icky to put her hand down there. I dont ridicule her. I do think that children may "explore" as they develope in life and that is for us as parents to handle with our own children. Not sure if I would allow them to have "their way" in a private place and suggest washing up after though. But as I said, that would really be up to a parent to handle with their own child as they choose. When I see a child pick their nose I also inform them they are not to do that at my house, they are welcome to go to the bathroom and blow their nose with tissue and then wash hands. I inform them if they are allowed to at home, that is fine. but not at my house.

  12. #10
    Expansive... Play and Learn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidlove View Post
    Reggio: I really think this is not a "sensation" thing, she is not old enough to have any sexual sensation, I do believe she is placing her hand in a warm and comfy spot just as a pocket or in their warm hair on their head.
    But they do. They're learning about themselves, and it 'feels' good.

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