We were sitting around the dinner table when my son said, “mommy, I have a friend. Her name is Anabel. And she looks pretty.” Shocked about what just came out of his mouth (because he loathes the word “pretty”), I felt like my body froze for a few split seconds.
I mean he’s only 7! I knew this day was about to come, but in my mind, he’s still only my baby.
Why You Need to Have a Conversation With Your child About What It Means to Have a Crush
I had absolutely NO IDEA how to respond! My first thought was to make fun of him, but that would just send him into a crazy frenzy, not wanting to ever tell me a secret again. Another part of me thought it was extremely special to be included in the first crush conversation.
You might call it a milestone, but it’s a stage in his life that apparently needs to be talked about. I really didn’t think it was that big of a deal until I started to do some research.
If you think about it, biological stages are at play and brain chemicals are on the move to create newfound emotions for your child. So helping your child deal with these emotions is a very big deal.
Things to Consider When Talking to Your Child About His Crush
So where do you even begin? You know you probably shouldn’t laugh, but what do you say?
- Limit your questions
- By showing respect, you will likely get respect
- Just be there
This is as big a deal for you as it is for him. You’re going to want to ask tons of questions, but contain yourself! Although kids love to ask hundreds of questions, they may feel a little uneasy about the situation if you’re the one doing the asking. The subject of crushes and romance may not be a completely comfortable subject regardless of what you may think.
Asking too many questions has the potential to keep your child from wanting to open up further or in the future. So think before you start asking a million questions. Construct your questions carefully and in a manner that allows you to get the gist of as much as you’d like to know in one go. Try to rephrase your questions in a comfortable format so that it could encourage your child to want to tell you more without you having to do all the asking.
This is as good a time as any to talk about manners and the importance of respect. For boys, their actions and the way they treat women is perceived to be a result of the way they were treated or have seen their mom being treated.
Although this might appear to have a lot to do with what dad can pass onto his son, moms can also have the upper hand by expressing her own feelings and need for respect.
You and I both know that there’s a 99.9% chance his heart will get broken at some point. There’s no need to forewarn him because the last thing you want is to strike up any paranoia or fear of what could happen. Let nature take its course and allow him to recognize the possibility of hurt feelings. Then when you feel he’s ready, you might be lucky enough for him to divulge his feelings to you and whether or not he’s at all hurt in any way.
Do you still remember your first crush? I do! It was nice and now that I think of it … quite funny. But at the time, I remember daydreaming a lot about this person. I never told a soul because I was so embarrassed. You could say, I didn’t really have a guide. I never talked to my parents about much.
Over time, I figured things out on my own. Luckily, I didn’t end up with jerks that abused me or disrespected me in any way, but nevertheless, there were jerks. If I could contribute to society by not raising another jerk, I’d be a very happy parent.