Here’s Why Your Toddler Is Obsessed With Their Butt

Toddlers are cheeky little people—literally. They love anything (and everything) to do with their backsides. They love saying the word “butt”, telling toddler-esque butt jokes, and, ahem, even showing you their bottom. But before you butt in on all their fun, you should know that this is a very healthy (and normal) part of growing up. Here’s why your toddler is obsessed with their butt, and what you can do about it. 

For the most part, you shouldn’t worry too much if your toddler is totally loving their tush. “Toddlers are famous for pushing the limits and testing boundaries, and this is their age appropriate means to do so,” says Leigh Ellen Watts Magness, LCSW, R-PT, a child and adolescent therapist who specializes in healthy sexual development in Athens, GA. “Try as we might, it may be too hilarious to curb their behavior until it runs its natural course”. 

So if your toddler is obsessed with their butt, here’s how to get to the bottom of it. 

It Gets A Reaction

When your child talks about their butt, what usually happens? They get a laugh because what they’re saying is usually so silly. “Toddlers love butts because adults react to them loving butts,” says Magness. “Toddlers don’t love elbows because no one giggles or blushes or shushes them when they mention elbows.” So if you want your kiddo to cut down on the potty talk, it might be best to try to reduce your reaction to their antics….if possible.

They’re Learning About Their Body Parts

As your child transitions to toddlerhood, they have a greater awareness of their body parts and what they do. Often, a reason why your toddler is obsessed with their butt is because it’s still something new to them. “Healthy sexual development includes two facets: appropriate sexual knowledge and appropriate sexual behavior,” says Magness. “During toddlerhood, appropriate sexual behavior includes enjoying nudity, touching genitals for pleasure, and using elimination words with peers.” According to Magness, healthy sexual knowledge at this age involves a mastery of labeling body parts as well as understanding differences between male and female bodies. 

They’re Interesting

Let’s face it: elbows just aren’t all that interesting. Sure, they bend, but what else do they do? Butts, on the other hand, can do a whole lot, from farting to pooping. And whenever your child’s butt does something, it’s a big deal, especially to your toddler. After all, a toot will probably get a laugh, and pooping (particularly during potty training) will get a round of applause, hugs, and even a reward. That’s why you can’t really blame a toddler for being obsessed with their butt when it gets such a positive response. 

They’re Funny

No matter what age or stage of life you’re in, fart jokes are funny. And that’s why your child wants to toot right at the dinner table when everyone is eating. “Jokes about poop, discussions about butts, and fascination with butts or genitalia all fall well within the limits of healthy sexual development for toddlers and older children as well,” says Magness. Of course, you can always encourage your kiddo to refrain from purposely pushing out a fart at inappropriate times, but really, sometimes there’s no reasoning with a toddler. 

There Might Be An Issue

Unfortunately, in some cases, your toddler’s talk about their tush might have another meaning. “Parents may want to seek additional support for their child if the child discloses abuse, or if they have sexual play that is coercive, aggressive, or does not stop with limit setting,” says Magness. If abuse isn’t the issue, and your child’s talk continues, there are ways to help. “Parents can help in this area by using proper terms for genitals (not slang), and talking confidently and casually about bodies,” says Magness. “If the butt talk is becoming distressing to parents, try not to react to it and ask other adults in the child’s life to minimize their reactions as well.” 

Whether you find it funny or silly (or a bit of both), your toddler’s obsession with their butt is most likely totally normal. Just try to soak in the moment, (and not, you know, the smell), and appreciate this sweet yet stinky stage that your toddler is in.  

Photo Credit: Shutterstock
No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.