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They are good friends since they were 4. Last weekend at a play date at my house they were playing with my girls tablet, making toys videos (just for fun, not uploading them anywhere), filming the dogs, themselves singing and dancing, etc. Just regular kid stuff I think.

Yesterday I went through the videos and found one of them that I found really disturbing. The friend asked my daughter to show her privates and she complied.

I asked my girl about it and told her to say NO if that happened again, and to tell me right away. She said she would do that, and seemed to understand it was wrong. She has a minor development disability, I spoke to her many times about her body being only hers, to respect it, to respect others body, not to let anyone touch her, etc. I never said anything about filming it because I didn't even think about it. In the video she just looked like she was playing.

Then I spoke to the friends mom. She said she would talk to her and that she doesn't know where that came from.

I deleted the video, I'm so upset. They were good friends and now I don't know whether letting her come again.

What do you think?

  • Are you sure it's not uploaded anywhere? A large majority of devices today automatically send pictures and videos to file services such as iCloud, Google Cloud, and OneDrive, etc. – user24631 May 16 '18 at 2:59
  • "she doesn't know where that came from" Almost certainly, it was among the lines of: "I wonder if Jane's privates look like mine. Well, there's only one way to know!" Especially if you're from a nudity-averse culture. – user7953 May 16 '18 at 9:22
  • I do not have issues with children curiosity about their bodies, I think it´s natural. What I worry about is the asymmetric situation, where my kid was given directions by other child who didn´t even appear on the video. It seemed abusive to me, even though at first I tried to think about it as a children game. The more I think about it the less I see it as a game. I worry about my kids friend, I don´t know whether she´s been in a situation like that before, and with whom. – MarieG May 16 '18 at 19:41
  • While unlike you I haven't seen the video, from what you describe it sounds very much like @user7953 suggests. Asymmetry doesn't automatically imply abuse. Most kids love role play, so one kid ordering another around seems fairly normal to me. You say you worry about possibly abusive situations your kid's friend is copying, and it's good you're not just ignoring that thought, but you did the best thing you could do without blowing this out of proportion - you told the friend's mom about it. That's a first step and likely the only one needed, besides a careful talk with your daughter. – Pascal says Talk To Monica May 24 '18 at 7:05
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It feels to me like you handled this appropriately. Children of this age, and really of any age, will do things like this; it's something that's scary as a parent, but also a very important teachable moment for both of you at this age. It's much better to have these conversations at 8 than at 13 or 14, after all, where it's much lower risk activity.

Whether you should involve yourself and avoid the friend or not, I don't think I can say. If your child were not developmentally delayed, I'd say that you should pay attention but not avoid the friend nor substantially limit her. I think the risk here is small enough that she'd learn from this without substantial parental intervention beyond what you already did - making it clear that her private things are hers and should not be shared with anyone.

As she's developmentally delayed, though, I think you and perhaps your pediatrician or other healthcare professional should consider whether this is something you need to take a higher degree of involvement with, if this causes her to be more at risk than most 8 year old children.

  • I'm the "asker". I don't know why the question is not linked to my profile. Just wanted to let you know I have already booked an appointment with her psycologist for this friday. I think she will handle the situation better (I want to find out whether something else happened off the video, and if there is something she is reluctant to tell me, even though I don't think there ir) and help us make correct decisions. I think my daughter understood what I explained to her and she will not allow behaviour like that anymore. Thank you so much for your feedback, I feel calmer now. Since I cannot "acc – MarieG May 16 '18 at 1:38
  • @MariaGonzalez Glad the answer was helpful. I converted this to a comment as that’s what it should be. I think one of the other mods can combine your accounts - I am new and don’t know how to yet! – Joe May 16 '18 at 4:28
  • @MariaGonzalez If you'd like to merge your accounts, you can see this page and combine them. – Joe May 16 '18 at 14:37

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