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10yo daughter completely obsessed with boys

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 

My 10yo DSD is completely obsessed with boys. It has gotten out of hand with one boy at school B. While doing laundry she left a note in her pocket. The note included that B was her boyfriend, they love eachother, that they want to kiss. also a sneeky plan to get invited over to a friends house that he lives close to so they can hang out. I am absolutely floored. There are several more notes in her room. I dont know what in the world to do. She is very easily distracted she is not doing well in school right now. It finally came to a head yesterday when i found a note laying on the floor (she is so careless that or she wants us to find out) that she kissed him, at school (where were the teachers) and a separate note crumpled up talking about how dad and mom almost found out and how much trouble she would be in. she is my step daughter. Which i think complicates this situation. She has lived with me and DP exclusively since she was 5, her mom shows her completely inappropriate things such as twilight when she is with her. im not saying this is to blame but we censor tv and media exposure. i dont know where this is coming from. I need some serious help and advice. 

 

TIA

 

post #2 of 41

Sometimes it just comes from them, truly. I've seen the most conservative families pop-out daughters with boy obsessions at 9 or 10. I've seen families with multiple girls have one who was boy crazy early and one who didn't even go near that realm until 16. Personally, my 15-year-old is just starting to date and she's moving very, very slowly... more like inviting a boy on a family outing as opposed to going out alone. Media has some power and it's good for a parent to pay attention but it's not everything. My DD read Twilight at 11, thought it was total drivel and hasn't even bothered with the movies... it didn't turn her boy crazy for sure. 

 

Since she's boy crazy AND she's getting involved with boys, certainly, it's time to do some serious talking with her about relationships and sex. I'd do what you can to bolster her self-esteem. Make sure she's in activities that build up her own confidence and self-worth. Martial arts can be very empowering and may help her focus her energies a bit. You might want to get to know this boy. Sometimes taking the bloom off a "secret" romance just takes mom and dad being aware of it. It's enough to scare lots of boys that age off.

 

Talk, talk and more talk.. activities that strengthen her individuality. That's my recommendation. 

post #3 of 41

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by whatsnextmom View Post

Sometimes it just comes from them, truly. I've seen the most conservative families pop-out daughters with boy obsessions at 9 or 10. I've seen families with multiple girls have one who was boy crazy early and one who didn't even go near that realm until 16. Personally, my 15-year-old is just starting to date and she's moving very, very slowly... more like inviting a boy on a family outing as opposed to going out alone. Media has some power and it's good for a parent to pay attention but it's not everything. My DD read Twilight at 11, thought it was total drivel and hasn't even bothered with the movies... it didn't turn her boy crazy for sure. 

 

Since she's boy crazy AND she's getting involved with boys, certainly, it's time to do some serious talking with her about relationships and sex. I'd do what you can to bolster her self-esteem. Make sure she's in activities that build up her own confidence and self-worth. Martial arts can be very empowering and may help her focus her energies a bit. You might want to get to know this boy. Sometimes taking the bloom off a "secret" romance just takes mom and dad being aware of it. It's enough to scare lots of boys that age off.

 

Talk, talk and more talk.. activities that strengthen her individuality. That's my recommendation. 

 


yeahthat.gif 

post #4 of 41

None of what you wrote would scare me in the least.  That's the age when it all starts - slowly hopefully.  Holding hands and even kissing isn't unheard of at that age. 

post #5 of 41
I think you should ask how the kiss was and act interested in her crush while also taking her to classes about puberty and having unrelated talks about the families beliefs on things like this. I'd also drop an email to the teacher asking her to have the duty teachers keep a little extra eye on things. Crushes and even kisses are normal and punishing, especially if she expects to be in trouble and doesn't care, is just going to make this something she does to prove she is her own person.

What activities is she in outside of school. If you can get her into something like swimming lessons at the y, dance, a sport, pottery classes, church, etc... it may help her channel her boredom into something she can feel success at.
post #6 of 41

While I think this is probably common, I'm not sure it is developmentally appropriate. It's not something I personally  would just sit back and do nothing about and so I understand the urge to do something.  I do think we push our (collective) kids towards adopting adult-type relationships long before they are ready.

I also think you can't turn the clock back, and that you need to be careful not to shut down communication, or introduce the idea of shame with respect to her sexuality.

 

If it were me I would approach this with a combination of information and alternatives. My son went through the OWL program and I highly recommend it. It is a liberal program, so if you hold conservative values around sex and sexuality, the OWL program will not be for you.  I loved it because it was based on information but also helped the kids explore their own sense of ethics and the implications of their relationship choices. We appreciated that it was built around the values of respect, inclusiveness and honesty.  There are different programs touching on different topics for different ages.  You can read more here.

 

I'd also work hard to create and encourage other interests and passions that can help her develop/maintain a healthy sense of self. I would probably try to make 1/2 of them girls-only the type of programs and to facilitate healthy boy friendships through some of the other activities.  Is there an older teen that she looks up to as a role model who may be able to talk to her and more importantly demonstrate how important it is to maintain a sense of self and self respect.

 

Hang in there!

 

post #7 of 41

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Callimom View Post
I'd also work hard to create and encourage other interests and passions that can help her develop/maintain a healthy sense of self.

 

Agreed.

 

Everything you wrote is well within the bounds of normal development even without media input. Attraction is really, really normal. Oddly, it seemed that among my DD's friends, some times the girls with the more strict moms were more interested in boys. I think that going overboard on what you allow and don't allow is a path to being left in the dark about what is going on in your DD's life.

 

You aren't going to stop her from liking boys.

 

I also think that finding ways for her to develop into a strong woman will help her over the new few years. Real sports (not sports that are about being pretty), horse back riding, outdoor skills, developing her passions (besides the one for boys). Helping her develop balance in her life.

 

Years ago I asked a mom with several older teens who were doing well what she thought the secret was to keeping them out of trouble, and she said that ones that had an activity that they were really into had a better chance of getting through the storms of sex and drugs. She didn't think it mattered what it was -- anything from music to sports. Just something solid to identify themselves with and spend their time and energy on.

post #8 of 41
Thread Starter 

Maybe this is harder for me because i am several years younger than DH and this is a time in DSD's life that it gets complicated. I really need some advice on how to open up the communication with DSD. Her mom is not very involved and I feel like I dont know how to get this conversation started. It seems silly but you guys are right I am pushing her away and that would be awful. I do feel like there is an appropriate time to like boys and have crushes and that is 10 yo but it's not ok for her to go around kissing or dating them. That is part of our family values and although we are quite liberal in our political and social views I just cant see being OK with this when she is so young. It's a matter of her maturity and knowing what it means to go out or date someone. I suppose you're right it comes down to her needing to have more self confidence. I got the book It's so amazing but I dont know if it's too young for her or silly. I guess some other book suggestions and maybe ways to open lines of communication with her.

 

Thanks

post #9 of 41

pomplemoose, my dds both really love the American Girl book, The Care And Keeping Of You. It's really perfect for this age and I don't think It's So Amazing (which we also have) is too young for her, either. They're pretty different books, but touch on a few of the same topics. The Care and Keeping of You is all about girls and boys are only mentioned in it incidentally. TCAKY is both practical and empowering. It does go into menstruation, but also includes tips like what to do if you leak at school, and has a lot on just healthy living and growing up. I imagine she's both attracted to boys (dd1, 5th grade, was telling me about a love note that a boy in her class just got, so I would say this is when it starts, too) but also wanting to be more grown up and showing interest in boys is a way of feeling more grown up. Maybe you can spend some time with her doing other grown-up pursuits, like take her to Starbucks for a coffee/hot chocolate date, go shopping for earrings or let her get her ears pierced, etc. 

 

You might look into some girl-centered programs, too. My girls have recently just completed Girls On The Run and they loved it. It's very empowering and uplifting. Doesn't have anything to do with boys, but helps the girls accomplish something and feel good about it. There might be a program starting up near you in the fall. They're taking sign ups now for our area. My 8 yr old is also very interested in our local Girls Rock camps, but we probably won't do that until next year. You might have one near you — not sure where you are in Oregon: http://www.girlsrockcamp.org/ . Anyway, I'd focus on empowering her and helping her to feel grown up in other ways that don't have to do with boys. I think it's fine not to let her date until later, but I think including the boys she's interested in in some group activities (birthday parties, going bowling, etc) could go a long way toward keeping the lines of communication open.

post #10 of 41

My 10yo daughter was the same way.I caught her kissing her ''boyfriend'' in my garage.

I forbade her from seeing him again. Everyone, my husband included said I was over-reacting

and against my wishes allowed her to continue to be ''friends'' with him

last month - now age 12, I walked into her bedroom and caught her performing

oral sex on him. Am I over-reacting now.

post #11 of 41

Girls are literally years ahead of boys in this regard, it is just nature taking its course.

 

By your initial over-reaction, she will now expect you to blow-up at what she feels normal. At 12 she is learning her own body in more depth and detail, her emotions about this boy are new and strong. The fact that she is doing this at home speaks volumes about the comfort she has at home. Though I do agree sex at 12 is too young, it is not outside the normal range for these things. My own parents had a hard time with teen aged sexual relations and I understand now why, but at the same time I am still young enough to remember those new emotions and how strong they were. I promote proper education, teach her about sex, pregnancy and scare her with the truth about STD's and show her how much it costs to raise a single child, if you have multiple children then you have more to show on how the costs multiply. At 12 she is her own person, treat her like a person (still your daughter, but now also a friend). Teach her what she is doing is not wrong, but something that should be saved for when she is older. If you dare, take her to a shelter and show her, have her talk to some of the young moms there and have them put an emphasis on education. They will be more than happy to help talk to your daughter over a cup of coffee (this you may want to offer as a thanks).

 

There is a great set of books: Whats happening to my body?  each is geared to each gender, the book for boys and the book for girls. You might want to pick one up and let her read it at her own pace, then ask her if she understands what is in the book. And remember, if you yell then she wont hear. Calm, quiet, and understanding talks are best and will yield better results. Once the boundary of understanding has been broken your daughter will open up to you as a close friend. You can guide her better from that position than as the mighty over-lord that just ruins everything.

post #12 of 41
Thread Starter 

young parent my daughter is 10 not 12. that makes a huge difference in my mind.katlan- I see where you are coming from my daughter has been way into boys since kindergarten. i spoke calmly with her about this when i found the notes 3 weeks ago. I told her that she needs to think about her self respect about what type of person she wants to be. about the consequences of her actions and how this will affect her for the rest of growing up. I was understanding and told her that it is ok to like boys and have crushes but the lying will not be tolerated. and that when she is older, middle/high school and she likes a boy she will be more than welcome to invite him over to the house to hang out. I do not in any respect believe that at 10 she should be treated like an adult or late teen and leave the decision making up to her. The reason we have parents is to guide us through these uncertain times in life and that is what we will do. Today i got a call from the school saying that she had kissed him again and that another kid told. They gathered all the notes out of her desk and had the school counselor talk with her. She and the boy now have a no contact contract which means if either of them interacts with eachother they will get suspended. DH and I spoke with our daughter tonight about how its confusing and that she needs to focus on schoolwork and how she is behaving in life because its now out of our control and she could really mess things up from here on out. She is grounded for lying to me. I will not put up with being lied to. Also i talked to her about how when you start to fell like you have to lie its probably because what you're doing is not ok. I am still so mad she lied to me. But very glad summer is on its way and she will have to get used to not seeing the boy anymore. this is one of those times when parenting is just plain HARD!

post #13 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by pomplemoose View Post

 I do not in any respect believe that at 10 she should be treated like an adult or late teen and leave the decision making up to her. The reason we have parents is to guide us through these uncertain times in life and that is what we will do. Today i got a call from the school saying that she had kissed him again and that another kid told. They gathered all the notes out of her desk and had the school counselor talk with her. She and the boy now have a no contact contract which means if either of them interacts with eachother they will get suspended.

 

 

Wow, honey, I'm sorry.

 

I don't envy your position and I don't know exactly what I would do. But kids have parents for a reason -- because they need them. We aren't their friends -- they have other people for that. If we ditch our job as parents to be buddies, that just leave the kid with no parents.

 

When is her last day of school?
 


Edited by Linda on the move - 5/18/12 at 5:43pm
post #14 of 41
Thread Starter 

Thanks Linda,

 

This is really hard. the last day of school isn't until june 20. She is grounded for lying to us and the principle. she is very aware of what will happen if she doesnt listen this time. my DH and i have a meeting with her ped next week and are setting up an appt to talk with a child psychologist. There are some other issues, stemming from the small amount of time she spends with her mom, that we just honestly dont know how to address. I hope that we are able to bring back the lovely young girl that we had up until this year. Growing up is just pain hard, for us parents too.

 

Thanks!

post #15 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by pomplemoose View Post

Thanks Linda,

 

This is really hard. the last day of school isn't until june 20. She is grounded for lying to us and the principle. she is very aware of what will happen if she doesnt listen this time. my DH and i have a meeting with her ped next week and are setting up an appt to talk with a child psychologist. There are some other issues, stemming from the small amount of time she spends with her mom, that we just honestly dont know how to address. I hope that we are able to bring back the lovely young girl that we had up until this year. Growing up is just pain hard, for us parents too.

 

Thanks!

 

 

Holy cow you have a late last day!!!

 

Does she have any outside school activities that she likes? Does she play a sport? Play a musical instrument? Make art?

post #16 of 41
Thread Starter 

yes in fact I just got back from taking her to a track meet. I don't feel like with holding sports is a fair move on my part. It is something she enjoys that we want to encourage and she really came out strong tonight. She is beginning to learn guitar and I want to keep getting her involved with things that will occupy her time and that she excels at. We have such a late last day because of bad winter weather and flooding that closed the school. I want to look into a girls on the run program but i don't think it starts til fall. She has been on her best behavior today, which is expected, and brought home some surprisingly good math grades. I hope she just needs to have some stronger boundaries and she will be back to her usual self. 

post #17 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by pomplemoose View Post

yes in fact I just got back from taking her to a track meet. I don't feel like with holding sports is a fair move on my part. It is something she enjoys that we want to encourage and she really came out strong tonight. She is beginning to learn guitar and I want to keep getting her involved with things that will occupy her time and that she excels at. 

 

 

I completely agree. I didn't mean to imply withholding anything, but rather to help her find things to do and ways to feel good about herself. Which you are already doing. winky.gif

post #18 of 41

I'm not at this stage with mine, my foster daughter is 10 and shows no interest in boys at all yet, but I am the second oldest of 9 girls :)

 

There's really nothing to be done about it except educate her and make sure she knows she has a safe place with your family and that she can come to you no matter what. Unless there's real sexual acting out, I don't know that putting her in counseling for liking boys is a good idea. It seems like it's more about you not ready for her to grow up. Putting her in counsel ling seems like a punishment and shaming her for what is just natural for her.

 

My sisters and I had the same parents, same upbringing, all of us had similar social standing. Except for my older sister and I, none of us are far apart, and IMO things haven't changed as much as people like to think when they do the whole "the world today is ___________!" melodrama thing. Same media exposure, most of us were all or mostly homeschooled.

 

We all hit the boy crazy phase at different ages. For that matter, we all hit puberty at different ages (though we all were later than normal, and probably not interested in boys until later than most kids too), which I think has a lot to do with it. Hormones kicking in and all. I wasn't interested in boys until I was in college, maybe close to 20. My sister who's 4 years younger was interested in boys almost a decade younger than I was. The others, if my recall serves me well, were somewhere in the middle there. 12, 13, mostly. My immediate younger sister was a late bloomer like me, but the rest, total mix bag.

post #19 of 41
Quote:

Originally Posted by Alasen View Post

 

Unless there's real sexual acting out, I don't know that putting her in counseling for liking boys is a good idea. It seems like it's more about you not ready for her to grow up.

 

 

The kid is on the verge of being suspended from school for inappropriate sexual behavior. At what point would you consider it "real sexual acting out"?

 

After the suspension? 

 

There is a massive difference between LIKING boys and being out of control with boys.

post #20 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

Quote:

Originally Posted by Alasen View Post

 

Unless there's real sexual acting out, I don't know that putting her in counseling for liking boys is a good idea. It seems like it's more about you not ready for her to grow up.

 

 

The kid is on the verge of being suspended from school for inappropriate sexual behavior. At what point would you consider it "real sexual acting out"?

 

After the suspension? 

 

There is a massive difference between LIKING boys and being out of control with boys.

I guess that's a distinction that's up to the individual. I hardly classify kissing a boy as "inappropriate sexual behavior," though I admit I find it weird for a 10 year old.

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