6th Grade, Reading, and…Romance?

First, I must say that what I'm about to relay is based on hearsay. I am not the person going out with a sixth grader (hooray), nor the parent of the sixth graders in question—heck, I'm not even at the school in question.

But.

I found this tale fascinating (sort of) and you will see why:

An unnamed parent of a sixth grade boy reports that her sixth grade son has a girlfriend.

OK—not exactly typical, but neither is it uncommon. Proceed:

The sixth grade girlfriend of this sixth grade boyfriend had a specific request, and she (allegedly) noted that it was really important to her, and would help him better understand her. Would he please read The Fault in Our Stars?

To which I say: huh? I mean, I know that in that selfsame book the girlfriend requests that the boyfriend read a book. And so maybe it seems like, "Oh yeah, this is something people do." And it is something people do. But is it something that sixth grade people do? In your neck of the woods? And to better understand them?

In our neck of the woods, boys are routinely classified as "good kid" or "jerk," nothing more, and the idea that someone would have enough clarity about herself to say, "You should read this book in order to better understand me," is both thrilling and mystifying. I don't think I would think to do this, and if I did I have no idea what book it would be.

You? Would you do this? Have you done this? Were you in 6th grade? What was the book?

Help me understand other people, please.

4 thoughts on “6th Grade, Reading, and…Romance?

  1. This is so far beyond my comprehension, I mean…is it self awareness? manipulation? control? tween angst? thirst for understanding and some kind of communion? Does not fit in with my experience or what I observed of my 20 something daughter.

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  2. Huh. I’m the mother of a 6th grade girl, and I had no idea. My experience (based on hearsay) is that it’s slightly older girls who are reading that–7th grade and up.
    But then, from what I hear, the boyfriend/girlfriend dynamic seems to be broken into two categories (from the pov of my own kid):
    1) They’re popular, and when you’re popular you have a boy/girlfriend, but it doesn’t seem like they actually like each other, and
    2) It seems like they actually like spending time with each other.
    I’m not so helpful, am I?

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  3. While I wasn’t dating in 6th grade this doesn’t strike me as weird at all. I passed books around with friends, and when I started dating in 9th grade I passed book to boyfriends as well, some specifically because they had characters I identified with, or spoke in a voice that I recognized but was far braver and more eloquent than my own. But, I haven’t read that book, so can’t say if that makes it stranger.

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