Social Skills: Twelfth Grade

Twelfth Grade • Most seniors will prefer to spend time with a boyfriend or girlfriend than with a group of peers, so don't be surprised if you start seeing a lot of a particular person of the opposite sex. Dating patterns can still range, however: Your teen may have few or no dates at all, may date often but with different people, or may have fallen in love with one person and even be considering going to college together. Don't worry: Most of these young "mini-marriages," as they can be referred to, peter out by the time they reach college. But when the relationship does end, it can be protracted and painful.

• Your teen may be in and out of the house so often that you feel that he's treating your home as a hotel. While you shouldn't be taken advantage of - he should be able to do his own laundry at this point, for instance - it's probably also wise to accept that he is fast becoming an adult and shouldn't be expected to spend a lot of time with the family.

• If you were a high school senior today, what do you expect your social reality would be? Here's one statistic: Probably half of all of your 12th-grader's friends are having sex, and half are not. How would you respond to that as a peer? How did you respond?

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