We have a 10-year-old daughter. She occasionally keeps phlegm in her mouth and plays with it. Sometimes, I see her blowing bubbles with her phlegm or taking it out and sucking it back in. It's really disgusting and we have tried many times to get her to stop but it seems like she can't help it. Any advice will be great.

  • 1
    Is this an occasional thing or more constant? I think from seeing kids do this it's not an uncommon behavior and likely one outgrown if you just remind her it grosses people out. Since you say "sometimes", it doesn't sound like a constant issue where it could be a compulsion, but more like one of the ways kids learn to entertain themselves that adults find gross. – threetimes Aug 24 '17 at 4:45
  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. Any further discussion posted here will be deleted. – Rory Alsop Aug 25 '17 at 12:58

Its really disgusting and we have tried many times to get her to stop

How did you? From my experience it matters, how you are transporting what you want to say, especially with children, since their ability to take your utterings to a meta-level is somewhat restricted. There are many wrong ways to say that you want her to stop

  • Stop it, it is disgusting.
  • Stop it, for it disgusts other people.
  • Stop is, because other people will think badly about you.
  • Stop it, because girls don't do these things.
  • ...

You'll really have to say, what you want to say, that it disgusts you, while you have no opportunity to avoid seeing it. Tell her, that - if she really can't stop - that she can do it in another room, when you are not around. I believe that telling her to stop it at all is not the way to go, since she does not harm herself or others.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.