Is Little Jimmy in Puppy Love or Pre-Stalker Camp?
Imagine this: your fourth-grade (age 8ish) little girl- we’ll call her Olivia- comes home and tells you that a boy in her class likes her.
You’re probably thinking, “I’ma fuck ’em up! Okay, let’s see where this goes,” right?
Then she drops the bombshell: “He made a website about me, it’s called ‘I Love Olivia'”
What do you do?
Hat tip to my sister for this- yes, this is a very real situation that is going on with some classmate’s of her daughter (clarification- NOT my sister’s daughter- oh hell naw).
Jimmy has a website at 8 years old, dedicated to your little Olivia.
He expresses how he feels about her (he luuuuuuuuvs her ❤ ❤ ❤ ) , and his observations about her on a given day; what she wore, what she ate for lunch, when she fell and scraped her knee and he walked her to the office to get a band-aid.
Is this sweet, innocent puppy love- or is it scary-stalker-boy in training?
Of course we know that little kids have feelings, sometimes they fall in love with each other, they get crushes, they kiss each other- they have attraction- yes, attraction.
There should be no shame in that.
But is okay to encourage so much focus on it? Imagine being 32 and finding out that your office-mate has a website all about you and what you did that day at work; what you’re wearing, how your hair is styled, who you ate lunch with, that you bob your head when you have your earphones on…
Can you say creepy as hell?! That wouldn’t be tolerated.
There’s another factor- Jimmy isnt a computer genius, he’s your normal, average Jimmy. His parents helped him set up the website; they help him put up info when he wants to post something.
Are they encouraging him to share his feelings or encouraging him to turn into someone who obsesses about women from afar? How long should little Jimmy be permitted to have this site- when does it end, or does it?
I have a boychild, age 9, who loves girls, in a geeky, compassionate, awkward way that boys love girls. It’s not uncommon for him to, upon getting off the school bus after school, to walk his lady friend to her house a few doors down before coming home. He’s also dealt with rejection and jealousy- it’s a part of life, and people of all ages experience it. When you have kids, or work with kids, you understand that.
But I also try and balance my son’s feelings with simple doses of reality. One little girl moved away. That was hard for him, and I didn’t belittle him or his feelings, but I also encouraged him to get over it, without ever saying “get over it”.
I would never encourage or allow a website- that’s just too much in my eyes, but hell, maybe I’m old fashioned and this is what all the cool kids are doing these days.
What do you think? I really, really want to know.