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    Parents of Tweens and Teens - Welcome to your home!

    Bundles of hormones, emotions, and insecurities. Rebellion, dating, school problems, peer and societal pressures, its our job to see these kids to adulthood. Get the support you need here!

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    An_221651 posted:
    My 8th grade daughter is thinking about telling her friends at shcool she is gay. I know for a fact that she likes boys (she became boy crazy a couple years ago!) but she has had a couple of girl crushes. I found this all out by reading her text messages on her phone last night without her knowing.

    Honesty I am afraid that she thinks this is a cool thing to do (tell her friends she is gay)! I am afraid that that she will be riduculed and teased ( remember how awful kids can be from 8th through 12th grade??)and that she has no idea at this age how badly this could follow her around.

    If I really thought she WAS gay, I would have a different feeling right now. I would be nothing but supportive. So she is confused, and maybe she really thinks she IS gay, but I remember being 13 and having similar feelings, and I am totally straight.

    I just don't want her to jump the gun (she is so young!) and everyone in school and town calls her the lesbian when in fact she is probably just confused.

    What do i do? Do I tell her I read her texts??
    Any advice would be great please.
    Pauline03 responded:
    Wow, I am dealing with almost the same exact thing with my 14 yo daughter. In fact, the latest of it was today when I read an outgoing letter she was sending to a friend claiming she is now "bi". Which puts me in the same position as you. I had no right to read the letter!

    Like you, I have no trouble with adults deciding their sexuality, but teens, like my daughter, with only a first boyfriend just recently - don't have the experience or mentality to be labeling themselves.

    Sorry I don't have advise for you, but at least you know you aren't the only one going through this.
    An_221652 replied to Pauline03's response:
    Thanks for posting, Pauline.
    I agree with this: but teens, like my daughter, with only a first boyfriend just recently - don't have the experience or mentality to be labeling themselves.
    That's my dilema. Keeping her from talking with kids who are not mature and could very well spread the word like fire and she will get all sorts of negative attention. I plan on talking to her, gently.
    Do you know what you are going to do?
    Pauline03 replied to An_221652's response:
    In my case, she has brought this up in the past - or I overheard it somehow & Talked with her back then. Expressing the fact that, at that time she hadn't even had a date, let alone a way to know what she preferred. SHe has since indicated that I am crazy & that she never said she was "bi".

    All I know is she lost interest in her one and only boyfriend.

    I have tried discussing with her how dating works and how it can mess with your head when you get the "crush" or when the crush part wears off, but it seems what I say goes in one ear and out the other.

    SHe has been told not to label herself at such a young age and to just live and be a teen, but todays letter proved she is ignoring that. Like your daughter, mine is finding it to be cool to advertise herself as such.

    However, mine is suffering from a mood disorder and has been off the rails for years. You, I imagine - have a normal teen. Perhaps, yours would be more willing to listen to reason. As to how to approach it - don't bust yourself, by letter her know you snooped, until a last resort. But do bring up dating, labeling, how cruel teens are - even all the new bullying laws in place can be a great springboard for discussion. It's how I disguise many of my diatribes. :D It works well on my boys!
    An_221653 replied to Pauline03's response:
    Thanks..sound advice. "normal teen"? is there such a thing, lol? My daughter has suffered through depression but recently seems that has been better. I am going to attempt to talk to her without her knowing I snooped, but if she figues it out I'll fess up. Thanks again for your advice. I'll be curious to see how you handle this with your own daughter.
    Nice to "meet" you on this forum!
    Pauline03 replied to An_221653's response:
    Nice to meet you too. I use to be quite the regular, but been a slacker for quite awhile now.

    Nope, I suppose there isn't such a thing as a "normal" teen. In our case I was kinda grateful for the teen years - now my daughter is like everyone else. Prior to that she basically had PMS symptoms since preschool & let's face it - kids don't respond well to that, so she has had a lot of rough years.

    How could you tell when yours had depression? Do you have other kids? I have a 16 yo boy who has dyslexia & aspergers, my 14 yo daughter with mood disorder, non specified :( & an 11 yo boy who they say has ADHD & dyslexia, but who I think has central auditory processing only. Hoping to get that testing done soon.
    An_221654 replied to Pauline03's response:
    No, I don't have any other children. Sometimes I wish I would have given her siblings. Being an only child must be hard on her to a point.
    I discovered she was depressed when she was about 11. She would go in her room and cry and and cry. She would let me talk to her, but she could never pinpoint the reason whay she felt bad. She described it as feeling alone, very lonely. Of course I felt awful, feeling like I was not doing something right as a parent. No one likes to see their child sad like that. What really freaked me out was that she admitted to occasionally thinking about suicide. I took her to counseling which seemed to work a bit. I also got her into two activities- dance and tennis- and that helped a lot, sepecially the dancing class.

    There is nothing worse than seeing your child suffer and feel somewhat responsible- asking yourself where you failed them, where you went wrong as a parent.

    I hope that the testing for your son, too. It sounds lime you have your hands full but are managing really well.
    Pauline03 replied to An_221654's response:
    It sounds to me like you are doing everything right with her. The part that really caught my eye was that you said she talked to you about her feelings. Mine pretends to but is pretty much a chronic liar, so even when she wants to tell me the truth she can't. But if yours is, use that to talk more with her about her sexuality. I can't for the life of me believe she believes that she is gay at that age. Not randomly & out of thin air. THere must be a reason for it.

    I have a niece who is guy and believe me, we all knew it since she was a toddler.

    If you able to talk with her and have discussions, then go for it. My boys & I regularly talk about all this stuff, so it's not like I am springing it on them. THey feel better discussing boy stuff with me than with their dad. I only wish I was able to have that with my daughter.
    Pauline03 replied to Pauline03's response:
    *meant Gay, not guy*
    Sorry for all the typos - kids need dinner & are chirping around me.
    An_221655 replied to Pauline03's response:
    I hope you acheive that with your daughter too. I bet with time and patience it will happen. You seems very intune and dedicated.
    Thanks for taking the time to respond to my posts today. You've made me feel better, just knowing I'm not alone.
    Have a great night :-)
    Louise_WebMD_Staff responded:
    I really wouldn't worry about it. It seems to be quite "trendy" these days among middle school--college girls. Particularly in middle school where boys seem somewhat lacking in brains and social graces, it can be easy to say "I am a lesbian. Boys are gross." because, in fact, middle school boys often haven't hit puberty or have just started and haven't had their social skills catch up with girls at that point.

    We found a similar note involving my 20 year old at 14--we fretted. (Goodness! What will her father do?) In the end, we left her privacy alone and she got older and started to become interested in boys again. At first they were a year or two older than her--then once she got older they have tended to be about the same age.

    I would be more concerned about a boy, just because the bullying tends to happen to gay boys (or boys suspected of being gay) more often than the girls.
    An_221656 replied to Louise_WebMD_Staff's response:
    Thanks for your reply, Louise. I'm finding out these thoughts in girls her age are more common than I knew. My only remaining concern is that because she is so social, she probably wants to tell everyone her thoughts. She's such a sweet girl, I just want to protect her the best I can.
    An_221657 replied to Louise_WebMD_Staff's response:
    And forgot to mention, you are right about how it would be very hard on a boy. My brother is gay. Although he did not mean to tell anyone in school, it got out, and he was teased and picked on quite a bit. That was back in the day when it was less accepted though.
    stressed1857 responded:
    my neice is a tom boy and she last year she had on myspace that she oe bisexual but also she is in intrested in boys she is very physical and i think that alot of girls at some time in life or another has an intrest in other females but also i hear from my daughter and neice that it is the in thing right now alot of people are saying things like that if you coment or push the issue she might actually act on the feelings teensnow days demand privacy to some extent we as parents do sometimescheck out things but you need to let them feel like you respect their privacy and respect them if not they can come become very disrespectful in middle school half the kids are saying they are gay also she might be doing it because of hormones and she can keep boys from approaching her until she can handle their emotions you shouldnt be woried right now good luck
    stressed1857 responded:
    me i on the other hand have had a problem with my daughter pitting out she has changed boyfriends 4 times this summer even though she has only talked on myspace with them or texted but at their age you have to give them space to figure out who they are or just out of defiance you might push them into something they really had no intensions on acting on good luck and just keep on letting her know she can talk to you about anything but dont act unusually because they pick up on it quick

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