Thursday, February 20, 2014

Nine year old daughter is exposing herself! Help!

Dr. Keller,

I have a 9 year old daughter who has repeatedly exposed herself to boys her age and she also allowed her brother who is 5 to expose himself to her. We have taken things away ( things she enjoys ) and have had the talk about her "cup of sugar" and how she must keep it till after marriage. Nothing seems to be working and we are lost on what to do with her and how to nip it in the butt for our son.

Anonymous

Dear Holly,

Parenting is much like training for the Olympics. Often we can not get to the end of the goal by ourselves. We need support from trainers who have expertise in areas that we do not. I would strongly encourage you to find a Family Therapist who specialized in children's issues. You can and should ask them how they are licensed in your state and what there specific area of expertise. Look so see if they can demonstrate success in working with children who are in your child's age group and developmental stage of her life.

There is something that your 9 year old is trying to communicate to you on a level that makes sense in her mind. Be courageous and call a professional and find out what is going on in her mind. Children and adults do not exhibit behaviors unless there is a payoff (benefit) in them doing so.

Best Wishes!

M. Kay Keller, PhD