My nephew L, who is 12 and cute as the dickens (as my grandma used to say), has a girlfriend. He asked his mom (my sister) if he was allowed to "date," whatever that could possibly mean at 12. She says L and the girl are texting each other all day long.
When my sister told me, I was incredulous and maybe even a little appalled. 12? Isn't that extremely young? He hasn't even started puberty yet. I'm sure I had no interest in dating at 12. But then I remembered (duh) of course I was interested in boys at 12, but my interest didn't lead me to ask my mother if I was allowed to go on a date. I knew that if I ever told anyone about the evil growing inside me, I would spend the rest of my life being raped in jail, and even if I didn't tell anyone I would spend eternity roasting on a spit.