I take my own temperature, and those of my 3 children rectally. It is hard to explain that there is a wall of separation between ¨play¨ and ¨real¨. In each role of my life, Nurse Practitioner, woman, and mother, the mindset when administering rectal temps, suppositories, enemas, etc, is different and as are the stimuli or sensations received, and the thoughts in the moment as well.
Specifically, with my kids it´s always a more focused and and dry experience, so to speak, and seriously, no pun intended.
When doing so with my kids there is no association with my personal love of med play, and I do not think that any of us who are in a parental or pseudo-parental caretaker role (aunt, older sister, friend, babysitter-as-authorized) purvey any psychological damage to kids when we do these things. The most important factor I believe, particularly with adolescents is that they have a clear understanding of WHY these things are being done, and that it is not a matter of what they want, but what they need. By being open and honest about the why and discussing their (possible) feelings of embarrassment or timidity openly also helps clarify that this is clinical and not sexual, and that they should perceive it in a mature and ¨courageous¨ manner.
It has always been interesting to me even in my practice, the power the word ¨mature¨ has with an adolescent. When presented with objections by kids, I always find a way to use that word in context, such as, ¨Jennifer, I know you´re having mixed feelings about this, but it´s really no big deal, and letting me do it really is the mature thing to do¨, well .... that often seems to hit a button, and the attitude changes immediately. Skirt up or pants down, on their tummy, and thermometer in tushy! Oui la! Done deal!