Dating, Explained

My kids watched some TeenNick program last night on TV. I was marginally paying attention. It’s such drivel that I can barely stand to be in the room, but I want to maintain some semblance of being interested in what they’re watching. The gist of the show we watched was that a girl’s parents thought she was too young to date, but she liked a guy and he asked her to be his girlfriend, so she hid it from her parents (spoiler alert: not well).

Of course in the end, the parents end up loving the boyfriend and give her the thumbs up to date him, so it’s all good.

I completely forgot about it, and I thought my kids did, too. Until today, when I foolishly allowed my kids to help me paint the trim in my bedroom with primer. I know. Mistake. Anyway, we’re all painting, and my 9-year-old says, “Mom, do you care if I date?”

Come again?

“You’re WAYYYYYY too young to date,” I said. “Who do you even want to date?” I am constantly asking him if he likes anyone in his class. He always acts like I have just asked him if he’d like to get a tooth extraction.

“No one,” he responded. “I just wanted to see if you were ok with it.”

“I don’t think anyone in the fourth grade is allowed to date,” I told him.

“On a date?” my 5-year-old began. “Girls do all the talking and boys do all the farting.”

We dissolved into giggles and the subject was dropped. I don’t know if that was a line from the show, or if he made that up. I have a feeling it’s the latter. That’s pretty insightful, coming from a kindergartener. He basically broke down the dynamic of male/female relationships. I’m so proud.

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