Son's Curiousity

Discussion in 'Relationships, Discrimination, and Jealousy' started by Sean O., Nov 29, 2005.

  1. Sean O.

    Sean O. New Member

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    Haven't seen this come up on the boards, but wondering if anyone has had a similar problem, and how you may have dealt with it.

    My son is 13, turning 14 in a few weeks. We shower together after swimming at the gym, and on weekends when we go out on my father-in-law's sailboat (the bathroom at the marina has a small group shower). Over the last few months, I've caught my son staring at my equipment in the shower. After the first couple of times, I explained to him that it's not polite, and asked him if he had questions or wanted to talk about anything, but he clammed up. It stopped for a couple of weeks, but then started up again. I haven't noticed this behavior with any other adults in the shower, so I'm thinking it may be because of my size.

    At this point I'm thinking I will stop showering with him, but I will still have a couple of concerns - first, that is only addressing the short-term issue and doesn't get him to open up about why he's staring; and second, I'm hesitant to send him in the showers at the marina alone, because you never know who may be lurking. I might be paranoid about the second concern, but I know that won't leave my mind.

    Has anyone else encountered a similar situation? Is there a better way for me to approach this, other than how I've tried? Thanks.
     
  2. catman

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    you said you will stop showering...

    As the father of 3 sons- don't stop- imho, that sends the wrong message... Curiousity is normal- you said your son is 13/14- curiousity at that age is natural- esp with body changes kicking in. I suspect he wants to know what he will be 'like' when he grows up.

    You mentioned you are 'large', does he show signs?

    Have you had 'the talk' yet about sex and how to be repsonsible? Might be a good time, and an excuse to explore his feelings/thoughts...

    just my .02
     
  3. DC_DEEP

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    I agree with the above post, with an addition: do whatever you can to make your son feel comfortable discussing these issues with you.

    Perhaps begin a conversation with him, away from the shower, somewhere the two of you can talk privately. Go for a long drive, or for a game of golf, or anything where the two of you can spend some quality, private "father/son" time. Perhaps start with something like "I noticed you looking. Curiosity is normal, especially when you are going through some changes yourself. I don't want you to feel embarrassed, and I hope you can trust me enough to talk to me about these things, because there are lots of very important things you will need to know in the next couple of years, and I want you to hear them from me, not from your friends or from a book."

    If he notices anything but complete confidence from you about the subjects of sex and puberty, he will not want to talk to you. If he sees that you are comfortable and confident, he will pick some of that up from you. Best of luck... from your post, you seem to be halfway there already.
     
  4. yellowman

    yellowman New Member

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    I agree with DC Deep. My father never did this with me and I had to discover a lot on my own. That led to a lot of confusion and insecurities resulting in a lack of confidence. I have overcome that now, but it would have been a whole lot easier if my pops had dispelled a lot of the false perceptions when I was younger.
     
  5. Alley Blue

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    If I were you, I would ask him "why are you staring at me" while he's staring at you. Do it that moment, and if he clams up, then ask him that moment ( not later) "why are you so quiet". Situations like this should be dealt with "in the moment" and not later on, when he's able to deny it or perhaps feel more embarresed by it.

    I don't see you as paranoid at all. I would be protective and worried that someone may take advantage of his staring too!
     
  6. Pecker

    Pecker Retired Moderator
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    Your boy is simply curious about the possibility that he's going to have what his dad's got, wondering how big it'll get when it's hard, if it's going to present problems and he's seen other men have a look at it, too.

    What's the harm, really, Sean O.? Would you have him stare at someone else instead? In your frequent man-to-man talks with him discuss locker-room etiquette.

    Whatever you do, don't make him feel uncomfortable about showering with other males, including yourself.
     
  7. DC_DEEP

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    AlleyBlue, the reason I suggested waiting was so that they would not be in a public place. The boy may not be OK with discussing those things when there is the possibility of strangers overhearing the conversation. I still think dad should say "maybe we can talk about this later." Forcing the issue in a public shower is not the best idea.
     
  8. Alley Blue

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    Your absolutely right DC_DEEP. Oddly enough, when I posted what I posted, I only read Sean O. original post, not reading the other posts. But after reading your post, I agree with you. I was assuming that they would be alone in a public place, but if there are people around, or if he feels uncomfortable, then defiantly save the conversation for later. My only concern was that he may not want to discuss it after the fact, as Sean O. suggested. My thought was, if he brought it up while he was actually staring, he'd find no choice but to discuss it.
     
  9. B_horribleperson

    B_horribleperson New Member

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    be a good dad and talk to your son about his body and your body and girls body. spend some good father-son time and have the talk.
     
  10. Matthew

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    There's your good advice, Sean O.
     
  11. allmale

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    Yeah, it's definitely time for "the talk" somewhere alone where there is privacy and openness. You'll have to really go down a mental checklist
    so you'll cover everything. But yes, one of the first things you definitely
    want to talk about is lockerroom/public restroom ETIQUETTE. At his age,
    to stare in a lockerroom among his peers would not be a good thing.

    On your second point, you'll have to trust him AFTER you've had the talk
    to quickly shower and get on with business at the shower in the
    marina, to use with caution. You can't be there holding his hand forever,
    you have to let go sometime.

    Hope this helps.
     
  12. Simon9

    Simon9 Active Member

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    It's ALL good advice, IMO. Talk now or talk later. Be supportive and don't make a big deal out of it. Life's too short.
     
  13. B_caneadea

    B_caneadea New Member

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    :rolleyes: I think that you stifled his natural curiosity when you told your son that it was not polite to stare at your penis in the shower. Your admonition seems to reflect YOUR discomfort with the situation. This sends the message that curiosity or sex is somehow "dirty" or wrong.
    I see nothing wrong with your continuing showering with your son in the public showers. You have a legitimate concern about sending him there alone.
    To a kid, everything about sex is new and exciting yet often embarrassing.
    Everything in your post makes me think that you are a sincere caring dad who wants what's best for your son. All boys should be so lucky.;)
     
  14. B_caneadea

    B_caneadea New Member

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    Dear DC_DEEP,

    Your post brought tears to my eyes; I think because I wish that my own father had known how to be a better dad. Your words were wise, very wise......
     
  15. GoneA

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    what a curious and awkward situation.
     
  16. Pye

    Pye
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    Many great responses here...give your son as much information as he wants and some that he doesn't want-- you can never be TOO informed
     
  17. kurios

    kurios Member

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    I dont know but to me, at 13. being curious about sexual development and what the later teen years will bring is natural.
    Maybe you are the first adult that he has seen nude and feels comfortable looking at instead of just glancing. Maybe he wonders if he will look like you especially if you are hung.

    I say let him look and just carry on with your shower routine.

    I also think that you could start a talk with " Im sure your'e wondering about your development" then you could go in to some details about yourself, the differences between you both at this stage and when you started to mature. You could go into whatever level of detail you feel he is ready for but deal with the size issue and other information even to what condoms you suggest he use.
    He may be thinking holy shit am I small or is my Dad really hung to is that what I will be like someday. Who knows what goes through a 13 year old's mind.
    Your'e his father and friend. Fill him in and I suspect the staring will stop.
    In the talk I think you will find out why the stares.
    You might caution him about how other people might interpret stares and assure him that you are the one he should come to and ask any questions.
    I stared at my father any chance I got cause for quite a while cause I couldn't figure out why he looked so different (not circumcised) and it was only later that one of my friends explained. It would have prevented some stares if he had talked about the obvious differences.
     
  18. husky14620

    husky14620 New Member

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    I disagree, this is too confrontational and may make the kid clam up even more. He may just be curious, he may also be having uncertainties about his sexuality. The hormonal changes at puberty can create all kinds of strainge emotions and physical feelings. Young boys generally dislike and shun girls. At puberty, some eventually straight guys take longer to "like" girls, and are confused.

    I agree, to a point. Since the new board doesn't show everyone's sexuality like the old one did, I can only assume (yes I know) you are predominately or exclusively heterosexual. I am sure you know from the experience here if nothing else that most gay guys are NOT child molesters. And most child molesters are NOT gay. There are however a few sicko's who might try something. It also sounds like this marina may be somewhat exclusive? Not a likely place. And one can be too careful as well, leading to a young man who has been too sheltered and isn't ready for the real world.

    I think that gently reminding him that staring, under any circumstances, is rude is best while IN the showers, and then asking why he stares in the privacy of the car afterwards is the best way. Perhaps you could start out by saying something about your "gift", about averages, about puberty, early and late bloomers. Just try not to be too confrontational, young men that age usually begin to assert themselves against confrontation, and it could drive a wedge between you for a long time.
     
  19. D_Martin van Burden

    D_Martin van Burden Account Disabled

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    A lot of great stuff, I've read. I just wanted to reiterate the importance that you have at this stage, Sean. Your son is telling you nonverbally that he needs to get this sex stuff kinda sorted out, and trusting you as his male role model, he wants you to give him some answers. He clams up when pressured, but if offered a, "Hey champ, let's sit down man to man and talk..." he might be more amenable to the conversation. Don't expect him to spit out every single question. He probably won't. This is a gradual process. Just begin by letting him know you're there to talk. The next time he looks at your rod, use it as a teaching tool about shower etiquette (for sure), but also acknowledge that his curiosity is okay too.

    The endowment talk is a whole different story. I don't know how comfortable or appropriate it would be to share your dimensions, honestly. I think it's better to stick to some facts. His body is changing and he's noticing. He wonders what he's going to grow into, and he wonders if he's big enough just like ALL guys. It's your job to help him accept what he's got whether he's as big, will grow up to be bigger, or is just average or less in the dick department.

    Either way, he's going to be showering with other man as he gets older and that's just unavoidable. Having a mature discussion about sex doesn't need to get super complicated. It's really hard because parents want to have all the answers right then and there, forgetting that puberty doesn't happen in one day. He's got quite a bit of growing to do, and he's going to need a good parent around to support him through that process.
     
  20. GoneA

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    What a wonderful post DeeBlackthorne. That really was a very, very sage exhortation.

    :applause:
     
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