Mason is just 12 years old, but he is wise beyond his years. A few nights back we had minor disaster in our master bedroom and I had to sleep on the trundle bed in Mason's room. It was fun, kind of like a slumber party. I was wrapping up some email on my laptop and he was on his iPad. I told him he needed to say goodbye to his girlfriend he was messaging with on Instagram and he was taking longer than I wanted him to take. I pushed and he got mad at me, he said, "Mom, she is trying to tell me something, can you give me just another minute?" I was playing hardball as it was really late and when he finally signed off he made sure to inform me that she just broke up with him. Ouch! I felt like a total schmuck.
Keep in mind that he is only in the 6th grade but he and this young lady have been courting for a couple of months - that's a long time at this stage in life. I had my laptop off and way lying in the dark listening to my boy cry. It felt horrible and I was so grateful when he started talking. "Mom, L and J knew, they were so happy today at school, they were laughing when I walked by and I just know they told N to break up with me. Why would people be happy that someone was going to be hurt?" What do I say to that? I said the only thing I could say, I told him that there will always be people in life who will take joy from other people's pain and in middle school, it's probably as bad as it will ever be. I went on to say as young kids, you all don't know how to reconcile these grown up situations and when someone is getting hurt, it's scary. It's easier for a young person to act tough and like they don't care than it is to show real compassion and empathy.
I don't think he liked my answer but I followed it up with what I thought was sound advice. I told him to not feed into any drama that may be at school tomorrow. I said that middle school is the introduction to relationships and how you start out handling things will help how you handle things as you go through high school and college. The best thing to do is to hold you head high, do your own thing and ignore any remarks that try to pull you into the blacktop drama. I did my best to convince him that he should leave girls alone and just be a kid, don't mess with "girlfriends" right now. I'm not sure I succeeded, but I'll keep trying.
How many mom's get to be present when their son's first break up happens? Not many I would imagine and I was so honored that Mason shared his feelings with me. What an amazing gift, seriously, it was a priceless, wonderful gift.