Middle Schoolers Seeking Dating Advice From Crazy Parents: A True Story

My oldest son is now in middle school.

We have entered the big leagues, my friends.

The thought of String Bean walking through the doors of middle school sent me into a panic. All I could think about were my uncomfortable days of junior high.  I never wanted to relive those moments of hell again.

Fortunately, all my worrying was for nothing. String Bean has had a good run thus far.

Lately, he has been asking me some unique questions.  Questions that he has decided I am the best resource to ask.  Questions about dating.

Yes, dating.  Apparently something resembling this happens in sixth grade.

Sadly, I don’t want to share my middle school dating experiences which only consisted of one slow dance, a note that had the words, “Will you go out with me? Circle one: yes, no or maybe,” and being dumped by the said note-writer because I wasn’t allowed to go with he and his older brother to an amusement park.

Obviously, I was not the best person to ask.  I didn’t become a good person to ask until later in high school and in college.  Oh yes.  Good times.

So sorry – I digress. Back to String Bean.

“Mom.  Can I talk to you?” he said as he is working on his math homework.

“Sure thing, dude,” I said as I stared blankly at his math homework.  It looks more advanced than my college Algebra class.

“How do you know if a girl likes you?” he said, not making eye contact with me.

“Do you talk to the girl at school?”

“Yes. We sit near each other in Social Studies.”

“Have you talked to her about anything in particular like movies or Legos or anything?”

“Mom. Seriously? You think I am that dorky that I would talk to a giiiiiiiirrrrrrrlllll about Legos?”

“No, not at all. Probably not a good idea to talk about Legos.  I was just thinking about Legos for a second. My bad,” I said while looking at the Lego Shakepeare figure he gave me last week.

“How do I know if she likes me?” he said, starting to lose patience with me.

“Has she given you any hints that she likes you, such as giggles or whispers to her friends or smiles really big when you are around?” Yes, I am grasping here.  Failing like I failed many a math test.

“Yeah, kind of.  So, how do I ask her on a date?”

Wait a second.  A date? Wwwwwwwhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaatttttt???

“Umm. You could ask her if she likes Thor, and if she has seen any of the movies,” I said.  I am not sure where my response came from except for the fact I really like Thor.  Really like him.  And I want to see Thor, so I would take anyone to see it with me!

“OK.  Maybe I will talk to her about movies then,” he says and goes back to his homework.

Successful dodging of topic!  Hooray!

Later in the evening, as we are doing the bedtime ritual, I go to tuck String Bean in.

“Mom.  So how do I ask a girl on a date again?”

“Starting talking to her and then see where it goes,” I said, and, knowing full well The Captain was nearby, I added, “Maybe you should ask your dad because he is a guy also.”  Ha.

“Dad, how do I ask a girl out on a date?” he said.

The Captain appeared in the doorway looking completely baffled at the question, but without missing a beat, he replied, “You are too young to go on dates.  Now go to bed.”

String Bean looks at me and whispers, “See, Mom, this is why I asked you. Dad must not have had any dates in middle school.  He probably talked to girls about Legos.  Poor guy.”

They grow up too fast...

They grow up too fast…

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28 thoughts on “Middle Schoolers Seeking Dating Advice From Crazy Parents: A True Story

  1. Oh this post is precious! Brought tears to my eyes. My little guy is just seven years old, I am definitely not ready for dating. Though of course he told me the other day there is a girl in his class who he likes and who likes him! Eek!

    What great writing. I could completely feel your sense of anxiety with this line, “‘How do I know if she likes me?’ he said, starting to lose patience with me.” Perfect.

    And like you, I was not allowed to date in middle school. Also, they were horrid years in so many ways. I really have no idea what I would say if, in a few years, my son asks me, but I know for sure that I would be thrilled that he came to me with those questions. Your son seems so loving and trusting — you must have a wonderful relationship.

    • You are too kind! Thank you for your sweet comment!
      As a mom of boys, it is crazy to think about them even liking girls. Enjoy the elementary school phase – middle school is a game-changer! Thankfully, my youngest is nine years old and he shows zero interest in girls. He actually teases my oldest about girls a lot. He has the right idea! ;)

  2. How wonderful that your son will ask you about these things. I’ve heard nary a word on the subject of dating from either of my teen sons. It’s probably all those puberty books I’ve tossed their way since they were toddlers. Not to mention my spontaneous snippets of unsolicited advice…

    I love your son’s response to your husband’s response. Now it’s up to Dad to redeem himself. ;)

    • I am all for giving unsolicited advice to my boys! I think that is a mom’s job! :)
      Sadly, since the puppy incident this past year, all of the birds and the bees and the dating questions have been tossed my way. I think my husband’s tactic has paid off for him – he doesn’t have to answer to any of it! ;)

  3. I have to agree with String Bean on this one!!! I think The Captain was home A LOT on the weekends!!!

    Nice blog!! Now come over to my house and deal with “The Playa!!”

    • Lisa, I know it! It has been a nice surprise! I was afraid that he wouldn’t share with me, but I am lucky he feels comfortable enough to talk to me. I am hoping it stays this way through high school and beyond!

  4. I knew I loved my (then) boyfriend when we had a Lego date for Christmas (we were both in our mid twenties). We bought one big huge lego castle to build together, and surprised each other with a smaller project related to that castle (mine fired spears–AWESOME). But then again, I didn’t really have any dates in middle school, ha! Just wanted to say that I absolutely adore your blog; you’re hilarious, and your family is just so *real*.

  5. It’s awesome that he can talk with you about it. I went through much the same conversation with my oldest son last year. We had another talk when she told him she didn’t like him, and another when he found out she was “dating” another boy. Keep him talking, Momma. And keep writing it down too. ;-)

  6. Aww yes, the middle school years! They were a difficult time for you because we moved so much. This blog was hilariously entertaining and brought back a lot of memories. Stringbean was a love this weekend…growing up way too fast for this grandma!

  7. Hahaha! Dates in sixth grade?! I would have said the same thing as The Captain. Heh. I probably would have also suggested the Lego conversation. Hee!

    • I told him that he wasn’t allowed to “go anywhere” with her without a chaperone (i.e. me!) He said he was just going to see if she wanted to go to the dance at school with him. I will be chaperoning that for sure!

    • We do love Legos here! I do think it is a little soon for real “dates” at this age. I think it won’t go farther than maybe talking for two whole seconds at school! ;)

  8. Oh, this is adorable. And welcome back! Isn’t it good to be the parent they come to, even if you’re not sure what to say? And could the “date” be him seeing if she wants to watch a movie and have some pizza at your house?

  9. I love this post. How hilarious about the legos… I will keep that knowledge close to my heart. Sadly, I think both of my girls have been “boy crazy” since preschool. They soon will likely leap to dating at the school book fair or something, jeepers.

  10. It’s so sweet that he asks you… and you handled it all so well! Wait until he bans you from using any of his stories in your blog. I’ve got semi-bans in order. I break that ban from time to time, and pray they don’t read. My 21 y.o. son recently came to me with a personal crisis, and I was so grateful that eh still felt like he could, and that he trusted me to share the story. Priceless times with our young men, before they belong to another girl… You are contributing to another woman’s happiness one day, when your son turns out to be a very special man. Such a sweet post.

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