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Sexual harassment and rape incidents are the talk of the hour in Egypt. After multiple allegations surfaced, many mothers shared stories on social media about their kids being subjected to sexual harassment in kindergarten or heard multiple sexual innuendos from children who were previously abused. Mothers are finally realizing that abuse starts at an early stage in life; it’s not just teenagers who hang out with friends and get involved romantically.
Mothers have no idea what to do in this time where kids are addicted to Youtube before they can say their first words. One of the things that moms are concerned about is games that their kids love to play and categorized as sexual; they include touching and revealing of body parts.
Moms cannot decide whether to react calmly or stop them and take a firm action. One of those common games is the doctor game where one of the kids pretend to be the doctor and the other one is the patient who takes off clothes to get examined.
In this article, our certified positive discipline educator from US Positive Discipline Association, Rana Hany, tackles the dilemma.
Why do kids love to play such games?
During the age of 2 to 6 years, the child is curious and discovers own body parts and other’s as well. Hany explained that this causes the child to try such games or touch their genitals with hands or via a pillow or soft toy.
“Although moms shouldn’t panic about this as it’s a natural form of curiosity during this age, they should keep a close eye to take the right action when needed,” Hany stated.
Hany stated that there are some signs that require the mother’s attention and interference. Upon observing any of them, the mother should investigate whether her child was sexually harassed or exposed to any sexual content. Hany advised that a specialized child psychiatrist or psychologist should be consulted in such matter.
- If the child is above seven and insists on repeating those games.
- If the child is forced to play this game with older children who are not at the same age of exploring.
- If the child starts to draw sexual positions and regularly mentions the sex.
- If the child plays in a indecent way and imitates adults’ sexual behavior.
How should a mom react?
- Stay calm: It’s crucial to stay calm and reassure the child that it is not a sin.
- Ask curious questions: “What were you playing?”, “Where do you know this gamefrom?”, “Were you forced to play it?”
- Seize the opportunity to explain: This is a good opportunity to talk to your child about the privacy of his body and what should and shouldn’t be done.
- Closely observe your child: A mother should monitor he child’s play time with other children. During sleep overs, it’s not recommended that kids share the same bed or at least each should have a different cover.
Further reading: 7 Ways to Protect Your Child From a Pedophile