Teens Home Alone with the Boyfriend/Girlfriend
My just barely l5 year old 9th grade daughter now has been spending time for 4 months with a l4 year old very nice 9th grade boy from a different school who lives about 7-8 miles away. When he is over, they seem to be pretty physical, though respectful. However when we want to go out , I am confused what to do. Do I make them come with me even to the store, like younger kids? Do I make him go home for that hour or two? What I have done recently is have a neighbor go into the house 2 or 3 times during that hour or so. What do other folks do? Confused.
Hi, As a teenager, my mom would often let me have friends and boyfriends over at home unsupervised. Her point of view was that kids were going to do what they were going to do anyway and she preferred that it happened in a safe, comfortable environment. Her trust/support meant a lot to me and my sister (and despite the freedom to do so, I didn't have sex until college). Please make sure that your daughter is educated about sex and knows how you feel. But also understand that she is going to make these choices on her own. been in your daughter's shoes
Why don't you talk with your daughter privately about it? You might hear from her how far they are going? You should be talking about it anyway because if she has a boyfriend, no doubt the subject has come up between them. If she's having sex (whether you like it or not), they should be using condoms! You can say what you do and don't want going on in your house. In my experience (I have a 17-year old daughter), if you let her have sex in your house they will not have it other more unsafe places. (Teenagers are horny beings!!) Since she's young, she might not know WHAT she wants and this may be an opportunity to hear her and give a little womanly advice. Maybe at some point you can talk to both of them, but that's pretty embarassing, mom, so make sure your daughter is okay with it. good luck! anon mom
I will let you know what I do. No boys in the house when I am not home. The rule is absolute. If I will not be home for a short while, then they come with me (but don't have to stay with me) and can go to a bookstore, movie store or whatever. No staying at home alone with any boy (or girl, if I had a boy) at any age or while the kid is living in my house. Everyone knows the rule, knows it is absolute and there have been no debates about it. It takes less than 5 sloppy minutes to create a baby. adults set the rules
My friend's barely 19 year old daughter is having a baby in March because her mom let her stay home after school unattended. It only takes a few minutes. Teens can be very resourceful and determined. My mom's rule was not to leave me home with a boyfriend. The time she made an exception, I was raped at age 16 by my boyfriend of almost 2 years. When my son goes to a girl's after school, I ask if a parent will be there. Do not subject your daughter to the possibility of pregnancy and/or STDs. 1 in 3 teens has an STD, mostly herpes and chlamidia. Don't think ''nice'' kids aren't exposed to this stuff. If you have to go out, make it sound fun to go with you. Tell them they can pick out a snack at the grocery store or you will stop for ice cream. Let them pick out stuff to make you all dinner. I am sure your daughter is responsible, but in the heat of the moment, one of them may slip up. Better safe than sorry. Anon Health Educator
What do you mean by physical? If they are kissing and he has his hands on her, do not let them stay in the house. Send him home or take them with you. Why does he need to be in your house for so long? Is it on the weekends? Hopefully not during the school week. It doesn't take more than 10 minutes at that age to get pregnant and they can figure out when the neighbor is going to be coming again. Don't be afraid of hurting their feelings. K.
Dear Confused: I think you already know the answer. You said your 15 year old daughter and her boyfriend are ''pretty physical'' when he is over, and you want to know if it's ok to leave them at your house alone for an hour or two. I know you aren't THAT confused. You can't leave them alone for an hour or two, you know that! What would you and your boyfriend have done at age 15 with two hours alone in the house? It doesn't matter that he's respectful, or that you ''want to go out''. You don't go out, period. If you absolutely have to go out, they have to come, too. It may feel like you're treating them like little kids, but you're actually treating them like the great but hormone-charged, impulsive-by-nature, not-ready- for-mature-decisions teenagers that they are!! Don't set them up for a problem situation. They're ninth-graders, not seniors. They still need adult supervision, especially when it's just the two of them. You have to be the grownup
Hi-- yes, the kids will do what they want; but--- don't put your child (yes 15 is a child) in the position of making a poor choice. It's pretty big bs about a safe, clean environment--- you are setting an example for your child and for your daughter's children to come-- I like the parent who said the rule is no visitors-- boy or girl when no parent is home. More than sex, there's drinking, drugs, just plain ''mean girl stuff'', crank calls all sorts of junk! I'm sure most people realize this, but the adolescent brain is still forming and growing until about 26-- lots of poor choices, so at least, put a small deterrent in the way! anonymous
I know there is a range of parenting styles, but the previous response seemed a little harse. My experience with my 15 and 18 year old is that I trust them to do the right thing. If you know the boyfriend and your daughter shows strength in holding her own ground with him versus being intimidated or easily persuaded into doing things not in her character or good judgment then be confident that she will behave appropriately and be responsible for him as well. I have never needed to give my kids curfews or social boundaries. They are not goody two shoes, but they do have good commonsense and know what the consequences would be if they screwed up. As a result, I have been able to talk to them more openly about things that come up for them that they need to deal with... like having a friend that shop lifts or a cousin that is sneaking alcohol out of his house... They trust that I will give them advice they can deal with and not pass judgment, make stricter boundaries or punish them for these things. Having good open dialog without being too preachy goes a long way. So talk to your daughter about it, see if she feels comfortable with the responsibility. Humor goes a long way for talking about embarrassing things too. I have a great book called ''Third Base Isn't What It Use To Be'' on the subject of teen sexuality advice. Good Vibes in Berkeley has it. mom with trust
I haven't been plagued yet with the issue of boys hanging out in my daughter's room. However, she has told me she expects to be able to do this! When I grew up this wasn't the norm at all. (In fact, nearly *everything* in the boy/girl department is totally different from when I was a teen!) I think that if teens have friends of the opposite sex in their rooms, there should be an open door policy and the parent should pass by frequently to monitor activity. Each family has to determine their own tolerance level for this.
For me, friends of the opposite sex in a teen's bedroom is not a good idea and I would seek other places in the house for them to hang out. My view is: why add more temptations? Teens are already bombarded by them and probably don't need more.
I think a good thing to remember in dealing with teens is that, despite their vociferous statements to the contrary, they actually do want -- and need -- limits. It gives them security and lets them know what our expectations of them are.
FRIENDS IN ROOM: I have a daughter. Girls are welcome anytime! No one is allowed when I am away Boy or Girl. I would rather my daughter invite her boy friends into our home verses meeting them around the block or standing out front. Her friends know my home is always a safe haven if needed. Not an issue yet but see the storm coming.
Regarding the teenager in the room alone with girls: Please don't allow this. I was date raped/heavily pressured to have sex or to go farther (ie oral sex) than I wanted to when I was at a boy's house and his parents were there! We were alone in his room with the door shut. I protested when my parents instituted the open-door rule but later on, I appreciated it. It gave me an out. (I am sure your son is not going to do this, but his female guests will probably be more comfortable if the door is open)