There isn’t much that shocks me anymore; there’s even less that makes me feel uncomfortable but when I walked in to the nursery to see the Small humping her bunny rabbit (oh the irony!) I would say that shocked and uncomfortable were both emotions that knocked the wind out of me.
I mean REALLY…I was not expecting to be dealing with this kind of thing at 18 months. I figured that this may be a conversation to have when we had to talk about boys or puberty, or perhaps periods and sex. I did not expect to have to sit with my husband, in my infancy as a parent, and talk about my 18-month-old’s penchant for the bean-flicking comfort technique.
After much internet research I have discovered that this is pretty normal. In its most simple terms, they do it because it feels nice and let’s face it, who can blame them? But, when I went to get her from the nap I was faced with a choice: do I ‘interrupt’ her, or erm…for want of a better term ‘let her finish’?
In the end, I just picked her up, stuffed the bunny in a corner and distracted her with a snack. She was grumpy. When I told my best friend that I had decided to interrupt her little ‘comforting’ session and she was now a bit grumpy, her response was, ‘Well, wouldn’t you be?’
When, the other day, we noticed her humping on the baby monitor my husband had to turn it off because it was all too freakin’ weird for him. “I can’t watch her do that!” he exclaimed visibly shaken by the thought of his Small, who should really know nothing more than the pure joy of being given a drop of ketchup to dip her veggies in, getting her rocks off.
Now, mostly, we find it hilarious. We catch her doing it about once a week (she’s probably doing it more) and after the initial shock, I’m now not bothered by it at all. She tends to do it when she’s tired or sleepy and thankfully, she has yet to exhibit this behaviour in any kind of public arena (how on earth do I handle that?!) but for now, we’re leaving her to it. I’m hoping she’ll grow out of it and if not, then we’ll have to have that chat about how it’s a ‘private thing’ that we do ‘in the comfort of our own bedrooms’ and not on busses, or the corner of school desks (as a friend of mine once had to convince her Small of).
So, baby bean-flicking. Who would have thunk it?