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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 10547
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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My husband and i discovered that my 7-year old son had been

Customer Question

my husband and i discovered that my 7-year old son had been looking at pornography sites. He got an i-touch for Christmas and we put locks on his devise, obviously, as we didn't want him coming across anything inappropriate. since then, and this is a mystery (hopefully we'll find out how and why the locks were removed, he has viewed porn several times. His history is full of inappropriate searches, including gross boyish, poop related searches, boobs, famous people like taylor swift boobs, boys butts, etc.. ect... Most disturbing of all were the searches relating to male genitalia. Boys nuts, boys naked butts, and it goes on and on. The misspelled words were a dead giveaway that it was him. Thank you google for correcting my son's misspelled porn search. We've taken the phone for now, he doesn't even know why. I'm waiting for my husband to get home so we can talk to him together. When we looked through the history we were appalled, ashamed, disgusted, scared, and frightened of what he's presumably viewed. Mostly appeared to be gay porn. We are very worried to say the least. He has a big sister who's 10 and most definitely didn't show him how to do this. Older cousins maybe, kids on the bus, on accident....??? We just don't know yet.
JA: The Psychologist will need to help you with this. Is there anything else important you think the Psychologist should know?
Customer: I'm sorry, i hit enter on accident. Yes, there is more. We don't even know how to begin this conversation with him. He is our first and only boy. He is kind, smart, and gets along with almost everyone because he is charming and just wants to socialize/ play so he's easy to get along with. He is very funny and sometimes his humor is body part related, normal right? we correct him for being inappropriate, explain he cannot make those jokes in class/around other people, or not at all depending on the joke. And sometimes we laugh at the creativity of his silly and what we though were innocent antics. i'm afraid of what he's seen. It's clearly directed more to male porn. What do we do?
JA: OK. Got it. Last thing - JustAnswer charges a fee (generally around $18) to post your type of question (you only pay if satisfied). While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Psychologist about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 9 months ago.

*This website DOES NOT constitute treatment and only provides information and advice in a Q&A format. For treatment (therapy and/or medications) you must go to a licensed professional in your area. Please note that anything said here is not private or confidential, as this is a public forum.

Hello and thank you for using JustAnswer. I can understand how this can be distressing to you as parents, but in terms of childhood sexual development this is considered common behavior, as searching the internet, TV, magazines, or movies for sexually related material at his age is not considered abnormal. Here are a few good links concerning normal childhood sexual development that you may want to look at to help reassure you that his behavior is not considered abnormal if that is a concern for you:

http://www.nsvrc.org/sites/default/files/saam_2013_an-overview-of-healthy-childhood-sexual-development.pdf

http://www.nctsn.org/sites/default/files/assets/pdfs/sexualdevelopmentandbehavior.pdf

http://kidshealth.org/parent/growth/sexual_health/development.html

Now I do agree that you want to speak to him about this because even though he is curious about the naked body (whether that be male or female) and curious about sexual intimacy, the material is not quite appropriate for his age. Try to tell him that private parts are meant to be private and that the material he is viewing is meant for adults because he has not fully matured yet to understand the human body in this way. You want to be calm with your son when talking to him about sex and pornography and if you have your own specific moral compass regarding pornography you should invoke that here to help give him a moral understanding as well of right and wrong. Talk to your son about sexual intercourse and how it is meant to be an expression of love and connection between adults and that is why he is not ready to view this material, but leave open the possibility that if he has any questions he can talk to you about it as you can be "role models" concerning sexual health. I know this will be a difficult subject to discuss with him, but as I said this is not an uncommon situation and most likely your son will respond positively to you and will cease this behavior for the foreseeable future.

Expert:  Dr. Z replied 9 months ago.

I hope this helps to provide you some guidance on this issue.

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