My 11-year-old son has started dating – isn't he too young?

DEAR DEIDRE: IT’S difficult to accept how quickly my son is growing up. He is 11 but I miss him being a little boy. I often wish we could go back to that time.

We had lots of challenges with him over lockdown, mostly based around the amount of time he was spending on his computer.

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It caused lots of arguments and seems to have brought out an angry side in him.

He has a girlfriend at school and although I suggested he might be a little too young for a girlfriend, he says he cares about her. Is this normal at his age?

He talks to her on the phone and writes that he loves her. It fills me with worry. I am 41.

Am I just being an over-protective mum?

DEIDRE SAYS: Watching our children grow and change is a rite of passage for all parents – and it doesn’t come without its challenges.

Be proud of him. You have helped your son grow into the person he is.

Accept his relationship but establish boundaries and keep the lines of communication open. If you accept his girlfriend, he is more likely to open up about what is going on in all aspects of his life.

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