I am a person of strong opinions. Usually I have an “insert-foot-in-mouth” reaction to my own voice…I’m working on it. So if this offends you then, um, don’t be so sensitive and give me the benefit of the doubt. 😀

I think our society pressures little boys and little girls (I’m talking birth to 10 years of age) into relationships that are more than just sweet girls and silly boys way too much. Case in point:  saying that little girls/little boys are boyfriend and girlfriend when they are just babies, etc.  Not to mention all the parents who let their kids watch the kiddie version of smut that is all Disney programming….whoa…there’s my foot again!

I’m guilty of letting these things slip too-don’t get me wrong. I catch myself making these kinds of seemingly harmless comments about Chase and I have to remind even myself that I don’t believe in doing that! But to be even more specific, I’m talking about the stuff that is way beyond just cute little comments. I’m talking about when you ASK the kids “oh is so-and-so your girl/boy friend?” or when someone asks “does he/she have a little boy/girl friend?” or even when some people I know push that on their kids by laughing and talking about it with their child as if that’s totally acceptable and innocent.

S-T-U-D

I seriously believe it gives children a false expectation (i.e. that they think we as parents expect that of them!). I mean I don’t want Cooper thinking that I expect him to have a girlfriend or be in love anytime before it is appropriate. (Which is when he is 30.)

I could diatribe WAY more on that, but in the effort of keeping my foot out of my mouth any more, I will stop there, cause I’m sure you catch my drift and I can already taste my foot. I just want both my boys to deeply enjoy the freedom of being kids.

Enter my beautiful son, Cooper.  This is a child who has had an eye for all things lovely since his infancy. I mean when he was around the 6-9 month age range, I would be at the grocery store with him and he would TURN HIS HEAD to follow a pretty lady down the aisles of the store. Last year, he was enraptured with the spring dresses commercials that Ross had on tv. This is a boy who is destined to be girl crazy.

Now that he is in school, he seems to have caught the attention of a very sweet little girl (who shall remain nameless here). Coop’s teacher told me today that she has to really keep an eye on the two of them in class because they sit next to each other at every chance, they hold hands, Cooper regularly puts his arm around her and he tells me that she is his best friend. I believe the teacher’s words were “a budding romance”.

It’s seriously cute though, right? I don’t want to encourage it…I just want to parent through it well.

So here’s my question: In light of my strong beliefs about this subject, how do I help him guard his heart?

This may seem like I am blowing this out of proportion but hey, I know his Daddy. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and this kid is in for a lifetime of girl issues if he follows in those footsteps. I am determined to help him learn that it is absolutely ok to appreciate all the things that are lovely in this world (including girls) but that there is a time and a place. I want him to hold all that love his little heart gushes with so that when it’s time, God will bless it. And in the mean time…I’d like him to keep his hands to himself. 🙂

…30 is a long way off.

So all you Mom’s of little boys-let’s hear it. I may have to track down some of you ladies with grown-up boys too. Help!!

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