Help! I don't know if this is inappropriate or a sign of something.

[deleted account] ( 20 moms have responded )

My boyfriend of 1 year (met my daughter in May) and has been peeing with the door open occasionally ever since. He will announce that he needs to pee and ask her if she needs to go (she is fully potty trained). He thinks its funny that she likes to watch him since she has never seen a penis before (her birth father has never been in her life). The first time it happened I was in shock and didn't say anything. It's happened many times since then. Is this inappropriate? What should I say?

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Jennifer - posted on 09/11/2013

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as a mental health specialist I can tell you this behavior is called "grooming" and IS a form of sexual abuse and is often followed by molestation. get out now. do not sit this man down and have a talk get the heck out and protect this child before it is too late. If you were my client and reported this to me I would have to call the authorities. Seriously, I am afraid for your daughter and hope it is not too late.

Amanda - posted on 09/11/2013

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Every parent has different limits. I know some people who think it is okay for their children to watch and learn....and like myself i don't think it is right. My husband and i have only been together for 4 years...so my 5 year old was from my ex husband. When we first started dating i didn't put any restrictions, "limits" on him....he just knew that it wasn't his child and he wasn't going to step over the boundaries. I'm sure if you just say something to your boyfriend he will respect you for standing your grounds and totally understand where you are coming from.

Cindy - posted on 09/11/2013

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It is completely inappropriate! First of all there is no reason he should be showing her his private parts or letting her watch him pee. Shes not a boy and not currently learning to go to tbe bathroom and he's not her father. Whats he going to do next have her touch him!? You are her mother and as such it is your job to keep her safe. There is no easy way of dealing with it. You should sit him down and set down the law. Your daughter is off limits and thats that and its not funny that he could be doing some kind of mental damage to her. Shame on you for not stopping it from the very first time.

Stephanie - posted on 09/11/2013

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I think this is very inappropriate behavior. I would sit down with him and have a calm talk on how you feel this is inappropriate. He should always shut and lock the door, while showering, going to the bathroom and changing his clothing. This needs to be stated to him. He might surprise you and say oh I'm sorry. But I would watch him with her. Never leave him alone with her until she is old enough to tell you when being touched inappropriately. Talk with her about how it is not ok and that you will always be there for her and she will never have to worry about anyone being hurt if she tells. I was a single mother and my daughter was 5 when I met my husband. When my husband moved in with us he would get really upset when my daughter would get out of the bath and try to dress in the living room.(She had done this since she was little). He locked the bathroom door all the time. He did not ever want her seeing him naked or him seeing her naked. He's like that with his biological daughter as well. He feels it is morally wrong and so do I for children to see adults naked. Anyway, just talk to him about it. If it continues I would leave.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/11/2013

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Trust me, even if it seems like a silly idea, anyone who is bringing someone around their kids should never be uncomfortable about bringing up appropriate limits.

Even if you start with "You're going to be spending time with my kid, so here are some of the expectations that I have for that"...and start listing. I know that bathroom behaviour is not a normal conversation, but when you have kids, nothing is wrong with mentioning that "my daughter is very curious about other people in the bathroom. Please don't encourage that by allowing her to accompany you to 'watch'." If someone gets offended at that, then you know right off that they don't need to be around your kids.

Thing is, when you have kids (single parent or not), you need to be the "aggressor" as far as setting boundaries for other's behaviour around your kids. Its easier to address it at the beginning, than it is to go back and address it later.

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[deleted account]

I've never had anyone act inappropriately around me or my child before so obviously I've never had to have a conversation. Nor had anyone been inappropriate around me or my siblings to warrant a convo like that from my parents as a child.

You said I should have had a "limits" convo before he met my daughter. I don't believe that's true because you can't possibly list every limit you have for your children and especially if you don't know how that person will behave around your child.

You could have a convo about that with your child, but mine is still too young to really understand.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/11/2013

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What do you mean "how these conversations go"?

They go like any other conversation. If someone is around my kids, and acting inappropriately, I tell them that I'd appreciate their restraint in their actions around my kids

[deleted account]

Thanks Amanda.... I will be letting him know how I feel and my expecations for potty time haha xoxo

[deleted account]

I'm curious to hear how these conversations go.... I've personally never had to have them with anyone... nor had I heard my parent's have "limit" conversations with anyone when I was growing up.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/11/2013

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I don't have to be a single parent to have had conversations with others regarding limits around my kids!
Limits are limits. Mine are pretty strict, and I don't mind letting anyone who deals with my kids know that.

[deleted account]

I do redirect her.... When I asked if you are a single mom, it was to garner whether you have had conversations with a boyfriend/so about what you call "limits". It seems to me that these would be obvious/natural (although in the case of the potty watching I can see some grey area as everyone is raised with different views on what is appropriate/inappropriate).

Clearly my interests are in protecting my child. I'm not sure why you are stating that like I need reminding of my motherly duty???

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/11/2013

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First of all, when it comes to your kids, and appropriate limits with them, it doesn't matter whether you're a single mom or not.

Inappropriate is inappropriate. He's not her biological father, he doesn't have any "real" connection other than that he's your boyfriend, not even spouse, or life partner, so that means that stricter limits should be in place before he ever meets your kids.

As Amanda pointed out, yes, he definitely could be grooming her now, or not, (I'm not saying he's a pedophile, but this would be grooming behaviour), and it is your obligation to protect your child first. If she "insists"...you persist in redirecting her.

Amanda - posted on 09/11/2013

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kids especially girls are going to be curious of course......they see that there are differences.....they want to know what it is. There is nothing wrong with a child being curious, but i do think that she is getting to the age that maybe it's not the best idea for him peeing infront of her. My husband showers my 1.5 year old, but not the older girls as they are obviously more curious then my youngest(and he only does that because i'm 29 weeks pregnant with our 4th, and its just getting to be too much to be bent over a bath tub). If you aren't concerned about anything else, then just put a stop the her watching him pee...My middle daughter has tried standing up to pee before because that is what she has seen daddy do....but again, that is why he now locks the door when he is going to the washroom or showering!

[deleted account]

She absolutely insists on going in the bathroom (or wherever he is) with him. If he is showering she tries to open the door. She really adores him. He is very good with her, always playing and being silly together. I've never left them alone together. But aside from the potty watching I have no concerns.

[deleted account]

I should say, she is 2.5 years old. And my boyfriend is from Scotland. Not sure if it could be a cultural thing to be so open about peeing. Obviously my daughter is my number one priority and I watch them very closely as it is. That is why I'm asking for opinions here...

Amanda - posted on 09/11/2013

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Of course she is your priority, i wasn't meaning she wasn't...sorry if you took it that way! No i don't believe that is a cultural thing though, and even if it was, it's still not right, and i would make sure that no matter what it stops. How does your daughter react to him? Does she seem to like him, does she insist on going in with him?

[deleted account]

Are you a single mom? I am not sure if watching a man pee should be a limit or not. That is why I would like opinions.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/11/2013

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You should have set limits with him BEFORE bringing him into the picture with your daughter. As it stands, set them now, and if he can't abide by them, he goes. Out the door, I mean.

Amanda - posted on 09/11/2013

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I'm not sure how old your daughter is, but the fact that he is asking her if she needs to go while he is going and then lets her stand there and watch him it is VERY INAPPROPRIATE. Just tell him how you feel about the situation. You are her mother, and you need to protect her. He should really learn to shut the door while he is going to the washroom...out of respect for everyone around!! I am a mother of 3 girls ages 5,3,&1.5. They were really bad for just walking in on him while he was peeing, but he would ask them to leave because daddy needed privacy. He now locks the door just to make sure they don't walk in on him. They are very curious, but it's just not right. A girl doesn't need to see and learn about a mans "privates" until they are at the right age...I honestly would make him stop....and if he continues, i'd be watching him a little more closely with her. I'm not trying to be rude, but i would just really watch for the little signs.....Just remember she is your daugther and if he is that comfortable with her seeing him like that now, who knows what else he will think is funny. She should be your number one priority, so please just watch out for other signs, and put a stop to her seeing him like that!!

Sonja - posted on 09/11/2013

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Um, yeah I would say inappropriate but I know guys like that and I'm sure he really does just think it's funny. Unfortunately you do need to tell him that it is inappropriate and you understand it may have been funny to him at first but that's just not the case any more. good luck!

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