“If you were a Transformer, you’d be Optimus FINE.”
Valentine’s Day in middle school is pretty much exactly as you imagine it: awkward, drama-packed and hormone-fueled. Navigating the holiday can be tricky for middle schoolers, especially for those in their first year out of elementary school. Because middle schoolers have five or more different classes, it just isn’t feasible to give a Valentine to every student in your child’s grade. Most schools solve this dilemma with candy grams that can be purchased or a Valentine’s Day dance. This means that the main topic of conversation at the lunch tables in the days leading up to February 14 is who-likes-who and who-is-going-to-the-dance-with-whom.
Eleven to fourteen year old kids can feel incredibly stressed and anxious around Valentine’s Day. Due to the wide range of maturity levels in middle school, some students are thrilled at the idea of having a boyfriend or girlfriend, while others are overwhelmed at the thought of a romantic relationship. There are also the inevitable hurt feelings when feelings are unrequited or an invitation to a dance is turned down. You can assist your child with the navigation of these socially choppy waters by sharing your own middle school experiences so that your child can begin know that they are not alone in their experience.If your child really wants to give Valentines to close friends, one suggestion is to mail them so as to avoid any hurt feelings at school.
Pro-Tip: If your child is in a school club or afterschool sport or activity, suggest that they bring a treat for everyone in the group as a way to bring back the sweetness of the elementary school all-inclusive style Valentine’s Day. And again, share the holiday with the people at your child’s Middle School who offer daily assistance: the school nurse, attendance office personnel, librarians, and PE coaches.
If Valentines Day is causing you stress, let’s talk about it! Please give me a call at 310-849-6751 or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
All my best, Jeri