7 Yr Old Boy Interested in Girls

Updated on October 04, 2008
M.T. asks from Pflugerville, TX
4 answers

Ok so my son is now 7 and in the 1st grade. Even last year he had an interest in girls and would talk about girlfriends although it was usually a different girl each week or he and a friend would have the same girlfriend etc. Yesterday he had written an "I Love you" note to a girl in his class and I'm assuming gave it to her. Didn't want me to see it but Dad saw it and told me about it.
My question is: How do you keep your child from dating once they get a little older. I would like if I could at least hold him off until he gets into High School especially with young children testing out sex and the pressures of friends etc. If he had the excuse that he couldn't date then hopefully he wouldn't be confronted with having sex too early on and hopefully he would make the right decision not to. He's in a Christian school now and we have talked before about sex is something you do after your married and you get married because you love that person. Don't get me wrong we don't go into too much detail but we are pregnant with our second and so my, not only extrememly intelligent but also curious about a lot, will ask questions every now and then. I try to keep it simple so that it explains it enough to him but avoid going into too much detail. I'm not quite ready to give my son the "Birds and the Bees" speech yet. If I allow the girlfriend stuff now will I be able to not allow it later. I do let him know that he doesn't need a gf and should concentrate on learning but I know at this age is when they are starting to be curious about the other sex. I understand all kids probably go through this and gf right now don't really mean much but at what point do you cut it off. It's been a while I don't remember, what age is it when a gf/bf was holding hands at school or kissing? Ok I'm sure I've gone on long enough. Trying not to be over protective but at the same time want to set limits. HELP!!!!!

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answers from San Antonio on

Hi M.,

I think your worries are racing way ahead of your son's actions! He's written a note. He is "attracted" to little girls his age. This is not sexual. It is natural, normal and OK.

As for dating, you just explain the rules when he gets old enough to care. He is into play dates right now. Next year he'll probably have had enough experience with the ladies to know that they aren't as fun as boys and before you know it, they'll have cooties.

He probably recognizes caring and kindness and calmness in little girls, which is comforting because those things remind him of you. He's away from you all day. He's likely just looking for the things he feels at home.

Don't worry about dating yet. Don't call attention to what he is doing, either. Ask him why _____ makes him feel good. Start a dialogue with him where he can share his thoughts with you and not feel shamed or misunderstood. His ability to talk to you (or feel judged and not talk to you) will carry into those scarey teen years.

When the time comes, you make the rule about dating starting in high school. And you lay down the law and stick with it. If you're consistant with your rules he won't fight too much. Remember that you will still be the adult. He might have a "girlfriend" in school before then, but they'll be in school and those things are more something to talk and gossip about than a real relationship. But let all that go for now and enjoy the innocense of a 7 year old boy.

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answers from Corpus Christi on

We're riding in the same boat...but I may have been here a little longer. My son's seven too...but he started talking about his girlfriends at four. At five, a relative jokingly asked if he had a girlfriend...he said he had 10 and proceeded to list them. Top of the list for pre-k 4 and pre-k 5 was a girl in his class...she still invites him to her birthday party as her "date" (though both sets of parents discourage that term) even though they haven't been at the same school for more than two years...and they hold hands during the party.

In kinder, the number one position went to another girl in his class...and that continued through first grade...and even though they have different teachers now, he still spends all his time with her during recess and PE...she gave him a Bakugon last week...he gave her a cute notebook he bought her at a $1 store a few weeks ago. ...oh, and then there was his summer camp girlfriend...TWO years older than him!

Now I share your concerns about dating at an early age (personally, I'd prefer it if my son never "dated" in the traditional sense and instead focused on becoming friends with people...girls and boys...until he is old enough to consider marriage!)...but I'm concerned about setting limits on his behavior now because of the danger of making girls a "forbidden fruit". I'm thinking that silliness so many preteen boys go through when they first discover girls may not be an issue for my son because he is so comfortable with girls now.

I maye be wrong, but I know that it worked for language...I never made an issue of it when he used "bad words" at home (no matter how bad...and he learned all of them by the time he was 3 from a relative)...and for whatever reason, when all his 1st and 2nd grade friends are getting punished for using bad words at school, he has never had a single report for saying something inappropriate at school (or at church)!

I'd agree with the person that said to be impressed with him and proud of his maturity...my son has stood up to tons of teasing from his male friends to maintain friendships with several girls (especially in first grade when the "us vs. them" thing started with a vengeance). I'm viewing it as a good sign that he's already learning to resist peer pressure!



answers from Austin on

I can remember liking boys in the 1st grade, but the main goal then was to ignore them so they would never catch on. I think the fact that your son may or may not be telling them that he loves them means that he has great self esteem. I think you should be proud for now and take things one step at a time in the future.


answers from Austin on

This is not unusual. Your "Casanova" really does feel this love. The best way to handle this is through open communication. Tell him there are different types of love and what he is feeling is friendship love. Do not make a big deal out of it and it could pass by next week or maybe the end of the school year.

The girls will probably not be as interested in him as much as he is interested in them. He will also be in love with a different girl every week or every few days. Some kids just really have strong feelings it does not matter their age. Usually it will involve notes, bumping and hitting each other and playful teasing. He may even have a whole group of girlfriends he loves at one time.

I would suggest you all avoid one on one play visits with these girlfriends. If he wants to invite his girlfriend home, tell him it would be more fun for him to invite 2 or 3 kids over at the same time.

Never make it a big deal each time he has a new "love", just say "oh, well she must be very nice".

It is different now. The kids do not go on "dates" as much as go out in "big groups". Even at the middle school and high school dances, it is unusual to see many "exclusive couples".

In AISD they discourage public displays of affection in middle school and do their best in High School. They can hold hands in High school and are always testing to see how much further they can go. (Some things never change.)

If at home you can discuss, "true love waits" and true love does not need to be publicly proven with lots of visual hugging and kissing, he will understand what is proper behavior for young people in our society.

Congratulations on having such a loving affectionate son. He is going to break a lot of hearts and unfortunately have his heart broken, but it is because he sees how much you and your husband love each other. He wants to be just like you two.

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