11 year old boy: How can he be going through puberty? Help! Maybe TMI for some people

(39 Posts)
lucie19 Mon 06-Dec-10 01:46:22

I always worry about being the nuerotic mother but my eldest ds (11) seems to be going through puberty very young.
I have noticed for about 6 months now that his testicles seem to be hanging considerably lower down although his penis seems about the same size. He has started to get body odour and I have had to buy him deoderant. He also seems to be getting black heads on his face.
However in the last month he has been complaining it hurts when he sings and his voice keeps going very husky and he says at chior the teacher has asked another boy to do his solo with him because his voice is unreliable at the moment (whatever that means?) He has always been very hairy on his arms and legs, to the point where it matted on his arms and the doctor told me he probably had high testosterone levels.
I am a single parent with no dad to ask about this stuff so I am on my own here. Is he going through puberty and isn't he a little young to be going through quite so many changes? Thanks for your help.

Kaloki Mon 06-Dec-10 01:50:29

My DH went through puberty at the age. I wouldn't worry too much.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Mon 06-Dec-10 01:56:05

Early, but not freakishly so. I'd expect him to start covering up a bit more soon.

WingDad Mon 06-Dec-10 01:56:37

I recall my balls starting to descend when I was about 10, by 11 I had pubes and I was starting to need deoderant.

The rest took a little bit longer but yes, it's quite common for boys to start around that age. But also bear in mind boys progress at different rates, some will start early and it'll take aages for everything to happen, and some will start late and it all could happen very quickly.

Apologies for potential TMI in this post, and yes, if you're wondering, I was a very attentive young man when it came to my progression in puberty haha!

I'm surprised you've even seen his bits, DS1 (also 11, and starting to show signs of puberty) would be horrified if I or my wife saw his manhood shock

lucie19 Mon 06-Dec-10 02:10:09

He's still very innocent in a lot of ways, he still calls me in to condition his hair. I guess thats why I'm so shocked about the changes.
Please can you tell me about the voice changes. Is his voice breaking? and should I get him to give singing a rest for a while?
Also what can I expect next? not having been through male puberty and my only male sibling being 6 years younger than me I have no idea what to expect other than what the text books tell me.
I sound really naive, I'm not just suddenly finding myself in the dark.

WingDad Mon 06-Dec-10 02:25:03

Erm, I had a bit of a fraught childhood so I won't go into psychological changes because I think I might be an anomaly. However, in general you can expect sudden mood swings, irrationality and all sorts of undesirable personality traits.

WRT his voice, singing won't 'damage' his voice, as long as it isn't hurting his throat a lot when he sings. He'll lose the angelic pitch and may (very sadly) lose the ability to sing altogether, however many males do manage to keep on singing after a voice change, hence the creation of male choirs and all that! And the voice doesn't actually 'break', all it is is the vocal chords getting bigger. It may be very sudden (I remember a friend of mine's broke right in the middle of a presentation he was doing in school, he went bright red and thought he was ill!) or it might deepen over time. I experienced the latter, it took about a month for my voice to change. I didn't really notice it until someone told me.

Don't worry about naivety, if you don't know you don't know. There are books you can buy all about puberty changes

Hope this helps, I really don't mean to sound preachy, so apologies if it comes across that way! Any more questions just shout.

lucie19 Mon 06-Dec-10 02:36:56

Thank you so much just feeling out of my depth on this one. So goody I have a stroppy teenager to look forward too lol

WingDad Mon 06-Dec-10 02:41:13

My pleasure m'dear, all you have to remember when he's being a tit is that you'll get you're lovely boy back soon enough. It's a temporary change.

WingDad Mon 06-Dec-10 02:41:52

Oh gosh...

*your

Ooops blush

OldLadyKnowsNothing Mon 06-Dec-10 03:42:04

As WingDad has said, yes, your DS's voice is breaking. Expect him to spend the next few years grunting or being a bit arsey, and DO NOT GO INTO HIS ROOM. If he wants clothes/bedsheets washing, he puts them in the machine from here on in. Other than that, you don't wanna know... grin

And, again as WingDad has said, it is temporary. My lads are at the other end, and they're both (mostly) marvellous young men of whom I am immensely proud.

lazymumofteenagesons Mon 06-Dec-10 12:24:23

Both my sons went through puberty early as their father did and it seems to be hereditary. It also means they come out the other side quicker! Unfortunately mine also did their growth spurts at about the age of 11 and towered above the others for a couple of years, then everyone overtook them and they remained very average.

I'm surprised he doesn't want more privacy but it will come. I haven't seen any 'bits' since they were about 9/10.

Mine had proper deep voices at 11, it was weird.

MayorNaze Mon 06-Dec-10 12:26:38

v normal

ds has a few of these esp the BO <<poo>> but sadly the modesty part has not kicked in yet so i am far more privy to what is going on with his body than really is necessary grin

3littlefrogs Mon 06-Dec-10 12:30:06

Do make sure his shoes fit...poor DS1 went up 2 shoe sizes in one term - he complained his feet were hurting. I felt so guilty.

HollyTwat Mon 06-Dec-10 12:36:36

oh I'm glad you started this thread as I've noticed my (nearly) 9 yr old DS having BO

He's having mood swings and is very aggressive sometimes

maybe this is the start of puberty for him too, or is he too young?

I'm as in the dark as you Lucie19, the book I got for him was way too old imo so need perhaps a younger one

MayorNaze Mon 06-Dec-10 12:40:14

Holly - i actually spoke to school nurse about ds' agression around a year ago as he was so horrible but she was convinced it was puberty - she seems to be right as well.

MayorNaze Mon 06-Dec-10 12:41:15

i love a good puberty book grin- we have the usborne whats happening to me books in our house, both boys and girls versions they are nice and simple with good pictures without being overly babyish either

basildonbond Mon 06-Dec-10 13:33:09

sorry for stupid question, but do they all get BO? ds(nearly 14 eek) has still not gone through puberty - still looks like a little boy rather than a young man iyswim - but there are signs it's on its way - extreme modesty, a few teenage spots (not bad though) and feet that have gone up 2 sizes in the last 6 months

no body hair that I can discern, not a trace of facial hair, no growth spurt (I'm still taller than him, just), definitely no BO, even his feet smell OK grin - when's it going to kick in properly?

it's v important to him as he's currently competing against 6' plus boys with huuge muscles and he's not allowed to do weights with the big boys during training - and dd (8) has started helpfully pointing out that ds is much smaller than his friends ..

WingDad Mon 06-Dec-10 14:02:16

Some boys will sweat (and therefore smell) more than others, but I think in general, no one can get away with not washing because it will become evident soon enough!

But I think nothing is impossible, some boys won't have some of the more common traits of puberty. I remember I never once had any spots (which I was very thankful for!), so it may well be possible that some boys won't experience bad BO. However, BO is more to do with growing up, as opposed to being a temporary change during puberty such as spots, which will disappear.

Basil, your son will catch up soon enough, it's just a matter of time.

snowedinthesticks Mon 06-Dec-10 17:24:58

DS1 went through it at 10/11.

As someone else said check his shoes, DS went from size 6 to size 11 during year 6 at primary. Huge growth spurt- he was 6' and his voice broke just before he was 12.

At the time I struggled to answer his questions. I had no brothers and DH was no help. Most puberty books were mainly for girls and didn't do the details. I found one or two good books - "Everything you wanted to know about willys" was useful although some content for older boys.

Luckily DS was very open about it all. A little too much at times as he would demand I check out how much pubic hair he had grown. Since the previous week. hmm.He only had a brief flirtation with modesty when he was about 7.
Perhaps a word about extra hygene down below? DH did have to demonstrate that one to DS who was becoming distinctly whiffy.

DS2 is nearly 13 and not a sign yet.

lucie19 Mon 06-Dec-10 19:16:12

Took all your advice and have been out to the library and picked up the Usborne 'whats happening to me' boys book. Thought we could sit down together and go through it. I thought if I explained that I was unsure about it as well he would feel more relaxed with me to talk about it.
Am hoping its a good opportunity to lay down openess and communication between us before the stroppy bit kicks in. So will be an interesting evening once ds2 is in bed. lol

WingDad Mon 06-Dec-10 20:35:13

I'm not trying to tell you how to be a parent, but how about you give it to him to read and let him know that any questions he may have after reading the book, he can come to you.

I'm just thinking he might be too embarrassed to go through it together with you, but you know your son of course, if you think going through it together would be better, then that's absolutely fine.

I gave DS1 a book (shame on me, can't remember which one, but it was recommended by a very nice young man in Waterstones grin) and got him to read it then ask questions. I did this because reading through the book myself first made me a bit embarrassed and I didn't want to do that in front of him. He was quite matter of fact about it, and we've agreed that as things change, if he needs to talk he knows to talk to either me or his Dad.

He's a couple of months off 13, has been getting BO on and off for a couple of years (used to be if he did sports, now it's more of an everyday thing) No hair, voice is unchanged but balls dropped a good while ago, probably at around 11ish, thinking about it.

lucie19 Mon 06-Dec-10 23:34:13

I asked him what he wanted to do and he said he would like me to read it with him. I have always answered they're questions without embarrassment on the principle that if they're old enough to ask they're old enough to know (age appropiate of course). The first thing DS1 ever asked me about sex was when I was pregnant with DS2 (DS1 was 5) instead of asking me how it got in there which I was prepared for he asked me how it was going to get out lol
We talked very openly without embarrassment about everything and I think it was ok I have'nt bombarded him with information tonight. Gonna leave it a few days and talk some more. Thanks again to everybody esp. wingdad for your male perspective

MrManager Wed 08-Dec-10 23:37:10

Uh... how do know "his testicles seem to be hanging considerably lower down although his penis seems about the same size"?

He's 11, are you still looking?

BelleDeChocChipCookieMonster Wed 08-Dec-10 23:40:41

Do they have some sort of hormonal thing go on for a while first? Mine just keeps saying he's sad. Not at all like him.

My son's 11, he stopped changing his underpants when I was in the same room a few years ago. There's no way in hell I'd know if his testicles hung down.

Goblinchild Wed 08-Dec-10 23:42:59

Muuuummmm I've got a spot, come and look

Muuummm my hair needs conditioner now

Muuuum (a thousand other reasons why one might be in the same room as a nude son)

She's a single parent, she can't afford to have a paranoid and stressy relationship with him about his body. If there's a problem or a question, he needs to be totally comfortable with him and he with her.
If that makes you hmm Mrmanager, it's an issue that you have with relationships, not them.

MrManager Wed 08-Dec-10 23:50:26

I don't think it's a big issue, Goblinchild, I just don't remember ever being naked at that age long enough in front of my Mum for her to measure the descent of my testicles.

Like BDCCCM says above, that age is old enough to embarrassed about nudity in front of people.

Goblinchild Wed 08-Dec-10 23:52:33

Depends on the child and the attitude towards nudity that they've been raised with.

bruffin Thu 09-Dec-10 00:24:02

"Depends on the child and the attitude towards nudity that they've been raised with."

No it doesn't. We always had a relaxed approach to nudity but both my DS and DD started wanting privacy a year or so before they started puberty, it's perfectly normal part of development.

I know DS's voice started to breaking and wobbling when he was in year 6 and broke completly when he was 12. He could have started shaving when he was 12 as he had quite a moustache, but didn't bother until he was 14.

RCToday Thu 09-Dec-10 00:36:57

My DS is 11 and not in the least bit concerned about privacy

I was in the bath earlier, he walked in and started chatting to me as he needed the loo

I dont find anything hmm about that at all

melezka Thu 09-Dec-10 00:37:23

It is interesting that boys seem to go through this hobbit stage with their feet. You see these fairly ickle boys with massive feet - and then just a little while later they are much bigger and hairy and have deep voices.

DS1 is almost 13 and is more than happy to wander around in his boxers/chat to me whilst drying himself after a shower/stand in the living room in a towel (have a flat so the bathroom is next to the living room) At least once or twice a week he'll accidentally flash (cue cries of 'put it away, my eyes are burning' grin) He gets embarrassed when it happens, but he's not self-conscious about it or his body.

Definitely nothing hmm about it in the slightest.

lostinwales Thu 09-Dec-10 10:16:07

'his testicles seem to be hanging considerably lower down although his penis seems about the same size' thank you for that, I was wondering mightily about DS1 but it's not something that you can generally ask people about and DH can't remember much about himself. DS1 (nearly 11) goes through 5 minute phases of modesty but then gets bored of it and dives in the shower with the rest of us (can fit me and DS x 3 in, HUGE shower!)

Also his feet STINK, but I haven't noticed any BO yet. Thank you for the comments about feet too, he was complaining about his football boots at the weekend but he's only had them 5 mins and I thought it must just be his socks. How can he possibly have grown to a size 6 already, my baby!

He has started to have eczma again, where he used to have it when he was young (we used to have to wet wrap him at night) do you think this could be related, it must be at least four years since his last flare up?

Oh I love this thread, all my friends have younger children so there's no one to ask/compare notes with.

KerryMumblesFaints Thu 09-Dec-10 10:21:34

ds1 just turned 12 a week ago.

he would shrivel up and die if I ever saw his private bits.

His feet are MASSIVE but he is already 5'3" and looks to spurt up even more. I find they all shoot up around 12. Judging by the other kids in his class.

KerryMumblesFaints Thu 09-Dec-10 10:23:08

so therefore i have no insight into 11 year old's testicles but dh's testicles are very tight and hardly hang at all. thought this might have been a youth thing....

marriednotmulled Thu 09-Dec-10 11:12:12

This thread is making me smile

I have 2 almost 14 year olds in the house, 1 mine, the other DH's.

They have been poles apart in terms of physical development- DSS voice broke about a year ago and he has the body of a grown man DH tells me. He's 5'8" and seems to be slowing down a bit now but is cultivating a small beard/moustache shock.
DS only really started puberty about 6 months ago, has grown several inches and is now in size 10 shoes despite being only 5' 7". Am hoping his height will catch up before the circus asks to recruit him grin

The common theme is the 'eau de boy', despite daily showers and ozone killing quantities of deoderant. Why do they bloody stink?

Acanthus Thu 09-Dec-10 13:44:57

Is it the wanking do you think married grin

marriednotmulled Thu 09-Dec-10 15:16:01

Bleuurgh, thanks for that thought- not.

Nah, they save that for the bathroom I reckon (judging by the time they're in there!) as they share a room- bunk beds does not equal privacy.

snowedinthesticks Thu 09-Dec-10 15:29:57

Yes the powerful whiff of teenage boy. Even ones who shower twice daily and douse themselves in Lynx.
DS1's bedroom just reeks of testosterone. When he has four 15 year old friends sleeping over, well......

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