Adventures in Parenting: Adolescent Love

Since the premiere post for Adventures in Parenting featured my youngest son,  I thought I’d be fair and focus on my oldest son, John (affectionately called John-John), for this episode.

One night last week as we were all getting settled for bed, John was up to his usual antics, doing anything he could to avoid going to bed.  Usually this is accomplished by spending an unnecessary amount of time brushing his teeth, offering to help me with whatever I’m doing, etc.  This night was different.

John very casually mentions that he has a date the following day.  I asked John if he knew what a date was, his response was “Yes, it’s when you sit down and talk.”  Ok, crisis averted.  The “date” was with this little girl in his class,  Natalie.  He and Natalie have been friends for the past several years.

Fast forward to the next evening.  We’re driving home and I ask how his “date” went.  Here is a transcript of our exchange:

John: You have to promise not to tell Dad.

Me: Not tell Dad what?

John: (shifts uncomfortably in his seat, giggles, refuses to look me in the eye)  We kissed.

Me: (mind you, I’m driving!) Excuse me?

John: On the cheek, on the cheek!  Not the lips!

Me: And where did this take place?

John: Recess.  We were looking at the clouds, describing what we saw, and she just, you know kissed me.

Me: I see.

I spent the rest of the ten minute car ride getting after Justin for kicking my seat while chanting “John-John got kissed! John-John got kissed!”

When we get home, we all get prepped for dinner.  I’ve already mentioned the day’s “festivities” to my husband.  It’s his turn to grill talk to John about what happened.

Husband: So, I hear you had a date today.  How’d that go.

John: (Gives a very condensed version of that day’s activities)

Justin: (butting in, as is the norm) John-John got kissed!

Husband: Really?

John: (Grins)  Yes.

Husband:  So, how did that make you feel?

John: I dunno, kinda good.

Dad: So what do you like about Natalie?

John: The way she looks.  She has the perfect face, the perfect hair, and the clothes she wears are very fashion-forward (I just about died!)

We spent the rest of dinner explaining appropriate behavior at school and why one shouldn’t be kissing at school, even if it is on the cheek.

I think the Husband and I handled it all very well, given the circumstances!

What about you?  Do you  remember your first adolescent love or kiss?  Or, if you are a parent, can you recall your child’s first love?

21 Comments to "Adventures in Parenting: Adolescent Love"

  1. March 25, 2010 - 7:28 AM | Permalink

    heh i liked my first boy in kindergarten. his name was Tommy, he had blonde hair, wore flannel shirts, and always got in trouble with the teacher. i wonder what happened to him….

    my first kiss was in 6th grade. we were playing spin the bottle at birthday party. actually i kissed two boys on that day. i never told my parents!

  2. March 25, 2010 - 8:10 AM | Permalink

    My first real kiss was in my parents’ basement with the boy I was dating in 7th grade. (Why my parents let me be alone in the basement with a boy, I will NEVER understand.) He used tongue, and I kept thinking about how it felt kind of weird, like when you stick your tongue through that film on top of a cup of pudding. (TMI, I know…but hey, what do you expect from me?)

    My favorite part of the John-John story is that he 1) knows the term “fashion-forward” and 2) used it correctly!

    Also, this is possibly my most favorite blog series ever.

  3. March 25, 2010 - 8:39 AM | Permalink

    What a great post. You will be remembering this story for a long time and probably have to take it out to share with everyone on his wedding day!

    Instead of my first kiss, can I embarrass my hubby, who once played 7 Minutes in Heaven, went into the closet with a very cute girl and wound up closing his eyes, going in for the kiss and…kissing her ear! Yeah, he didn’t live that one down too quickly.

  4. March 25, 2010 - 9:02 AM | Permalink

    OMG Jenn that is too cute. I am kinda scared having to go through this. Michael is only 6 but I know that the little girls LIKE him. I think you guys handled it great. I will keep you in mind for when it happens to me. AGH

    As for me I had my first peak on the cheek in grade one and the guy was so cute his name was Jody. (Yea I know) Sadly because I wouldn’t go to his house after school one day he dropped me like a hot potato :(

  5. March 25, 2010 - 9:56 AM | Permalink

    I think you handled it great!! I have to say that when John-John said they were looking at the clouds describing what they saw, I thought, wow, I wish I’d looked at clouds with a boy.

  6. Heather J.'s Gravatar Heather J.
    Twitter: age30books
    March 25, 2010 - 10:06 AM | Permalink

    Woah. I about choked when he told you they kissed. I think I would have passed out from the shock. But on the good side, he actually TOLD you about it! That’s fantastic! And I think (hope?!) that by you handling it calmly and not making a big deal about it – while still setting expectations – he’ll feel comfortable talking to you about other relationship issues in the future. *fingers crossed*

    Kiddo is still at the point where he doesn’t like girls “that way” but he does keep track of who likes him … LOL

  7. Becky's Gravatar Becky
    Twitter: BeckyLeJeune
    March 25, 2010 - 10:44 AM | Permalink

    That’s too funny! I definitely remember my first kisses — first peck, first real kiss — and I don’t think I ever told my parents. Although I’m pretty sure they knew about the pecks.

  8. March 25, 2010 - 3:00 PM | Permalink

    When Vance was 3 or 4, he was in a commercial with several other children for a local store. At one point, he and a little girl were playing with a train when he leaned over and gave her a big kiss. We have that one on video!

    After we moved from France, we were out somewhere and Vance announced to the room at large that he knew how to French kiss. We were embarrassed and everyone was appalled. Then, we realized that he meant kissing someone on both cheeks!

    It sounds like the fun is just starting for you!

  9. Judy Schu's Gravatar Judy Schu
    March 25, 2010 - 4:15 PM | Permalink

    You kept your cool and listened with appropriate questions. John John obviously wanted to share his experience with you. He sounds like a romantic, doesn’t he?

    When I was in the third grade, I had a classmate who liked me. He kept stealing kisses from me when I least expected it. I was very embarrassed. My dad had told me a year earlier that I wasn’t old enough to have a boyfriend whenever I started writing notes to the cute boys in my class. I ended up having to tell the teacher about it and she gently asked him to stop.

  10. Michelle's Gravatar Michelle
    Twitter: michelleerin
    March 25, 2010 - 4:46 PM | Permalink

    Can I share my little brother’s story? When we were very young, his best friend, Trish, and him would constantly kiss each other. We have pictures of them at 2-years-old kissing in the kiddie pool, under the table, on the couch. It’s adorable. He was devastated when we moved 800 miles away from her.

    I’m still friends with Trish’s older sister and we were recently reminiscing. Unfortunately Trish is married now to someone other than my brother. Would have been a cute story at the wedding reception if they’d ended up together.

  11. March 25, 2010 - 10:35 PM | Permalink

    That’s just too cute. Of course, I’m not a parent…

  12. S. Krishna's Gravatar S. Krishna
    Twitter: skrishna
    March 26, 2010 - 10:00 AM | Permalink

    OMG. This is so cute and hilarious! You guys are such great parents.

  13. Nicole's Gravatar Nicole
    March 27, 2010 - 7:21 AM | Permalink

    Ha! And you thought you had it bad when he wanted to go on THIB! Now you are in a whole new ballgame.

  14. Dawn - she is too fond of books's Gravatar Dawn - she is too fond of books
    Twitter: toofondofbooks
    March 28, 2010 - 11:23 AM | Permalink

    I can so imagine being in the driver’s seat with one kid kicking the seat and teasing his brother while you try to stay calm and keep on the road – OMG!

    Looking at the clouds and telling each other what they see up there… that’s almost poetic.

    (Do Natalie’s parents know about the date?!)

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