What’s more, the students who dated since middle school also experienced greater risk for depression because of the impact of romantic breakups. So many of these relationships last a week or three weeks. “In school they should not have to focus on dating, but on promoting friendships and healthy relationships.” Kelly Smith, a counselor at Willowcreek Middle School in Portage, Ind., agrees, saying that she spends much of her time dealing with these social and emotional issues.
Orinpas believes that the stresses of middle school dating are similar to those of coworkers dating and breaking up: “Being in middle school and high school, you sit with the same person from 7 a.m. “At this level we deal a lot with friendship issues, but at the core, it is typically about the romantic relationships intertwined.
Finally, always remember to set aside time to spend with your children, even if they don’t seem to want to spend it with you.
“A parent who regularly spends time with their teen can pick up on changes in mood or dress that you might not pick up on when you are just passing each other in the morning,” Corcoran says. Spending time with your kids really matters.” And don’t worry if you think that they are not listening to you, Corcoran says.
One recent study from the University of Georgia evaluated the dating habits of 624 students in grades 6 through 12 from six Georgia school districts over a seven-year period.
Students who reported dating since middle school demonstrated the poorest study skills in the group and were four times more likely to drop out of high school.
So it’s important to let your child know that digital devices and social networking access are privileges that they need to respect, and to be clear about your expectations for behavior on the Internet and with texting.