Appropriate behavior for teens dating

Julie - posted on 10/31/2015 ( 9 moms have responded )

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My 14 yr old daughter's boyfriend is 16. I was skeptical at first, but like him. I let him come to our house. I allow them to go in her room to watch TV as we live in a small condo. They lay on the bed to watch TV and last night I walked in and my daughter was raised up kissing him. It upset me. Only because I'm old-fashioned and it felt disrespectful. She's mad and doesn't agree or understand. Help!

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Jodi - posted on 10/31/2015

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Julie, hang in there. Don't let her manipulate you. Some teens are really good at playing on the guilt of their parents. I see it over and over again, and if their parents let them do that, it rarely ends well. Be strong.

I'm sorry your older children haven't been supportive of your decision to adopt your younger one.

Has your 14 year old ever talked to a counsellor? Especially when you had your cancer and her fear of losing someone?

Dove - posted on 10/31/2015

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First of all... a 14 year old has no business w/ one on one dating in the first place. Second of all... they should never be left alone in any room of the house. They can watch TV in the living room.

Of course she is upset. She's a hormonal teenager that was given freedoms inappropriate for her age and now that you realized the consequences of those freedoms you want to change the rules of the game on her.

Apologize to her for allowing inappropriate freedoms, talk to her about why it was inappropriate, and stay firm. Now... a determined teenager will find a way to do whatever they want, but that doesn't mean you have to allow or condone it. Set the boundaries and the consequences, and talk, talk, talk about sex, birth control, pregnancy, STDs, and WHY it is best for her to wait until adulthood... then pray... a lot.

Hang in there! You've been through the teen years before... you can do it again! ♥

Julie - posted on 10/31/2015

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Thank you Jodi and Shawnn. I'm actually in tears right now, however you both helped me to pull my head out of my butt and smell the coffee. There's always so much more to every story, BUT you are both correct. I have a lot of guilt because of things she's told me in the past and now she's one smart cookie and plays on that. She's very manipulative and spoiled. I have guilt because I adopted her as a single mom. She told me she wishes she would've had and grown up with a dad. All I can tell her is it was GOD's plan. He knew what he was doing when he blessed me with you. He knew you would not have a father growing up. Then she told me ever since I found out I had cancer, she stopped showing her emotions and it changed her whole life, and she doesn't want to get close to anyone for fear of losing them. It changed mine too. It was meant for me to sit down at the computer for advice, because her adult sisters (my 3 bio daughters) are no help. They have their own issues with me even adopting her. So I never turn to them for advice. Friends rarely like to give their honest opinion because they want to keep the peace. I'm thankful for Circle of Moms! I'm sure my daughter won't be tho! LOL Julie

Julie - posted on 10/31/2015

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You're right and I agree. I just left her bedroom and told her if she wants him to come over on the weekends and hang out then she has to abide by my rules. She says I just don't understand and he's her boyfriend and teens her age kiss. LOL I get it. I guess for me being pretty "old-fashioned" it just didn't feel right to have her in my house under my roof in the bedroom kissing some boy. My other daughters' didn't get to do it and neither will she. From now on out he is welcome to come over, but they will sit in the living room and watch TV. I will go in her room and come out whenever I want. LOL

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 10/31/2015

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Well, all I can say is that
1) Teens have most definitely NOT changed that much, as I was 14 in 1984, and it was common "first kiss" stage then...so if your eldest is 35, the behaviour of teens when SHE was 14, in 1995 was no different then than in '85...and no different now.
2) allowing underage children in a 'dating' scenario to spend time exclusively alone in another room will generally promote behaviour that wouldn't happen in the front room or public area of the house. That's why it's not recommended. I don't allow my 18 YO to be alone in a room with his gf, who is the age of consent, but not yet 18. That's inviting investigation and potential trouble.
3) If you had discussed your expectations of their behaviour with them, and they violated the terms of that discussion, then you'd have a right to be upset, but "violated"? That seems a bit extreme to me. Upset, perhaps disappointed...maybe, but as I stated, she's at that age where they do tend to look for that 'first kiss', etc...so it really shouldn't have been that unexpected.

I do agree with Jodi here...you need to clearly outline your expectations and house rules.

Julie - posted on 10/31/2015

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Oh trust me Jodi! I'm w/you. I do NOT want her dating at 14. She just started high school as a freshman this year and is an honor roll student as well as an athlete in every sport. Then she met this Junior and the battle began. I've learned to compromise (after going to my therapist) and pick and choose my battles. The last thing I need is for her to rebel. I adopted her when she was 5 mons old. I recently went through and survived cancer, pulmonary embolisums and most recently menengitis. I also work two jobs. I feel blessed to be alive. I raised my three biological daughter's successfully with no teen pregnancies, all graduated and went to college, no drugs/alcohol use and no trouble with the law. As I said, things are so different in 2015. I'm at a loss to be honest, but not about to give up. I'm in it for the long haul until she graduates high school in 4 yrs. Thanks as I really do appreciate any advice/help I can get. :(

Jodi - posted on 10/31/2015

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She's 14. She doesn't even need to be "dating".
But kissing at 14 isn't that unusual. In fact, it's been pretty normal for decades (I'm not that young either, and I can tell you it was normal at this age in the 80s).

If you are feeling "violated" (that's a pretty strong word) maybe there are some issues you have that need to be worked on.

Having said that, however, this is where you step up and be a parent and spell out the rules in your home. If she can't abide by them, there are consequences, such as sorry, boyfriend can't come over any more.

Julie - posted on 10/31/2015

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Let me explain...It's difficult because we live in a small condo. We don't have a family room. My bedroom is now occupied by my elderly uncle so basically I live in the living room. I am NOT surprised about the kissing, but I'm an older mom (58) and when I actually saw it, I felt violated. It seems so disrespectful. On the other hand, what are my options?? I'd rather she be here, not to mention she is NOT allowed to go to his house, even though I've met and like his mom. I guess you can say I'm kind of at a loss. Things have changed so much since my older daughters (35, 34, and 33) were teens. I guess I'm looking for suggestions/ideas. Trust me, I'm NOT naive or oblivious.

Jodi - posted on 10/31/2015

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Seriously. You let your 14 year old daughter date/have a boyfriend AND be in a room alone together and think there is no kissing going on?

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