worried mum

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-11-2003
worried mum
5
Tue, 11-11-2003 - 7:38pm
My daughter is almost 14 and has a boyfriend he is already 14. Previously this meant you hold hands at school and not much more not this time they are hugging and kissing. This boy is waiting every afternoon when we arrive home from school to spend time with her. They are not permitted to leave the yard yet I know she has met him at the park without my consent. I tried in the beginning (it has been going on about 3 weeks) to discuss this with her and make some rules together, as I felt this would be the best aproach, she will not open up it seems I do all the talking. I have asked her to tell him not to come over everyday and she says she does then he is there again. Yesterday was the last straw I told her if he is here again I will be the one to send him home. At the moment we are not speaking as I am extremely frustrated with her as she is not the kind of child to lie and decieve yet this began the first time she met him. I am not a prude but I feel this is too young and she is vunerable to males as her father and I are divorced and I do not have another male involved in there day to day lives. She has other male role models but her father lives interstate.

I don't want to get this wrong as I love and adore my children and we have an open conversation policy "there is nothing we can't discuss" i thought this would get us through anything not this time it seems.

Look forward to your input

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-07-2003
In reply to: i_nazza
Tue, 11-11-2003 - 9:04pm
Hi, I can certainly understand your concern, and it seems you've dealt with it trying to talk with her and come to some rules you can both agree on, but she's not talking much. I think this demonstrates her immaturity and your need to be the parent. Unfortunately, banning him or telling him he can't come over everyday can backfire. It's like telling your kids who they can be friends with or not. They're going to do what they want but hide it if they feel they have to. I think the key here, since they are both so young, is just to make sure they are NEVER alone. Don't allow them to go to the mall or movies or any outings (dates). When they are together, there should be other adults present. Actually, him coming to your house makes that easy on you -- if you are there when he's there (are you?) to keep an eye on things. Try to keep the communication open with your daughter, explain why you think she's too young if you haven't already, explain why you feel they need supervision. She won't agree with you, but that's okay (that's her job, just as yours is to provide supervision). Sometimes these things seem real intense at first and then suddenly die out or there's a fight or they get tired of one another -- try to hang in there until this happens (hopefully it will!). Again, keep talking but don't nag her, don't overwhelm her, don't threaten her. Ask her, "What do you think?" "What would you do if you were the parent?" Maybe this will help open her up a bit. If you tell her she can't be with this boy alone and then you find out she has been, by all means enforce a consequence!
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-16-2003
In reply to: i_nazza
Wed, 11-19-2003 - 1:12pm
What is wrong with YOU telling him not to come over everyday? YOU are the parent not your daughter. What does you and her father being divorced have to do with her being "vulnerable"? My daughter's father and I were split up when she had her first boyfriend but I sat down with the BOTH of them and laid down the ground rules...her father had no idea she even LIKED boys let alone have a boyfriend until four years later (the same boyfriend byt the way). You are the parent and YOU need to set the rules not the kids.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-20-2003
In reply to: i_nazza
Wed, 11-19-2003 - 1:42pm

I agree that she's too young for a 'boyfriend' of this type.



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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
In reply to: i_nazza
Thu, 11-20-2003 - 11:19am
How about this:

The next time you find him on your doorstep, ask him if he can return at (time) and join you for dinner, then gently tell him he can come back at that time as you and dd have things to do till then. Let him go, allow dd to fume a little and then explain to her that you MUST come to an agreement about her time spent with BF. Explain that while you do not want to FORBID her to see him, you MUST set up some ground rules concerning time spent together and at who's home. Then you and dd, together, come up with what is fair for both (she may not agree with you on most points, but she will be willing to live with the rules if you at least try to be fair minded about it, maybe even a little less oppositional). Once you've set up a compromise and agreement, write it down and make a short checklist list of points to cover with BF. Then, either during or after dinner, sit down with BOTH kids and go over it TOGETHER. The BF needs to see that you are not his enemy, as does dd, and dd needs to feel comfortable that you are willing to help her set up healthy boundaries. She may not realize it now, but later she will be thankful that you've helped her set up these bounaries which will allow her to still have time for her friends and family. She might even set up boundaries with bf if she knew how or knew she needed them, but she needs you to teach her. I wish my mother had helped me develop healthy boundaries when I was a teen - instead I allowed every BF I had to consume my whole life and even lost friends over BF's. A 14/15 y/o girl is NOT ready for that type of relationship, IMO.

There is no reason this needs to turn into an adversarial situation - with open communication and without threats, you can make this work for you, your dd and even the BF. I totally get what you mean about not having a healthy male role model in her life, however, that doesn't mean each potential BF needs to be suspect either. You can find an even balance, I'm sure. Best of luck and I hope this helps a little.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-19-2003
In reply to: i_nazza
Thu, 11-20-2003 - 10:32pm
There is something wonderful and terrible about the first blush of puppy love, for that's what you've got on your hands. When my son was "in love" the first time, about that age, it was with the girl next door. I too was a single Mom, so decided to make sure he saw lots and lots of her. I invited her to dinner, on outings, to just about anything he might be involved with. It wasn't long before their love had cooled and they became friends. Once you take the mystery out of the situation it ceases to have the lure of danger and becomes quite ordinary.

I've read some of the other responses and agree that you are the parent and you must act like it. Kids are never going to "like" rules that don't favor them, but in the end respect them because boundaries set behavioral patterns for the future that they can depend on.

Good luck!