18 answers

12 Year Old Daughter Having a Boyfriend (REVISED)

My daughter who will be 12 in July, has been liking a boy now for about 8 months. I have taken them to the movies, the mall, been on the same basketball team etc. They are not allowed to go off by themselves. She is heavily involved in sports and so is he. So they do other things besides sitting on the phone all day. But they do talk regularly on the phone as well as texting, and I do monitor the texts. They also go to the same school. My concern is that for example this week is spring break and she has not been able to see him. Last weekend she could not get in touch with him and it seemed to ruin her whole weekend. I don't see anything wrong with her having a boyfriend at this level because it is controlled. But I am concerned she may be wrapped up in this relationship a little to much. To the point that she loses interest in hanging with friends if she feels there is something wrong with her relationship with her "boy" friend. This may be normal, but it is a concern. We talk regularly and she is open with me on how she feels. I leave the door open for her to talk to me about anything, and so far she has. I am wondering if there are any other mothers that have daughters who are starting to have boy relationships and if so any advice or experiences. The last thing I want to do is to make her feel like she has to start sneaking around.

She lives with me and her stepfather who is also the coach for her two teams. She sees her father frequently. Also, she hasn't gone out on any dates. In 8 months I've taken them to the mall once and the movies once which included myself beside them. I had some responses that seem to twist it up a bit.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Every parent is different.

My daughter is 13 and she knows that she is not to have an at school boyfriend or a boyfriend that she can see under supervision. I know she probably amires or likes a boy but she knows that it begins and ends there.
We talk about all things boys and have a open relationship....the most important thing she needs to concentrate on is her grades.

You may have to have that open communication with her about some boundries with her boyfriend. She sees him everyday at school, talks & text after school and at times spends a supervised weekend with him. That maybe much for an 11 year old. This is something a high school student may do.

If her spring break was ruined because she didn't talk with him what will happen if he happens to break up with her.

More Answers

My daughter will be 12 in June.. She is very mature. She got her period last summer and she is 5'5". Everyone thinks she is 14-15 yrs old. That makes me nervous! But she has a smart head on her shoulders and through communicating with her and allowing her to tell me virtually everything we move on. she has had a BF for about 2 months. they are very very close. He has been to our house, and she has been to his house. They go to the movies, skating , to dances and just hang out. Many of my freinds do no allow this at all. But... little do they know that their daughters are hooking up with the boys anyway. Well...I am happy that my husband and I know about our daughters relationship, and her BF parents know. I talk openly and upfront with the dangers of getting close. I told her everything...probably more than she wanted to hear. I personally think that the kids are too young for this. But they truly do love one another and have a genuine respect for eachother. Anyways...I have rambled on enough...Just stay in touch with your daughter and stay close to her freinds and BF and COMMUNICATE. Good Luck!

Only other thing....just make sure she prioritizes things like school work , activities like dance and always encourage her to stay close with her friends, and watch out for the jealous, envious bullies who try and wreck sweet relationships...that's all... :)

1 mom found this helpful

ok, i know i'm probably not supposed to be on this but i wanted to respond to this badly. I'm a 12 year old girl currently in the 7th grade. I'm in a program for gifted and talented people, the top 5% of my grade. There are only 25 people in the group out of more than a hundred kids in the 7th grade. It a very elite group, so lets just say I'm pretty responsible. I have a boyfriend I really like, and heres the deal. My mother was miss popular when she was in school. She dated and had lots of freedom. I have absolutely none. My sister is only ten and is allowed to date under supervision and I'm being treated the same way. My mom won'tlet me go out alone at all, not even if i'm with a group. My dad lets me sometimes. She doesn't let me go to the movies, the park, or his house alone at all. When she started doing these things in the 4th grade! She said she will never let me go to his house and told him that. She always has to be with me...which is very embarrassing and uncomfortable. I know its hard to let kids out alone because theres always that chance something bad will occur. I've known this boy for a year and we've been dating more than 2 months. I will never ever let anything bad happen to me and I trust my boyfriend and she has to learn how to also. So there you have it. A story from a 12 year old's point of view. I have many more stories and only told you half of this one. So, email me with comments or questions, i can probably tell you what your kid is feeling, you need to know their point of view. the email is: ____@____.com ... Good luck with your children...i hope they have lots and lots of freedom(: as long as they keep their grades up and are trusted! -Love K.

Question? How straight forward are you about what having a relationship entails? I ask because my daughter too just embarked on having her 1st ever boyfriend and she too has a very busy schedule, as well as her and the boy don't go to the same school and they live about 10 mins away from each other. Well, a couple of weeks ago she said to me Mom why can't I see him every weekend? Not seeing him is making things difficult for us, so I told her having a relationship is going to always be difficult, you have to know that you two care enough about each other to want it to work and you have to trust that not spending so much time with each other will not break you up. I told her they both have very demanding schedules and sometimes they may not be able to see each other or talk to each other every day, but if they truly care about each other not talking every day should not hurt their relationship in the least bit. It's spring break for her right now as well, she is in NC right now so I ask her how's it going with them her being away from him and she said they are talking just fine. Explain to your daughter the truth about how difficult it is to maintain a relationship, and this is just the beginning. Explain how abscence do make the heart grow fonder. Then let them be they will work it out just fine. Just continue to be there for her.

Hi A.,
You may not like my advice, but you did ask, so I wanted to offer my opinion. I think 11 is way too young to be doing things with boys, especially one on one. She is still SO young... there are so many interests that she can be pursuing right now and being free to be a young girl, not even a teenager yet, without worrying about her relationship with a boy. I really think that you will regret this later if you allow it to continue. Doing things alone, even with you supervising/chaperoning is setting her up for emotions and experiences that she is not at all ready for. Relationships don't stand still, they always move forward. Your daughter is already emotionally wrapped up in this boy, and it will only progress. Maybe she needs some special time with her dad, or grandfather, or another man in her life to be loving on her and letting her know how special she is, and much later showing her how to be treated when she is out on dates with boys. But really, what is the benefit of this in her life at her age? Don't worry about setting boundaries causing her to rebel, not when they are set with love, within reason, and in the context of your relationship with her, meaning not just dictated to her but coming from a mom who is involved in her life and spending time with her and available to her. And it is very reasonable to not allow an eleven year old to have a boyfriend. She is looking to you to set the boundaries and teach her what is acceptable. Keep the communication with her open and have lots and lots and lots of mother/daughter talk about all kinds of things, helping her to find her way into becoming a young woman and all the hopes and dreams she has for her life. Keep her busy and focused on time with family and girlfriends. She is still a child.

Its Fine. Its Not To Young Let Them Go To The Movies With You Go Shop In A Mall. Or Stuff like that. You Need To Let Them Have Their Space. There Not Going To Go Off And Have Sex They Might Kiss. But Its Not A Big Deal

I have a daughter that is 13 and she has liked boys at school but I won't allow alot of texting or phone conversations she has went to a school skate in which I attended and the boy she liked at the times b-day party. I always instill in her guys come and go they do not tend to stick around so dont wrap your whole being into something that is just going to pass. I also gave my daughter an expample I told her to keep a diary for 1 month and write down what she did every day and etc and also whom she liked at school. Later, I ask my daughter if she spoke of any boys in her diary and she said yes ma'am why? I responded more than likely you think alot of boys is cute, you think you love each one on a different day and your feelings always change. I explained this is normal. funny thing was later she said how did u know, I said 15 yrs ago doesnt seem that long for me to remember. Also if the dad is not in the picture which happened in my case a girl will tend to want male attention and she just wanting to be loved will or may end up hurt,instill in here to be strong. As far as having a boyfriend its probably ok if its not interfereing in her social life and grades.I have to go for now i was on break.

Hi A.,
I had to help you out here... You sound like an awesome mom!! My daughter is only 4 but when she is 11 or so I will be doing the same thing you are! In todays world, you cannot use AGE as the factor anymore. Commonsense goes along way. You know your daughter and you know her maturity and what level she is ready for. You are with her through this and allowing her freedom to talk to you! AWESOME! I only wish my parents were like this! If she has these interests in a boy, guess what, she will see him with or without your approval. They will always find a way! You are right on the money with what your doing. She isnt going to do things any younger because you let her see this boy at 11. If anything she will proably be doing it much later because of your honestity and openess! It is never too young for the sex talk so do it if you havent! Mothers who think 11 is too young are up for a big disappointment. No not every 11 year old is ready for a 'boy' friend but those who are should have there parents there for the movie, mall, etc. Its a lot better than sneaking around! I would have a talk about the mood change when unable to get ahold of him. Come up with a solution and just talk it out. You are doing great!! Keep it up! I wish you the very best:)

my name is S. and i am a 12 year old girl too. i just tthink she misses him.I she tell you everything, i dont think you should be worried.plus, when she;s a little older, she'll realize that he;s not the only thing in the world, and that it's just puppy love, S. Gomez

Every parent is different.

My daughter is 13 and she knows that she is not to have an at school boyfriend or a boyfriend that she can see under supervision. I know she probably amires or likes a boy but she knows that it begins and ends there.
We talk about all things boys and have a open relationship....the most important thing she needs to concentrate on is her grades.

You may have to have that open communication with her about some boundries with her boyfriend. She sees him everyday at school, talks & text after school and at times spends a supervised weekend with him. That maybe much for an 11 year old. This is something a high school student may do.

If her spring break was ruined because she didn't talk with him what will happen if he happens to break up with her.

Its been about a yr since ur post but i am in the same situation with my 12 yr old girl dating a boy from school, i always tell her she can come to me with anything bc i do not want her sneaking around like i did with my mom. The problem is it seems to be getting to serious with the talking anf texting all the time, i also aggreed to take them too the movies and be there with them. I also check messages and know they only see each other at school. Its hard when your in this situation becuz the parents that are the strickest are the parents that are being lied to the most. I personal think my daughter is too young, by at this age I was told their hormones are running wild. I dont know if Im doing the right thing or should i forbide her to have boyfriends, i have also told her she has her whole life to find a boyfriend. Its very hard as parents today....

I am usually reluctant to make suggestions but after reading your concerns about your "almost" 12 year old daughter i felt compelled to reply. It sounds like you are a very loving and concerned mom. I am also the mother of three girls...13,11 and 7 years old as well as a baby boy. For the last six years or so I have been reading alot about how to raise my daughters to live responsibly in a culture that pushes kids to grow up fast. Many times kids are in situations that they are too immature to socially know how to handle. It is so important that they have effective role models and good advice. It sounds like you are right on target with your daughter but I didn't hear anything mentioned about a father figure. There is so much that dads can do to build up their daughters confidence by loving them so that they don't have a need to seek love elsewhere until they are ready to handle it. A good book I would recommend is called "Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters" by Dr. Meg Meeker. I hope this helps. I know that it has helped my family alot.

I have a similar situation with my daughter and quite frankly I'm not sure if I'm doing the right thing. She is 12...will be 13 in May and she has had a relationship with a boy her same age for the past 6 months or so. She is very open with me and we talk on a daily basis about everything. I've always had a close relationship with her because I never had a good relationship with my mom and it caused me to hide a lot of stuff from her. I promised myself that my relationship with my daughter would be completely different and it has been so far. Her relationship with this boy has been mostly on facebook and they do call each other and text now and then. I have gone to the movies with them as well on a few occasions and I know his family as well. He is also actively involved in sports and he has a younger brother about the same age as my son, so our families interact well with each other. My fear is that the relationship is becoming quite emotional and as in your case, she seems to place too much emphasis on it. She needs to talk to him on facebook every night and although it hasn't affected her grades, I'm wondering if it's all too much and maybe I should limit her contact with him. I know he is a really decent boy and he really seems to care for her but I'm beginning to see that the more they interact the closer they are becoming and I don't know if that's ok at her age. I would really like some advice on this issue.

Hi, i have a 12 year old girl too and do not let her have any time with any boys. I know this may sound harsh but your
the mom and should have more ground rules. My rules for my daughters, I have a 16 year old too, have been no dating until maybe 14 and then group only and then maybe double dateing at 15 but no cars....i think it would be a good idea to get your daughter into a program for girls that will explain about dating and its purpose. it's also for her safety,

I think 12 is just too young for a boyfriend - controlled or not.

I'm pretty young, but my kid brother, who is 15, stays with me three weeks out of the month and has for the past 3 years. I think if you keep your grades up and are involved in school/community/whatever, you should be allowed some freedom, since you have proved that you are responsible. I am living proof that this parental philosophy works, and so is my brother. And you're absolutely right, if you try to be too strict the lying and sneaking out will begin.

I would tell your daughter that boyfriends come and go, but, I remember what it's like to be 12 and "oh so in love"... it'll be like talking to a wall. But, this relationship will eventually end, and her friends (and mother) will be there to support her. She'll remember that next time.

If you suspect that she is really codependent on him, you might want to consider a therapist, especially if there are any daddy-issues that need to be worked out.

It's also time for a talk about safe sex.

An eleven year old is too young to have a boyfriend. Even when she turns twelve in July, she will still be too young. Why the rush?

I wish my parents had not given me so much freedom. I was a good kid and they trusted me, but I was not mature enough for the very grown-up positions I found myself in when they allowed me to start dating so early.
As a parent, it is our responsibility to protect our children. We need to just make sure we do it in a loving way. When they have children of their own, they will finally understand how much we loved them and that is why we put restrictions on them.
It sounds like you are doing the right thing by not allowing them to date alone.

I personally think she is too young to have a "boyfriend"... She is not even 12 and there is just no way she, or he can understand a relationship at this point. I am with the PP who says no dating until a certain age, (although I would say 16.) I think it's nice that they are involved in lots of activities together, but as far as all the texting and phone calls, it seems too early to me. You mention that not being able to get in tocuh with him ruins her day and that is just not healthy for an 11 year old. She needs to be a child for a few more years before she gets in a relationship. I think if you sit down and talk to her about it, and explain your concerns that would help both of you. Having that open door policy is a fabulous thing, you just need to figure out how she really feels about this boy to be able to help her with her dependency. I hope you find a solution that works for both of you!

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