Groups can offer a safe, protective way for kids to learn.
But at the same time, parents need to discuss not going too far too fast.
Connolly points to the reality that few kids actually rush onto the dating scene.
Instead, they spend time in casual group contexts where boys and girls are together.
There is interest, but they are not coupled up, which is normal.
"But I didn't start dating until I was 18," says Mom. According to one survey, nearly half of teens between the ages of 11 to 14 years old are dating.
More and more parents are faced with this dilemma today.