Parents, you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers.

Or just as likely, we’ve got questions and you’ve got answers.

Challenge: Open Discussion

Dear First Boy Who Broke My Daughter’s Heart,

Vote up!
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Email this article


Dear First Boy Who Broke My Daughter’s Heart,

As I write this, I’m tearfully a room away from my daughter who lays heartbroken in her room in the wake of her first breakup. I haven’t been here before as a parent but I feel a wave of nostalgia to the teenage heartbreak feeling that I had suppressed so deeply from many moons ago, that I tried to forget because it hurt so deeply then that I can still feel it today this very moment.

Teen life is filled by many first for our kids: Teenage love, first boyfriends, high school, firsts dates, first cars, first jobs. And then you realize many firsts for you as a parent too: first time young adults, first time drivers, first time curfews, first time for realizing your kids are growing up right before your eyes.

What I’ve said to many friends that haven’t hit this stage of teen parenting yet, is that it is so much more emotional than physical when you get here. Less physical in the sense that you aren’t chasing toddlers any more. You can’t make the play dates either. You are managing emotions, with hormones and friendships with friends they have chosen, and navigating the choppy waters of boyfriends or girlfriends and attempting to keep the peace with your child to help guide the seas but not overstep enough to captain their ship.

But… lessons to be learned… always from every situation, right?

To the boy (and I say this with love as I have a son, and have always treated boyfriends in our home like it was my son going into someone else’s home) who broke my daughters heart…

You are the first and won’t be the last. Her pain is temporary and like an open wound will heal with time. You are a reminder that it is my job to give her a foundation and a safe place to land when things go not the way we planned. She is first a daughter, a sister, a friend, a wonderful individual that can stand alone and will thrive into her own being. She is better off without you and we wish you the best of luck in your new chapter too.

She will come to realize that she will hold her head up high, higher and stronger now, to do greater things for herself than she knew were possible. She will seek her true friends, the ones who are golden, as shoulders to cry on and they will leave help pick up the pieces of her feeling whole again.

She will have the guidance from us, to help remove her from this wreckage and come out stronger, and forge a new path with confidence that yes, things happen for a reason, not always as we planned, but for reasons we will learn later.

As complacent as I had gotten with my teen steering her own ship, I’m gently reminded that my job as a supportive parent will never be done and I should always remain vigilant- like a lighthouse that always leads you back to shore. There will be many more “wrecks” that will need navigation and guidance and as painful as they are to watch, as it is your own child living through them, we can always be that shoulder to cry on, the safe place to land and help them survive and come out stronger in the end.

To the boy who broke my daughter’s heart, this actually wasn’t written for you at all. It was written as a love letter to my daughter to let her know that we are always here. One million times around the sun and to the moon and back again. We are here for you and can’t wait to see you grow and blossom into the person we know you are to be.



This post comes from the TODAY Parenting Team community, where all members are welcome to post and discuss parenting solutions. Learn more and join us! Because we're all in this together.