I need some help

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The situation is the following: two boys at the age of six who have been very close friends since birth, their parents are also very close and have been for years. The boys were caught touching each other in their private area and kissing. We were devastated, never thinking that this could happen at the age of six. They were both told individually by their own parents that you don't play games like that. That is your private area and you don't let anyone touch you nor do you touch anyone else. We asked them if anyone had done this to them before and they both said no. We made sure they understood you must always tell your mother if someone does this to you. [...]

Four months later we had a party with a few other kids around, who were all about the same age. They were playing hide and seek and trying to scare each other. Well, the same two little boys, still six years old, were caught doing the same thing again. I caught them when I was checking on them. They were hiding in a closet. [...]

He started to lie and said that nothing happened but then he finally said: "OK, I know it was wrong, I know we were told not to do that before, but we just forgot." Well I clearly know they didn't forget. I asked him how many times this happened and he said this was the only time since they were told it was wrong. I again told him he can't do this, he can't play games like this, you don't touch others like that and you don't let other people touch you. We have tried to keep this to ourselves. I guess we were ashamed. I feel I have failed as a mother, not teaching him right from wrong. I don't know what to do. I don't know how to handle this, I'm afraid. My son doesn't even act like he's been in trouble. He sits and listens to my husband and me explaining to him why he can't do this kind of stuff and then he says: "OK, I won't do it again, can I go play now?" I feel like he just doesn't get it. Our friends, the parents of the other boy, have handled it differently. He got yelled at and spanked and told he would never play with any other boys until they could trust him again. [...]

Should we go talk to a professional that might deal with this kind of stuff?

source: Letter 'I need some help' by Janet [edit], Birmingham; De Nieuwe Sekstant; December 2005