My 13 year old daughter wants a boyfriend. Should I let her?
By carolyn from Cincinnati, OH
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Thirteen is definitely too young to date. When my daughters were teenagers (in the late 70s), there was a difference between having a boyfriend/girlfriend and actual dating. They would have a boyfriend, but they didn't actually go out, just hung out at school, during lunch, and between classes. I feel there should be limited dating, even in their late teens.
Hi, I remember when I was 13 and was dating behind my parents' back as my dad was very strict and I was not even allowed to talk to boys unsupervised! I know that if you do not allow your daughter to date at all then she will lie to you, and do it anyway because that's what teenagers do. Be her mother and set the rules you want, like you must meet the boy and you want to know where they are going and when he comes over they can sit in her room with the door open always. You must set the rules up front whatever they are for you because you will hear later "you never told me that", or "that's not fair". If you don't like the boy just be polite, talk to him and she will see what sort of guy he is by herself.
Believe me if you make a big deal she will want him even more. Yep that's what teenagers do, they think they know best, haha. Also, most teenage romances do not last long! Please talk to your daughter about sex, and also who cares peer group pressure. Tell her about teenage pregnancy's, maybe take her to a single mothers place. It's not cool, it's hard work and you have your whole life ahead of you. Talk to her about love and that if he does love you he would not ask you to have sex, he would wait till you were older and if you say no it is not because you don't love him, no matter what he says. Because saying no to sex always means no! But most of all, tell her to have fun and enjoy her life and let her know she can always talk to you - no matter what .
Wish someone had told me all this. Good luck!
I'm 23 and if I was in your shoes, I would tell her wait till she's 16. That's how old I was when my mother started to let me date. Your daughter may be very mature for her age. But she would also be more mature and be able to handle herself, if anything would happen, if she was a few years older. But if you do decide to let her, make sure the dates are with other kids her age and that all dates supervised by a parent.
I agree more with Redhatterb. Having a boyfriend is one thing and dating is something else entirely. I believe she should be allowed to have a boyfriend, but their activities should be supervised by a responsible adult. Let them go to group activities like school dances, but have her curfew be early.
I say you should wait till she is 18 and out of school. Too many kids get distracted now a days with dating each other that sometimes their schoolwork and jobs get slacked off. Now, I know this may sound old fashioned, but wasn't dating a way of getting to find out if the person was the right one for you. I'm sure she will not be getting married at 14. Plus, a lot of time these teenagers date each other, and end up doing things that us parents don't know about.
I think thirteen is a tad young to date. Maybe your daughter could have other interests?
Like others have said, I think it depends on what you mean by date. If it means that there's a boy who she hangs out with, writes notes to, etc., that's fine and healthy. I do think that they shouldn't be left alone in a house--there should always be an adult at home if it's just the two of them, because that's when teens tend to make a lot of bad choices. At 13, they should generally have other friends around as well.
I agree with Barbie that if you try to keep her from seeing boys until she's 18, she'll either a) obey but resent you or b) lie to you.
Most importantly, talk with her frankly about what's safe--and not just sexually, but emotionally and physically--in a real relationship. Give her an idea of what you think is reasonable at her age now, at 16, at 18, at 21 to give her a better road map of relationship development.
Look on amazon for these two books by Joshua Harris: "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" and "Boy Meets Girl". Thank me later.
Not letting her "say" that she has a boyfriend can and probably will cause her to be ridiculed at school. I know I just went through this. After I saw what was actually happening to her at school. I told her she could have an "at school' boyfriend. The couldn't go anywhere together and they could not talk on the phone. When she turned 14 I let her talk to boys on the phone for 15 min - that was all she needed to feel "normal" when she turned 15 ( which she is now - I let her start having Parent chaperoned dates).
On her 16th birthday she will be allowed to actually go on a date, between 7 and 9 pm and I will know where she is at all times or she will lose her car and cell phone. All you can do about the sex thing is tell them the truth and hope they listen. And be there for them if you find out they didn't. I guess I am fortunate that my daughter's friends did the "sex" thing and it turned out badly for all of them. And she still hasn't so she has seen first hand how it can truly turn out and know that it is not a fairy tale ending. Good Luck and smile " This too shall Pass"
Well speaking as the mother of a teenaged boy, he is now 19. He was allowed to have a girlfriend at 13. At 14 he had sex for the first time. We didnt find out till he was 16. He had a serious girlfriend at 16 so we only let them spend time together with her parents or with us, thinking this would stop them from having sex. Not! When he comes to us a few months later and says uh my girlfriend, shes 15 is pregnant! I want to know how, thought they were supervised, nope, her parents would leave them alone to go excercise in the garage. It seems so simple with they are 13 so innocent. It can go wrong so fast. They have so many pressures on them, let your child stay a child as long as possible, be the bad guy and just say no as long as you can.
I'm thankful I have a strong, traditionally-minded hubby. None of our five kids was permitted to actually date one-on-one until they were 16. Group "dates" in public places were no harm, but that was the limit. Same with phone calls; they were severely curtailed... 15 minute limits and no calls after 10:00 PM. Too bad the parents of our oldest son's first serious girlfriend weren't of the same mind. He missed out on a free ride scholarship because his barely-15-year-old girlfriend had his baby.
You should definitely let her go. Take it from a teenager. The more you tell us no the more we want to do it. We even sneak out every once in a while if were tired of hearing no. My parents wouldn't let me date until now and I used to sneak around all the time. I couldn't stand them, but I keep my phone with me all the time so she can call me and check up on me. That was her condition. Meet the boy first because you want to make sure she has a good guy that won't influence her in the wrong way.
You should let her.You just need to talk about it with her. It's cool how you have an great relationship with your daughter.(:
I would allow her. But, if she was to go on a date then you should always make sure an adult is with them. Teen girls and boys have wants, bad wants. To make sure they are safe and they go to the movies, go to a different movie in the same theater. Don't keep checking up on them though, because your daughter may get embarrassed. I would love to go back to my memories of dating. The bad thing is that when the boy or whoever dumps whoever, its gets fisty, and mean and the girl cries a lot. Also make sure they are not sexting or cybersex, thats not rite. And make sure if she has a phone then to make sure she isn't sexting.
hope this works!
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