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Thread: this kid is driving me bonkers

  1. #1
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    this kid is driving me bonkers

    How many times have you heard me say that over the years? Not many actually. I tend to have a lot of patience for many kid behaviors and focus on the growth and positives.

    This one is driving me bonkers, N is a 5 year old girl. She has had difficult behaviors in the classroom and a little with us after school. The teacher has talked to parents often, parents talked to me a little bit and I have been honest that she has a lot of growth needed. She is young but some behaviors are closer to a younger child, and a good dose of stubbornness as well.

    Over a week ago she started a new behavior, self-soothing in a sexual way (rubbing outside her clothes). I have done all the proper steps, talked to teacher, social worker, parents, and made the SS call. I had a parent who is also a school counselor walk through and see her on the first day she was doing this. The parent followed up with me to make sure the SS call was made. She simply will not stop! Some afternoons I am redirecting her 10 or more times, other staff is doing the same thing. We usually just say "N hands on the table". Yesterday I made her leave the table and sit next to me in the cool off/time out space next to my desk. It took 10 minutes, tears and refusing to come with me. I have a bag of things that are just for this time out space and she actually got interested in the putty. Today she was right back at it without any awareness of previous conversations it seems. I think I have exhausted my 'this is perfectly normal but private' conversations with her. I am now treating it like a child with any behavior that needs to stop, and I am running out of patience. I will redirect her and when I look over 2 minutes later she is trying again. So tomorrow may be a lot of time in the time out/cool off spot.

    Side note that I first told my assistant about this before he had seen it. He asked what the problem was if it was self-soothing. Shouldn't she be able to do that. I think he understands better now that he has seen it for himself, not sure if he really thought it was okay or if he just likes questioning everything I do.

  2. #2
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    From my social worker experience she has been sexually abused or wouldn’t be doing this so obsessively at such a young age.

  3. #3
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teacher Terry View Post
    From my social worker experience she has been sexually abused or wouldn’t be doing this so obsessively at such a young age.
    Really? Is it really this cut and dried with Social workers? Black and white? Absolute?

  4. #4
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    And yes, Zoe, you dont complain about behaviors of the children you care for. There is always foing to be one that breaks the mold!

    This poor kid, though.

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    I would say that alternately there is a neurological issue.

    but the sudden never to always would concern me.

  6. #6
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    You may be misreading the behavior. If it came on that suddenly I would suspect she is rubbing at an itch, perhaps from something as simple as an allergy to the detergent her underwear is being washed in. Has anyone tried the obvious and just asked her why she's rubbing herself there? It seems potentially harmful for everyone to be talking to her as if what she's doing is sexual, if it isn't.
    The more you know, the less you need.

  7. #7
    Senior Member herbgeek's Avatar
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    If it came on that suddenly I would suspect she is rubbing at an itch, perhaps from something as simple as an allergy to the detergent her underwear is being washed in.
    Yep. Also possible that a 5 year old hasn't mastered the art of front to back wiping after toileting, and has a bacterial/yeast infection as a result.

  8. #8
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    Yes her mom should check first to see if she has a rash, etc and if not proceed from there.

  9. #9
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    I have talked to her, asked her if she needed to go to the bathroom, asked her if it hurts or itches. I have had a couple talks with dad, he took it very seriously and is getting a counselor for her and the behavior. The social worker at school is seeing her on a regular basis. My feeling is that it is part of the uncooperative and emotionally delayed overall behavior issues.

    From what I know it isn't sexual necessarily. It is a good feeling to them however. I have basically told her that any places that are under a bathing suit are private, not to be touched in front of others or by others. I also have told her that this is a bad habit like picking your nose, but we don't do that in front of other people even if it feels good to get something out of your nose.

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