Pint-Sized Romance

Don’t treat it as a taboo subject.
It is a fact of life and the earlier and more openly you communicate with them the better. Plus, if you start talking to them early, it is more likely that as they become teens they will continue to talk to you about things.

If your child is asking questions, be honest. Have open communication with your child early on so that when    they do become interested in someone they feel comfortable talking about it.

Ask questions.
You know your child better than anyone. If you notice differences ask questions. Do you feel your body changing? Do you know what sex, menstruation or wet dreams are?

Set a Good Example.
Children learn how to act or behave in a relationship from you, so set a good example. Be sure to discuss things like self-respect and respecting one another.

Play Dates.
Meet your child’s person of interest by inviting them over to the house. Invite them as a part of a group so that they feel less awkward. This will allow you to get to know them and to feel more comfortable if your child begins to date.

Set Rules and Stick to Them.
Be sure that they are not distracted by their “crushes” and continue to be productive in school. Make sure that they know once they start dating that there are rules, like curfews, about what is appropriate for someone their age

Angela’s Teachable Moment: Create Valentines with your children to send to their friend who they “like”. This is a great opportunity to talk about who these people are and what they mean to your child. If there is a “love”, it is a great time to speak about what is appropriate for their age and that they don’t have to do anything they don’t want to and can just be friends.