taking a bath

Actress Jennette McCurdy still handles the emotional aftermath of the complex relationship with her overbearing mother and life as a child star. In a recent interview on “The Louis Theroux Podcast,” McCurdy discussed details about her best-selling memoir, “I’m Glad My Mom Died.”

McCurdy discussed how her mother would shower her until she was 17 or 18 and how she would “be in the shower with me shampooing and conditioning my hair, washing my body.” The now 31-year-old recalled how her mother would give her vaginal and breast exams in the shower, checking for lumps and cancer.

She noted that her mother would be clothed, but it was still uncomfortable for her, stating that it felt violating to her. McCurdy said the one time she asked her mother if she could shower herself, her mother became hysterical, making it clear to McCurdy that she couldn’t try to bathe herself again.

This situation raises the question, when should children start bathing alone? Most experts believe that children are typically ready to wash themselves in the shower or bath when they’re about 8 years old. However, some independent children might be prepared a bit younger, around six or seven, whereas some may feel comfortable with you washing them when they’re nine or 10. All children reach this stage at different times, but you may want to supervise them before letting them do it all themselves.

Teaching your child to bathe themselves.

Before teaching your child how to bathe themselves, explain that they can still have fun in the water, but they should concentrate and listen to understand how to wash themselves properly. Mention that they should keep shampoo and soap away from their eyes and avoid mixing the two. Teach them that shampoo is for their hair and soap is for their body and face.

Ensure that the shampoo, soap and towel are within reach for your child from the bath. Start with the face and tell your child to wash critical areas like the armpits, neck, behind the ears, buttocks, chest, feet, and legs. You may need to help them wash their hair before they do it alone. Once they’re finished, they should rinse off the soap and shampoo, which you may also want to do for a while before they start doing it themselves.

When they leave the bath, they should step on the bath mat and dry themselves off with a towel. It’s a good habit to give them separate towels for their body and face and ensure they dry their whole body, including hard-to-reach areas like the armpits and buttocks.

Teaching your children how to bathe is essential to growing up. Although Jennette McCurdy’s mother chose to shower with her well into her teen years, you should start teaching your child how to bathe while they’re young to maintain proper hygiene habits as they grow up. It’s common for children to begin washing themselves when they’re around 8 years old, but some children may be ready sooner. In that case, ensure they know all the ins and outs of hygiene and be available if they need help.

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