my 11 y.o. is holding hands with boys. how do i react?

Melissa - posted on 05/19/2011 ( 6 moms have responded )

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We have already talked about periods and sex etc. but only the mechanics of it all. I need pointers on how to address her from the emotional standpoint. I dont want to scare her off from talking to me about these things. She has been hiding the boy interests from me so far and the only reason I know about this is because I found a note in her backpack... What do I say about the subject to keep her talking to me and stop her from hiding things? i'm ready to pull my hair out lol

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Klara - posted on 05/26/2011

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thats a hard one. breath, just breath... okay, I have to say, I help hands at that age, and did not choose to have sex until I was 19. Not to say your daughter won't, but hand holding is pretty harmless in my eyes. I would definitely encourage spending time in groups or at your house where you can supervise. If they are not alone, hopefully it won't go much further. That being said, there are kids these days that are sexually active at 11 or 12.. just scary... I would talk to her again about the birds and the bees, and let her know that girls can date many boys, and there may be many boys before she finds the right one. Let her know its okay to like boys, and definitely let her ask you ANY questions she may have. Let her know you love her and thats why you are talking to her. Whatever you do, do NOT overreact or get angry, or the communication will stop, and that is the worst thing that could happen. Do you attend church, she go to Sunday school? These could be great tools too if you have a particular religion. I am no expert, but I do have an 11yo that has friends that are doing these things and their parents don't know. Her friends actually ask me questions, and I do my best to steer them in the right direction and encourage them to talk to their parents. Hard for me, cuz I don't want to upset them, or they'll stop talking to me, just like they have their parents. When I answer questions, I do so in technical terms and let them know that the physical aspects of a relationship are for when they are older, and that everything we do has consequences. I wish you the best! If you find answers, please share with the rest of us..lol

Christie - posted on 05/21/2011

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I have a 10 yr old daughter and she is in to boys now. I also have an 11 yr old son. Both of my kids tell me everything. They come home and they tell me the things that are happening at school and the 4th grade drama that goes on. I know they do this because they tell me " Mama, my friends can't tell their mama things we tell you. I think it's because, when they tell me something(good or bad) they know they can come to be without being judged or fear that I am going to blow up on them.I've always told them that they can tell me anything or ask me anything and they will always get a truthful answer and a positive result. They also know that when they talk to me about things that i'm going to tell them my point of view and how I feel about that situation and tell them how it's right or wrong. So hears how I think you could get her to open up to you. You are her mother and she looks up to you more than she does anyone. Trust me, I know she wants to open up, but there is something that is making her think she can't.Talk to her-tell her that no matter what the problem or situation that is going on in her life(big or small) she can talk to you. Now, after she talks to you-you might not like what she's saying sometimes. Let her know that when she comes to you she will not be judged or get in trouble.She also needs to know though that you are going to tell her right from wrong to keep her from going down a bad path she shouldn't go down. Don't do it as jumping on her though. She will surely clam up then and not tell you anything. she will get nothing but love and understanding. I know as a child that's why I couldn't talk to my mother is because she didn't take my feeling seriously.She would just say OMG, Christie.So I locked up and didn't tell her anything.Remember, everything that she says, is important to her. It may sound petty and childish to you, but never take what she is saying for less than it is. It's important in her world and you a huge part of her world. I know you are her mother and you can't really be a "friend" at all times cause you have to be the mother, but a mother is the support system through everything. This is just my opinion and my way of doing things. I'm not a perfect mother and I make mistakes(I know I do)but I do think that this is a good way to know what is going on with our children. I want you to know that in no way am I saying that the way you are doing things now is wrong. If it came across like that, it's not the way I meant it. I'm just going off my kids and the way my mother was when I was a child. My mother is and was a great mother. She just didn't take the way I felt seriously. If someone broke my heart, she'd just say omg how ridiculous and she didn't want to answer any of my questions and it got to the point where I was even scared to ask her a question cause I thought she was going to think I was a bad person or she made me feel like I wasn't supposed to know about stuff that I had questions about. I'm telling you this cause I know as a mother, how important it is for my kids to talk to me and know what's important to them. So anyway, just my opinion. Hopefully, I've helped in you in some way. I hope she opens up to you. The most important thing you can do for your child is pray for her. Pray for y'alls relationship and ask GOD to help you be the mother HE wants you to be. You can NEVER go wrong there. Sincerely Christie

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Klara - posted on 05/29/2011

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I am just honest with my kids. Plain and simple, sex can be scary and overwhelming if you aren't ready for it. Whenever I get the chance, I discuss negative and positive points I see about other peoples' relationships. I try not to be judgemental, but environmental lessons are often best. I always reinforce that my kids can tell me anything, but do not lie to me. They get in much more trouble if they lie than if they tell the truth, even if what they did otherwise was wrong. I don't have all the answers, but so far my daughter talks to be pretty well. Like I said, she's also 11. She talks lot about her friends and their boy issues, but has yet to have a boyfriend yet of her own, so we'll see.

Klara - posted on 05/28/2011

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Good job Melissa! You opened the line of communication, and that is so important. Keep up the good work and good luck in the teen years!!

Laura - posted on 05/27/2011

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You are definitely on the right track with your daughter, Melissa! Keep it up! : )

Melissa - posted on 05/27/2011

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thanks for all the advice. We had a good talk and it turns out she kept it from me because she was embarassed and thought we would tease her because in 1st grade we told her a boy in her class was her boyfriend and that embarassed her. Great memory huh? anyway, I apologized and told her that if she could act mature and tell me about these things then I could certainly not treat her like that. I have since asked some minor questions relating to the subject and she was very willing to talk about it. Today i let her pick out shaving gel so I could teach her how to shave her legs. I'm hoping treating her more grown up will aid in feeling like she can have more grown up conversations with me.

Laura - posted on 05/20/2011

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First of all remember that at this age the "boyfriend/girlfriend" relationship is more of a social relationship among peers. Kids at this age are starting to explore the social norms of relationships rather than the emotional or sexual aspects (that develops as they mature). So relax a bit, it sounds like your daughter is behaving as a normal pre-teen girl.

As for the communication--you are on the right track in keeping the lines open! All you can do is keep asking her questions and reminding her that you are there for her to talk to. Speak to her about your expectations regarding secrets; some secrets are okay and others need to be shared right away. Teach her the difference! Consider yourself lucky if you get an eyeroll and "whatever" from her! Hope this helps and best of luck!

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