11 yr old Daughter; boyfriend? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 19 Old 03-23-2008, 07:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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WOW,
I am at a loss, it seems it came too soon. She spends summers with me in Cali, and school w/dad in Wisconsin. He is the man who works and that is what he contirbutes. She has this boyfriend, she seems to be a bit too involved for a girl her age. They are calling, texting, have 4 classes together at school, and whenever possibe secretly hang out after school at the boys and girls club. She keeps this all from dad, and tells me every thing. I feel that I should talk to him about it; it is almost like she is searching for somthing she is not getting at home. The infamous "daddy complex". I just feel this is all wrong and she is too young to be saying so and so loves "". If I break her confidence then who would she have to talk to, better to be honest than to lie. Am I worrying too much? Should I relax? HELP
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#2 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 12:32 PM
 
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I don't know if you are over reacting but maybe you should tell your DH. If it was the other way round you'd like to know right?

Maeve, wife to Bobby and TTC since August 05. Mummy to furbabies Jay and Spota since October 03.
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#3 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 12:42 PM
 
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I don't think you're over reacting. Eleven? And if she is keeping this from her dad, she must know that he wouldn't approve, either. If you and exdh have a decent relationship this seems like the time for a united parental front.
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#4 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 12:46 PM
 
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If you know she is keeping the info from her dad, please don't go behind her back and tell him secretly. Let her know that her father needs to know, and give her a chance to tell him first.
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#5 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 12:50 PM
 
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I don't think you're over reacting. Eleven? And if she is keeping this from her dad, she must know that he wouldn't approve, either. If you and exdh have a decent relationship this seems like the time for a united parental front.
I agree-eleven seems awfully young. That's only a little than my almost eight year old daughter-and she's still so small. If you guys do have that workable relationship, I would definitely discuss it with him. I also wouldn't worry about "betraying" your daughter's trust-she's a child, you're the parent. It is your responsibility to make sure that she's safe.

Bethany, crunchy Christian mom to Destiny (11) Deanna (9), and Ethan (2)

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#6 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 12:54 PM
 
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If you know she is keeping the info from her dad, please don't go behind her back and tell him secretly. Let her know that her father needs to know, and give her a chance to tell him first.
I agree with this. I would give her a chance to tell him - set a time frame - but you should let her know that regardless, you will be discussing it with him.
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#7 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 01:05 PM
 
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11 seems very young for this, my dd will be 11 in a few days and she does not think of boys as boyfriends, etc. sure her and her friends may giggle about boys being cute and all. But no boyfriends yet
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#8 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 02:17 PM
 
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Why not talk to your ex about it? It sounds like a tough situation for your daughter "all around" so don't be so quick to the put the blame on your ex-H. My parents divorced and by age 10/11 I too was very involved in finding the right boy to pay attention to me because my dad was gone. I had sex by ripe old age of 14 back in the early 80's and it wasn't the norm back then. I just wanted my boyfriend to stay and never leave me and he threatened to leave if I didn't "put out". But it was both of my parents fault that I made bad choices.

If you live hundreds of miles away from your child then that isn't helping the situation either. I'm not saying you are completely at fault but you gave birth to her right? It sounds like your daughter needs more "parental control and involvement." I know I did. I'm surprised I didn't turn up pregnant as a teen because my home life was crap going from my dad to my mom's, back and forth constantly, and they only lived 20 minutes from one another.

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I also wouldn't worry about "betraying" your daughter's trust-she's a child, you're the parent. It is your responsibility to make sure that she's safe.
I totally agree. A lot of divorced parents feel this way though. They don't want to lose their child anymore than they already have so they let them have their way. My sisters both do it with their children, who all live with their fathers instead of them.

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#9 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 02:17 PM
 
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A surefire way to get her to stop confiding in you would be to tell her dad behind her back. Why not be open and honest with her about your concerns?
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#10 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 08:29 PM
 
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My DS is 12, and alot of his friends/classmates are still 11 and that age IS normal for all of this...as long as the boy isn't way older than she is, I really don't see where it's anything to be concerned about. So she has a crush on a boy and talks and hangs out with him. Not a big deal, really, IMO.
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#11 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 08:54 PM
 
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Well, my daughter is 11 years old, and she is always coming home with stories about "so and so is going out with johnny" and "so and so wants to ask out josh", and I tell her, do you even know what 'going out' means?? 11 is so young but it is pretty common nowadays. When I worked in the health care field, you would not believe the number of 12 y/o pregnancies that would pass by my desk. I've been wondering if I should have "the talk" with her. I feel like I should but it's so hard ykwim? I would rather her hear things from me than her classmates though. I didn't have the talk with her yet, but I did tell her that she is absolutely not to have a boyfriend until she is 25 (half-way jokingly of course). And she says "Mo-ommm, how about 16? 17?" Oh, my how I'm dreading those days LOL
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#12 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 09:26 PM
 
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Here is my take:

1) The 11-13 yo range of age romances- Not that new. I had a little boyfriend when I was 12. It didn't go beyond kissing and holding hands, but we had classes together, went roller skating on Friday nights and sat together on the bus to away games. It lasted the length of basketball/cheerleading season and then it was over. But there were many a discussion about who was sleeping with who and who was cheating on who...in 7th grade. This was about 1984. Do I think that pre-teen should be having sex? No, not really. But I don't see any real harm in a more innocent, well chaperoned romance in junior high.

2) I don't think it is ever too early to talk to kids about sex, relationships, and dating and to instill your values into that discussion. Let her know what you think about it and why you have concerns. Be honest with her. She may listen, and she may not. She may be telling you because she wants you to set the boundaries...let you be the "bad guy" to save face, even if she isn't conciousy aware of it ("My mom says I can't date...She sucks...Bye Bye now"). Or she may be having strong feelings and really needs someone to talk to and sort it all out with her about what is "normal". Or it might be of a more innocent nature and she is unaware that you might have concerns. It is hard to know unless you have an open and frank conversation with her about it.

3) Unless you think she is actively engaging in unhealthy practices/putting herself in danger, I probably would not break her confidence. If you think she is putting herself in some kind of danger, than I think you have a responsibility to tell her father. Just know you risk alienating her and potentially endangering her trust in you, something that might take a long time to re-build. And if you are going to tell her father, I would be honest with her about your intentions and why you feel like you have to tell him. Maybe you could all have a joint conversation, with them on "Speaker phone" on one end and you on the other end. It isn't the optimal arrangement, but it would hopefully get all three of you on the same page and to a place of understanding.

Mama to three small people; wife to one big person; pet-person to cats and dogs..."Be the change you want to see in the world"-- Gandhi
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#13 of 19 Old 03-24-2008, 11:50 PM
 
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Originally Posted by RachelSerena View Post
If you know she is keeping the info from her dad, please don't go behind her back and tell him secretly. Let her know that her father needs to know, and give her a chance to tell him first.
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Originally Posted by zinemama View Post
I agree with this. I would give her a chance to tell him - set a time frame - but you should let her know that regardless, you will be discussing it with him.
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I also wouldn't worry about "betraying" your daughter's trust-she's a child, you're the parent. It is your responsibility to make sure that she's safe.
Since you are long distance, and she does talk freely to you, that talking is a HUGE part of your relationship. Yes, she is a child and need to know that you are her parents and in charge, but I think it is very important to preserve that trust and openness. I would really encourage her to talk to her dad and/or ask why she's keeping it a secret from him. Go to the root. Why does she feel she has to keep it from him? Just because she feels he won't understand? Why does she feel that way?

My mom discussed who my brother liked when he was 15-17 with one of his friend's moms and he quit talking to her about think he kept close to the vest. She really regretted it. I know it's not the same, but in terms of your child talking to you it my be.

Just my $0.02. HTH

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#14 of 19 Old 03-27-2008, 04:38 AM
 
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11 is young but it isn't unheard of. It doesn't sound like she's doing anything wrong or dangerous. What would happen if you told her dad? Would he take her out of that school? Scold her? Or, best case scenario, would he talk with her about his concerns? Do you think he would be able to stop her from seeing this boy (or any boys for that matter)? Weigh the positives and negatives.

I would be careful because she doesn't need to be shamed for liking boys, and she doesn't need to be afraid of them. The most important thing here is that she's talking to you about it, and that she trusts you. I would hold on to that trust especially with tougher times ahead. You can do everything positive that he could do. Talk to her.
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#15 of 19 Old 03-27-2008, 01:42 PM
 
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The most important thing here is that she's talking to you about it, and that she trusts you. I would hold on to that trust especially with tougher times ahead.
ITA

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#16 of 19 Old 03-29-2008, 11:13 PM
 
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If you were together would you tell him if you found this out, or your daughter had told you? Assuming you would, I think you should tell him, and make sure you discuss an appropriate way for him to handle/monitor the situation without over reacting to it. I had a "boyfriend" at that age, but like your daughter it consisted of having lunch together, sitting next to each other in class when we could, playing together(yes this was back when kids actually played outside!), not phone calls though, I wasn't allowed to have boys call the house(or call them) until I was in JR High(12 or 13). I know times have changed considerably since we were young, but I'm sure it's probably still pretty innocent.
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#17 of 19 Old 03-29-2008, 11:50 PM
 
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A surefire way to get her to stop confiding in you would be to tell her dad behind her back. Why not be open and honest with her about your concerns?
I agree wholeheartedly with this entire post!!!

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#18 of 19 Old 03-30-2008, 12:13 AM
 
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A surefire way to get her to stop confiding in you would be to tell her dad behind her back. Why not be open and honest with her about your concerns?
ITA, I wouldn't go behind her back. If you think her dad needs to know then I'd discuss it with her. Tell her what you think. But I certainly wouldn't just tell him without talking with her first. Unless you want her to never trust you again.
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#19 of 19 Old 03-30-2008, 02:09 AM
 
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I was just having a conversation a few days ago with some of my old friends and we all went to different high schools and elementary schools etc,.. and we found that a commonality is that the first class boy friend/girl friend couple that the boy had always grown up to be gay. The conversation had started because a boy in my 12 year olds class is the boyfriend of a girl, the first and he is really into just hanging out, picking out clothes and helping his girlfriend do her hair. I think its great. When I was young we could not have guessed or talked as openly as my sons age. I love the normalcy of it. So I guess what I am trying to say that the girlfriend boy friend thing at her age may just be a friend friend thing that they are titling "boyfriend girlfriend". Not to say he is gay or not gay but unless he is older I wouldn't be too worried.
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