photo-263x350My 12-year-old son is very guarded about sharing information about the girls in his life. He shares a bit—usually names—but if I’m the one to initiate the topic, he usually steams. But they’re clearly in the mix: He’s part of a whole big co-ed caravan of texters; he often walks to school with a group of girls; girls steal his phone and change the outgoing message. He FaceTimes with them aplenty (which I know in part because of our screwy family phone plan, in which I sometimes mistakenly receive his FaceTime requests—you could imagine the horror of his friends to discover old grizzly me at the other end). The one area of personal privacy he can’t defend, however, is parent-sharing. And yesterday, I gained a plum ally.

Everyone will remain nameless. Out of the blue, I was introduced to someone whose services I might be able to use for the magazine. And she says (paraphrasing): “Eric, I don’t know if you realize this but our kids [my son and her daughter] are really good friends.” Indeed, they are. Indeed, they FaceTime a lot.

In light of their bond, I suggested to this new professional connection that, instead of meeting in person, we should just FaceTime!

She knew exactly what I was referring too.

At night, I shared the news with Adam.

To me, it was all in good humor. But he was stunned, almost speechless.

The boundaries of what I want to know and need to know about his life are shifting—and clearly I have some learning to do.

Eric Messinger is the editor of  New York Family. He can be reached at [email protected]