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What do you say to your son, 12, about girls and dating? If you have a daughter, is it a different message?

Since my son is younger, I have already been through a lot with my DD, 16, and dating/boys. It has not always been pretty and he's seen that. She was interested in boys starting at 14. I've told her not to get so overinvolved with boys, keep your hobbies, girlfriends, don't make them a priority, work on yourself!! So, my son has a girl who likes him and plays in band with him. I've met her since I teach at his school. They talk at school, and are in concerts together, she gave him a bunch of packs of lifesavers and a flower at school on Valentine's day, where they can buy one for someone and it's delivered to the class. I said, that's so nice...and you are a nice young man, but no dating until 16. He said, no offense Mom, but I think that's a little overprotective...I'm not going to be like my sister and get all freaked out and break down all the time. LOL!! And I added, when you are around her, I hope you are a gentleman, careful and polite in your words, and keep your hands to yourself. He says, ma, I'm not a creep! I said, if you want to show her you like her, bring her a cupcake, share your favorite book, a drawing you've done. (Already talked to him about problems with computer/porn stuff, creeps on there, ugh!!) I think I'm getting through, but do you think 16 is too long to wait? And what else should I be telling him in advance?? He looks older then 12, voice changing, hairy legs and that little fuzz on the upper lip...and handsome. But, he's still so young!! He will be 16 in summer before he is a junior in HS. Thanks, Moms, the only reason I'm somewhat sane is because of all of you!!

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Asked by Anonymous at 12:06 PM on Apr. 17, 2011 in Tweens (9-12)

Answers (11)
  • our son and daughter are only a grade apart. right now its only kindergarten and preschool (son is older) but I know that'll change fast. in general our plan is groups only (movie, mall, etc) til highschool. then maybe dates, proms, etc..... but maturity will matter. because my kids are SO close in age we have to treat them like twins basically equal as much as humanly possible

    Answer by hibbingmom at 12:10 PM on Apr. 17, 2011

  • The purpose of dating is to find someone to marry. No, 16 is not too long to make him wait. Look at all the teen pregnancies and such from kids being allowed to go on dates at early ages. At his age he should be focused on schoolwork and only friendships.

    But yeah, I'm sure to get a lot of downvotes for this answer.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:12 PM on Apr. 17, 2011

  • i think that 16 is a good age for they first girlfriend .my son just turn 14 and i found out like 2 days agot that he had a girlfriend and i told him his too young right now by the time he hit 16 he could have his first girlfriend at the same time im new at being a mom to a teen

    Answer by sexyscorpio69 at 12:17 PM on Apr. 17, 2011

  • Oh my goodness . . . that is hard . . . I'd like to keep mine locked up until 23!!
    So, I am with you on the age . . I think it will be 15 here, for official dating, but hanging out in groups, probably earlier.
    It is important to talk to them about hormones, emotions, and future goals. Keep reminding them that the number one priority is life success, and any boyfriend/girlfriend who is not supporting success in academics and activities is keeping them down. Talk about the consequences of pregnancy.
    Your job is to get them through to adulthood, and that may mean getting involved in their relationships and guiding them away from detrimental influences.
    And, yes, my son is going to get an extra earful about respect of women, protection of women, and being vocal in his social circle about zero tolerance for any disrespect toward the ladies.

    Answer by ImaginationMama at 12:19 PM on Apr. 17, 2011

  • l wouldn't really put a number on it- I mean it sounds like you have told him a lot of the important things, maybe let them hang out or whatever if they want- but with other people around as well?

    As for the person who said dating is so you can find a marriage partner...I think that dating at least at first, is about figuring out what works and what doesn't - what you like in others and what you don't, what you can tolerate and what you can''s a learning process- it doesn't HAVE to be super serious...


    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 12:32 PM on Apr. 17, 2011

  • Nope, we tell our dd the same things we tell our son. You might want to discuss with your son how agressive some of these young girls are or become. Our son had a gf that tried quite hard to get him to have sex with her, he didn't, they broke up and she took up with someone who would have sex with her. She was barely 15 at the time. He doesn't date, except for like a school dance or something, his choice, he says most of the girls have had sex with more than one partner and seem to expect to have sex with anyone they are dating and considered to be a couple with. Thanks to all the talks we've had with both of them, he doesn't want to get into a situation he knows hes not ready for so he doesn't really date. He's 16. Sad isn't it.

    Answer by meriana at 12:57 PM on Apr. 17, 2011

  • I don't think 16 is too long of a wait.

    I would tell him, that i don't mind them being friends, that i don't mind them hanging out, having crushes on each other, buying each other cute little things....but that i do think that kids under 16 aren't mature enough for a relationshsip for many reasons. I think 14 is too young for boys & girl both.

    Answer by samurai_chica at 1:00 PM on Apr. 17, 2011

  • same messafe and as long as rules and grades are followed then we have no issue starting at middle school so 12/13yrs of age.

    Answer by momto3infl at 4:39 PM on Apr. 18, 2011

  • I think that it is a little crazy for us (parents) to say no boy/girl friend until x age. They are starting younger and youner. They have so much peer pressure. I use to say 16, but found out that she, my dd just lied about the boyfriend. I think you need to keep open lines of communication. I rather be told at 13 about a boy/girl friend and be lied to for years. Just my thoughts.

    Answer by juliemomx2 at 7:10 PM on Apr. 19, 2011

  • sorry but kids shoudn't be dating at 12!

    Answer by SweetlilQtMama at 11:16 PM on Apr. 21, 2011

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