Obsessed With Breasts...

Nicole - posted on 06/17/2010 ( 6 moms have responded )

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Okay, I have an unusual situation (I'm hoping it is not as unusual as I'm thinking, because I need good advice).

My five year old son is very into breasts. The bigger the breasts, the larger the fascination. He is quite into my own breasts and my bras at home, but I have not been bothered by it. I just chalked it up to being breastfed and having very fond memories of comfort and love from the breast, but where I am seeing this being a problem is with women other than myself. He is very loving and sweet. He has never met a stranger and he hugs EVERYONE! He loves to give others compliments. i.e. "You're sweet!", "You are pretty!", "I love you!", and so on. But in that loving, he can get quite touchy with women's breasts (especially if they are large). When it is women that I would call great friends and are very aware of my breastfeeding history, etc. I do not feel so embarrassed, but he seems to do it more often with those ladies I am casually acquainted with or see less often.

So, my question: How do I teach him to not touch or talk about women's breasts (he very vocally points out how big they are if they are large) without making him feel like he is bad or in trouble? Especially since he sees his little brother nurse from my breasts 10-12 times a day. Another thing he is really into! He loves to sit next to me and rub my shoulders or kiss my face and say things like "Marcus, Mommy is feeding you your really yummy milk! Isn't that great?!" and "Awwww, Mommy you are so nice to feed Marcus his milk." He is just such a sweet child and I don't want to make him feel that there is something wrong with breasts, because I know that his curiosity with them is purely from a functional view (breastfeeding) and I don't want him to think they are taboo and I don't want to tell him not to touch people because he is a hugger and that is a huge part of his interaction with people and, usually, it makes people VERY happy to be hugged by a sweet 5 year old, but I want to teach him about personal space at the same time.

See my dilemma? Please help from an attachment parenting view!

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Karen - posted on 06/18/2010

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Since my daughter is only 19mo old I can't speak from experience, but my first thought is similar to Brenda's - have a conversation with him about it. Since you're AP, then he's probably had lots of conversations about feelings of others throughout his life, and this can be another one. Maybe he can come up with another way to show his affection ... help him come up with some sort of alterntative.
As far as respecting people's personal space, I would start with very intentionally respecting his. Ask before giving him a hug/tickles etc. Teach him that if he doesn't feel like being touched then he can just say so. That might help him to translate that into making sure it's okay to give a hug before actually doing so.
Sounds like you've got a real sweetie there! Maybe he's going to be a bfing advocate or something LOL!

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Joni - posted on 12/28/2012

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My son is five, and does the same thing! He loves to look at Victoria's Secret catalogs, and will also try to touch me there, but almost always only when another person is there! A couple of weeks ago, he would not let us leave till we took the Boston Proper magazine at my friends house. I just researched this to see if it was a common happening. I am glad that I read the post, and the responses. Thank you for sharing!

Kim - posted on 06/20/2010

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I have 3 boys (ages 11, 8 and 2) and it may just be a boy thing. My older boys around 4-5 were fascinated with boobs-especially big ones. I did have to have the bathing suit/personal space talk with them. However it did take some practicing (you know having to remind them after seeing them "grope" another auntie). They are smart at that age and will be able to understand that. Even now they still like to be around when I am nursing there little brother :)
Your son my not grow out of liking/loving breasts but at least he will have respect for them as he gets bigger:)

Nicole - posted on 06/18/2010

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Thank you so much all!!! You had some really great advice! I don't know why this was so tough for me to come up with a solution for, but I think it was a combination of being embarrassed when he did it and not wanting to change his love-able nature that I couldn't think of a clear solution.

I will keep you updated!

Brenda - posted on 06/17/2010

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I'd just sit down and talk to him about how other people's breasts are private areas for them, and while there is nothing wrong with them, since they are made for nursing babies, it is just not too nice to touch or talk about them because it makes them feel uncomfortable. Just go witht the "if it is under a swimsuit" idea for stuff you don't touch or talk about with other people. That way he kinda gets the idea of private areas, but doesn't feel like they are bad areas. Just things that people keep to themselves. Give him examples, like tell him that other kids don't touch or talk about your breasts, so it is just nicer if you don't do it.

I've got a hugger too. He wasn't breastfed, but the boy is obsessed with my "boobs". He watched his brother nurse, and sometimes tells me "He wants your boob milk!" LOL :) He's almost five.

Marcy - posted on 06/17/2010

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Nicole your post is so sweet I have tears in my eyes...truly! I love that your son is that way. My little dude is exactly the same. my son is still nursing (he's almost 4) so he is way in to my boobs. Fortunately he is slightly shy with others (unless he knows them) so we have been able to escape the whole "touchy, feely" for the most part. Since he is 5 years old and obviously a bright child maybe you can start teaching him other ways to say Hello. Maybe go to the library and look up ways that people say hello in different parts of the world....and then incorporate that in to a lesson and include handshaking for "new" friends.

Honestly, with the exception of doing things like what I mentioned above I would let it pass. I'd much rather have a child who hugs and is a love bug......good luck!

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