Teens and the sleepover issue - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 12 Old 03-02-2014, 03:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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There was a debate in another group about sex positive parenting and I was ridiculed about sex positive parents encourage their teens to have sex.  To me there is a big difference between encouraging them and accepting the fact that they are having sex.  I would never encourage my 16 yr old to have sex but when she did become active at 15  I did not want her to feel embarrassed or ashamed about it.  I do allow her and her bf privacy while they are here and he does stay overnight in her bed on weekends.  She is on bc and they do use spermicide so I do not worry about an unplanned pregnancy.  Do you allow your teens and their partners privacy at your house?  Do you allow sleepovers? 

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#2 of 12 Old 03-03-2014, 02:50 PM
 
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~~Do you allow your teens and their partners privacy at your house? Do you allow sleepovers?

 

Yes, and yes... Like you my daughter is 16 and came to me when she was 15 and told me she and her boyfriend were ready to have sex.  I took her to Planned Parenthood for birth control.  It may be hypocritical of me but I don't like him sleeping over at our place.  She sleeps at his house every Saturday night and I pick her up on Sunday at 1:00.  On the occasion that he's at our house I usually find errands I need to do anyway and tell them 'I'll be back at _____".   They don't go to school together so they usually only see each other once or twice a week.  Any more than that and her school work suffers. 

 

In the beginning I stressed that the birth control responsibility was all on her.  I used to do spot checks to make sure she'd taken that day's pill...but in a year and half she's never missed a day.  I hear her 'bc alarm' go off every morning about 30 minutes after she gets up.  She's very responsible about it. 

 

I felt like I had no control over whether or not she had sex (unless I followed her around 24/7) but I did have some control over whether or not she used bc responsibly.  I've known too many teens who were 'not allowed' to have sex and Surprise! got pregnant. 

 

I will say that my stress level went down by A LOT once she was on birth control.  Before that I didn't give them any privacy!  If he came over they had to stay in the living room and even then I was always popping in.  I didn't allow the sleepovers until she was 16 (age of consent in my state).  His family is very nonchalant about the whole thing and the sleepovers are fine with them. 

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#3 of 12 Old 03-03-2014, 09:33 PM
 
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Well, yes and no. DD started dating her first/only boyfriend at 16. They've both just turned 17 and been together almost a year. We let him spend the night New Years Eve but they crashed in individual sleeping bags on the living room floor about 10 feet away from DS 13 and a couple of his friends. In that case, we were having a family party and we didn't want him at risk driving home in the middle of the night. We've taken the boyfriend on family camp-outs but he slept in his own tent. We really like him. We trust our DD. If and when they decide to move their relationship to that level is up to them. When DD decides she wants to go on the pill is between her and her doctor. As parents though, we're just not comfortable with him sleeping over any old time and sharing a bed with her. It's not a moral thing... it's an everyone in our house has the right to feel comfortable (including grandpa and daddy) and we're just not there yet. As for "privacy," we don't stress about them being alone together but we also don't alter our schedules to give them the house to themselves. DD's been pretty open about not being ready yet. It just seems to invasive an act to her. I've been surprised at how openly she's talked about it with me but I'm not complaining.

 

Oh, and I won't stop worrying about pregnancy until my kids are adults, settled and able to care for a child on their own. DD was conceived on two forms of BC and both DH and myself were accidents. Happy accidents they all were but there is no comfort zone in my mind. I want grand babies some day but I don't want to raise grand babies.


Married mom of two, DD 17 and DS 13.
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#4 of 12 Old 03-03-2014, 09:42 PM
 
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Oh, I do have a question for Caliope and Gary'sWife... how does dad feel about this arrangement and is dad living in the home where sleep-overs are happening. It's just a curiousity as the only families we know that openly allows sleep-overs of this nature don't have dad's in the home. 


Married mom of two, DD 17 and DS 13.
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#5 of 12 Old 03-04-2014, 02:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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With my husband it was more of an evolving issue.  For him it was great that he had sex as a teen but OMG not his little girl lol.  In the beginning, he basically did not want to know anything about her relationship with her bf.  He was much more comfortable putting his head in the sand at first.  I did casually mention that I had put her on bc and one time he saw a box of condoms in the shopping bag and knew they weren't for us. Eventually he got to the point where he  basically said Ok we can't stop her but I don't want to see it or hear it.  After that we'd leave them alone at home if we went out or allow him over after school before we got home from work.  Then it evolved into him staying over the first time and sleeping on the couch.  Now they share her bed and my hub really just accepts it as a normal occurrence.  He's come along way now and I think it's worked out for the best.

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#6 of 12 Old 03-04-2014, 08:21 AM
 
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:lurk

 

Very interesting discussion. I have a 14-year-old DD, and she does not have a BF yet, but is starting high school next year, so I have been mulling over issues like this. Two questions - Did you ever talk to your kids about the age of consent? Sounds like here the BFs are the same age (frankly, it came up & DD and I talked about it due to a dumb TV show where a HS junior was dating her twenty-something teacher). Also, did you speak with the BF's family about the sleepovers or do you consider that each family's decision to make for itself?

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Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

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#7 of 12 Old 03-04-2014, 08:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caliope View Post
 

 

I will say that my stress level went down by A LOT once she was on birth control.  Before that I didn't give them any privacy!  If he came over they had to stay in the living room and even then I was always popping in.  I didn't allow the sleepovers until she was 16 (age of consent in my state).  His family is very nonchalant about the whole thing and the sleepovers are fine with them. 

Sorry, Caliope - Didn't process that you had said this before I posted. Seems like a reasonable approach to me.


Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

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#8 of 12 Old 03-10-2014, 03:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragana View Post
 

Sorry, Caliope - Didn't process that you had said this before I posted. Seems like a reasonable approach to me.

I agree with Caliope that once mine got on bc and I knew they were using condoms, the stress level went way down.  I still do worry in the back of my mind but like our gyn said, using two forms of protection properly should prevent any mishaps.  And by allowing them a safe place to have their privacy, the risks of rushing and being careless are minimized. 

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#9 of 12 Old 05-10-2014, 05:34 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GarysWife View PostDo you allow your teens and their partners privacy at your house?  Do you allow sleepovers? 

 

Yes and Yes.

 

Hubby and I have decided to not be overly restrictive of this with our kids, especially considering that we were teen parents, but we have always had some rules surrounding sleepovers & privacy. Our oldest 2 kind of did their own thing and thought it was "cool" to be able to have their GF's stay over, but they were never allowed sleepovers in their rooms until they were in a relationship with their GF for over a year, and they respected that. Now they are both young parents, but are taking responsiblity and raising their children with the mother of those children. Our 3rd has his GF sleepover periodically but he says he finds it weird to share a bed with her in our house, so they choose to not. The 3 of them have all been pretty open & honest with us about this kind of stuff. And now our daughter has turned 16 and we've discussed it with her, and if she wants a guy to sleepover she knows our rules. Thankfully, she says she's good. (haha) She said she sees what her dad & I went thru as young parents, and what 2 of her older brothers are going thru being young parents, and she's not ready for any of that. She does have a guy friend that comes over quite often, but if he stays over he stays in the guest room.

 

Hubby and I have purchased condoms for the boys, and BC for our daughter, and have been as open and approachable as we can be with them. We can only hope that they now choose to make the decision that is right for them.

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#10 of 12 Old 05-11-2014, 06:13 AM
 
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When I was growing up I was told "don't have sex."  It wasn't really something that my parents talked to me about other than telling me No don't do it.  Well obviously I did have sex and I loved it, and I did a lot of sneaking around and consequently I had a lot of risky sex. 

 

I now have 3 teenage daughters and I have raised them opposite to the way I was raised.  I have taught them sex can be wonderful in a committed relationship and I've preached bc and condoms.  I've never encouraged sexual activity but I understand how many teens are sexually active and I can accept the fact that they have sex.  With mine I never set an age where I allowed sleepovers, it was based more on the seriousness of the relationship and their maturity.  My only rule was that I wanted their partners parents to be aware that they were staying overnight and I did not want them sneaking around and lying to the other parents.  All 3 of mine have had their bf's sleepover in their beds and all sets of parents knew about it and allowed it.  I think it's part of teens growing up and learning about relationships both emotionally and physically    With all my girls being on bc and knowing they all use condoms every time I do not worry too much about unwanted pregnancies (although they are all aware of the risks.)  I do understand parents that do not allow this and I think it's up to each parent's comfort level what they will allow and what they won't allow.  Letting teens sleep together is not for every parent but it has worked out great in our family and because of this all 3 of my girls are open and honest with me and know they can come to me with any issues or questions they have. 

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#11 of 12 Old 05-22-2014, 11:14 AM
 
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I say this only half-kiddingly, but when you let your teens have sex in the house it's a lot harder to get them to leave home when the time comes.

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#12 of 12 Old 05-23-2014, 02:53 AM
 
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Last Monday night we had a parents forum at our church (a liberal non denominational church btw) and they had a child psychologist give a talk on teens and relationships.  The gist of the

message was that teen love can be just as intense as adult love and that it's something to embrace and not try to shield your teens from. The speaker talked about allowing our teens to grow and experience love at their own pace and without boundaries and barriers being set up by parents.  Obviously she stressed safe sex and protection but she  said that having sex can be part of a healthy relationship and that us as parents should not freak out about it. She also said some teens are ready to have these type of relationships at 13 and some teens are not ready even at 18 and how it depends on the maturity and self esteem of the child.  But she did say that she was talking about teens in serious relationships and was not advocating bed hopping or one night stands. 

 

It was very interesting from the Q and A afterwards, how the parent group was divided.   Some thought the lady was sending the wrong message and others thought she was right on target.  However the entire meeting was handled very professionally.  And although I've always been accepting of my 3 teens relationships it did give me some reassurance that allowing teens to have sex at home is a lot safer and more responsible than making them sneak around and hide it from me. 

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