How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Theresa Your Own Question

Theresa, Psychologist
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 877
Experience:  PhD. Clinical Psychology - Ex. Director Adolescent Treatment Facility
Type Your Parenting Question Here...
Theresa is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

what is normal children sexual explortation

Customer Question

i just went in to my 7 year old daughters room to check and and say goodnight. both her and her friend were under the covers with thier pants off and touching thier own genitals. i asked my daughter to come in to the other room and i asked what they were doing. my daughter was very calm and kept saying that they were just hot. i asked why they had thier pants off and that i saw them touching themselves. my daughter never cried and kept saying that they were just hot. i let them sleep in the same room, but i made them sleep in seperate beds. i am a little freaked out to say the least right now. do i call a counselor? my doctor? what do i say to the other mother?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  Theresa replied 8 years ago.


I would not be freaked out just yet; however, I would be concerned. Normal developmental sexual exploration usually involves a small child from 3-5 years of age asking their parents questions.

Common questions for this age child follow: (Referring to the mother's breast)

What are them? How did you get them? Why don't I have them?

(Referring to the male penis from a female child)

What don't we have that? Is daddy's broke? (Because it doesn't look like theirs) etc.

The same questions could be reversed for the male child.

They may also ask their pregnant mother questions like: How did that baby get in your tummy?

From a behavior view the child that explores their sexuality may be found touching their private parts. The reason for this is because they do receive sensations from this that are pleasant. On the other hand they are not obsessed with it because if they had to choose between this and an ice cream cone, they would select the ice cream cone. It is merely something that they have learned is part of their body.

The reason that I said that I would b concerned with regard to what you saw your 7 year old doing is because children come into the world without any knowledge of sexual behavior. The questions the young child may ask occur when they notice that mommy has breasts or that daddy has a different private part.

To know to take off the underpants indicates to me that your daughter's friend may have seen her parent's (not intentionally perhaps) engaged in sexual behavior or that someone has touched her in this manner and she is educating your daughter. Not to frighten you but this could actually be reversed... Has your daughter ever had a sitter? Has she ever accidentally walked in on you and your husband?

Here is what I am going to suggest:

Sit down with your daughter and talk to her about her private parts (if you haven't already) and explain to her that she is not to let any one see them other than her mommy or her doctor when mommy or daddy take her to see him if she has a boo boo (or what ever you call it). You can ask her why she and her friend took their underpants off? Explain to her that if people other than mommy or the doctor want to look at or touch her privates it is because they are not nice and could hurt her. Be honest with your child and let her know that you are going to talk with her friend's mommy because you want to make sure that her mommy knows what happened because she might have to talk to her little girl about this too to make sure that she doesn't get hurt.

Do call the mother's child and let her know what happened. If she becomes angry at you for this do not let your little one associate with her child any longer. For if this mother becomes angry it indicates that she ignores things that take place around her because she doesn't know how to deal with them.


If this information has been helpful to you then please do ACCEPT by clicking on the green button on your screen for this is how we are compensated for our work. Positive feedback is always appreciated too!

If I can be of assistance to you in the future, you may request my help by typing:

ATTN: Terri60 before typing your question on the header or subject line and submitting it!

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
< Previous | Next >
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther Woodstock, NY
  • Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know. Robin Elkton, Maryland
  • He answered my question promptly and gave me accurate, detailed information. If all of your experts are half as good, you have a great thing going here. Diane Dallas, TX

Meet The Experts:

  • Rafael M.T.Therapist

    Rafael M.T.Therapist

    Family Counselor

    Satisfied Customers:

    MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
< Last | Next >
  • Rafael M.T.Therapist's Avatar

    Rafael M.T.Therapist

    Family Counselor

    Satisfied Customers:

    MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
  • Cher's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    Extensive Experience working with Children/Teens; M.A. Teacher/Tutor 40+ yrs.; Parent of 2
  • Jennifer's Avatar


    School Psychologist

    Satisfied Customers:

    Collaborative parent consultation on everything from modifying behavior to child development.
  • professional_Alison's Avatar


    Child Care

    Satisfied Customers:

    Degree in early years,16 years experience in childcare
  • Dr. L's Avatar

    Dr. L


    Satisfied Customers:

    Licensed as psychologist and marriage and family therapist
  • Dr. Shirley Schaye's Avatar

    Dr. Shirley Schaye


    Satisfied Customers:

    PhD-Psych; Certif. Psychoanalyst NPAP& NYFS; Memb.APsaA;IPA; Pub.Author; Teach/Supervise Therapy
  • Eveningstargazer's Avatar


    Family Counselor

    Satisfied Customers:

    Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT)

Related Parenting Questions