“Suzanne Gelb Image”

”Boyfriends — At What Age?”

Dear Dr. Gelb:

My preteen likes this boy and has started calling him her boyfriend. I think she is too young to have a serious boyfriend. Should I disallow this?

Too Young For Love

Dr. Gelb says . . .

Dear Too Young:

It is not uncommon for preteens to try to emulate teenagers in terms of their puppy love experiences and it is important not to make fun of this behavior.

On the other hand, I do not believe that parents should encourage or permit their preteen to emulate intimacy-type behaviors that they might observe others engaging in. For example I wouldn

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