Boyfriends, Breakups, and Saying No

Madeline informed me last night that she and her boyfriend broke up.

Reminder: she’s three.

I asked her what happened. She said she told him not to kiss her and now he’s not her friend anymore.

Again, she’s three.

I told her that she did the right thing by telling him not to kiss her and that she shouldn’t be kissing boys yet. I also told her I was sad that he wasn’t being her friend anymore. And that she was too little to have a boyfriend anyway. That seemed to satisfy her for now. I hugged her and she went on to play.

I know that most likely the next break up won’t be so easy to cure with a hug, and that makes my heart ache for my little girl.

Already at three, a boy chose not to be her friend because she said no when he tried to kiss her (something they have already been in trouble for previously, so Madeline knew she wasn’t supposed to do it).

What happens when she is thirteen and it’s more than a kiss?

These are the things that already make my momma heart and mind worry.

What if next time a boy she really likes threatens to break up with her if doesn’t do more than just kiss him? How do I instill strength in my daughter, beginning even now, so that when she wants to say no, she can say no and stand firm in that decision?

How can I make sure that her heart is not broken by a boy who only wants to see how far she will let him go. These may seem like crazy things to worry about, because well, she’s only three. But I believe that the foundation of strength, self-worth, and confidence is being built now.

She watches our every action. She sees how sweetly her dad treats me. She knows what love looks like. I want her to seek that in her life. I want her to grow up not settling for less than she deserves. I want her to expect the best because she deserves the best.

For now, our little threenager has seemingly gotten over her first broken heart fairly easily. She was able to say no to the unwanted kisses from the boy who is always trying to kiss and hug her. She is learning that while she likes to give out hugs, she doesn’t want to be kissed, and she is in control of herself, so she gets to make those decisions not the boys.

I can only hope remembers that she is in charge of her body as she grows into her teen years and that that beautiful heart of hers doesn’t get too broken along the way.

But I will be prepared with a shoulder to cry on, some sappy music, cheesy movies, and some ice cream to make it all better when it does.

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