boys and dating - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 7 Old 02-08-2005, 01:09 PM - Thread Starter
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OK - my question is really more complex than this but here goes -- at what age should boys be allowed to show interest in the oposite sex? I am not necessarliy talking about going off together on "dates". But holding hands, showing affection - even kissing.
My 15 year old daughter is going nuts - boys flirt (espeically one boy) with her and let her know that they like her and then suddenly THEIR parents tell these boys they are too young. Some are not allowed to date until they are 17 or 18. Is this normal?
Well, there is more to this -- but let's start here.
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#2 of 7 Old 02-08-2005, 02:16 PM
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I think it is normal that boys and girls are showing intrest at this age.

But I could see the parents wanting to hold off dating for the same reason you would/could with your daugthers.

It could be they are wanting their sons to hold off so they can have mature relationships, complete schools, et.

Even though this holding off on dating is not an American norm I can see this being benificial also.

It could also be the parents want to hold off on sexual activity for there boys.
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#3 of 7 Old 02-08-2005, 03:33 PM
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NOT normal in America.. Nope.. 15 is usually HS Freshman or Sophmores.. I was told I couldn't start dating unti I was 16.. And I completely ignored it.. I had boyfriends when I was in jr high.. Most of my friends did too.. I grew up in the midwest.. (Iowa) So I'm not that far away from where you ar RM.. Are you in a very conservative area maybe?? Or where a lot of the parents were young parents?? Those are the only things I can think of.. The only boys I knew who weren't allowed to date at 15 were Mormon..

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#4 of 7 Old 02-08-2005, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by reverendmother
-- at what age should boys be allowed to show interest in the oposite sex? do you stop someone else from being interested? (I know this isn't what you mean--it just struck me as funny.)

Seriously though, I think kids have every right to feel what they're feeling and to act on it if they choose. Unless a parent is willing to be with their teen 24/7 and jump in between every attempted kiss or hand-holding, I don't know how in the world you'd stop it even if you wanted to.

My oldest will be 14 in a couple of weeks and so far isn't interested in this stuff, but I sure wouldn't discourage him exploring those feelings -- I'm thinking along the same lines as Dyan--that maybe you're in an ultra-conservative area or one who has religious reasons for trying to prevent kids from acting on these feelings?

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#5 of 7 Old 02-08-2005, 10:47 PM
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I agree with Joan and Dyan.

That is the age at which we (generally) start to feel that stuff, some earlier or later, but around 15 I would definately not be shocked by a kid having an interest in someone else. I wouldn't discourage it in my own kids at that point.

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#6 of 7 Old 02-08-2005, 11:06 PM
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17 or 18 sounds pretty ridiculous. When I was a teen my mother said I couldn't "date" (a term that made me cringe even then) until I was 16. So she just didn't know about the dating I did. I went to dinner with someone when I was 14 and the fuss she made! Meanwhile plenty of kids were paired off by then. A lot of kids didn't have serious sexual relationships until 16 or 17. That seems really late to start dating. I mean, go to the movies and smooch? Seems silly to clamp down on such innocent forays into this territory.
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#7 of 7 Old 02-09-2005, 11:36 AM
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Ok, my kids aren't quite old enough yet, but I still really enjoy this forum.

Anyway, I was thinking of having approximately the same "rules" for my kids that my mom had for me and my brothers. Group "dates", like a bunch of boys and girls going to the movies or the mall or wherever, around 13-14, and one-on-one dating around 16ish. Subject to review of course, depending on the maturity of my children and their boy/girlfriends.

I think 15 is definitely a reasonable time to be interested in the opposite sex. I'd prefer my kids not have really serious relationships at that age, but I doubt I'd outright forbid it. I went to Catholic schools until college, so we're talking pretty conservative, and it seems most of the parents had rules like mine. I don't think I knew anyone who wasn't allowed to date at all until 17 or 18. So no, I don't think it's "normal" for mainstream to fairly conservative areas. But different people have different beliefs and whatnot, so..........who knows? Maybe this IS normal for these kids' families.
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