Preschool Boyfriends, Girlfriends, and Marriage

Having two girls, I know that boyfriends would some day come into the picture. Part of me completely dreads it, but part of me really looks forward to intimidating the young suitors that they bring home. I completely understand that it is probably not the most mature thing, but I really think I’ll get way more enjoyment than I should from busting some 13 year-old dweeb’s chops. Turns out 13 years might be about 9 and a half years too late.

While me and my 3 year-old daughter were sitting at the breakfast table, enjoying some nice conversation over bowls of cereal, she told me about one of the grown up girls at church (a Sunday school aide) who has her very own cell phone. Not only that, but she uses that cell phone to send texts to her boyfriend. My daughter was very impressed. At first I thought he was struck by the fact that a kid could have their own phone, and I braced myself for her asking for one. I did not, however, brace myself for her informing me that she had a boyfriend too.

Now, I know that she in fact does not have a boyfriend because no chops have yet been busted, but I was curious to see where this was going.

“O yeah? Who is your boyfriend?” I asked.

“Hugo,” she responded with a smile.

After confirming that Hugo was also aware of this situation, I asked her what makes him her boyfriend.

“I stare at him,” she said. “We stare at each other.”

Never mind some kind of puppy love, this must be more serious than I thought. I mean, sitting there staring at each other is like 80% of marriage. Most of me knows that she had the concept of a boyfriend on her mind and she probably associated that a boy in her class that she happens to play with, but part of me couldn’t help but wonder if she really was developing a little crush this boy. Should we have him over for a play date? Should I greet him an overly aggressive handshake? What are his intentions with my daughter other than the apparent staring contests they’ve been having?

I was fully prepared to not think about it again, but as luck would have it Hugo happened to be right in front of us in the drop off line at preschool later that morning.

“There’s Hugo!” she said as she did a little wiggle in her car seat as if she was playing charades and was acting out the sound the “OOoooohhhOOOOohhh” sound the studio audience made when two sitcom characters kissed. A reaction like that made me think that perhaps this is a little crush.

“He’s your boyfriend,” her older sister chimed in.

So apparently Hugo has already been discussed between the sisters? Is this serious? Have her illegible scribbles been her way of trying to write “Evie + Hugo 4Ever?”

I needed to get a look at this boy. He was walking away from us so all I could see was that he has the same haircut that all 3 year-old boys have. Not a lot to work with. I did notice that his Dad was very tall. Or perhaps average height, he was standing next to a preschooler so its kind of hard to tell. He had a full head of salt and pepper hair, and based on the window stickers on his Subaru, he seemed outdoorsy. These initial five seconds worth of impressions made it clear to me that my kid could do a lot worse than Hugo.

“Are you going to marry him?” her older sister asked. Getting a little ahead of ourselves here, but ever since they were in their aunt’s wedding the girls have been very interested in getting married. Not to anybody in particular either. They have said they are going to marry me, their uncles, and their baby brother. Us not being hill-people, those clearly are not real options. But Hugo?

“No,” she replied, “I am going to marry Judson. He’s so handsome.”

Where the hell did that come from?

Artist’s rendition of my daughter.

Less than a minute ago she was wiggling in her seat for the lad, and she’s willing to drop him like a bad habit for the handsome kid. The little Jezebel. I feel like I need to course correct this. If she is dropping a perfectly short kid with a perfectly average haircut now, what kind of a bitch is she going to be in high school? I can’t let my kid grow up to be a kind of person I’d hate. It is a slippery slope from here to telling a guy who asked to you prom that you’ll go with him, unless somebody else asks. Is she going to keep one eye out for a handsomer handsome guy right up until she says “I do?” What ever poor bastard she ends up with better have ugly groomsmen.

I had no idea what to say to that so I handed her her backpack and she walked into school. Probably to go string Hugo along. Poor little guy. What if he really does think she is his girlfriend? What if staring at my daughter from across the Lego table is the highlight of his day? Maybe Judson’s dad also has a wonderful salt and pepper mane, but I don’t think I care to find out. And if I ever meet this kid I am going to give him a knuckle crushing handshake. My daughter can make her choices, but I’m on Team Hugo.

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