Wednesday, December 12, 2007

It's Not Easy Being Twelve

Our son David has been processing the breakup with his girlfirend. It started Saturday night and into Sunday morning (after 2 am.) Up until this time he had continued to talk as if she were still his girlfriend. We talked to him about the reasons that he is feeling this way and that God has a plan and it may or may not include Mackenzie in his future. That even though mom and dad have known each other since elementary school that we each dated others before starting to date each other. I think he finds it hard to believe since his whole world revolves around us as a family and mom and dad as a couple.

I was vividly reminded that adults tend to lessen children's thoughts and feelings as we explained to adults around us that we were very tired and David was hurting. We have had some that were very understanding. However, many laughed (not out of meanness) and some just discounted his feelings. Adults have gone through so much in life that is so much more important, sometimes—the death of a spouse, health problems, financial problems—that this seems trivial to them. However, we need to remember that God has prepared us for these trials a step at a time. We have been prepared for these experiences by all our experiences and hurts in our past.

We were up again Monday night with David not able to sleep. This time it was pure anger at everything and everyone that fueled his inablilty to sleep. Again we were up until the wee hours trying to work through this.

So far he is going right down the steps of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. We are trusting that God provides the patience and wisdom in helping him as he travels down the road to acceptance. We are not sure how each of the steps will exhibit themselves, but are at least aware of what to look for.


Anonymous said...

Hello??? A TWELVE YEAR OLD with a girlfriend? Something is wrong with this picture. He's a CHILD for heaven's sake. Don't you think that's a TAD young for a girlfriend? Good grief, don't they grow up too soon as it is? I don't think it's appropriate but then that's just my opinion.

Anonymous said...

I agree with anonymous above. Your poor child's reaction is proof to me that kids that young are not able to handle the emotional aspects of having girlfriends/boyfriends.

Kim said...

I do want to clarity, in case you got the wrong idea. David and Mackenzie have only gone to one movie and only seen each other a few times (five to be exact) over the last 2 years. The one movie was supervised by not one, but both sets of parents. We do feel that 12 is to young for a true "boyfriend-girlfriend" relationship. I would never have let them go to a dance together, even though most parents of middle school children would not think twice about doing so. David's reactions to everything in life is extreme, but am happy to say that he has had a good week. I truly feel that with or without the title "boyfriend or girlfriend" his emotions and attachment would be the same.

Richard D said...

Dear anonymous: - It's obvious that both of you are the same person, so I'm very glad that you agree with yourself. However, if you knew Kim's son, you would know that it was not a classic boyfriend/girlfriend relationship.

The point of that post, as I see it, was that he was going through a very rough time dealing with a situation that at the tender age of twelve seems like a terrible thing. It really didn't have anything to do with whether or not it is proper for him to have a girlfriend, but with how it feels to lose a friend when you are that age.

Andrea said...

Oh Kim...I'm sorry for David's loss. At 12, if a child has involved parents, having a 'girlfriend' or a 'boyfriend' isn't the same as what we see in the news; it is a sweet friendship, seen through rosy glasses. I remember my first breakup - it was just as hard. You've never been rejected like that before, but you do learn to seek God's will through the anger, hurt, and sadness. My prayers for David, that he learns to pray for his wife, and seek the Lord's will for his life, and my prayers for you and Rich, that you can continue to be wonderful parents and guide him through this tough time.