uncomfortable talk and scary actions

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Liahona, Aug 1, 2011.

  1. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Yesterday easy child 1 came to me with one of her dolls. The skirt was pulled down and she wanted my help getting it back up. She told me difficult child 1 pulled it down. I had sent difficult child 1 to his room for a few min. I went looking for the other kids because I thought it weird that difficult child 1 would do that. difficult child 3 had another skirtless doll. He held it up to me touched the crouch and said "I like the underpants off." difficult child 3 said difficult child 1 had taken this dolls skirt off too. I wanted to know where the skirt was so I could put it back on. No one could tell me. I threw the doll away. Then difficult child 1 told me where the skirt was. I got the doll out of the trash, washed it off (it was a small plastic doll), put the skirt on, gave it back to difficult child 3, and told him to leave the skirt on. Then I yelled at difficult child 1. I yelled I would take his head off if he ever did it again and to not touch the dolls anymore. Then sent him to his room.

    I don't think difficult child 3 would've come up with that about underpants by himself. He just doesn't think about underpants. His own or anyone elses. Its a constant fight to keep everyone covered in this house. They just don't think that its not appropriate to go about the house without clothes on. difficult child 2, difficult child 3 and the pcs are clueless about clothes and bodyparts. This part scares me. easy child 2 has started taking off all her clothes every chance she gets. I've even started duck taping her diaper shut. She wants to potty train though.

    This morning (when I'd had a chance to calm down and think) I tried talking to difficult child 1 about it. He wouldn't talk about it. I tried to instill that some parts of the body are special because they are used in sex. That sex is special but should only be used in certain circumstances. That it is very wrong and hurtful if it isn't. Then I asked him the big question. "Do you know what sex is?" He would not answer but looked at me like he hated me. I pressured him to answer. I asked again. I told him just say yes or no. Still nothing but a glare. I believe he does know what it is. I believe x has exposed difficult child 1 to it somehow and yesterday that exposure came back to haunt us. I really don't know how to handle this. All I can do is talk to the therapist and hope difficult child 1 will also talk to the therapist. difficult child 1 sure isn't going to talk to me about it. I don't think talking to the therapist is going to be enough to ensure this doesn't happen again or doesn't happen to a sibling instead of a doll.

    difficult child 1 was supposed to have been a shadow during this time. He was supposed to to be in my sight at all times; sticking to me like a shadow would. How did I let this happen with the dolls? I thought he was with me. I must have slipped up and let him out of sight. I can not slip again.
    Lasted edited by : Aug 1, 2011
  2. Ktllc

    Ktllc New Member

    I don't know your story, but if I were you I would not panic. Don't dismiss it and proceed talking with the therapist, but don't draw conclusion. I have/had a similar problem with difficult child (a lot younger though) and I did talk his therapist about. She was actually not all that alarmed and said we need to talk (keep talking) aboout privacy and get some books on the subjects. She saw it as intense curiosity. At 11, your difficult child might indeed not know what sex is and really wonder and wants to know so he would copy the little that he knows about it. That would be my guess. In today's world, it's hard to be completly sheltered from sex what is around sex, but a thorough explanation is needed for some kids.
    One of the books I bought is also good for older kids ("it's not the storke"), and it might help you have a conversation with ALL your children.
    I would talk about privacy in both way: you don't expose yourself (I had to explain to difficult child the consequences: police would come, at 4 years old I had to keep it simple), you don't explore someone else's privates and NOBODY is allowed to see or touch your privates (except parents and doctors).
    As far as the doll, you maybe want to reconsider: play is healthy and taking skirts off not unsual. Maybe explain to him he cannot play with his doll in that way when his sibling are around. Once again it is private.
    Since are NUMEROUS talks, the books and the fact that I bought difficult child his own girl doll (barbie in a bathing suit), I have to say he has been a lot less intense about the topic. It has almost deappeared, and in any instence is not an issue anymore.
    At one point, I was quite worried! (some bad stuff had happened at a daycare he attended and had to pull him out). So, don't dismiss it nothing but don't imagine the worst right away.
    Keep us posted and good luck with a difficult subject.
  3. Fran

    Fran Former Site Owner

    11 yr olds are pretty curious about all those secret body parts. It's only when they lack the self control or are impulsive when things go awry. Obviously, for all your children's sake you have to watch that none of the children are harmed or exposed to sexual content in an inappropriate way.
    I agree that there is a large selections of books that are age appropriate for kids to learn appropriate behavior. Keeping the conversation open and truthful with difficult child 1 from now and for years to come about respecting other peoples privacy including babies is how I do it. I often try to put difficult child in the role of someone who gets touched and explain how much he wouldn't like it. Try to expose him to those feelings of discomfort. You may have to be specific about what that means.
    Kids taking diapers off is pretty normal for almost all kids. Personally young children swimming and playing in the water naked is a lovely thing in my humble opinion.
    If he is curious about dolls and bodies both male and female, helping him learn about it in a controlled healthy way is the way to go. I try to take the big mystery out of all the physical stuff. It just encourages "secret" behavior in prepubescent and pubescent kids.

    Find an age appropriate book and let him read it. Then talk to him about one topic at a time. You just never know what misconceptions they have.
  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Although normally I wouldn't pay too much attention to this, your child's attitude about not answering your question would worry me. Is this the boy who tried to kill his siblings? If so, I wouldn't take ANYTHING with a grain of salt.

    Any serious abuse you know of from your ex?
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    My take on this is a bit different. Eleven year olds are often beginning to show signs of puberty. He has issues that are already known and since he has been to Residential Treatment Center (RTC) I would think there is at least a chance that he has been exposed to sexual conversations if not behaviors. To me this is a red flag.

    You have six children in the house and he is five yars older than his closest sibling. In simple daily living the chances are great that he has frequently seen naked siblings. I don't know how you would avoid that with so many little kids potty training, bathing etc. So I'm surely not finding fault. I admire your energy just keeping up with everyone! on the other hand, to me this seems like a sign that super diligence is required and perhaps some new enforced household rules to assure that not only is he shadowed but that the younger children be told that "clothing optional" is not the rule of your home. Something has triggered his interest and perhaps the therapist can help sort it out but meanwhile I would try to impose the concept of modesty for everyone's safety. How to do that? Lord ony knows...I sure don't.
    I wish you the best of luck. DDD
  6. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Thanks for answering. I'm really trying to not over-react, to be calm, vigilant, ect...

    Ktllc, if this had been a different child I wouldn't be so worried, but difficult child 1's impulse control problems and the lack of warning I get before something really bad happens and puberty coming up and the very real possibility difficult child 1 has been exposed to sexual abuse its hard to not worry about the worst possible outcome. A book is a good idea. I'll do some research and find one I'm comfortable teaching.

    Fran, I think I need to open the conversation about this topic myself more frequently; not wait for something to happen. Its a topic I need to talk to all the kids about.

    Midwest mom, Yes this is the kid who has many times tried to kill his sibs. Ex's abuse of me has included rape, ex does look at porn, and ex does not censor himself or the content he is watching because a child is around. And ex has been married and divorced 3 times since being married to me (5 times total). difficult child 1 is very protective of ex and won't tell me (or anyone else) if ex has abused him, exposed him to sex, or exposed him to ex abusing others.

    DDD, we'e already got that rule about modesty. Enforcing it with a 2 year old and some Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) boys has been very hard.

    I'll keep everyone posted. Thanks for listening.
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    First, like the others said, don't panic. Sexual curiosity is normal behavior. His angered stare, most likely stems from embarrassment. Boys tend to get mad when embarrassed. And yes, I'd be shocked if by age 11 he was clueless about the mechanics of sex. But being autistic, he may not be picking up on the appropriate boundaries for sexual behavior or curiosity.

    I'd keep a close eye on the situation, but do my best to remain calm and not over react. Yes, it's a good idea to discuss this with the therapist and let them also discuss the issue with him as they're not so close to the situation and don't have the emotional attachment to it. While you want to make sure no sexual abuse happened to him, you also want to be cautious and not jump to conclusions.

    Age 12-13 with Travis were hard because I had to balance teaching these boundaries without stomping on normal behavior and curiosity. It didn't make it any easier that he did some pretty off the wall stuff.

  8. keista

    keista New Member

    You've gotten a lot of good advice from several perspectives. Be cautious and diligent, but try not to overreact. (Dolls in my house never had clothes after the first hour of being brought in. If it's ONLY the dolls to me it's really not a big deal, but definitely opens the door to conversations about people)

    There was something you wrote that had me equally, if not more, concerned.
    If you used those words, YOU. MUST. STOP. NOW. Let me explain. I am 100% certain that you did not mean it literally at all. It was an idiom. I know that, you know that, as your PCs get older they will probably learn that naturally. Your difficult children, not so much, ESPECIALLY since they have ASDs. Firstly while yelling such a thing is supposed to put the fear of g*d into them, and let them know you are serious and they don't even want to know what the real consequences may be, kids on the spectrum take things more literally and may believe that you are going to ACTUALLY take off his head and essentially kill him. This is the kind of fear and stress that needs to be minimized especially with difficult children, and especially if there is a history of abuse. Secondly, this puts more into perspective a previous post you made where difficult child 1 said he was going to poke his sibling's eyes out. Well, in his mind, that is not as bad a threat of tearing a head off, and Mommy says stuff like that all the time, so I guess it's OK for me to say it too. But, you may say, that he actually acts on his threats. Yes, that may be, but he's a child, with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and doesn't fully understand that you won't really act out on your threat either. He might be fearfully waiting for the day it may really happen.
  9. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    difficult child 1 knows about terms of speech. difficult child 2 and difficult child 3 aren't so your right I should use exact language, but difficult child 1 knows what I meant by taking his head off. Sometimes I wonder if Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is the bext diagnosis for him, but its what we've got right now.
  10. keista

    keista New Member

    I'm glad you understood what I was saying. I'm a bit hyper-vigilant when it comes to language and difficult children. With son it was expected and 'easy', but I never expected to have such issues with DD1 who is NOT on the spectrum, but I did. It was over seemingly little things. Turns out it was her anxiety and not having a full understanding of nuances of language. Caused a LOT of unnecessary grief. She was 7 at the time.

    Your difficult child 1 has a whole cocktail of dxes. in my opinion PTSD and the anxiety can certainly look like Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). 2 psychiatrists have expressed their concerns with DD1 being on the spectrum because of her behavior in their offices. Yeah, if that's the only place/way I saw her I'd think it too, but I know what they are seeing is her anxiety.
  11. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Does difficult child 1 still have visitation with ex?
    I can't really tell you my opinion I guess without know that first..............
  12. Free Kittens

    Free Kittens New Member

    Hi Liahona

    whew you have a plate full!

    I don't know if your boy has been abused or not. In either case the best best best thing you can do is to be VERY non-judgemental. My daughter was abused by her bio dad and yes, when it is your own kid, it is DIFFERENT. I had to bite my tongue my cheek and my lips! Make a concerted effort to have routine, naturally occurring if possible, talks about bodies and how to keep them safe. Emphasize that he would never be the bad one in that kind of situation, it is always the adult. No matter how hard (and this will be hard) try not to give any clue to your disgust of the father. Being nuetral in this sense will go the furthest in helping a child who is being abused to disclose. Make sure that you cover, more than once, that no matter what ANYONE, dad included says, the child will never be in trouble for telling.

    Bio dad had already been investigated once and charges dropped and custody resumed with my daughter before she was even verbal. I made a point to change her clothes just before viasitation with me was over and I would reveiw 'safe touch' (keep in mind that the little's ones body might have experienced the abuse as pleasurable). I would reveiw the no fault and not in trouble concepts. Interestingly, the topic that prompted my daughter to disclose (she was 3) was child pornography. I have no idea where I came up with that but I added 'and no one is to take pictures of you without your clothes on' and she reacted intensely with guilt, poor baby. She discllosed everything the next week and DFS stepped in.

    I know that dread as a mom, that 'oh no it couldn't be'.Try to get past that and focus on current and future safety for all the kiddo's.

    Hang tough Momma
    Free Kittens
  13. mazdamama

    mazdamama New Member

    I am having some of the same type issues with my soon to be 11 yr old son. My guy though is making what I consider inappropiate actions towards ME. Am going to post about what has been happening here in a seperate post though so as not to mess up your post.
  14. Liahona

    Liahona Guest

    Yes, difficult child 1 still has visitation with ex. Ex has told difficult child 1 if difficult child 1 tells he will lose ex. Ex is disney dad. I've tried to tell difficult child 1 that he will not lose ex (no I'm not lying he could still have supervised visits), but difficult child 1 won't believe me. Everything ex says difficult child 1 believes. difficult child 1 isn't going to open up about ex.

    Free kittens, I'm so glad your daughter is safe with you now. We've had many talks about where is o.k. to be touched and where to touch others. We've also talked about what movies he can watch and why. Up until the last year difficult child 1's diagnosis was bipolar and everyone (me and docs) have thought that his hypersexuality (its come up before) were part of his diagnosis. I've just realized I have not told him it isn't his fault. I will include that in my teaching on this subject. Thank-you.
  15. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Liahona - WHY are you letting this 11yo see his Dad??????? He abused you, horribly - and he is at risk or possibly already has done it to the 11yo!!!! This is really SERIOUS - your son cannot see his Dad without supervision!!!

    Are you too scared of his dad to get protective custody???? If so there are so many people who can help. But what is going on with your son is NOT good. He is going to turn into his Dad if you don't get supervised visits ASAP!!!!

    I say this with love - but great concern. If your son already tried to kill his siblings - what are you waiting for???? This WHOLE situation needs to be changed. It is not just a concern over your difficult child taking off dolls clothes - it is a concern that your son may be being damaged for life by his abusive father.

    Please go to the courts today, and tell them you want protective custody!

    Iis your son in counseling, on medications, has he had testing? What steps did he take in trying to "kill his siblings"?

    We are here for you - please be strong and intervene on this child's behalf and make sure he is safe.