Start Parent guide to teenage dating

Parent guide to teenage dating

One-on-one activities in dating are more appropriate for older teens.

It is important for parents to be ready for this aspect of teen dating as well.

One of the toughest areas of raising a teenager is determining how to approach dating and sexuality.

Sex Even if you have already discussed sex with your teen, now is a time to revisit the subject and remind your teen of your family’s values and expectations.

Healthy relationships Being in a healthy dating relationship as a teen can have its benefits.

Try to be open to discussing it, rather than lecturing them.

You want them to listen to your opinion, yet at the same time feel they are making up their own mind.

But it can also be a confusing time and a difficult time for parents too. Gail Saltz, a psychiatrist with New York Presbyterian Hospital, has some advice. Your relationship with your partner is a model for how your teen will behave with others. Being manipulated, verbally put down, pushed or slapped and kept isolated from other relationships are all signs of an abusive relationship. Tell them they need to be honest and clear in communications. Make them think seriously about what sexual intimacy really means to them.

Teen dating can be a wonderful and fun time where self confidence is built up, and dating techniques are learned. Attorney General reports that 38 percent of date rape victims are girls between the age of 14 and 17. Teach them how to date, how to have respect for one another and how to protect themselves from emotional and physical hurt. Your relationship for your child speaks far louder than anyone’s words. Help them pay attention to the voice inside that says, “I’m uncomfortable in this situation and don’t want to do this.” Teach them to trust their judgment. Tell your sons that having sex does not make them a man and tell your daughters that having sex does not make them cool. Make sure both your son and daughter understand that, and that they should come to you or another parent/teacher/counselor if they feel at all threatened or oppressed by their boyfriend or girlfriend. “I’m not sure…” from a girl can mean “I just need to be pushed or pressured some more before I say yes” to her date. Tell boys if they hear “No” then proceeding anyway is rape. Tell boys they are not expected to try a million different ways to get sex.

To help ensure your teen has a positive dating experience, here are a few things to consider when preparing for your conversation.

Age matters Dating is different for a middle-school-aged teen versus an upperclassman in high school.

This is also one of the most hotly contested aspects of your relationship with your teen since they are unlikely to have all of the same opinions regarding dating and sex that you have.