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2nd Grade Love Letters and other bad advice

Earlier in January, I shared a picture that a boy gave to Charlotte. Gave to her. As in a present. To me, mom radar went through the ROOF. I am not good with this stuff and I am envisioning that she has crushes and dates and boys when she is a safe age. Maybe like 26.

But to me…this is how it starts. Today, a cute little picture…tomorrow, running off to Vegas in a whirlwind marriage. Let us not forget she is EIGHT.




The internet assured me this was normal and cute and lovely.

But by May, just a mere five months later, little William stepped up his swag.

He called my house.

You can read that little tidbit (and my head explode) here.

Fast forward through the summer. I am standing in Charlotte’s room two nights ago to kiss her goodnight and I pick up a folded letter on her dresser. I figured it was a cute drawing.

Imagine my surprise when I open it up and it’s this:

Let me state the obvious first.

  • William has excellent penmanship.
  • William is an eloquent writer too.
  • William would perhaps make a fantastic tutor for my left handed daughter.

But he has GOT to go.

Then…. THEN last night I find another note….all the kids in the class had signed a paper. I figured this was a “end of the school” fake year book thing 2nd graders do…sign, sign, sign….and we get to William.

And he writes his phone number (which I have blocked out for privacy) next to his name.


Persistent little shit, isn’t he.

Is this normal for 2nd grade?

Save me.


25 thoughts on “2nd Grade Love Letters and other bad advice”

  1. I think this is the sweetest letter ever. Charlotte seems to have no issues with it, or would have brought it to your attention months ago- not in the middle of summer!

    If they are in the same class, I would let the teacher know that the little boy has quite the crush on Charlotte and ask her to monitor it.

  2. You know how I feel about this… exactly the same as you. On your post about when he called your house I told you the similar situation I had with my 8 year old daughter. To me this is so early and kids should play tag at this point not go out to date. If they are in the same class again I would definitely bring this up to the teacher and tell her how you feel that you don’t feel comfortable with them walking together hand in hand because it looks like for him it’s headed that way.


  3. This sounds normal, healthy and adorable to me! Most of these other comments are completely mystifying to me, and here’s why:

    1. The note was clearly written by a (smart) kid of about 8. That is exactly how kids that age write when they are trying to get poetic. I mean, he might have had help from a 10-year-old, but not a literate adult. People are acting like someone put him up to it or something. Sheesh. And that handwriting clearly matches his signature on the other paper–look at the back-slanting L’s and the curvy W and M. Also, he’s clearly imitating what he thinks love poetry and love notes are supposed to be like, so I wouldn’t assume he’s “obsessed”–he most likely just thinks that girls are supposed to be praised in flowery, hyperbolic language. It’s ADORABLE; he’s just a few centuries behind. I guess that’s what happen when you grow up too fast, huh?(Other evidence for imitation is the “going out” part. I’m sure he doesn’t really know what it means, just that it’s what you’re supposed to do with a girl if you like her, because that’s what older kids and people in stories do. For little kids, “going out” or similar terms usually just mean that they’ve publicly declared their “relationship,” not that they are actually going on dates or engaging in romantic activities.)

    2. Having crushes at age 8 (and telling them you like them) is perfectly normal development. Kids may or may not be “growing up too fast” compared to some fanciful halcyon time in the past, but that is a historical claim, not one that can or should be thrown around whenever people get uncomfortable with their kids not being born completely asexual and remaining that way until age 21. In other words, if you’re going to say stuff like that, you should be prepared to demonstrate it with evidence from the past. Kids were writing notes like this in the 1950s when my parents were kids, and in the 80s when I was a kid, and at least occasionally doing things so much more outre that I can only imagine how scandalous you’d find them if you’re upset by a sweet little note and drawing.

    3. Really? You people would have her call his parents (or grandparents, I guess?), as if he has done something wrong? If, as I’m beginning to consider likely, they lack any sense in the matter, this could turn into an incident that actually harms his development. What if the lesson he takes away is that telling a girl you like that you think she’s pretty and nice gets you sent to therapy or labeled a future stalker or predator? Based on this kid’s eloquence, his artistic talent, and the tenor of the note, it seems likely that he is gifted, which is a term of art that encompasses not only a child’s unusual abilities but also his special needs. Gifted children are prone to be more passionate than other children at an early age, and they are also very emotionally sensitive.

    4. My only real concern would be whether the little girl in question thinks its creepy, feels uncomfortable having to be around this boy, is embarrassed by his attentions, etc. No one seems at all interested in those issues, just in preempting their daughters’ healthy sexual and emotional development so that the world they’ve constructed continues to make sense. (“Lock up your daughters” jokes are not funny; they are creepy. Way creepier, in fact, than this boy’s little note.)

    • Yes, I would call another parent from a concerned parent. This is the FOURTH note and my daughter doesn’t return these affections, nor, as a parent, do I want her to even consider love, lust, or liking until she naturally feels that way. Putting these types of notes, calls, and phone number and expressing “love” at this age is not something I take any lightly. Phone calls and leaving numbers on sheets no one else does is def crossing the line.

      • See, now that I think is the real issue. Not all this cutesy stuff about locks. This boy may not be “abnormally” advanced in his development, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t further along than your daughter–and of course, even if he isn’t, that doesn’t mean she would be interested in him in particular. I just don’t like the idea of “policing” children’s sexuality rather than helping it to develop in a healthy manner, which was what I got out of several of the comments.

        • Obviously I cannot speak for other commenters, but my daughter is particularly naive and was raised that way on purpose, so even using the term “sexuality” in a form of these notes for her reconfirms that its not a healthy relationship for her to be involved in, or one I would be comfortable with, as her parent.

          • That’s what I mean–there’s so much concern about policing their sexuality before they’ve even developed anything you’d want to call that, and before they have any idea about it themselves. But it isn’t the acknowledgement that child sexual development begins very early that makes this unhealthy; it’s the fact that she isn’t interested in or ready for this stage of development herself and the persistent, one-sided nature of his attentions. On reflection, I’m thinking it’s a little creepy after all for those reasons, even though out of context the note is adorable.

  4. WOW. My daughter is going into 5th grade and she hasn’t had ANYTHING like this. My boys are going into 6th and they are JUST showing a little interest in girls. Nothing like this (thank god). While its cute and all, clearly the kid is a little weird, I would nip it in the bud.

  5. We tell Lucie, who is 10 and has just as many friends who are boys as who are girls, that “boys are for graduate school.” We’ll see if that advice sticks.
    But Charlotte’s friend – I think it’s adorable but at the same time needs to be watched. Have a chat with his grandparents about it!

  6. I can’t imagine that anything about this is normal. They’re in second grade for goodness sake! GEEZ! It feels almost as if he’s being coached, or maybe I’m just naive? I would be talking to his parents if he called my house regarding this. And yes, kids are growing up WAY too fast.

  7. Seems a little intense to me and I’ve got a 10 year old.
    But that said? It’s got to be something modified by him… “The world” has seen her and learned what love is? There’s a lot of odd verb tense in there for a second grader.
    But yes, his handwriting is lovely!
    That said? Talk to your daughter. Ask her what she makes of it all. Ask her if she knows what “going out” means. This is great conversation material for the two of you! 🙂

  8. I don’t know what’s normal. LOL. I have a 7 year old boy and he thinks he knows who is going to marry. He has known since Kindergarten, because she told him he was her boyfriend and he says okay. So they’ve been boyfriend/girlfriend for at least two years. Next school year will be their third. LOL.

    But my son’s handwriting is NOTHING like that. The only person that wanted to call him this summer was his best friend from school.

  9. I went through the same thing with my daughter from kindergarten until about 4th grade. Things tapered off for a bit, now she’s 12 and has a flipping 15 year old boy calling her and texting her all the time. I really miss the days of notes and drawings.

  10. I vaguely recall that you stated that he lives with his grandparents, which I believe would have an impact on his maturity level. My grandparents babysat me at a very young age full time while my parents worked and my maturity level was way beyond my years. However, I was not boy crazy at all but did have really good relationships with the older generations. I do think a chat is in order for the grandparents so they can sit William down to talk with him about it. Charlotte seems to be on the same level though as my daughter who just turned 9 in April. She just wants to have fun and boys are not on the radar at all. I don’t think she would even know what a boy wanted if he wrote her a letter or called her. I think your reaction would be my reaction in that I am not ready for my daughter to be around boys in this way yet. I want her to stay innocent a little longer.

  11. I’m trying so hard not to laugh but it’s totally cute! It seems odd that it’s the boy writing the notes and stuff, usually it’s the little girls that do this. I was in 3rd grade when kids started “going out” with each other. It was an at school thing and usually lasted only a couple of days.

  12. Sorry that I am laughing. Okay, done.
    First of all, these do not even sound like 8 year old words. But then again, I have some preschoolers who sound like they are little old men with the things they say. But I am also the Mom of 3 daughters, so I get where you are coming from. My oldest announced one day after 4 yr old preschool that her friend Marlaina was going with so & so and SHE, as in MY 4yr. old, was “GOING WITH” Cole!! After preschool graduation, her “romance” with Cole ended. Start Kindergarten and enter Nolan. Then 6th grade and I can’t remember that boy’s name, though years later learned he was gay. What I am saying is, don’t worry. As I learned years ago – GOING OUT doesn’t mean anything other they like each other. My 4 yr. old is now 26. And single. Good luck!!

  13. Unfortunately, I think it’s a sad commentary on how fast kids are growing up these days. It might be the “new normal” but I don’t think it’s appropriately normal. I have an 8 yr old so I get what you’re saying.
    It’s sad that so many things in society are forcing (for lack of a better term) our babies to grow up so fast – just look at some of the clothes big chain stores thinks are appropriate for little girls. I’m not prudish by any means but when I think back to what I was like at 8 and what my oldest daughter (now 22) was like, it amazes me what kids come home talking about these days.
    It’s up to use to be a filter for our kids. Good on you, Trisha.

  14. I don’t think this is too creepy. In Kindergarten and first grade my oldest was head over heels for a girl in her class. Why? Because she knew pokemon characters and the relationship blossomed. She adored him too because he was the only boy she invited to her birthday party. When we moved, there were tears from them both. My youngest also has had his fair share of crushes and he’s seven now (going into 2nd grade this fall). Once he learned his phone number he gave it to a couple of little girls and whenever I would come to his class he would forbid me from looking at the little girl because he didn’t want me to let it slip that he liked her. I have 3 boys and one girl – I understand the boy mind probably better than the girl mind because of it. I would say, talk to his parents (grandparents?) and let them know what’s going on. Maybe set up a supervised play date between the two of them and invite the parents or grandparents over too. I don’t know that it’s too intense but I do know that the adults in his life might want to know and talk to Charlotte about it and see what she thinks too.

    And just wait, P’s day is coming too! 😉 Good luck and keep us posted.

  15. I don’t know if its normal. My son didn’t have a crush but typically, aside from William, it’s the girls that develop crushes early on, not boys.

    I had my first crush when I was in first grade and it lasted all through high school. We were always just friends but had he wanted a girlfriend, I would have been ecstatic. He and his family were at my wedding and ironically, my first grade crush and I danced together. I couldn’t help but laugh.

    At any rate, from your Facebook post the other day, it sounds like you have taught Charlotte well and she knows and understands your expectations. And it seems like she has a good head in her shoulders.

    As for William…to be honest, that doesn’t sound like a second grade boy wrote it. And his name at the bottom doesn’t match the handwriting of the note. I bet an older sibling wrote it for him.

    • I dont know, have you seen how serious that drawing was? Charlottes teacher told me he is quite the artist. When school starts in the new year, if he is in her class, I am going to bring these to the teacher. I really dont think this is normal. I dont remember 8 year old boys having crushes…. 8 year girls usually do.

  16. Geez. I hate to say anything is creepy about an 8 year old having a crush, but I don’t think my husband has ever written ME a letter like that and we’ve been together forever! I wonder if he’s copying out of a book, or has an older sibling who’s in a relationship and he’s getting ‘advice’ from them?

    If I were you, I’d call that number (and if the kid answers, ask to speak to a parent lol), and just let them know about this ‘crush’. It seems pretty intense for only 8.

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