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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my daughter is 15 1/2. She asked me last year when she could start dating although there was no one on the horizon. I told her to ask me next year (this year). Her dad lives in another state and she rarely sees him, but does have a fairly decent relationship with him. I have involved him in every aspect of her life and when she asked me this year, I told her that she needed to clear it with him about dating before I even thought about it. He said that since she was getting excellent grades, had gotten in no trouble, and was leading a fantastic life so far, that he felt she had earned his respect and trust and would be able to date. I then agreed with him starting this year. Her stepfather (my DH) also agreed that it was probably OK to do a 1 on 1 date. So I finally consented.

A few weeks ago, she said that this boy had really liked her all year and had asked her out. She wanted to know if they could go to the movies. She then said she wasn't going with him because he had a bad personality. That then changed in one week and they ended up going to the movies. This boy's best friend lives down the street within biking distance and I know that he is over there all the time and my DD goes over there to go swimming. Since the movie incident they have "gone out" a couple of times, once again to the movies and a couple other times to hang out in the downtown area of the island where we live.

This brings me to yesterday. She wanted to go to the Street of Dreams with me and I told her she could bring a friend. She decides to bring this same boy. In the car on the way there, I notice they are holding hands and almost the whole ride, she ended up sleeping and had her head rested on his shoulder. He also at one point had his arm around her and they were holding hands. The whole time there, they still held hands (the kind where you just CAN'T let go!!).

My DH and I started feeling really weird in the car like we weren't ready for this. I literally felt like I was going to start hyperventilating. I know in my heart of hearts that this is normal teenager behavior. I remember full on what it was like when I was this age and even the things that I was doing - YIKES!

We've already had the sex talk numerous times and she's gone through sex ed, the whole nine yards. We also have a really open relationship and she's told me time and again who she has a crush on, who is cute, and we've talked openly about sex, etc. On the first date where they went to the movies, I said, "So are you nervous?" Her response, "No, not really." Me - "Well, what if he tries to hold your hand?" Her response, "Oh mom, that's not a big deal." Sounds like typical teenager stuff and not trying to act like anything is a big deal.

So here's my concern. Given that this whole thing just freaked me out so much, I know deep down that I shouldn't make a big deal out of it as it will make her want to do it more. Should I talk to her some more about sex, going on birth control, that kind of thing? Should I say that she shouldn't be holding hands in front of her parents, practically laying on the guy, etc.? Last, should I tell her that the boy talks WAY TOO MUCH for my taste and really a lot about himself?? LOL That was really the only thing that got on my nerves about him.

Help before I have a nervous breakdown over holding hands!! Thanks!

Carrissa
dd's born 02/14/91, 08/29/04 edd 12/2/06
 

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Hi Carrissa!!!! Okay, honestly I think everything that is going on is totally normal. I know how hard it is, but she's doing great, and so are you!

One thing I learned from my parents vs. my sister, if you tell your child you aren't wild about his/her choice, it only seems to drive him/her towards that person more. My mom has said time and time again that she wishes she had just kept her mouth shut about my sister's choice of boyfriends. Funny, the one she was with when she was 19 that my parents couldn't stand (he was 37) would be wonderful compared to the three she married! Unless the guy is truly dangerous, I would just keep my mouth shut if the worse thing about him is talking too much, know what I mean?

Hugs!
 

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it's so hard watching them grow up! My oldest is 13 1/2, so I'm right there with you. Just let her know what your rules are for this relationship--ie, phone time, alone in a room, etc., It's hard but you have to trust her and let her experience life.
 

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Teenagers talk about themselves. They're somewhat self-involved at that age. So he talks too much for your taste -- obviously he doesn't talk too much for your daughter's (current) taste. Bringing it up is probably not going to endear her to you or your point of view.

As for holding hands in front of her parents, why shouldn't she? Would you rather her be secretive about the nature of her new relationship? I mean, she probably knows that making out with her new boyfriend in front of her parents just isn't acceptable, because that kind of thing should be private (from everyone). But hand holding?

You said yourself that your DD has been in no trouble, has led a "fantastic life", and that she's earned your respect and trust. So act like it. Freaking out over very normal teenage behavior on her very first semi-serious boyfriend is not acting like she's earned your respect and trust, IMHO.

You said that you and your DH started feeling weird in the car like "we weren't ready for this" and I think that sums it up. Honestly, from everything you've posted, I think the issue here is yours. I don't think your daughter is doing anything inappropriate, unless there's something more you're not telling us. By all means, keep having open communication with her regarding sex, relationships, respect and trust in those relationships, her body and what she's comfortable with, etc. Beyond that, I'm not sure what kind of help you're looking for. As I said, I see your daughter's behavior as perfectly normal and appropriate.
 

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The thing that popped into my head:

(Don't know their names!)

Billy and Sue sitting in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g. First comes love. Then comes marriage. Then comes the baby in the baby carriage!

Of course there is usually a lot of time between the start of the song and its end. I think instead of more sex ed, I would double check on her ability to negotiate (bad word but can't think of a better one) with bf and to be bf's what her values and expectations are. Make sure she can stand up for herself. The other thing that scares me (about my dd) is not hooking up with an abusive boyfriend who won't leave her alone. If your dd can be a good judge of character and know what boundries she wants, I think that may be the best you can hope for.

PS: Can you save your brown paper bag for me!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you all ladies for such kind words of encouragement and reassurance. The poster who remarked that I thought she had earned my respect and trust and now I'm not acting like it had a very good point. She is being a normal teenager - I think the thing that shocked me was that she was doing it in front of me. I would NEVER have held hands with my boyfriend in front of my parents. My first boyfriend we dated for 3 years of high school AND the first year of college and by year 3 I still wouldn't hold hands and I don't think he would either (in front of my parents at least). I think it made me feel weird or something like they didn't approve. Anyway, I will be having a very relaxed conversation with her about her boundaries, making sure she can say no, fend for herself, AND do we need to go on birth control (god forbid) etc. I don't think this boy is abusive (I guess who knows), but my DD is definitely not one to put up with any crap.

Thanks everyone!

Hugs,
Carrissa
 

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Don't forget parents are notoriously bad judges of character when it comes to their children's choices. I had a really sweet boyfriend, still a friend many years later, polite and assured and great with all kinds of people. My mother told me privately she could tell
that he wouldn't "be the kind of boy to pressure you sexually."
Meanwhile that was all he was interested in, was very forthright about it too, wanted to date many girls at once and was the biggest perv, into trying everything! Your relationship with your daughter, and your assessment of her as a confident girl who won't take any crap, is far more important. Sounds like you are on the right trak there.
 

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i think it awesome she is holding hands in front of you! i had to hide so much from my parents, it would have been nice to be able to be open.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mothragirl
i think it awesome she is holding hands in front of you! i had to hide so much from my parents, it would have been nice to be able to be open.
Oh, I totally hear ya on that!
 

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I think.... (trying hard to think of a good way to say it....) that your expectations might be off? You and your high school boyfriend dated for three years and STILL thought that holding hands in front of your parents was taboo? That seems really unusual to me.

I would be 100% fine with her choosing to bring him to Street of Dreams (I'm jealous - I've never been but keep meaning to!) and holding hands and going to the movies. If you are uncomfortable with her putting her head on his shoulder in the car (which I find kind of sweet but I guess we are different) then you can talk to her about that - that you'd be more comfortable with a little more physical space between them. But that is just in front of you. You can't control her comfort level when you aren't there.

I definitely would NOT tell her you think he talks too much. Another poster already said exactly what I was going to - too much for YOU maybe but clearly she is ok with it. Or maybe not and she'll get tired of it and you won't have to worry about this particular boy being around anymore. Most teens talk about themselves a lot; that is just the nature of the beast. I would be HAPPY that he feels comfortable talking in front of you!

My dd1 is ten so we haven't gotten to this point yet but I plan to tell her she can come to me when she is ready for birth control. BUT let's be realistic here just for a minute, ok - you and me? MOST kids (even the ones whose moms say they can) don't come to us. We are the ones who can say yay or nay to them going out, taking the car, being alone with the boy they like. Why tell us that they are planning to have sex? I plan to tell my girls that they can come to me, but if they feel they don't want to do that, they can go to Auntie or their best friend's mom or drive themselves to the Planned Parenthood in town or a neighboring town. I also plan to buy condoms at Costco, tear all the packages apart, and put them back in the box and place it under her bathroom sink. Tell her it is there; she is free to use them as she needs when the time comes; but when she uses enough for it to be noticable that they are gone, she is ready to buy her own!

I think hand holding is very, very minor in the scheme of what is to come. Take a deep breath and calm down and it will all be ok!
Then you tell me the same thing when I come here in a few years!
 

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I think it's wonderful that she feels comfortable enough with you guys to be able to lean on her boyfriend in the car. You must be really close! I'm jealous!
And of course you felt peculiar... I'm decades away from this experience and it already fills me with dream


Personally, if my mother had been even a little bit more understanding / cool, even if she had been faking it, I doubt I would have ended up being so sexually active at the time I was. Her policy of "If you kiss in front of me I want it to mean you're getting married" backfired bigtime!
 

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I had to reply because the title of your post made me smile! When I was 15 1/2, I met my first husband (we were together for 10 years). I think it's sweet that your dd was holding hands in the car, by the time I was your dd age I was sexually active (and I don't regret it at all, I was ready!). I was very open with everyone about our relationship and 7 of those 10 years were so great!
 

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well when i was 15 1/2 i started dating. we were aloud to go on dates and such. then at 16 i started having sex. my mom did the sex talk, i would even deny anything but holding hands. in my opinion, 1 on 1 dates are too much for a child of this age. there should always be an adult. ALWAYS. i know for a fact, i would not have had sex if there would have been adult around. nor would i have even kissed a boy if someone would have been around. so please, don't think just because she gets good grades and has been good so far she can be trusted with a boy alone. it doesn't take much to talk a girl of this age into a kiss, then a hand up the shirt, then sex. it does happen. as someone who has been there, don't let her go on a date alone. this also means, don't leave them alone even in a basement. as i have had sex in my basement with my parents upstairs. them thinking we needed privacy. they are only 15-16, they don't need privacy. i say 1 on 1 dates when she is 17 1/2. but that's just my opinion.
 

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Quote:
well when i was 15 1/2 i started dating. we were aloud to go on dates and such. then at 16 i started having sex. my mom did the sex talk, i would even deny anything but holding hands. in my opinion, 1 on 1 dates are too much for a child of this age. there should always be an adult. ALWAYS. i know for a fact, i would not have had sex if there would have been adult around. nor would i have even kissed a boy if someone would have been around. so please, don't think just because she gets good grades and has been good so far she can be trusted with a boy alone. it doesn't take much to talk a girl of this age into a kiss, then a hand up the shirt, then sex. it does happen. as someone who has been there, don't let her go on a date alone. this also means, don't leave them alone even in a basement. as i have had sex in my basement with my parents upstairs. them thinking we needed privacy. they are only 15-16, they don't need privacy. i say 1 on 1 dates when she is 17 1/2. but that's just my opinion.
This is super extreme in my opinion and I think it will backfire...big time! I had super controlling parents and I am damn glad I chose to disobey them otherwise I would have gotten to college and gone really crazy not knowing what to do with all that freedom! They were so clueless about what behavior is developmentally appropriate for a teen.
 

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I would be having a mental freak out too. I think you handeled yourself well. remember, thisi s what dating is. holding hands and going to movies and such.

as for the talking, just be listen carefully. at least you get to know more than you ever weanted to know about this guy. i fear the quiet ones.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by e123vg
well when i was 15 1/2 i started dating. we were aloud to go on dates and such. then at 16 i started having sex. my mom did the sex talk, i would even deny anything but holding hands. in my opinion, 1 on 1 dates are too much for a child of this age. there should always be an adult. ALWAYS. i know for a fact, i would not have had sex if there would have been adult around. nor would i have even kissed a boy if someone would have been around. so please, don't think just because she gets good grades and has been good so far she can be trusted with a boy alone. it doesn't take much to talk a girl of this age into a kiss, then a hand up the shirt, then sex. it does happen. as someone who has been there, don't let her go on a date alone. this also means, don't leave them alone even in a basement. as i have had sex in my basement with my parents upstairs. them thinking we needed privacy. they are only 15-16, they don't need privacy. i say 1 on 1 dates when she is 17 1/2. but that's just my opinion.
I completely agree with this! And I think that with cons8istency, it certainly won't backfire. I think group dates with one or more other couples would be fine starting at 16 y.o.
 

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I am going through this only my daughter is two yrs younger. Yes,I am talking more about sex,realtionships,etc. For her,I think iit is too young so will supervise to make sure it is safe for her and that group dating is what occurs. Sallie in Fl.
 

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no matter how hard you try, you can NOT prevent a teenager from having sex if you wanted to. my son is almost 16 (in sept.) and he has never really had a 1 on 1 date (he cant drive yet). they have gone to the movies with friends and hung out and stuff like that, but no 1 on 1 date and he confessed that he has had sex.
yes, i was disappointed. but i found condoms. no, i am NOT happy. neither his father or i lost our virginity until we were almost 18 (i was 1 weeks prior to my 18th bday)....and we thought we could do this with out son..but he had other ideas.

i think its cute she held his hand in front of you. shows that she feels secure in your love for her. and your reaction is probably normal. i felt weirded out when my son got out of the car and kissed his gf on the mouth after a movie a few months ago.

as far as how she feels about the boy, my son thinks his gf is the "most beautiful girl" in school. well thats HIS opinion. i dont necessarily agree with it, but its HIS gf, not mine.
dont criticize the bf to her....if my parents had shut up about my first bf, i would have dumped him long before i did, kwim?

as far as preventing any 1 on 1 dates, i guess its easier with a boy than a girl, b/c my son isnt driving and wont until he's 17, so he cant really do a 1 on 1. but parents can be present everywhere (unless you dont have any other children, a job, or anything else in your life to do...even then, i dont think i would spend my time spying on my teenager).

i do agree though, that kids have sex in the house even if their parents are there. thats why i dont allow any shut doors in my home.

good luck. treat yourself to a glass of wine if you drink.
 
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