13 year old daughter has her first real boyfriend.

Diane - posted on 03/13/2012 ( 36 moms have responded )

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My 13 year old daughter has had this new boyfriend age 12 soon to be 13. They have been dating for a month now and we do supervised visits, they are not happy with it. They text all the time, I have to tell her to stop just so she can do homework. I decided to check her text messages and found out her boyfriend was on the verge on suicide and has told her she saved him. My husband talked to his dad about it. This boy talks about nothing but how much he loves her, missis her when they are not together and dreams about her. Seems this thing is way too deep for their age and too soon. He talks about ways to get together alone with no parents, there is only one reason why they would need privacy and that is not happening. This boy also had a girlfriend that he started dating just 19 days before dating my daughter. Wondering who broke up with who and why, was he pushy with the other girl? Not sure what I want to hear but I feel they are lucky we are allowing the dating thing at all and driving them around to spend time with each other and if supervised at their age is not good enough then nothing at all.

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Louise - posted on 03/13/2012

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This boy has issues! It needs to be lightened and fast. Talk to the other parents. They will either agree or you will get a mouthful. Your first priority is your daughter. Tell her that a normal relationship develops slowly and that she should not cut out her friends for this lad but share her time equally.



Ask her to stop texting at 8pm to give her time to do something else. If the lad is at your house then try talking to him about taking things slowly. The problem is the more you try and keep them apart the more she will want to see him. My advice is get her interested in something else and fast. Does she like horses or something, introduce her to the stables, she will soon forget about the boy!



Teenage relationships are all about management. I think you are right to be worried I would be.

Tabitha - posted on 03/22/2012

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You're right Carol dating doesn't always mean sex. But considering 6th & 7th graders are having babies now days...I'd say things are a bit different than they were when you were younger.

Tabitha - posted on 03/29/2012

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Saundra...this boy's parents can take care of his emotions and stability. It is not the responsibility of a 13 year old girl. This is an unhealthy dependency at any age, let alone as a teenager. You can respect and trust your own child all you want, but at the age of 13, she is not equipped to handle these kind of emotions. If this boy was really suicidal, would you really want your daughter to be responsible for keeping him alive? Would you want your daughter in harms way if he lost it one day and decided to kill himself while she's around? Or worse...kill her first? I wouldn't!

Saundra - posted on 03/29/2012

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So your response to finding out that your daughter was the one thing that brought happiness to an emotionally unstable 12 year-old boy was to make them "take a break"? You should be proud of your daughter for being so compassionate. Also, don't worry so much as to knowing every detail of her life. The things she's been saying to him have possibly saved this boys life. From what you've said she sounds like a responsible young woman who knows what she is doing. The problem I can see resulting from this is the fact she is distracted from doing her school/homework. If you don't respect and trust your child, how can you expect her to act that way towards you?

Carol - posted on 03/26/2012

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My 11 year old 6th grader had a homework assignment last month in which he had to ask us how we'd feel if he made an abstinence pledge. It was for his health class. We told him that it wouldn't make a difference to us because we knew he still thought girls were creepy so he'd BETTER be abstinent. We told him to ask again if he started feeling different towards them. He laughed and said never, so I think we're safe for a while.



A few years ago we had a doctor who admonished us for not telling our 6 year old about the birds and the bees yet (at the time we lived in a town where little girls aspired to be mommies quick). I'd much rather be the one to introduce these subjects than my kids friends. They are much too young to be experiencing most things first hand, but they see examples of people in relationships everywhere. I hope that people show affection for their spouses in front of their kids (like a kiss hello, not anything too intimate). They see older kids holding hands or bragging about whatever they did over the weekend. Movies, videogames, songs, even Nickalodeon and Disney have kids dating and cheating and coniving to get dates. I think it's better to talk about issues before they happen, not to rush them past childhood, but to help them make sense of why they're starting to think differently and to help them not feel weird about it. These aren't adult emotions. They are kid-versions of adult emotions (ie no sex, no living together, no marriage, no kids, no bills). Kids have them as they transition into adults. I'd be worried that telling a kid to knock it off and not think about kid-versions of adult relationships wouldn't stop a kid from having the emotions, but it would stop a kid from talking to you about the emotions and force them to learn things on their own. Diane, the woman who started this conversation, has a daughter who just happened to have her first boyfriend have a major issue. I hope things have gotten better for them.

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Caity - posted on 11/29/2012

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and yes the young man is certainly questionable, i think it's also important that you let your daughter know that you are there for her if she is ever wanting to talk or to end the relationship between them, as she may feel she can't leave him incase he hurts himself, (it is likely he is telling her he will kill himself if they brake up, *he could also be telling her things like he will harm himself if she doesn't sleep with him, because it means she doesn't love him) she will possibly be pressured into doing things she does not want to do, this will effect her emotionally for a life time especially if he ends up harming himself or her over it. Also i think honestly he sounds like he is a few sandwichs short of a picnic and migh need some therapy, it maybe important for you to inform his parents of his odd behaviour too, if that were my son i would be very very concerned and would have afew things to say to him.



*i say he could as in it's possible, he may not be sayin those things to her, i unfortunatly experienced this type of boyfriend when i was 14, he still gives me the creeps 10years later.

Caity - posted on 11/29/2012

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you could negotiate, maybe a day time movie wouldnt be to much harm? depending on how much trust you have..if not you could sit out side the cinema and read a book, or do something even sneekier. Lay very strict rules for the kids, EG. you do not leave unless the cinema is burning down, you keep hands above the waist, you watch the movie and will both tell me about it when it's over, tell them if they do not folow the rules ther relationship will be unquestionably over)) then you buy 3 tickets, two for the kids afew rows ahead and one for yourself wea you can see them but they can't see you...wait outside the cinema untill the movie has started so you know they have not left or seen you, then take your seat and watch, the chances of them noticing your there watching are slim to none as they will be more interested in each other or the movie depending on how trust worthy they are. You can supervise them this way and also see how trust worthy they are. you could also ask an adult friend to do this for you as your child is less likely to notice your friend than a parent.

Caoimhin - posted on 11/28/2012

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I'm a 13 year old boy all they wanna do is kiss calm down, it'll be over in 2 weeks.

Tracy - posted on 04/11/2012

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I have a 14 yo daughter and there is NO WAY she will be dating anytime soon. First of all, they are too young and just this type of situation your own daughter is in... is too much for kids to deal with. My daughter has friends that are boys but there is no dating. I have a close relationship with my daughter and having 7 brothers...she knows how boys are. She has more common sense and goals for her life and boys do not rate very high at this time.

Laura Jill - posted on 04/01/2012

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Hi Diane,



While I feel that some young people can be ready for dating at 13 years of age, I have many concerns about this situation. If the young man is emotionally unstable - be he depressed, suicidal or any other issue - it complicates matters beyond words. I understand that the last thing you want to do is create a "Romeo and Juliet" effect by outright banning the relationship, but I feel that this relationship is way to complicated for a first boyfriend. I'm sure you've given thought to how he might react when/if the two of them break up.....Continue to limit the amount of time that she has available to hang out with him or chat with/text him; if his parents are willing to help with the situation, ask them to occupy some of their son's time - chores, family outings - anything to fill up his days. Be discreet of course, but try to fill up their social calendar for them when and where you can. =) Do you have any options for your daughter going to visit a family member ? They don't need to live far away - the plus side of dealing with young lovers who can't drive - just across town could work. Many years ago, when I was dating an unsuitable young man, my parents sent me to visit my grandparents for a week - not a long amount of time, but sometimes a break can weaken the intensity of the hold a relationship has (on both parties) Most importantly, continue to talk to your daughter about your concerns, and don't be afraid of being a parent who sets limits. Good luck !

Kari - posted on 03/31/2012

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Diane,

I'm not going to sit here & admonish you saying "She's too young! I would never allow my child to date that young" etc. That is counter-productive and NOT what you came here for. Thing is, you are doing what you feel is right. We are not in your shoes, & honestly it IS a sticky situation. Teenagers are incredibly difficult creatures. Push too hard & they're gone.

Monitoring their conversations is a great idea, & of course supervised visits. However, this boy obviously needs some mental help. It's simply not fair to put everything onto your daughter ("You saved me" etc). No one, regardless of their age, needs that. (I was in a similar relationship in my 20's & it was pure hell)

There needs to be communication between the parents here, boundaries set, etc. Your daughter doesn't realize that she will NOT be with this boy forever, & it is not love. (& you can't tell her that, either ;)



Good luck to you & keep us posted!!!

Elizabeth - posted on 03/26/2012

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He is showing the early signs of an abusive boyfriend. I would not let them date because it will only get worse especially if it lasts long enough to where they can sometimes be alone. He has learned how to play "mind games" early. If he keeps it up by adulthood he is going to be the boyfriends we watch on Nancy Grace. Just saying I would watch it because he learned it from somewhere.

Danielle - posted on 03/25/2012

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the only honest opinion I can give you here, is my own. I think 12-13 is way too young for a boyfriend. I have a 12 year old daughter, and she is just a child, still playing with Barbie dolls. Kids these days want to grow up so fast, I just don't see how any 12 or 13 year old has the maturity to take on such adult-like emotions and situations. In our home, there is simply no talk of dating at this age, and my girls are not even close to even care about such deep issues. Kids need to be kids, and sometimes, we need to set some firm boundaries to slow them down abit.

Sandra - posted on 03/23/2012

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Definitely agree Sandra and Stacy, too young for boyfriend at 13, they are both way too young, they are just kids. Sorry but my daughter would not be dating at this age whether supervised or not. She's got the rest of her life to have a boyfriend, she's a kid and needs to enjoy being a kid.

[deleted account]

My cousin got pregnant at 14 (well over 20 years ago)..... and some kids most certainly ARE having sex in the 6th grade. Not all of them, but SOME are....



Dating/having a boyfriend does not automatically equal having sex, but why even open that door at such a young age? There is a 'couple' in my daughter's class (5th grade) that has broken up and gotten back together again half a dozen times in the same day! Kids should not be dealing w/ this nonsense... and dating at a young age IS nonsense. They aren't mature enough to deal w/ a real relationship, but are driven by hormones and new feelings that can cause them to make some really stupid, permanently life altering decisions.

Carol - posted on 03/22/2012

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My son is only 11 and has absolutely no interest in girls yet, but most of his classmates are dating (6th grade). Dating doesn't mean sex. Cripe, I had a boyfriend when I was 10. We passed a note asking each other out and then never spoke until we broke up - then we were back to being friends again. When my son feels he's ready to have a girlfriend, he'll be allowed to have one. My boys have had rules concerning girls for years. They know what's expected. My son is also one of the few without a phone. I don't know where all these people commenting live, but here kids have the stupid things glued to their hands and ears. They text 100's of times a day, some of them do it over 1000 times a day. You're setting limits, talking to her about it, and monitoring as much as you can. Good job.



The only thing that concerns me in your post is the poor boyfriend's mental state. Talk to the school counselor. They're trained to deal with that kind of thing. He can also bring your daughter in and talk with her about how to deal with a kid that lays that kind of stuff on her.

Sandra - posted on 03/21/2012

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itotally agree stacy no way on earth would my daughter be allowed to date at that age they are still children and need to act like them dating and boyfriends is not a suitable hobby for 13yr olds.

Stacy - posted on 03/20/2012

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Way to young for a boyfriend! They are just kids, I would nip this in the bud immediately. Sorry but I would never let my daughter of 12 almost 13 have a boyfriend.

Tabitha - posted on 03/20/2012

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Maybe it would be a good idea for her to research relationships. You can have her google some stuff and look how relationships should be. Make sure you "help" her find some site that pretty much spell out the type of relationship she has with him. Maybe if she sees the signs of a controlling, abusive relationship and matches them herself to the relationship she has now, She'll wise up.

Diane - posted on 03/20/2012

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Tabitha, he does monopolize her time already. Most of the text are him and I use to find her reading for interest or for homework when I said good night to her but the book is now a phone. I let her keep it till 10 pm because she sometimes has a lot of homework and does not get it done till 9 pm. She is an A student so we shall see if this has affected her grades. I want this boy out of her life but feel if I push she will rebel and see him anyway. Hoping she will see the light soon or I will have to intervene.

Leah - posted on 03/19/2012

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And another thing...have your daughter have her phone calls in the kitchen or living room. If they are discussing good things then what's there to hide? Stop being scared to parent. She's been alive for 13 short years.she's not ready to be an adult and make adult decisions. 10 pm? Really.

Leah - posted on 03/19/2012

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Parents....don't be bashful! Talk with your child....with respect and empathy. Your daughters feelings are very real to her but obviously she cannot yet see the big picture. You pay the cell phone bill right? You have every right to pick up the phone and check it. My niece isn't allowed to delete any of her texts. Her mom does random checks. Also, you can block his number and they would never know. Call your phone carrier. Then have a meeting with all six of you....him his parents, you and your daughter. Lay out the rules! COMMUNICATE. It's not your daughters job or yours to parent HIM, but you are responsible for your daughters heart! Check out a blog I love called Epic Parent.

Tina - posted on 03/18/2012

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Go with your "Mother's Instinct". Everyone below has given you great advIce. I also have a 13 yrs old daughter. She has had a few bf .....they did the texting and seeing each other at school. Thankfully she is involved with sports....which keeps her pretty busy. She knows that there is no "dating" until she is 16 and we have to meet him prior to date night. I grew up with the same rule.

Tabitha - posted on 03/17/2012

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The dating age at my house is 15 and even then all dates will be supervised. My oldest has a girlfriend but he only sees her at school or sporting events. But the thing that caught my attention was the texts. This is a form of control. Texting and calling all the time, missing her all the time, I'm suicidal and only you can save me...classic signs of a future abusive/controlling spouse. Do not hesitate to talk to his parents as well as someone at the school but you need to get your daughter away from him now! He'll use the calls and texts to monopolize her time so that her friends stop trying to hang out with her. Therefore she'll feel like he's all she has. He'll make her feel like she has to be his gf so that he won't kill himself. I've seen it several times. In one case, after a year the gf tried to break up and the bf killed her then himself! You're not intruding, I've seen adults who needed help seeing the issue and needed help getting out of those types of relationships. It's your job to keep her safe and getting rid of this boy is just that...keeping her safe. She'll be mad for a bit but after she's dated a few boys and sees that this isn't normal, she'll be glad you did.

[deleted account]

My 10 year olds are already well aware that there will be no dating or boyfriends before they are 16, so it's hard for me to try and guess what I would do in this situation...



This boy certainly needs help, but w/ his unhealthy attachment to your daughter I'm not sure you are the best family to be getting him help. I would certainly be limiting my daughter's access to this boy outside of school. The relationship might not have to end completely, but more space definitely needs to be involved. If you have a landline phone I would be taking her cellphone away while she is at home. Any phone conversations can be done in a general area of the house.

Diane - posted on 03/16/2012

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America3437, that is what I want to know too. My husband talked to his father and seems to think it is because of a custody battle they are going through right now. I also told my daughter keeping something like this to herself is not in the best interest of anyone and she should not be scared of being a snitch. She may save a life by letting us know about it. The dating thing is not like adults, mostly they just text a lot which I am beyond over it. They will be going skating with other kids from school so we shall see. I am hoping she will dump him so I don't have to.

America3437 - posted on 03/15/2012

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The first thing I would want to know is what's so bad in this 13yr old's life that makes him think death is the only way out!?! As a parent I would be concerned that his problems may be to much for my child to handle. I would try to make her understand that although she wants to have him as a boyfriend that right now a FRIEND is what he needs. There would be no more "dates" supervised or not! I personally would not allow my 13yr old to go out on "dates" and she knows it!

Tricia - posted on 03/15/2012

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1) we don't allow dating until at least 16 and then we'll talk. I didn't have a good role model and was giving myself away at the age of 13. My daughter, now 13, knows my history, and although she fought us on this issue for a long time, God opened her eyes to the ridiculousness of dating at such a young age. She has friends who date, and date a lot, and she sees the problems that it causes.



2) this boy has issues. Do you know anything about his family life? As someone involved in Youth Ministry, I'm obligated to report to someone if a kid has threatened suicide. That could be parents, teachers, clergy, school psychologists, heck even CPS. But you ought to stop the relationship so that your daughter does not feel obligatory to save his life.



3) you can use this opportunity to minister to this boy. I'm not sure what your home life is, but it sure sounds better than what this boy has. I know his is contradictory to #2, but sometimes we have to reach out and help, creatively!! If he doesn't respond, then you shake the dust. You ever know who or what God puts in your path!



Good luck and God bless!

Diane - posted on 03/14/2012

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I have had him over once and my husband took them to the park but stayed close by. I will see what happens I guess and keep a very close ear and eye open. Thanks Loise :)



Good idea on the monitor Karen, I do believe I still have it from when she was a baby. Wow where did the years go?

She has one more track meet so I guess I need to see what she may want to do next to keep her busy. Thanks

Karen - posted on 03/14/2012

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I think your doing the right thing just keep your eyes and ears open don't keep repeating yourself just tell her things once and if your concerned about what she is talking about hide a monitor in her room so you can ease drop and if there isn't any reason to be alarmed leave it at that

You could always try to get her involved in another social scene something co-Ed that will keep her busy

Louise - posted on 03/14/2012

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Diane if they continue to see each other welcome him into the house. At least you can get to know him and watch what is going on rather than they meet alone out doors. If you still think he is toxic then you need to step in. You can see that he is using her emotionally but she cant. She just needs to step back and see what is going on and when your in that situation it is really hard. Hopefully another boy will come along that she likes better. Problem solved!

Diane - posted on 03/14/2012

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Ok so I had a talk with my daughter and made her hand over her phone at 10:00 pm, lights out. I told her not to delete newer messages or I will think she is hiding something and take the phone away anyway. So now she is calling the boy instead so I have no clue what is said grrrrrr. I trust my daughter and she is a smart girl but sometimes no matter how smart we are we sometimes still make the wrong choice. I do not trust this boy at all, I do not know him well enough and what I do know raises a lot of red flags.

Diane - posted on 03/13/2012

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My fear is that she will stay in this relationship just out of fear that he may harm himself which I hope and pray does not ever happen but she should not be focusing on his feelings all the time. She is not responsible for his happiness. I never wanted her to even have a boyfriend yet and now I really don't. I tell her just remember a boyfriend is part of your life not your life.

Becky - posted on 03/13/2012

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I have no problem with 13 year olds "dating". However, you need to get your daughter out of this relationship, yesterday. He sounds the same way my sister's boyfriend is. Ten years later, he has her in so deep she can't see her way out. I don't mean to sound negative, but this relationship is toxic. She's probably going to hate you for a while, but she will find someone else.

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