Valentine's Day There Is Nothing Romantic About That
Every Valentine's Day, we ask kids about L-O-V-E. More than 4,300 of you responded
to our survey this year and one thing was clear: Liking someone - or having someone
like you - can be so embarrassing. How embarrassing? Enough to make kids blush,
hide in the restroom at school, or even feel like throwing up. Nothing romantic about
Here are some situations that make kids uncomfortable:
• Getting a phone call, email, or note from someone who likes you.
• Admitting that you like someone and finding out he or she only likes you as a
• Getting turned down after asking someone to dance.
• Talking on the phone to someone you like and having your mom pick up the
• Hearing false rumors that you like someone or when people talk about how
you like a certain person.
Most Kids Say They Have a Crush
About 80% of kids say they have a crush on someone. A lot of boys and girls feel
private about their crushes, with 40% saying they keep their feelings quiet. But
60% said they talk to others about the people they like. This can lead to problems.
Nick, 10, said he felt embarrassed and angry when people started talking about how
he has a crush on a certain girl. Brandon, 10, said he was embarrassed when a girl
made fun of him and how much he liked her in front of the whole class.
It made Katherine want to cry when her best friend yelled out that she liked Ray. quot;I
don't think anybody heard. She's still my best friend,quot; said Katherine, 12.
Clare, 11, knew there was trouble the day she saw a group of cool boys whispering
and pointing at her. Later that day, she found out one of them started rumors that he
and Clare were quot;deeply in love.quot;
quot;I was so embarrassed that I hid in the washroom for most of the day!quot; she said.
A Sour Note?
Passing notes also seems to lead to a lot of embarrassment. Emily 12, got a love
note from a boy, responded that she liked him too, but then the teacher caught the
note and read it aloud! Emily said she was embarrassed, but couldn't help finding it
a little funny.
quot;I went bright red and so did he,quot; she said.
Sanela, 10, has had two embarrassing moments. One, when someone left a love note
on her desk. Everyone was looking at her and she was so nervous she dropped all
her art supplies on the floor. Another time, a boy gave her a rose at a New Year's
quot;He wouldn't take it back...In fact, that was my most embarrassing moment ever!quot;
And you can imagine how Diana, 12, felt when a boy sent her a note that said, quot;I
love you, Honeybee.quot;
Based on our survey, here are some tips for avoiding embarrassment and helping
other people do the same:
• Try not to make fun of others or spread rumors about who likes whom. (It's
tough to avoid, but remember how it feels when it happens to you.)
• If someone says they like you, but you don't like them, try to tell them in a
• If you like someone, consider that person's feelings. It's great if the person
likes you back. But if your attention makes the person feel uncomfortable or
angry, try to back off.
• Talk to a parent or a trusted adult if you need help or advice.
When a boy likes her and she doesn't like him, Stephanie, 12, tries to handle it in a
quot;I will still talk to him...Normally, people avoid them,quot; she said.
Boy + Girl = Friends
It's perfectly normal for boys and girls to start liking each other during the preteen
years. It's very new, so it might feel awkward or strange. It's also fine if kids feel
too young to get involved in this lovey-dovey stuff. The good news is that almost all
kids think girls and boys can be friends.
Among boys who took our survey, 85% say they have friends who are girls. And
among girls, 90% say they have friends who are boys. That's a great way to get to
know each other and for girls to start understanding boys and boys to start
Legend, a 12-year-old girl, put it this way: quot;With guys, you mostly play games more,
and joke around way more. For example, if you put two girls (who are friends)
together alone in a room, they might start talking and chatting. If you put a guy and
girl (who are friends) in a room, the guy'd probably want to play basketball with a
paper ball or something.quot;
A girl and a guy just hanging out playing trashcan basketball? That sounds like a
slam-dunking friendship to us. Happy Valentine's Day!