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Teen Daughter That Is Too Much into Her Boyfriend

I have a 13 year old daughter that lives her life for her boyfriend. All I ever hear is about him and his mom. What great fun they are and it really hurts my feeling that she doesn't want to be with me. I am sure this is a phase she is going through but I also want to spend time with her. If she is at home it is a big fight to get her off the phone or computer with her boyfriend. Any suggestions?

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I just wanted to say thank you to all who have responded to my question. This is a very tough time. I will take all the suggestions and do my best. Thanks again.

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I'm sorry, I beg to disagree with all of this. 13 years old is just not acceptable for a boyfriend.

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She is only 13 years old! Why in the h*ll does she have a boyfriend? It's O.K. for her to have a friend, that is a boy, but as far as her doing stuff with him, or seeing him other than at school-wrong answer! You are her mother, put the kinks to that, now!

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T., I am not here to tell you what you are doing wrong. I am going to tell you that I was once that girl. I felt the same way about my mom but please believe me that she does need you very much. It may not seem like it but she will remember those times that you were there for her and that will mold the relationship that you will have with her when she is an adult. Her obsession with her boyfriend is pretty typical. For some girls it is a phase and for some girls they will always be "boy crazy" but eventually she will come to you with a broken heart and that little girl will come out again. I hope this helps. Take care and good luck.

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I know this is late, but I am new to this site and an update on your request came to me this morning.
Firstly, I would like to say I was appalled at how many people sent responses that said nothing more than ‘She’s too young’, but offered no other input. Unbelievable! Anyway…
I also have a 13yr old daughter and last year she had a boyfriend before I knew really what was happening. Against all my better judgment I allowed her to keep ‘dating’ this boy, but I did set specific limits even though that required some back tracking. I sat down and with her and explained that at this age she may feel like an adult, but her hormones are really not allowing proper judgment so it was my job to keep her safe from herself (never saying anything bad about he boy or keeping her safe from him, which really would not be that well received!). I tried to joke a little about how weird it is to talk about this stuff with mom while still being firm that it was necessary and would continue until for life so she may as well get used to it! :o).
She was not allowed to go to the boy’s house any more since I was not sure what type of supervision they would have there. He was welcome to our home, but not in her room. ‘Dates’ were limited to school dances and movies in a group. No one-on-one. Phone time was limited to 1 hour a day. They could email, but not instant chat. I also let her know that although I respected her and trusted her, but that trust was only as appropriate for a teenager. That meant that I would be checking on her when she was out and had the right as her mother to check emails and such if I thought it was needed. The computer is not allowed in her room, but only in public areas of the house. I explained that if I walked up while she was online (or phone texting) and she minimized the screen or otherwise limited my ability to see what she was doing, that would be considered lying/sneaking and she would lose privileges as a consequence. She was welcome to tell her friends and boyfriend that I was a horrible mother and blame it all on me, but the rules were firm.
Luckily for us this relationship didn’t last too long, but did have a dramatic and hurtful breakup which helped to illustrate my point about why dating is not to be taken lightly and needs to be considered seriously. Afterward we sat down again and I said there would be no more boyfriends for a while. She of course wanted to know when she would be allowed to date again. I was honest and said that I don’t believe in setting some arbitrary age for dating, but it would definitely depend on her. I explained that the most important question was not ‘when’, but ‘why’. Why does she want to date? Is she bored hanging out with her friends or with her other activities? Does she think that having a boyfriend is important for some reason? This is an ongoing dialogue, (not argument, as soon as she gets argumentative I end the conversation nicely, but firmly. Arguing with a teenager is a losing proposition!) and she has come to realize that just wanting to date someone is not a good thing, but wanting find the right person God has for her is a great thing. Hanging out in groups has become more fun for her since she is not viewing all the guys as potential dates. We’ve discussed how this arrangement gives her a chance to really see what guys are like. Generally she will have a crush for a few weeks then discovers that he is not as great as she originally thought and moves on to the next crush. By not declaring her feelings up front, she is safe to change those feelings (as all young girls do!) without making it awkward within the group or hurting anyone's feelings.
Ok so now I’m into novel mode! Sorry! All this to say, it is not too late to go back and make something good from this. Your daughter is lucky to have a mom that is paying attention and notices a red flag when she sees it. Keep up the great parenting and be brave, you have great instincts!

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I don't mean this to sound harsh, but rather to simply be food for thought...what is the point of having a boyfriend at 13? I am the mom of three, the oldest of which will be 14 in March. We joke about boys being cute, and who has a crush on whom, but there is no question in my daughter's mind that boyfriends are not an option for quite a while yet. It takes the pressure off of her to allow her to make friends with all of the kids in her class, and to become comfortable around the opposite sex. It also eliminates a lot of stress and drama in her life, and for the entire family. I want her to feel free to develop her talents and personality, as well as her values, without the added pressure an immature relationship can put on her. The teen years are hard enough as it is. I assure you we have plenty of drama over other things in our house, and I just can't imagine adding the additional drama of boyfriends at this point. So, I guess I would just want you to consider if having a boyfriend at this age is of any benefit to your daughter. I want to add that it sounds like you are a good listener for your daughter, and if she is keeping the lines of communication open with you, you are winning half the battle.
It is hard at this age when they are becoming more autonomous, and the topic of keeping our oldest child involved in the family has been a topic of many discussions between my husband and myself. We also discuss it with our daughter, and are clear that we won't let computers, ipods, phones, etc. cause further isolation from the family. We also ask her input for things we can do together as a family that SHE would enjoy (it's tough at times as her siblings are 4 and 7). I think the world we live in now has so many more challenges for parents, and so many more things that require limit-setting. It makes it hard, but we have to do what we believe will be best for our kids. So hang in there, we have a long ways to go yet, but just focus on taking one day at a time. Also remember that when you set tough limits and she gets mad...don't back down--she'll get over it! Take care.

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I'm just seeing this...I realize it's way after you posted, but...

So, for all those that say "you're in charge, period!", I say that and a buck will get you a cup of coffee. As in, we're already to this point & like the other mom said, you can't go back to before so you gotta deal with what is now.

To butt heads is to make that gap wider. Kids often rebel at these ages & we need realize that your reaction only keeps her there....the desired affect is achieved, she wants to separate from you & you're ticked off...voila! Acceptance is the key but on your terms. We're allowed to change our minds on some things/rules, but it's how we do it that makes all the difference. For you to come across to her as low key, not yelling/fighting & tossing around authority but as the calm & fair adult that's in charge, will ultimately have more of an authoritative ring to your encounters. Try emailing her with your thoughts/statements, since she's always on the computer. Hubby should be a part of any statements, even if he's not standing there at the time....."your father & I think/have decided...." and make sure he isn't swindled into breaking that united front. Kids NEED to know where that wall is, even if they don't like it, someplace inside they're calmer because of it. Above all, however, accept the boyfriend because he's already there but don't let go of your boundaries, whatever they may be.....just allow for him to be a part of, if you get my drift.

My eldest (now 24) was in LOVE with an 18 yr. old Sr. when he was a Freshman in HS @ 14....and, not a good reputation did she have, either :-). I listened when he came to me about wanting to take her to a movie for her b-day & was looking for my help. I stated the obvious (like, he can't drive..??) but listened MORE to the fact that it was SO important to him AND that he was talking to me in the FIRST PLACE!

****Rule of thumb, if we're (parents) are talking more, we're losing....if they (the kids) are talking more, we're winning****

My son's "love" went by the wayside but he still talks to me about these kinds of things because I never pushed him down or away during his early years of challenges....so, for me it was a "money in the bank" kind of lesson....you follow..?

Take a breath & realize that this too shall pass....and then we'll be onto the next thing. How we handle any 1 thing always rolls into the next. You ARE the Mom/Parent/1 in charge. Having power WITH as opposed to OVER is the key..!!

Good luck!

6 moms found this helpful

Hi T. I am the motehr of a 17yr soon to be 18 and we are going through this now we also did when she was 13. I know its hard but here is what i did. I told my daughter she will be having supervised visits with him and no phone calls longer than 30 mins as lon as her homework is done. I am to meet the boys family and get to know this boy take him to dinner with us as a family and I point blank asked him what his intentions were with my daughter. That stuns them in a heartbeat. They are speechless. Then I ask them why they are interested in my daughter what attracted her to him. I basicly put them both on the spot. I also told them that they are not allowed to be in one antohers home unless a parent is with them and not allowed in the bedroom or a confined room away from the rest of the family. I am to talk to the boys parents before she goes to their home or anyother home no matter who she is with so they dont go sneaking to tohers homes together. If her grades started to fail I told them they were not allowed to see one another till grades came back up and that was on both ends. About you and your daughter not sure how you are finacailly but you may want to offer to your daughter for you and her to go to a movie together of her liking you may not care for it but try to sit through it. What kind of things does she like music clothes shopping of any sort take her on a day your free and say lets go have lunch together and buy 1 outfit for her. Then talk to her about things other than her boyfriend. Are there activities she likes she can get into like dance karate or something of the sort. Have a ladies day out get her nails done or together get them done or hair cuts or makeovers therer are many things you can try to get her todo. make her to busy to go to the boyfriends or have the boyfriend with her. Give her chores check them to see if there done.
I feel the pain your going trhough I have been there. Her it is now my daughter is almost 18 I cant do those things much longer thats why its important to get her to know you like to do these things with her before its to late. Let her see the fun side of you. Good luck

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Hi T.,

I'm a 56 year old Mom of 5 children, 3 of which are girls. I still have a 16 year old at home. My mother in law says that raising teenagers is like trying to hammer jello to a tree. Those with teenagers will understand that comment.
I have really tried to find my children's passions and during that tween years, inform them that now is the time to develop their talents and I try to keep them as busy as possible so they don't have too much time. Doing special things with me were times we always set up. Whenever I would drive with them , no radio or DVD players or Ipods. My kids know that is a time to sing, laugh, play a game, or just talk. It is painful for them at first, and then it becomes a habit and they look forward to it. When their friends are with them we turn off the radio too and you would be surprise what a parent can learn without the distraction. And when they are older and boys come into the picture, I like 16, then date only in groups. No steady dating until they are older. It sounds tough, but, I am a nurse and had to help even 14 year olds have their babies. I have never seen anything more sad.
Now, sometimes our children won't always obey, but I always tell my children that it is my job to teach them, and what they do with that information is up to them. With good choices come blessings and with poor choices come consequences.
It is too bad the media is teaching our kids that boy girl relationships ought to start so young. It makes it much harder on us as parents. Good luck and don't forget to get on your knee and say a little prayer as you try to raise this precious daughter of God. DBH

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T., Your daughter is only 13 and way to young to be spending so much time with a boyfriend. You are the parent and you need to be the parent and limit her time with him. Sit down, let her know you don't mind her having a boyfriend, but it will be limited. If having a boyfriend is going to cause her to treat you with disrespect then she isn't mature enought to have one. She needs boundaries and limits on when and how long she can be on the phone or computer with her boyfriend.

J. F.

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I am also a 38 yr old mother of a 14yr old(feb) daughter. She has been boy crazy since she was in elementary school. I was worried back then that it would be a problem. I never made a big deal about it, much to my husbands disappointment and she in return never made it a problem. For years now she always seems to have a boyfriend that has lasted many months, but she has luckily never let her life revolve around his. She is very independant and I know she gets that through my example. My suggestion, as hard as it may be, don't make a big deal about it but stay strong and determined to be in her life. You will win out in the end. My daugther and I have a very strong bond and I know it is due to the fact that I am always there in her life loving her, talking to her and coaching her through life. She tells me most everything. I have also made a point of meeting and getting involved with her friends. That is huge. I agree with the other mom about the value that other parents hold though. I am amazed at what other parents think is ok. I am very strick with who she is able to hang around with at all times, but I also give her the freedom to grow up. I cannot stress enough how hard this fine line is. It is absolutely the hardest job in the world to raise children. I would limit the time she is able to see and spend time with him to something reasonable that you both can agree on and with that time let her be, but in return she needs to agree to spend some alone time with you alone and with your family bonding without any attitude. If she does give attitude during YOUR family time than she gets her time with him taken away for that week. Be strong because over everything else you are the most important person to her and your opinion does count more than any other in the world.

Good luck to you. I wish you the best on this hard and long road. If you would like to exchange more info my email address is ____@____.com I would love to help and you might be able to help me at something too.


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Hi T., I have 3 children, the 2 olderst girls. What I did was instead of focusing on the "boyfriends" in their lives(which seemes to begin in kindergarden), I told them that matureing came with more resposability and privliges. When each one started Jr High, I bought them their own alarm clock. No longer did I wake them up. If they slept in and missed the bus, they were make to walk to school. But the privelige was to begin extra activities in their lives. Sports, dance, gymnastics, horse back riding, etc. Something that they choose. Chores and school work came first before phone, computor, friends, activities, etc. I also bought them a laundry basket, and gave them the chore of washing their own cloths. Keeping them busy is key. At this age cloths are importand to them, let them pick out some scented laundry soup of their likeing, show them how to iron, teach them how to organize their closets and drawers. If you give your daughter choices and make her live with the after math of those decisions she will learn that her behavior is a direct link to her own disapline. Example: Use the phone when homework and chores are not done, lose phone priveliges for a week. This way when she tries to blame you (which she will) you can tell her that she did this to herself.This prepares kids for adulthood. As adults don't our choices in life directly affect us? If we chose not to do our laundry, does our mommy run to the rescue by coming over to do it for us? I wish you luck with your pre-teen. These are trying years. Just remember, she hasn't stopped loving you, she is just exercising her wings, preparing for the time when she will fly the coop. She is matureing. PS somebody told me along time ago that teenagers are just 2yr old in bigger bodies. Exploring the world, getting into trouble, but wanting mommy close by in case they fall down. Think about the boundries that you used to set when she was that age. LOL

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.. you can be a parent without being bossy or dictorial ...children want parents who try to understand them ,yet at the same time be a protector and a leader for them . Your dau. is trying to rule you and I think down deep she really wants you to tell her what to do . 13 is way too young to have a boyfriend. Girls now a days try to grow up too fast and we allow them too ,... at age 13 , their minds are developing physically ,their hormones are kicking in , they are waking up to the real world ... its very important that you as a mother get into her life gently , without judging her even if you feel like it , restrain yourself , be gentle, yet very firm in what you as a mother want for your dau. above all, don't scream at her , if you talk quiet , she will have to listen to hear you and it may give time for soaking in ...... above all ask God to give you wisdom in teaching your daughters to be obedient , to be Godly ladies, and be an example for them .....
I hope you will be able to put the brakes on this and make a complete turn around for you and them ..... get God in the picture and pray alot ...... M. B.

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Hi, T.,
I know it's been awhile since you posted this and I don't know where you are on this situation now, but I thought I might have some words of encouragement.
I remember having this sme situation once. Only I was the teenager and my mom wwas the one perplexed. I think I can give you a little insight into how your daighter might be feeling.
Remember how when you were a teenager adn you had a crush on a boy? Remember how strong of a pull it is? I remembe how my heart would jump everytime he walked in the room. It was like I couldn't eat, breah or even think without HIM always being right there in the top of my brain. I also remember that in my mind EVERYTHING was perfect about him. I thought his family was the coolest there was, and he could do no wrong. Everything he liked or thought was cool, I did to because since he was perfect, he must be right.
Anyway, I also thought my own family was lame, and boring at that time. It's funny though because I never thought this before this time, and actually, from a teenagers viewpoint, I had a pretty "cool" family. My parents were young and "hip" according to all my friends so I didn't have any reason to think threy weren't, but since I was so into him, I wanted to seoerate myself form my family. I wanted to be all about him and to do that, I had to become independent from my family. Fortunatly, my mom saw this as the reason and let me have my independence. It didn't exactly make me turn back to her, but I always knew she was there when I was redy to go back.
Right now, your daughter is probably just trying to grow up and she sees you as the one to stop her. Even if you are not trying to stop her(and my mom didn't), she still sees you as the one who defines her as a child. Simply by existing you are the one who ia associated with her being a child. In reality, she DOES need you, but she wants to NOT need you, so that's why she's pulling away. She may not even realize that this is what is going on. I didn't. I just knew that everything my family did was NOT for me. It wasn't until I got older and thought back on it that I was ble to out it in perspective.

My best advice is to sit her down one day and say something like, "I want you to know that I am here for you. I feel like you tink I am the enemy and I want you to hear me say that I respect you. Yo are gowing up and I know you are not a little child anymore." She'll be waiting on the lecture she expected (even if you never give them, she'll expect one now), and she'll be suprised! Smile at her and then change the subject. It won't all dissapear. She is still a teenager and until she matures into a young adult, she will always see you as the person that can stop her from growing up. Just love her and if things get so bad that you have to protect her form HUGE mistakes (drugs, getting pregnant, dropping out of school...), then you just have to be the bad guy for that time, but in the meantime, maybe she won't make such bad choices if she knows you aren't out to stop everyhting she does.
I hope tis helps you see what she may be thinking. My prayser are with you... ~C.~


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Good morning T..

Just HAD to put my two cents in.....At the age of 13 - your daughter does NOT need a boyfriend. Way too young. There would be no issues about her wanting to spend time with her "boyfriend" and his family if you lay down the rules - NO BOYFRIENDS at 13....Our children are growing up way too fast and it is up to us - the parents to direct them in the right paths. Yes, they will do what they want eventually or maybe they will defy you - but to allow your daughter at the age of 13 to have a boyfriend is not the best decision.

I will be praying for you and your family.

K. B

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What if you initiated a family night. Were one night a week you and the girls do something together just the three of you. No boyfriends allowed, no phone, no computer etc... Maybe you can all cook dinner together then watch a movie while cuddled on the couch, or play a board game or cards. Maybe every other week go out to dinner and take turns picking the resteraunt.

And just tell her "Look, one night a week, we are going to be together as a family with no outside interruptions." BUT for this to work, you'd have to be sure to follow the rules too!

Good luck and God bless!!


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Oh T.,

So many questions.

1. Where is your husband with all of this? It might help for him to insist upon family time first...grades first...boyfriend third.

If you are a single mom...then you have to insist upon it. Plenty of time for boyfriends later. The kids realize quickly how much time a relationship takes..and then they chose to give up sports, music, family time.

Please do not give up your resolve.

Unfortunately dating today is akin to courting. Whether they are doing anything or not..they are together and spending a lot of time and things end up happening eventually.

There is a lot of pressure to have a boyfriend..intellectually my daughter (16) knows that she does not have the time for one...she still wants to have one.

If she has one boyfriend at 13...I am afraid that the natural progression is towards intimacy earlier.

Lay down the law for everyones sake..especially your 11 year old.

School & Grades first, family(church, God), ...community/christian service next, earning money and learning how to manage it next, THEN..if there is any time left...amazed if there is...then include a guy.

Our daughters need to know how important this time is to develope themselves ..they are incomplete people...who have no business being in a serious relationship with a guy right now. THE GLORY COMES LATER!

I could go on and on...so many of the women who have written have heart breaking stories.

My 16 year old 5'11 multi sport athlete and stunningly beautiful daughter is so dying to have a boyriend..fortunately we get to witness the girls in our carpool with their boyfriend drama and she is happy to be hanging in a group of friends.

Dance? with a huge group...the moms arranged the pre and after parties ..all supervised.
Movies? with a group....arrangements must be given to moms by Wed....who is going, what seeing, who driving(name,number model and make of car) This might sound oppressive to some of you but it sure saves the last minute teen planning emergencies !This is our job! To teach them to plan so that we are not all running around their schedules!

The last thing is this sentence..you will need it with her.

Trust, but verify, Its my job.

I trust you, but I would not be a good mom if I did not verify the details. Thanks for helping me with the information.

Good luck!

C. R

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Good morning T.. I am sorry your feelings are hurt by your daughters actions. I can remember when I was in my teens...I was trying to find out who I was, what I believed in, what represented me and so forth. I can honestly say that I would do anything to upset my mom, why you might ask, because I wanted to 'prove' something to her...I'm all grown up and I don't need her advise any more. But guess who was there when the chips fall...mommy. One thing I wish my mom would have done, invite the boy 'friend' over and his family for family gatherings. Not so much to encourage the relationship, but to show me that she could be 'cool', 'fun' etc too. Right now she needs a 'friend' after a parent. It seems like your the parent first which is awesome, now step down and try being the friend for a little while. Set up a date with your daughter to go have a manicure/pedicure hit the movies and do lunch, let her pick or suggest something. I loved it when my mom would do things like for me.

And as for the computer and phone, what seemed to work best in our family was, okay, you did all your homework, it took you x amount of time, you can have 1/2 that amount of time on either the phone or the computer, and set up specific time frames/days when she can use them. Put the computer in the main part of the house and the phone should NEVER be the cell phone, she is way too young for it in my opinion. Set time limits on the home phone.

And when you think all else has failed, just remember who does she go to when that boy and the next and so-forth break her heart...MOMMY. I'm sure the two of you will get through this difficult and challenging time. God Bless.

3 moms found this helpful

T., I am not here to tell you what you are doing wrong. I am going to tell you that I was once that girl. I felt the same way about my mom but please believe me that she does need you very much. It may not seem like it but she will remember those times that you were there for her and that will mold the relationship that you will have with her when she is an adult. Her obsession with her boyfriend is pretty typical. For some girls it is a phase and for some girls they will always be "boy crazy" but eventually she will come to you with a broken heart and that little girl will come out again. I hope this helps. Take care and good luck.

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WOW--you sure got a lot of opinions didn't you? Some of what they say is good, and some is a bit ridiculous. You never really defined what the "boyfriend" thing is. Some moms are out of touch with the real world. My daughter is also 13. She does have a boyfriend. What does that mean? It means she is "going out"....but really no where...that is just what they all it. They see each other at school and after school events. She was allowed ONE time to go to his house to exchange a christmas gift for dinner.

I wish she didn't like only one boy, but things are different now.

All the things the moms told you about spending quality time are great! 13 year old girls love to be with their moms as long as we are speding money on them. That is the truth!! Do the manicure and shopping and lunch things...they will pick YOU over the boy. And laugh, laugh, laugh.....show her who is in charge, and who loves her.

The person blamed here the most could be the boy's mom. MAYBE---maybe your daughter is not giving you the whole truth. My daughter's boyfriend's mom has no girls...this is her way of thinking she can have one. WRONG. I stick to my guns and do not let them GO ANYWHERE...but I always say nice things about him just in case she thinks she will do something to spite me. I always say nice things about the mom too. Girls this age are spiteful and mean no matter what anyone says. They can not help it. HORMONES and every thing in between.

So my advice--define what the boyfriend things is all about, limit computer time and phone time, PLAN more things so that there is not time for him, and enjoy her....but never never believe anything she is saying FULLY...she will tell the truth and lie all at the same time. IT IS NORMAL.

She will be fine as long as you stay involved with everything. She has a crush, not really a boyfriend, remember that, and make that be what this is really about. YOU ARE IN CHARGE---you are the parent AND the friend...but you are the MOM!!

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I'm the mother of a 16 yo boy and 10 yo girl. I was also once a teen girl with a boyfriend.

I think you will find part of the answer to your question in your own words -- "... it really hurts my feelings that she doesn't want to be with me." Quit worrying about your feelings and start being a mother that she wants to spend time with. Think of fun (for her) things that you can do together. Focus on her interests. And, the more rules you lay down the more opportunities and incentive you'll give her to subvert your rules. Try to remember being young and in love. Don't set yourself up to be an adversary, be her partner. Be the one she enjoys and trusts the most and she won't feel so compelled to head for a boyfriend and his fun mom. Look within and change what you can about yourself and how you relate to her instead of trying to change her -- she's an independent person who will all too soon not have to follow your rules. Create a relationship in which she wants to do the right thing because it feels right, not because she'll get punished.

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She is only 13 years old! Why in the h*ll does she have a boyfriend? It's O.K. for her to have a friend, that is a boy, but as far as her doing stuff with him, or seeing him other than at school-wrong answer! You are her mother, put the kinks to that, now!

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At the age of 13, she should be told when she can and can't talk on the phone/ or use the computer. When our doughter starte talking on the phone we put a time linit on her conversation. We did not have a computer. However most parents are different with their children. My children were allowed to go to a friends house for a certain length and had a curfue until they got married. Curfues vary with age. They respected us and we spent family time and they were allowed to take a friend on a trip or out to eat on occasions. We are the parents and they are the child and will love you for being strict believe me.

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Bless your heart.....I have a 13 yr old and feel a little overwhelmed right now myself. Not so much with "boyfriends and dating", but the pulling away from me. We had a crisis before the holidays, and i had to stop talking and start listening. I'm 51 and i'm beginning to remember what it was like to be 13 ....boy, it's full of emotions. I remember that much.....we have our best conversations in the car while I'm driving....I'm not in her face, and she opens up a little bit more. I remind her from time to time, how "isn't it interesting that one short year ago, this wasn't even an issue, thought, situation, etc. and now look at your way of thinking" (it gets her thinking).....of course, we talk about hormones, puberty, etc.....you just have to keep telling her how much you love her,even when she is not so lovable, and keep her busy!!! Whenever my daughter wants to be with me, anywhere, Mall or park or playing cards, I drop what I'm doing. She needs a mom, she doesn't need anymore friends. I would never let her get herself into a situation where she is alone/unsupervised, etc. Not w/ a boy or a girlfriend. Talk to the boy's mom. You'll be fine.....DF

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Well, I think it's pretty normal for a 13 year old girl to think her boyfriend's mom is cooler than her own. Most teenagers have issues with resentment towards their parents, or ill feelings about how your rules are more strict than their friends, etc. What's important for you to remember is that although it's painful when your child doesn't feel the same bond as you, or doesn't appreciate the things that you do to keep her safe, her opinion on your parenting skills doesn't really matter. As long as you are teaching her good values, trying your hardest to remain an active influence in her life, and love her unconditionally, there isn't much more you can do.

She is however at the age where you do need to be concerned about her interests in boys as she is old enough to think she's ready for the next step, but definitly not actually ready for it. Keep as close of tabs on her as you can without causing too much stress on your relationship. Remember that you ARE the boss, whether she likes it or not. I'm not an advocate of snooping through her belongings necessarily, but sometimes you have to know whats really going on and talking to her may not work. And remember that talking on the phone and being on the computer are normal for teenage girls. Perhaps a little give and take? If she does her homework, and stops for dinner, does any chores that you give her ect, allow her to talk. As long as they are just talking on the phone everything is still ok, right?

I assume that you've met the boy, but if you haven't you should get on that. Invite him over for dinner once a month or once a week so that you can see them interact. There is a lot to be said about how a boy looks at a girl and if you are around them more often, you'll be able to tell what's going on more. You are her mother after all, nobody knows her like you do. You might want to also consider (if you haven't done this already) getting to know the boy's mother. You never know, she may be just as fed up as you are and maybe the four of you can work something out. If your daughter really thinks she's super cool, maybe she could help you curb their talking, or if nothing else, you'll better know why your daughter seems so attracted to her and not just her son.

Lastly, she is a teenager. There is always going to be teen angst and being upset about your parents. Like Will Smith said back in the Fresh Prince days, "Parents just don't understand". And it's not that they don't understand, it's that teenagers like to think they're more grown then they are and that they could make better decisions than the parent(s). Well they're wrong. Be as supportive as you can, as active in her life as you can, and as nosy as you can manage. Keep her safe and she'll remember that more than the nagging to get off the phone when she's 25+!!!

A. A.

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You are her mother and you know best. If you feel that she is spending too much time with him (in person, phone, internet, whatever), then put a stop to it. Of course she won't like it but who ever said that parenting was easy??? I am the single mother of a 15yr old boy, my son is not allowed to date until he is 16, it hasn't been easy but I explained to him before he entered middle school what the rules were and why the rules were there. He respects me enough not to fight over it. You are her mother and YOU know better, you owe it to her to be her protector even if she doesn't see it that way. God Bless!!

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At 13 years of age the young lady needs to be focusing on her academics and not boys. Stand your ground by enforcing rules/regulations. If you think she needs boyfriend, set a specific time for the boyfriend to come over for a meal/games/video....If you have a family outing, invite the boyfriend. But remember at 13 years of age, she needs to focus on her academics... there will always be a male species but the availability of education will have limitations. Think about it. Do not beat yourself up for standing your ground.

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I'm sorry, I beg to disagree with all of this. 13 years old is just not acceptable for a boyfriend.

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I have a 19yr old who will be 20 in a couple of months. At age 13, it's a new thing and it sets a 'starndard' for the rest of the school years to highschool. I don't know if you had a boy friend when you were that age but i did'nt. and for those of us that were in the boyfreind-less category we envied those that were with someone. usually it meant that they would have a boyfreind throughout the school years for dances.. proms. etc. and are generally a bit more popular than the others - social status you know? point is, you cant stop her from it, however, the 'newness' will wear off like a new toy does.. the new computer.. the new ipod (ok.. well.. maybe not the ipod so much hahaha). give it time, there will be some reality that will hit her and she will see that his mom is no better than you - infact, she will more than likely see that you are a better mom for a number of reasons when his mom has to lower the boom and discipline him for whatever reason.

the best thing to do is keep an open mind about it, allow open dialouge about ANYTHING even if in your mind your screaming and wanting to put a chastity belt on her, throw her into the convent for the rest her years or have her see a psychiatrist for things that are totally human and normal - yes.. even if she is that young. try to talk to her about boys in general and about sex (scary ..but you need to). if you have freinds that are in the dating world have them over when she is around and let them ask her about her boyfreind and tell them to be excited about it. it would be good to have a freind you can trust talk to her confidentially becuase she will more than likely tell her more than she would you until she feels comfortable talking to you about these things. and the best part? your freind can fill you in on whats really going on - BUT becareful to NOT break the confidence by letting her know that 'already know'. one of the things i started doing when my daughter was 11ish was (and its not too late) talk about boys in general and when her freinds were over and they would talk about boys (girls do that you know.. ) i would just listen and joke with them when they would make comments and told them all.. 'boys ONLY know ONE 'L' word and its NOT LOVE.. its 'LUST' they are too young to know what love is and dont care - women/girls are different and we grow up faster and know what love is before they do'. i would always tell them they will say ANYTHING and play the part of "love" when all they want is to be the FIRST to get into their panties, thongs, pants.. whatever.. once they do, they change how they treat you.

and when the freinds would come over again.. i'd joke with them and ask.. ok girls.. what is the L word boys ONLY know??? and they would laugh and repeat together.. "LUST".

I have always told my daughter she can tell me anything and one important thing is i dont get mad at her for telling me whatever she tells me, i dont judge her - i listen and then offer insight. its hard to be a mom and have them be able to talk to you as a freind while they remember and respect you as a mom. it can be done and sometimes it breaks your heart and sometimes it saves your child. my daughter does talk to me about boys, and kisses and all that - i know there are things she hasnt told me and that is ok. the important part is that she knows she can talk to me and i wont put her down or judge her. we have to accept who are children are and not impose our own dreams on them - they are developing thier own. do not try to MAKE them who YOU WANT Them to be..but rather help them become who they are MEANT to be. Try to recall what it was like when you were that age, what did you wish you mom did to help you out? what did you wish your mom DIDNT do that made you feel like running away?

one more thing is to remind your daughter that she can live life on her own - she does NOT need a man to complete her or support her - emphasize on education and the importance of it. that it is nice to have a man by your side to help you through life but it ISNT necessary. Marriage is not mandatory but rather a great thing if done with the right person. she needs to date to find out who she is and what she needs in her life before she settles down.

my next challenge.. is my son - he will be 13 this year. i have already started talking to him about girls and how NOT to treat them. its a bit strange for me becuase i am not a boy so i know the approach is different - however, parenting is something we never finish learning about.

i hope some of this makes sence and that part of it is helpful.

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13 is a bit young for a boyfriend. This is a great time for a converstation from dad. Dad should also set limits by talking to the boyfriend. There is a book I read, we're planning on having each of our 5 daughters read when they're around 13. It's by Dr. Laura - 10 Stupid Things Women do to Mess up their Lives. I wish I had read it when I was a teenager. Good Luck

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Hello T.,

Wow! I just went through and read the majority of the advice left for you. I have THREE daughter's and one son. My life has been a rollercoaster ride lol. I think my main advice is NOT to let her get so involved with ANY boy right now. I mean, limit her time on the phone and computer and you spend as much time with her as you can. She will love spending time with you, even though she grumbles. My oldest daughter was 14 years old and had a "boyfriend". I know I kept thinking that she wwas ok, and I had nothing to worry about. Boy was I wrong! She came to me a few months later to tell me her and her b/f and done the deed. I was heartbroken, and ticked all at the same time. I wasn't even thinking about sex at age 14!! I took her to planned parenthood and made them test her for everything and put her on the pill, and I made HER pay for it all. I told her if she wanted to Play like a adult she could Pay like one too.
Her first experience was not the grandest and we talked and talked and talked, she never wanted to think about doing that again for a LONG time. My younger two daughters (because of my older ones choices) got watched like a hawk.. Literally. I think with my oldest, it was as much my mistake as hers. I should have paid better attention, but I was too worried about being her "Friend" when I should have been more her "Mom". My dad constantly says you are NOT thier friend at this age, you are their Parent!
I also agree with keeping your daughter busy with other activities. I am firm believer that the busier they are the less time they have for trouble. This whole boyfriend thing could be a crush, but PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE watch her. My younger daughters are 16 and 17 years old now and their b/f's come to MY house. I do not allow them to go to the boyfriends house hardly ever, and that is not until I meet the parents and see what kind of parents they are. I've been lucky in the fact that they agree with the things I do.
My daughters had b/f's at age 13, but it was seeing them at school and church that was it. They never spent alot of time on the phone and internet with them at that age. They wanted to hang with their girlfriends too. So it worries me that she spends so much time over there and on the phone, it isn't really healthy, she needs other friend too.
Good luck T., and REALLY watch what is going on with her, and remember you never know what is going on over there. His mother might be alot more laid back and they can do more there, but then again why should she care, it isn't HER daughter.
Best of luck

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Its a phase for some young adults. Its begining to find who they are and their personality, independence. At that age they are exploring their boundries and unfortunately to some its with friends and possibly boyfriends. Stay in tuned with what she is going on in her life. Ask questions and be attentive. Also be very supportive during this time. Teenagers need that. Although you dont want to hear about her boyfriend LISTEN anyway. Watch attentively, She is asking by talking to you. Join her journey. Don't cross the line though in becoming a best friend to your daughter still stay firm to being a parent, teenagers want that and need it. Invite her "boy" friend over for supper so you are included. Take the both shopping so you are included. Share a DVD movie night in your home so you ae included. Its time to include yourself not feel that you are being left out. Your daughter is 13 and it is the time to spend with her and her boyfriend. Dont discourage relationships its a needed process in development but guide her to develope good choices in relationships and by your daughter talking about him shes including you. Teenage years are hard but they can be enduring too. Plan family things together with or without her boyfriend. Dont EVER feel your daughter does not need you. This is the time she does. Do spend time to sit down and talk to her about the human development process and need to understand the importance of reserving oneself for marriage, self esteem, and love for herself. Set Standards and house rules to go by on the phone issues. Guidance and direction is key to successful teenage years along with limitations. Encourage outside activities with church or after school sports, community service. But do hang in there because it is a development phase that all of us parents go through. Good Luck! KM

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Why at the age of 13 does she have a boyfriend? I think the first thing you need to do is just sit with your daughter and talk with her and not to her and then she needs to listen to you. Where are the boundaries? In this day and age with STD'S and pregnancies how do you let your child date. I'm sorry to sound so harsh but I was not allowed to date until I was 16 and I waited til I was allowed. What ever happened to listening to your parents and where are the ground rules??? I think you need to go back to the beginning and think it through again. When you go back to the beginning of this, you need to take your daughter with you and have her talk it out with you to figure out where the riff started and from there you will be able to mend your relationship and hopefully it will open her eyes. GOod Luck

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I am just seeing this post for the first time. But I certainly have something to say about it.

My daughter is 14 and o yes!! she is boy crazy. I never hear about girlfriends only boyfriends, the only people calling the huose are boys - never girls, it's a problem i work on daily. You hear a lot of mothers talk about how your child shouldn't have a "boyfriend" at 13 but times are so much different. I am a 33 year old mom, still young and "hip". The thing is the word "boyfriend" has taken on a totally different meaning than it use to be. It doesn't mean that they are doing anything that you wouldn't approve of it's just that children tend to "pair off" now as couples earlier than they use to. You can't stop her from having a boyfriend, no matter what you do.. main thing to watch is how many boyfriends she has. Does her boyfriend's name change once a week? If not then right now you have nothing to worry about. It really doesn't mean anything.

As far as your feelings being hurt, stand down quickly because it is about to become full raging hormones very quickly. When i see that my daughter is becoming a little TOO INVOLVED with a boy or even a girlfriend's family i stear her (without her knowing - heaven forbid she think i am telling her what to do) to help me do extra things on the weekends (i.e. "i need help grocery shopping.", "I need to go to the mall to get a new pair of shoes and want your opinion", "I have planned a family outting - picnic in the park with family games you are REQUIRED to attend", "let's redecorate your room - what color paint should we use" - whatever you can think of - now is the time where she is going to start really pulling away from you and it is going to be that way for years to come so you are just going to have to change your approach to things is all. Honestly, it isn't much more complicated then that. If she sees that talking about the other mother and boyfriend bother you she will push the issue even more (o boy have i been there!!). Just get creative with your time with her. But whatever you do DONT tell her that she can't have a boyfriend because think of it logically - can you stop her? She knows you can't.

If she is on the computer a lot - chatting, instant messaging, myspace or blogging... it is a good idea to have the computer log her converstaions - this way you can scan thru them from time to time just to make sure she is safe. Don't tell her that you have big brother watching, you don't want her to think she is being violated but mearly as a parent trying to see what it is that she is doing .. sex, drugs, drinking ... whatever (don't ever tell her that you are doing it, no matter what you read). It will also put your mind at ease if you ever suspect that she is doing something that you wouldn't approve of, and it will give you a piece of mind just to have the option.

Another suggestion - she can spend all the time in the world AT SCHOOL with her boyfriend but on weekends get her use to doing grocery shopping with you, or doing stuff with you because "as a family" you need her help. If she starts to buck back (which she absolutly will at first) stand strong, don't listen to ANY of the teen angst that is going to come from her in the moment, walk away if you need to if you feel as though you are folding - tell her that is the bottom line, and if she continues to bother you and yell - use that as a reason to take the computer away. If she continues to push start taking the computer away for periods of one day at a time, generally when you start this tactic you'll get to about 4/6 days and either she'll quite or you'll walk away and close the door - helping her out. Then you will have killed two birds with one stone. No computer (contact with friends) and no boyfriend until she does family stuff. Make sence?

I wish you the very best of luck, this is the time where you are going to have to get so creative to hold her attention it at times will become exhausting. UGH!! But, read a book about teens and teen angst because you are on the border of it now - it gets pretty difficult. The books help, they have helped me so much you have no idea.

My daughter was a tough one - still is frankly. But i have managed to steer her pretty well the last 8 months with no real blow ups. Yes, there are pretty regular disagreements but chaulk that up to kids thinking that they know everything. The books tell you how to be creative and how to calm the angst. It's rough sometimes, but not impossible at all. You'll see, give it a try.

Best of luck to you and your girls.

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First of all you are her mom not her friend, 13 is a very difficult age, (talking from experience). At the age of 13 why are you letting her have a boyfriend? She is just a kid yet and shouldn't be allowed to go out with boys, unless it's with a group of kids and their is an adult present. Parents are letting their children grow up way to fast now days. My suggestion to you is stop trying to be her freind and be a parent she will love you and appreciate you more when she gets older. Sure she will hate you now, but it's in her best interest. This is from a mom who has 8 children and know's you can't be their freind until they become adults. Also I have been a foster parent for 15 yrs and have had many children that I have taken care of.

Good Luck

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First of all, i don't know where you live, but my daughter is 13, and she is not allowed to date until she is 16, and we remind her of that every day, the consequesnces of having a boyfriend that young, can be devastating!!
she is allowed to be friends with boys, and talk on msn with them once in a while, but that is restricted too. so when she gets upset that she can't be on the computer, we make every effort to make it worth her while.
have a family night with movies and popcorn or going out for supper etc.
i think she has a pretty good head on her shoulders, at least i HOPE/PRAY she does.
i would not want to see my 13 yr old in the hospital delivering a baby!!!! then trying to raise one, and finish school. my husband and i started young 18, and we are 34 and 35 yr old parents with a 15 yr old son, who doesn;t date yet, and 13 yr old daughter, then we recently had 2 more, so we have a 2-1/2 yr old and a 16 month old... and so that is why we remind them everyday how hard life has been for us, not getting a good college education, or finishing college....it's tough when you're young and we don't want them to struggle as we have had to. plus they get to see/live everyday life helping around the house, help with the babies, makes them realize how hard it would be to have a baby at thier age! We tell them get thier schooling in, becasue that is your backbone to your future!! they have thier whole lifes ahead of them to date and meet someone to spend thier life with!!!!

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I'm sorry, but I completely disagree with everyone who says 13 is too young for a "boyfriend". I think banning this stuff just forces it underground, and this is something you DO NOT WANT underground.

I'm dealing w/ this with my 20 yo sister (she's my dad and stepmother's child, my mother was pretty reasonable about this stuff w/me) My Dad and stepmother have isolated her a lot from the outside world. After she received consistently bad grades in middle school, they home-schooled her so they wouldn't have to look at D's and F's. And the only social contact they allowed was church, although they do go at least twice a week, if not more.

Well, after she turned 18, they discovered she had an online boyfriend...who's 44. This guy was smart enough to wait to meet her in person until after she turned 18, and she has snuck out many times to meet him. I don't know this man, I live 1200 mi away from my hometown, but I really feel this is just legal pedophilia. Although she has come of age and there can be no legal action taken against him, the level to which my folks have kept her isolated has kept her a child in many ways. They are scared and furious and at their wit's end and keep calling me for advice...the same source of advice they thought was ridiculous when I said six years ago that I thought home-schooling wasn't good for her social development (and this is particular to this situation, not a condemnation of home-schooling itself. My stepmother is really has such debilitating shyness in public that she very nearly doesn't go out, let alone find appropriate activities for her daughter to engage in..)

But enough about my sister's situation. My point is, had they used the opportunity w/the little boyfriends here and there and let her, in a responsible way, interact w/ males her own age, she could have adapted to the dating world gradually, not all at once and in such an inappropriate way once she reached the legal age of majority. It also provides gradual opportunities to discuss relationships between boys and girls in a way that allows her to learn armed with a parent's insight and love.

I don't wish to be disrespectful to those who feel strongly about their daughters holding off on serious relationships until 18, I can certainly understand this. But if you don't address dating and give them some limited practice at it while they're growing up, you're going to have a serious problem if they go away to college. A serious problem that might still make you a grandmother before your time..

I don't think you can keep girls from being curious about sex by telling them it's not until they grow up/get married and that be the end of it. I grew up in a small southern town absolutely dedicated to "abstinence-only" sex ed. And there were certainly a lot of pregnant girls in my high school, the earliest in middle school.

And I'm sorry, T., I didn't think that was really what you were most concerned about at this time. Please forgive me for digressing from your main concerns. I remember at that age, I was very interested in seeing how other families work - saw things I liked and things I didn't like. Ultimately, it's preparation for dealing w/ your spouse's differing views based on how he was raised. I think you've already gotten some great ideas on how to incorporate some guaranteed family time. And I think it's a great idea to get to know his mom and to have him over for dinner once a week or so. (I'll bet if you get to know his mom, you may hear all about how great he thinks YOU are.. and while it maybe doesn't help your hurt feelings about your daughter, it certainly wouldn't hurt to know that.)

I think this is one of the first signs where you really start to "get" that your daughter won't be all yours forever, that someday she'll have a life on her own with a husband, children, etc. And that hurts, just like it's going to hurt when she goes off to college. My mom was the world's best at "Just Hold on Loosely" as song goes, and as a direct result, I came to her for advice, and now I have a professional career, got married at 27 and had children at age 30, both of whom adore her.

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T., I just recently went through similiar situation with my daughter who is now 15 years old. The best advice that I could suggest is that you set boundaries with your daughters. She is looking for you to set those boundaries. She will rebel at first, but that is a sign that you are in the right direction.This age is critical for you to be totally involved with her choices that she makes.It is very normal for rebellion at this time. Your daughter is trying to spread her wings and be independent. She is still way too young. What I mean by setting boundaries is by not letting her go out unless you can be there to supervise.Be firm and consistant! Hang in there! You can do it!!!!

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Don't you think that 13 is too young for a boyfriend? Did your parents let you date at such a young age? She is so impressionable and vulerable at this age. I would encourage groups of kids to hang out and let your home be the spot! Trying praying with your daughter and let her know that you have her best interest at heart. My daughter will be 15 next week and it has been hard, but I am sticking to my guns. I was taken advantage of at a young age, and I will NOT ALLOW it to happen to her.

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My step daughter was dating when she was 13 and we have had problems since then. She just turned 17 and has been grounded for six months.We are very strict now and she says that has helped her alot.She says alot of it was not being around and wanting attention. We told her she could not date until she was 15 of course sometimes its hard to stop them. We put a program on the computer so we could figure out everything she was doing and keep a better eye on her. It was one of the best things that we did. One thing that may work is if she wants to date make the rules that he has to come over to the house when you are there. Try to get to know him better. If anything set up a meeting with him and his mom. Get to know them. Thats one thing that we did. SO that we could communicate with them and know what was going on with the boyfriends parents. Also find out what she likes to do. Make a day to do what ever she wants. That really helped me get close to my step daughter. TO find out what she wanted to do. This is the first of many things to come. Teenagers are difficult and its sometimes hard to understand and to connect with them. Try to sit down with her and explain the rules and why you are making them. Give her choices.. if she gives up one night on the phone she can do this.. 13 is really young to date but it seems more and more teenagers are dating earlier. Let me know if I can be of any help .

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I have a son who is 14 and he tried and I mean tried to have a girlfriend last year. I found out when I picked him up from school and his friend busted him out. When we got home it was time for family talk night. My husband and I has already talked to them about this but it seemed like we needed to go over it again.I let him know that he has know idea what a relationship is or what it can do to you. I was honest and told, they would either loose things to talk about another girl would come along or he would get borded. COme to find out that another girl did come along and he relized he was not ready for a marriage. Teens today that they are just a boyfriend ot a girlfriend. But really they are playing house talking about very personaly things and they bearly know how to use the bathroom right.

Now the question is what is missing in her to want to look for a silly boy to fill a hole. Is it attention, love, that feeling of being wanted.

I started dating at that same age and my mother was never around a single parent and worked night. SO could get away with anything and I did until I was 15 and pregnant. NOt to scare you. But the reality is we are raising a diffrent generation that you and I and they think of things we didnt . They talk and text, like we wroe notes and yet they still want to be in the loop.

It may be time for a heart to heart. Lay some ground rules about what age you think you can have male friends. Not a boyfriend. I learn that children dating at a young age are setting themselves up for a world of hurt. BEcause someone in that relation ship is more into the one that the other and the are practicing divorce at young age. Have you ever had your heart broken buy the guy of your dreams for the moment. Remember how it hurt so bad you thought of nothing else. Just talk ans ask her what is she exspecting to happen from this and also remeber they need guidance not friendship. I could careless if I am a cool mom and they like me. I not here to be like I am here to train them up and then kick them out (HA HA). No really there is a place for everuthing a time to parent and a time to just be.

Hope this helps.

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It seems like the fact that she likes his mom is hurting you worse then the boyfriend. I don't think thirteen is to young to be interested in boys, but having a steady boyfriend is a little much. If I was you I would go talk to the boyfriends mom and see if you two are on the same page about the kids relationship. Maybe she likes to hang out over at the boyfriends house because the mom is letting them do things that would not be okay at your house and in her eyes that is cool. Invite his family over for dinner and feel out his parents. Let the kids know that is is okay for them to like eachother but not okay to shut out everyone else. Also schedule time for you and her to do things that you know SHE loves. Find out what she is passionate about and enjoy that thing with her. That lets her know you really care about what she is interested in and not just pushing things on her to do with you. I hope this helps and good luck....

Mother of 4
Work your own schedule! Ask me how!

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I have to say reading all of these responces is very intresting. I will tell you my theroy coming from a mother of a 13 year old boy. First of all what is done is done you can go back wishing you made diffrent rules. you can adjust them a little but if you take them away all together she will start lying to you and being very angry. you will loose her completly, (like the ones that forbid boys til 16.)This is so normal at this age, the fact she is even talking to you at all is HUGE....run with that and give her talks that she is only 13 and what ever descions she might decide to make could impact her whole life, and that you are always there to talk to her. you can limit her time with him by making reasons why she must do other things.she is bound to say she cant stand you or your not fair about anything but do not look or feel hurt. She will respect you more. oh and for all you parents out there read the book.
:get out of my life, but first could you drive me and cherl to the mall?"
its so normal.....just keep the lines of communication open with out flipping out!
hope this helps...on a more realistic level.

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T., sounds to me you give your daughter to much freedom. Theres just no way i would aloud my 13 year old daughter to have a (boyfriend). She is still a child, she should be concentraing on school,hanging out with her girl friend movies,ext. Call me old school and thats ok.but this is why these kids of this generating are the way they are.you need to be tough on them.if you don't she will make you a grandma before you know it.put some rule down.try taking her out, just you and her.do silly things with her, go to a movie ,lunch, something you both enjoy.,without the boyfriend.

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I'm a mother of 6 (ages 7 - 21) and I have to agree that 13 is too young for a "relationship." You can't tell your daughter that she can't like a boy or be attracted to him, but as her parent (NOT her friend) you CAN control where/when/how much she sees and talks to this boy. If you don't want to outright forbid her to see him (we all know that this approach will just make her want to be with him MORE!) I would make sure that you are in close communication with his parents and make sure that all are on the same page -that the kids may be friends, but that there must be limits and SUPERVISION. (We found out the hard way that just because a parent is home at the boyfriend's house, it DOESN'T mean that they are aware of - or even care - what is going on under their own roof!) If you are not totally confident with the boy's parents' position, maybe she should only see him at your house where YOU can be aware of what they are doing and talking about. Limits on the phone and computer are a must. And I agree with the others who have said that she must not let this boy monopolize her time and thoughts so much that she has no girlfriends, no other social life, and no quality time with her family. I would absolutely make those things a requirement if she's even going to be allowed to have a friendship with this boy. At 13, limits and balance are key!

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Do a brunch or something with your daughter, boyfriend, and his mom.

Just tell your daughter if she's serious about a boy, then everyone should get to know each other.

Make it a weekly or bi-weekly thing.

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Boyfriends at 13? We don't allow ours to have a boyfriend. Ask her to get off the phone and the computer. Take her to do something. We take ours on little weekend trips all the time. It would scare me if my little girl were that into boys at that age.

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I also have a 13 yr old but I won't let her date until she is 18..the reason is because I know how young girls can be persuaded into thinking they are in love and from then on it only gets worse..she has little "boyfriends" or so she calls them but they can only talk on the phone or if they do come over they have to be in my sight at all times...my boyfriend has 3 sister whom all became pregnant at 15..one of them is pregnant right now..it's a shame...I'm 39 and I have 4 kids but I can't even imagine having a child when I was a teenager..I was having to much fun with my friends to worry about being in love...I have 3 girls and they all know my rules..18 is when they can date seriously if they chose...by then school will be over and they will be old enough, that if something happens (pregnancy) they will be able to handle it better...My son is 18 and he chose not to get involved in anything serious during his teen years..I'm not saying it's okay for boys and not girls..I had a talk with him also when he was around 12..he had the same type of girlfriends when he was younger..phone or in front of me...You need to sit down and explain to your daughter that LOVE is for adults and what she is feeling is NORMAL..just she needs to keep in mind that she is only 13 and she has so many more years to date..she also needs to know that you will always be there for her regardless of the situation...You were the 1st person in her life and you will be there till the end...she should never put anyone before you..she will understand when she becomes a parent...I wish you luck in your relationship with your daughter...maybe you should make her slow down on the amount of time she spends with him...Good Luck!!!!

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My kids will date when they are 16 and until then they will only see their "boyfriend" or "girlfriend" at school.
Kids are getting way too deep into relationships at such a young age these days. If she's spending that much time with him now then what will she be doing with him a year or 2 from now. And what happens when she spends all of this time doting on a boy and then he disappears and she has nobody. She needs to concentrate on friends and school and not boyfriends.
I know it's tough because there are way too many parents out there letting their kids do way too much at such young ages. It's sad because this is when they are building their futures and need to concentrate on academics and friendships.
Good luck, I know it's going to be hard but you are the parent and you make the rules.
My friend tells her kids "when you make the mortgage payment here, you make the rules here" LOL.
Mom to 4 and soon one more through another adoption.

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I don't recall being 13 and even having a boyfriend. That is the first problem, but at this point that would further alienate her. Invite him over to the house.
ANother piece of advice, you are her mom, not her friend. ..it is a phase. She is figuring out who she is. ...just set limits.

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Hi T. -
I just want to commend you for seeking support and advice from other moms. From the time our little sweethearts come into our lives, we want so much to protect and shelter them from poor decisions and harmful relationships. When they begin to draw away from us and test their independence, we can be so proud of them at one moment and scared too death at the next. So much of what they go through sets the stage for learning important life lessons. We must, of course, draw the line between what is acceptable to allow them some freedom and set practical limits even if it is sometimes difficult to see where to draw that line. Emotionally, it can really be tough at times. What I also know if that if you continue to tell your daughter you love her, show her how much you care and try to be available when she does open up, she is more likely to seek you when her relationships struggle. My daughter and i were very close until suddenly at age 16, she changed right before my very eyes! We were fortunate that her friends wanted to be around her dad and I, but sometimes she was really rude to us and then decided to test the waters a bit. By keeping our home open to her and her friends and staying involved with her school and church family and youth group, we worked things out. And I mean, "we" worked things out! Apparently, I had some things to learn about relationships, too. I was way too sensitive, and carried my feelings on my sleeve. I'd love to have it to do all over again. :) I hope you have a strong relationship with God and a supportive church family. Prayers have helped me through so many of life's challenges. By the way, my daughter is now grown and still the joy of my life. But, it still stings sometimes when she is too busy and then I remember, she is happily married, has a family and loves to spend vacations with her dad and I. As she says, "I turned out pretty good; didn't I Mom?" She turned out great! Best of luck!

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In my opinion, 13 is WAY too young to have a boyfriend in the first place. Once they get on that road, they want to keep walking down it. It is only natural to want more time together, more intimacy, more commitment. If you start at 13, it all happens way to early and fast. She needs to be hanging around other 13 year old girls. 16 is a good group dating age and 18 is a good single dating / boyfriend age. They aren't mature enough at 13 to handle the feelings or the relationship.

I would talk to the boyfriend's mother, too. Express your concerns. If your daughter and her son are best friends, then get all four of you together to do something. Cut the phone and computer time way back.

Get your daughter with some other girls her age. Yeah, she probably won't want a lot of "mom/daughter" time at this age, but get her at your house for a sleepover or movie night with friends or something. Then maybe invite her to go shopping with you and she can bring a friend along.

Good luck,

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T.~ I totally know what you are going through. My daughter is 15 and always has a boyfriend. As soon as she breaks up with one another one is standing there waiting to take his place. What I have done is make my home as teen friendly as possible and a place where all the kids want to hang out. Her boyfriend has to come to our house if he wants to see her except for other occasional, parent approved, outings. Her boyfriend and friends love to come here and watch a movie and enjoy a home cooked meal and even though I may spend more on groceries, I always know where my kid is and what she is doing and that more than makes up for it! I take the time to establish a relationship with all her friends, both male and female, and it has definitely paid off. Some of her ex-boyfriends still come by to visit even after the break up and her friends often ask me for advice.

One thing to watch out for....often when kids say a parent is "cool" that means they are not acting very parental....maybe cursing or drinking in front of the kids or not really providing any supervision so you definitely need to find out if this boys mom is great fun because she has been nice to your child and has a great personality or because she is giving them free regin when at her house. Some parents try too hard to be their child's friend instead of the parent.

Either way, I would make it a rule that they are only allowed to see each other on certain nights of the week and some of those must be under your supervision. You can take them out to eat yet let them sit at the table next to you. Give them some space but always be there to make sure they make good choices. I don't believe in forcing your child to spend time with you but you can make some changes that will bring her around on her own. Remember, this young love is very real to your daughter no matter how silly it seems and how you know she will have many other boyfriends after this one. Listen to her when she talks and be there for her when it ends. Good luck and feel free to contact me if you ever want to talk: ____@____.com!

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Hi T.,

Your daughter is like every teen way too much time into this relationship and not finding ideas or things to do without him. Apart of it is her age but our girls needs the attention of their father or a father figure in their life. If not they run to the person that is giving them the most attention. I am 50 years old and in my generation daddy's paid the bills and only talk to us when we needed discipline!!

If there isn't a father for her to go to, then Mom you be the best mom you can be and keep an open relationship with your daughters so any situation they can come to you to discuss.

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Yikes!! Why, on God's green Earth, does a 13 year old have a boyfriend?? That is WAY too young!!!

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I am sorry for the situation that you are having but I don't feel that a 13-year old should have a boyfriend. She is to emotionally young and I think tht it could result in more problems later on in her teenage years. I am not trying to be harsh when I say what I am about to say. You seem to be letting her do the parenting. You are suppose to be in control so I am having a hard time understanding why it's a problem when she is told to get off the phone or computer. Getting mad is normal and she will get over it but you really need to take control or more problems are going to follow. First problem get rid of the boyfriend until she is much older and able to handle that type of relationship, maybe try 16. Good Luck and know that like changing any behavior it's going to seem worse before it gets better. I want to add that I discussed your situation with my daughter she will be 16 in two months. No my dauther can't date or talk to boys on the phone, she is focused on doing what she needs to get into college and maturing enough to see the importance of giving yourself time to grow-up slowly,she said that a 13-year old should not have a boyfriend and that you are letting the child be the parent. I assure you that I am a very dictatorial parent, which I dont apologize for or necessarily recommend for other people, but it is the way I raise my children. I am the parent and I hold the control it is the way that it is and always has been and I can say that so far it works. All of my kids are respectful, well-behaved, and phenomenal students. The best thing is that they get why I have rules and have reached ages to appreciate that there ar e reasons for rules and everything that seems like th most important thing in the world give it a day and it will change. Please continue to talk with your daughter but please be the parent.

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I am a 42 year-old mom. Both of my children are pretty much raised. My son is 22 years old and my daughter is 18. My daughter started seeing her boyfriend at 13 as well. Except my rules were a little different. I didn't allow her to go out with him until she was 15. Maybe you could try setting up Mom and daughter time, like going shopping or something of that nature. You could also try only letting her go to her boyfriend's until a certain times. Just keep in mind you are still her Mom and do have a say so in the matter. Good luck to you.

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i realize you already have several inputs here but i must say do not put her on birth control as one suggested. she is 13 and you are the adult. to me, putting her on birth control is like saying here have sex i just dont want to know about it. you need to set limits. its ok to be the bad guy sometimes b/c she will appreciate it, if not now, later. my parents didnt let me date until i was 16. i had a job and a cell phone that i was paying for before i could date. get her in an activity outside of school and her boyfriend. encourage her to meet other girls her age. spend some mother daughter time. make it apparent to spend at least a few weekends together without anyone tagging along if at all possible...taking your other daughter might be good too. my mom and i had a weekly lunch together. take a walk on a saturday morning or something. you have so many options. but DO NOT SAY YOU HATE THE BOY. dont tell her he's no good or he's a bad influence. that will make her hate you and go towards him. i'm still young and i have two teenage cousins around 15-16 yrs of age. they come talk to me not their parents b/c they are so negative. listening is the key. good luck to yall.

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13 is really too young for a boyfriend these days. But if they do have one they should be phone & school boyfriends only. Why is she spending time with him & his mother. My rule is no dating till you are 16 period & it worked for my now 26 & 23 year old daughters & is working for my soon to be 16 year old daughter. Also, they didn't have curfues once they started going out with friends or boy friends their time they had to be home was directly tied to when whatever they were attending or doing was over or done. I stll am not a grandmother either. You tell them what they can & can't do not the other way around. Remember the 11 year old is watching & each daughter wants to do what the one before them did even earlier.

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This one is simple. Thirteen, is too young for a boyfriend. You are the adult, she is the child. Set boundaries, no exceptions. If I feed it and it lives in my house they go by my rule. Children should not be in control!

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Set limits. You are your daughters' mother, and you have the absolute right to control what events they attend, with or without their boyfriends, you control their curfew time, and have input on the people your daughters are dating! Don't allow your daughter to trample all over your relationship. Who's the person in charge here? You, is the answer. When your daughter won't get off the phone or computer, immediately punish her, don't get in a fight. You are the parent, and that alone entitles you to the gift of- punishment! YOU are in charge. YOU do not need to explain yourself. Simply take away a privilege or date with her boyfriend. Then personally call the boy to explain that your daughter will not be meeting up with him at place X. Hope this works!

Julie MacNamee

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Have you looked into "The Mother-Daughter Project"? A very good resource that helps women and their pre-teen/teen daughters keep a strong relationship through the teen years.

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tamy my name is B. mello i live in holbrook mass. i took costody of two girls when thet where babies. one is 12 they other is 14. this is also very hard4 me . her phone bill was over 700 dollars talking to the boyfriend all nite and then she is tired in the mornings. what i did is took her for counseling . this is the time to but your food down at her. its also a bad age and she is much to young to be doing this kind of stuff . it onley takes one time to say jes to him. and she will say wy not try it one time . and here goes her young live having a baby . that is very scary to me . you neet to but your food down with her before its to late . i have done what i could with jocelyn when some one told me that . i realy got scared . i told them she is very shy . and then i found out when she goes to boston to visit her friends she also sees this boy . now that i have given her a warning and took her to counseling . she seems to calm down . you may e mail me at any time . ty
B. mello t

Don't take this lightly, T.. I have taught at-risk teens for years, and this looks like a coming train-wreck to me. You sound like a concerned mom and can still get this one back on track. All the advice so far on being a stronger mom to a teen by having teen-friendly mom/daughter time and also setting rules and sticking to them is right on.

In my experience, girls who are too focussed on boys are really looking for a MAN - where's dad on this? She needs a MAN to make her believe she is wonderful and special because of who she is and that she has value as a person - not just as a girlfriend.

I empathize with you as I have a 14 year old daughter who is so into her friends. She cannot date or have a boyfriend until she is 16. (Actually she is my granddaughter whom I have raised since she was 2 months old so she is like my daughter) so sometimes I do have a reference- (my own daughter)-however, the situation and environment is so very different. My granddaughter will try to do all she possibly can for her friends and thinks about me last. I attribute that to peer pressure. It is very frustrating and I can hardly wait for her to join the 'real world'. Unfortunately, this is a phase that goes on for at least 3 years, although each teenager grows at her own speed. It is hard, and all I can say is 'hang in there' just be there for her. Help her when she wants your help, don't anticipate, you'll just make it harder on yourself. She will reevaluate everything and realize where her concerns should be. Good luck.

I am a mom of a 16 yr old girl. We said "no dating until 16" and it worked, at least pushed back the time when she was thinking of spending time w/boys. I would recommend getting her dad or another significant male figure involved with her for some part of each week. Also have this person support your view of involvement with boys (too young, not focused, waste of time, wrong intentions etc..) In that way, your views are backed up. This is also a way to keep these girls active in sports etc... In many cases, I would think that they are looking for male interaction. Just give them what they are looking for. I agree that quality mom time is valuable, yet they are pushing away from mom so much. Give them a new interaction with adult males who are safe. They will learn so many things that moms and juvenile boys can't teach them.

my 16 year old daughter zoe began dating 24 year old "sawyer" about 6 months ago. everything was all about "sawyer" and what they had been doing that day. finally i sat her down and talked to her. i told her i felt she was pushing me away and i didn't like her and "sawyer" hanging out alone so much. she understood and talked to "sawyer". they now spend most of their time together at my house while i'm their and i don't allow them to go on dates alone. must be double or nothing. just talke to your daughter. i'm sure she'll understand.

Hi T.,

I just read through your post and the responses you've received - and boy...I sure don't envy you! We parents have a strong opinion on this topic!

Anyway, one thing that wasn't mentioned is perhaps to find out what your daughter's interpretation of a boyfriend really is (and perhaps find out what HIS mother's interpretation is, too!). I know that kids today are living in a world that is quite different from when we were all growing up - so it's definitely scary to think of what they might be doing together or even talking about with each other.

As parents, we naturally fear the worst. In reality, though, it COULD be pretty innocent. I like the idea of trying to take your daughter out on a mother-daughter day. Talk to her about her boyfriend by acting interested in him, and ask her what she thinks a boyfriend should be - why is it important to her? I also think a book that deals with parenting teens might give you some answers and ideas for how to work through this.

I had "boyfriends" from the time I was in 5th grade - and my interpretation of a boyfriend evolved with each relationship I had. Thankfully, I was never involved with boys who were trouble. That had to do with the values I was raised with and the respect I had for myself. I can only thank my parents for that. Think about the values you've instilled in your daughter. If you can trust the social circle of girl friends she hangs out with, that should tell you a lot. It certainly doesn't mean you're off the hook - and you should still try to do what you can to establish honest communication with her.

Best of luck - and don't get down on yourself. You're a good mom for being concerned about her and reaching out for advice and support!

I didn't see anyone suggesting birth control, hurry up and get her a depro vera shot before you have another baby to raise....and then get her into an activity (sports, any kind of hobbie it's time to invest money and time into her.

Hello T.,
Now a days is so different my sister in law is the same way, she found out that her 13yrs.old daugther have a boyfriend, she took her phone away and she talked to the boy's mother and they have them broke up, because they are just very young and is not right at all to have a boyfriend for such a young age.. you need to set a rules in your house.. I thank God my 14yrs.old daughter don't even come to her mind to have a boyfriend for she is busy in school, homeworks and she stays away from girls that talks about boys for she knows that will only cause troubles.. I will pray for you to help you to set a rules in your house and to have good communication with your children.. God bless! M.

Read a fabulous book called Loving What Is by Katie Byron! She supports us in looking at how our thoughts about what is happening are causing us to experience being frustrated and angry about being left out or not needed or loved. The author shares simple and easy ways to look at what is really happening in all aspects of life. I highly recommend it to give you tools to be closer to your daughters and to cure your hurt feelings!

Not all teens mature at the same rate, but doesn't it make you wonder about the natural timeline that God designed for us? We go thru puberty with our hormones raging a good ten years before 'society' deems it proper. We expect teens to be able to abstain from sexual relations, when even as adults all too many of us can't keep our sexual relations with just our spouses. Life is hard, you have to work at it everyday.
In this day and age, we except divorce so easily, even tho God intended for us to mate for life. Who's to say this young boy won't be your daughter's choice? The thought seem's silly to us as adults but it may be excactly how she/they are feeling. And because you cannot put her under lock and key, nor watch her every move, You should prepare her for her future. What does she want her life to be like ten years from now, when she's 23, 33,etc. What goals does she have -- schooling, college, a good paying job? What does she feel she needs to do to reach those goals?
Have a heart to heart talk with her and try to find out how 'into' this relationship is she? Maybe she really does enjoy being around his mother, but that doesn't mean she loves you any less. Maybe invite the boy and his Mom to lunch or a movie. Maybe you'll make a new friend that might last longer than the boyfriend. But keep in mind our natural urges and the girls that get pregnant accidently are the same ones that didn't plan to Not get pregnant. Educate her and prepare her for our God given instincts if you feel it's neccessary. Take her feelings for this boy seriously for what she honestly says they are.
Maybe she's just enjoying the crush. Whatever, share some of your stories with her and above all, be open and HONEST.


I truly understand what you are going through. When my daughter was 13, I went through hard times with her, but I thank God that everything change. I started going to church, I changed her from public school to private; I could not afforded at that time so I worked full time for the school as a volunteer for my kids tuition (4 kids). With prayers and involvement into their youth programs she started to change. Now I have my 13yo boy that is into the EMO thing, dressing in black and other things, and sometimes he gets very challenge with me. So I make sure I show him that I am in control. I buy his clothe but not everything he wants. My advice to you is to be patience, talk to her with love but firm. And let her know that if she is not willing to share time with you and her sis then she will loose her phone privilege and going out with her friends or boyfriend. Let her know how important it is to have a good relationship at home with family because this will help her develop a good relationship with others. If you allowed this relationship with boyfriend then bring him into activities with your family so she could see that you all could have fun too. Playing some board games, watching movies, going out to eat, shopping...etc. Pray for blessings upon her every day, for a change in her life and I promiss you that you will see a difference on her attitude.

My prayers for you,

A friend

HI T.,
Well, I am the Mother of a 13 year old boy and I can tell you from the other side that the boys really don't have a clue! I have set guidelines down about my son going to see his "girlfriend" and I do not allow alone time for children this young and neither do her parents. Perhaps you should get to know his Mother - You know what they say...If you can't beat them, Join Them! Make sure you both have similar values and feel the same way that the kids. And I can guarantee you that if you become friends with his Mom she will probably back off from this boy - because you know we are totally not cool! The more resistant you are to her gaining freedom, the more determined she will be to get it. I also remember being a moody, snotty teenage girl, and even though I thought I knew it all, I was clueless, too. Try and be a good guide for her and find a common ground for an activity you can both enjoy. But in the meantime, set some rules about "dating" even though at this age it is really just hanging out with friends.
Good luck and take it in stride,
L. S

Hey T.,

Sorta the same deal, we set limits and stick with them. The computer is set by parental control's ( wonderful tool to have) During the week, she only has a half hr of talk time on the phone, both the celly has to be on the charger by 8:30, and the computer is set from 7pm to 8pm. only those I GIVE permission to are able to join her contact list ( the parental control auto send's send request's straight to me) The phase may lessen, but I dont think it truly goes away! Just set the rule's, stay firm and it should all work out!!

try setting up mommy & Me time, I've been doing since my girl was a baby, mainly because my hubby was military for the past 20 yrs and I've stuck with it. And it seems to have work out, we talk abiut everything, even thing's I didnt think she was ready to discuss. Hope this help's, and good luck !!


There are so many good books out there on parenting a teen. Try to find one that recommends a focus on open, free communication and relationship without losing your place as "mom."
IMO, 13 is way too young to have a boyfriend. Maybe you could remind her that even adults don't spend that much time with their boyfriend, and instead spend some time on serious pursuits (work or school) and on personal talents and abilities. I think one of the greatest assets a teen can have is someone to help them develop their interests and abilities. Help her get involved in school or community activities such as sports, music, or whatever suits her personality.

Hi, I am a single mom with a teen daughter. I am active duty in the military and a full time student. It is very hard raising children, especially girls today. My daughter will be 16 in two months and is not allowed to date at this time. I know she likes boys (that's normal), but she is fully aware that dating is not an option right now. I am very firm when it comes down to parenting, and also I love to make her laugh by being a comedian with her. She is interested in dating but understands that when she is 161/2 and I feel she has displayed more signs of being more responsible, I may reconsider and revisit that option with her. Until then, I tell her that the male population will still be around when she is done with school, and at this point, that is more important right now. However, if you allow her to date, allow them to hang out at home, that way you can get to know him and see more of how she acts around him. Talk to him and try to make him feel comfortable in the conversation and maybe you may learn things that you may not if he didn't feel comfortable talking to you. Talk to your daughter and help her to understand a little more about reality and good and bad consequences from decisions we make. Good luck and don't give up.


Dear T.,
I am 61 with a 28 yo daughter, very strong willed and two stepdaughters with teenaged daughters to whom I am very close.

I have helped many young moms deal with teenaged daughters and it is not easy. You may want to consider counseling with her to reclaim your relationship and to get some support in doing so. There are many reasons why a 13 year old engages in a power struggle with a mom over a boy. Sometimes it has to do more with her father than with you. It is important that she knows she can spend some quality time with you to talk about her feelings without judgement. However, you will still have to lower the boom as far as setting limits. I suspect that until your relationship with her is stronger that lowering the boom (setting strong limits) will not work well. But there is no time to lose.
Let her know that your relationship with her is precious, but that you are responsible for her and will do your best to get things back on track. Don't give away your hand too soon. Pray for her and talk to her about yourself at her age if you think it will help. Talk about her feelings and the pressures that young teens have to deal with in this age. Say things like, "So you feel that having this boyfriend is pretty important." Show some respect for how much harder it is now than when you were her age if that applies. No lectures. Let her know that you will take her best interests into consideration and haven't decided how best to handle her boyfriend issues, but that things will have to change so that she can grow and develop into the person she wants to be.

Ask her opinion on things you see around you. Don't be nosy, but ask about her friends. Try to get a handle her ideas of who and what is cool. Keep trying to understand her and her world view. Assure her that you really love her and want to know how she feels and what is important to her. Also, try to find out what her interests are and see if you can help her to engage in any activity you feel is healthy for her.

Hope this helps a little bit.

Ruth W

Hey, been there done that, I have one that is 21 now and still have pretty much same problem. What I am about to say is if you are a christian parent then you need to start with praying and asking God to help you with her and ask him to give you direction, and love that will spill over on her. This has been a battle with me and mine and the lord brought her back. We still have problems and all but it is better than the way it use to be. You are just going to have to put your trust in him and what he has already done for us on the cross.

Hi, I know how you feel. I am a Mother of 2 boys 10 & 14. My name is Tracey we have live in Ipsheim for 4 years, My oldest son just got a girlfriend they have been dating now for 3 months. All I hear is how it's just nice to relax with her. How spending time with her he can just relax and not be stressed out. Today he came home and said he didn't have a good day, because she wasn't in school and in reading class he couldn't spell a thing. He was thinking of her all day. I have to fight with him to get off the phone or the computer. He is on talking to her all night. It's getting really bad. The only good thing about him having a girlfriend is that he gets up for school on time and makes it to the bus just to see her. Plus he goes to bed with out being told before his bed time. It's scary to think that he is growing up right in front of me and it's hard to let him go. He is independent now and doesn't need me and it hurts to hear him say that he is more relaxed around her then at home. All I can say is just hang in there. You have raised her well. I have to tell myself everyday that he is ok and I raised him well enough that he can do things with out me and that was my goal. To raise a son that can take care of him self and be able to do the right thing. It's nice to see that I am not alone in what I am going through and how I feel. Good luck to both of us. If I can help in anyway,maybe just a ear to unload my e-mail address is ____@____.com. I hope I helped somewhat I am still working through it myself.
Take care,

Hi T..
I am just a teenager, but i came to the site from an aunt to give help to the mothers.
It may help you to see things from our point of view.
I myself am a 13 year old girl.
I have had boyfriends all my life and only seriously dated someone once, he is the one i am with now.
To a girl these days, boyfriends are really important.
My mother lets me have a boyfriend because she trusts me, not because she thinks ill get mad if she doesnt.
It never helps to punish a child for things she thinks is right or fun, it just gets them mad and gets them to do it more just to go against your will.
You should try talking to your daughter as a friend.
ask her things like "how much do you really like him?".
It would be great if you would make sure she has her priorities straight.Make sure she knows that school comes first, if she wants to make something of herself some day.
Family comes next.Family will not be here forever, remind her of that.Tell her not to take her life for granted.
It may also help if you spend some time with your daughter and her boyfriend at the same time.
Have him come over and watch movies or what not.Get to know him personally.
But the biggest thing to make sure NOT to do is yell or argue at your child, even though you dont seem like that type.Arguing doesnt solve anything.
hope i could help from the eyes of a teenager.
May God be with you!

i may be off the wall here but...if she is having so much fun with him and his mom...join them! see what fun is to her. what do you have to lose. It will show you another side of her to help you relate and see what she is doing/feeling or it will push her away from him and bring her back to reality. The phone and computer is always an issue, but it should be her choice if...homework is all done..(or whatever else is in her responsibility list). it sounds like her interest is in boys now but that could be swayed by directing her towards another interest.
you can also get her to do, say an SAT question everytime she decides to sit down at the computer. She may get interested in that, or something else, and lose track of time on that. Just like the teachers trick you into 20 minutes of reading per night, they know it is hard to stop once you start.
good luck. i have 3 in this age range. gotta stay on your toes. they will waste a lot of time, and they don't mean to hurt your feelings. your their rock and they should always feel like you'll be there for them, no matter what.

She is just being a teenager! It's funny because my best friend and I were just talking about how we were at that age!! Although I don't really talk to my boyfriend at that age I still see his mom at the grochery store or at church and I will talk to her for like 10 minutes.

As a teenager, you are really into meeting new people and trying to figure out who you are. My spending most of her time with the boyfriend and his mom, she is learning how other family's work. You will always be her mom and she needs you way more then she lets on!! Try to find something that just the 2 of you can do together. Work with her strengths and make something exciting that the two of you can do together. (like have the 2 of you make dinner for her boyfriend) When she realizes that you are okay with her relationship, she will be more open to you. Right now she probably feels like you aren't okay with him since all she hears from you is to stop talking to him. Show her that you are okay with it and your relationship will grow!

THese quwestions amaze me. Has everyone forgot who the parent, and who, the children are? YOu have to pput your foot down from the beginning, they are not your friends, they are your children, raise them like so, and thse issues would not be there.

That is sooo young!!! It's ok to be in a group and doing fun
things, maybe once or twice a weekend per month, but on the phone & computer all the time!! Set some realistic
rules. I tell my daughter "Don't let anyone get in the way of your GPA. On weekends, No phone calls after 11:00pm" During the week days no longer than 30 mins. Homework & projects are soo demanding in that age group. I don't see how they can spend soo much time on the phone & computer. They should be laying down a foundation for the future.

She shouldn't be dating period at that age in my opinion, this wouldn't even be a issue!!!!!!!!! You're the mother, take charge! Be a mother first then a friend that is your role!

I am around a lot of teens every day and it is their age, I am sorry to say. A suggestion could be to make a date with your daughter. Like on a Saturday........pick a Saturday that you two could go out for lunch, go get a manicure/pet. together, then maybe do some shopping together. just the two of you. I have only sons, but I grew up with 3 sisters and I wish our mother would have done more things with us. You can try...she might enjoy it!

hey mom, you need to let your girl(s) know that computer/phone/boyfriend time is a privelege to be earned, not a goddess given right...you also sound just a teeny bit jealous, or insecure? about the young man's mom and stuff going on "over there". FLAG...perhaps his mom is smoking pot with the young people and is not the perfect person you envision...Got to be checked out! OR invite the fellow to dinner with the mom and get to know what is so compelling to your 13 yr. old... If that is denied you, then your daughter is abusing your motherHood...but this too will pass - not unnoticed especially if You let Them get away with it... do not be passive.

Wow...I totally agree with some of the earlier comments about why 13 year olds have boyfriends. I have a 13 yr old niece and she's the same...only my brother...bless his heart...has been a single father since she was 3 and has done the very best he can with what he's had to work with...my mom and I help as much as we can, but don't live close enough to do more. I try to be open and honest with her about everything. I explain choices and mistakes I've made and try to tell her why she should be more aware of what's going on. She asked me about how many boyfriends I had at her age...I told her that when I was her age I didn't have "boyfriends" that I "dated/went steady with" and that I just had friends who were boys and a bunch of us...boys and girls...just hung out/played games/went to the movies. I explained that my mom told me I couldn't "date" until I was 16 (20+ years ago!)...even then, I didn't start really dating until I graduated from high school and started college because it was instilled in me that you "date" to find someone you are looking to spend the rest of your life with and at 13, 14, 15...even 18 years old...you haven't defined yourself until you've experienced things like different cultures/travel/living away from home/taking care of yourself...etc. It's just amazing how fast these 13 yr olds want to grow up...geeze! they have their whole lives ahead of them...yes, you too Lacy...you don't need a boyfriend right now! You're just a girl...enjoy it because it's not going to last long!
from the lyrics of a Trace Adkins song "you're gonna miss this":
You're gonna miss this
You're gonna want this back
You're gonna wish these days hadn't gone by so fast
These are some good times
So take a good look around
You may not know it now
But you're gonna miss this

It's such a powerful song! It totally makes me step back and look at what I have and enjoy every minute...good and not so good...mostly great!

Oh my gosh, I completely feel the same way! I have a 13 yr old girl and a 15 yr old boy, and I feel like my daughter only wnats to spend time with me if there isn't anyone else. My mom told me that it will probably be like this on and off until she is an adult, and that breaks my heart! I guess I really don't have any advise, I just completely understand...

First, I would make sure that you have clearly established rules about the boyfriend as well as computer and phone time. If she expects that she can be on the phone and computer all the time when she is home then she will be.
Secondly, if you want her to spend time with you, you should find something fun for both of you to do. Shopping, a movie, manicures, etc. But please, please, don't outright call it "mother-daughter time". That will not make it appealing to her. I think we all realize that forcing a teenager to do something is fun for no one. So, personally, I would try to play it cool. Say, "I was thinking about getting a manicure on Sat, want to come with me?"
And if she doesn't, you should still go. You also need to realize that while she does still need you, your role as mom is starting to change. So, along with letting her be more independent you should find some independence of your own. Teenagers loathe parental desperation and clinginess. Part of the reason she probably likes her boyfriend's mom is that she doesn't try to mother her. Not saying that you shouldn't still be in charge, you should, but I think with teenagers it's a complicated balance of giving them the respect and responsibility they deserve (some deserve more than others) and earning their respect and trust through your actions as well.
Sorry I rambled on...hope this is a little helpful.

I have successfully raised 2 sons, but daughters are different. Limit setting is very important during teen years. Your job is to be the parent and set those limits. Spending a lot of time with one person or their family, gives to much power to that other family, especially when it is break up time. Your daughter will be devastated and you will have to help her handle that. I would set up some alone time with you - or days that are with you, or girlfriends, and boyfriend time. Boyfriend time should be limited for a 13 year old. Girlfriend time is next, with some time left for you and your daughter.
I have teach middle school children and I know what I am talking about. This is the mountain your stand on.

Wow. I wouldn't let a 13 year old date but I am also shocked that nobody has commented on the 16 year old dating the 24 year old. sigh.
Has anybody read that 25 percent of high school girls have a venereal disease? I agree with the nurse. I have also worked with pregnant teens...even a 12 year old who got pregnant with the ice cream man.

i remember all too well being 13. my mom didnt know anything and i was always right and my boyfrind was the king of the world, no one was greater then him or his family. hs family always made me feel so welcome. have you thoguht about inviting him on a trip with you and your daughters to the mall, star castle, there are so many things in our area that is fun as a family. the more she feels you are involving him in your life as well as hers she will be more open to you being in the picture. the more you fight with her the more she will fight with you. we have all been 13 and remember being in the stage where our hormones are raging and we feel like our mothers dont understand. now is the time where you need to get close to her and let her know she can trust you. she will be more willing to talk to you about important issues that NEED to be discussed. not every parent wants to talk about those things either. stay in the fight. dont ever give up. let her know you are her MOTHER FIRST then you are her friend. and there is a thin line between the two. i hate my mom at that age, it was not until i was 19 that my mother became my best friend. good luck. but invlove her boyfriend and make him feel welcome and you might see a big change in the stars

I know how you feel! My 17 yro dtr has been going out with the same boy for a year now. And she acts like his Mom is her best friend! They go shopping together,out to eat or just hang out at the house.(even when the boyfriend is at work) She even runs errands for her and cleans her house. Its an act of congress to get her to do these things for me!!
So when I get jealous,and I do,I just have to remind myself that this woman is sincere and truly likes my daughter. And I am grateful someone else sees the great qualities in my daughter and wants to spend time with her. Though I do think your daughter is a little young to be soo absorbed in a boyfriend. Mine didn't even date at that age! Hope this helps!

Unfortunately, it is totally normal that your daughter would rather be with her boyfriend and his mother than with you. I went through the same thing with each of my children at that age (they are now 33, 23, and 20). In most cases, our children think their friends' parents are cool and their friends probably think that you are cool. This too shall pass and you will again have a loving, close relationship with your daughter as long as you keep the lines of communication open by letting her know you are available whenever she wants to talk. However, from what you say, it doesn't sound like you have limits for your daughter as far as phone and computer time. In my opinion, a 13 year old should not have unlimited access to those appliances and the computer should be located in a "public" space in the home--kitchen, living room, etc.--not in the child's bedroom. That way, you and your husband can monitor the activity and the time spent. Good luck--being the parent of a teenager is the hardest job on earth.

It is just a phase. I think if you call the boys mother and talk to her and find out what is going on with them. See how she feel about the sitution. Join in when they do different things. She is just a child and you are the adult here. Pray for her let her know that you love her and she has her whole life ahead of her.

You know girls have this problem at this age just keep loving her and still make her realise you are the boss and her friend to. The more I pushed my daughter into breaking up with her boyfriend the more she wanted him then she did something wrong and was punished from things and she came home from school saying he was a jerk because he told her she wasn't fun anymore and wanted someone else. If I had known I would have punished her sooner!! She is now in her 30's and said Mom hard telling what might have happened but that was a blessing that he did that and I got punished because he was one that if he got his way it was o.k. but when you punished me from the phone he got bored of me and wanted someone else and I found out he was a jerk and I might have given into all of his wants if it hadn't been for that punishment you gave me I hated you at the time but now that I have children I know why there were rules and thank you. When I punished my girls I always told them that I loved them and some day they would understand but they had to go by my rules.

You need to speak with bf's parents. Find out more about this boy. What is it the attraction, what his back ground and history are. If you do not take action now with her being only 13 you will lose the battle as she gets older. I know, I am now raising my 4 1/2 yo grandson thay my daughter had when she was only 16. a she went down hill from there. Into drugs, living on the streets, losing her job sleeping in her car and hanging with all the losers in town. And it was all because she got involved with the wrong boy from the wrong part of town whose values were in the gutter. This all started the spiral down hill 3 months after she got her drivers license. The only hope she has is thank God she is academically intelligent and graduated with scholarships that when she wakes up and smells the roses (she is now 22 and pregnant again) that she will have the skills and no how from being a fast learner to adapt and find herself when she decides what she wants to be when she finally grows up. But I pray every day just in case it takes her longer than it should. My biggest regret and fault while she was younger and growing up is that I never followed thru with consequences. Had I done so....she would not be in this predicament. Buckle down, pull your daughter in by the reins NOW and follow thru with consequences and do NOT give in.....You might have the chance to save her and yourself from a hard life later on...........

I'm a fifty two year old mom and there is no way I allowed my twins now 14 year olds, who will be fifteen next week, to date or go around saying they have a boyfriend. It's ridiculous. Thirteen is the age most girls are just learning about their mixed emotions and their mom should be their boyfriend at that time. What i mean by that is this is the time that "mom/boyfriend" is letting her daughter know all about how the boy thing works. Explaining how the boys have wild hormones two and just like them theirs is jumping all over the place.

Have u tried going out to eat with the both of them. Or out to a movie or something including him too. Invite him over for dinner and get to know him. That may show your daughter that u respect her decisions and bring u closer.

I am a 26 year old mother of 2 boys and 1 girl. I know that this is a tough time for you. I was like that with my mother. I cared more about boys in general. I never wanted to to have a boy friend. One thing that I know is that my mother was always there for me. Whether I talked to her or not I just knew. I knew that if there was something I needed to talk to her about she was there. The only thing is that I was doing things that a 13 year old should not do, and I was too worried that i would disapoint them and I could not tell them. One thing that I will have to keep in mind for when my daughter becomes that age is you can not stop or keep them from doing what they want. One way or another they will do want they want. My father tried everthing but that only pushed me away further. I had to learn from my own mistakes, and I made tons of them. By the time I was 17 I was done with being a rebel and buckeled down. I suggest to go to her and have girl time, but do not turn it into a battle. Just let her know that no matter what you will always be there for her. Let her know how you feel, but if she starts to talk about things don't get to mad just be thankful she is coming to you. I hope this makes sense to you. The more anger you show the more she will not want to talk to you.

T., sorry for the late response, I just saw this today when you replied back to the responces. Sweetie don't take a back seat to the boyfriend and mother. From what you wrote their is not indication on if you even know this mom well or not. Be careful with your princess that God gave you, he put her in your care. Sometimes moms of boys are not as careful as moms of girls if you get what I mean. Take back your ground its not to late. I have two already past that age and with the others after my first you live and learn. My oldest isn't boy crazy but she had friends that were. My house is the hanging out place and these little girls today think they are 21 way too young. Too much Hollywood in our homes I guess. You need to get to know this mom of this boy and find out what kind of person she is and you need to step up to the plate and have them do things with you. If this boy is descent he will be willing to come around. These are kids putting themselves in an adult situation to quick. Get her some extra curricular activities. Is there anything she is interested in doing that maybe you didn't before or something that she quit. I'd enroll her. I'm not trying to sound harsh I'm just trying to motivate you. Its hard I don't know if your a single mom or not but I am and I was so afraid of losing them to their dad till I realized they'd stay with me no matter what then I was able to get back in the ball game and set some boundaries on the computer and phone. When they are boy crazy its hard, I saw that new responce today where the son functions best when he's with his girlfriend, thats what you need to find out, because its never good when you rely too much on someone else for happiness. Pray for guidance on getting more time with your daughter. Don't get discourage when the conversation doens't go to good, kids are going to push buttons to get their way. Pray for God to interact and put peace when yall go do something together. Its praying in his will he's going to meet your need. Remember she's a child and even though she thinks she knows she doesn't so don't worry about not being fun or her being mad. She will appreciate you. My oldest when I was afraid of losing her was always upset but when I took my ground back she respected me and wasn't always so angry all the time. I think she felt more secure when I took control, maybe more loved I hate to think that the case but we're all doing the best we can with the tools we've been given. God bless, by the way she loves you or she wouldn't have shared with you. So don't blow it with her by saying stuff like you don't want to go with me but you like his mother. That will turn her away.

We went through this as well and we came up with forced family time. We did this either Saturday or Sunday depending on everyone's schedule. Have your daughter pick the first event for forced family time. Our teen complained that we didn't like to do what she did and that was why she didn't want to hang with us. When she picked the event she was very happy. The first couple events were "forced" but after a while it just became family time. This was a great way for us to connect. She is now 18 years old and we still insist that we do this. If we don't she thinks of our house as a hotel. It can still be a battle at times. The teen years are not fun at all :) Good luck.


T., I feel for you. It is tough to be a mother of girls. Mine are younger so we are dealing with different issues(small kids, small problems is my mantra).

Anyway, my mom had me very young (16) and was a single mom of two at 21. She did her best, talked to me about everything, and set limits. It did not keep me from eventually having a serious relationship but it did delay things. I also used to talk about how cool my friends houses and parents were. I stopped when my mom told me how much it hurt her feelings because she could not give me the material things they had.

Like the other posts, in my opinion 13 is way too young for "one on one" dating. You need to set some limits (dating age, time spent on phone, with friends, tv, etc). It may not win you points but your daughter will thank you later. It is your job to guide her on the right path no matter how much of an uphill struggle it might be. If she wants to continue to spend time with this boy then it has to be in a group situation and for a reasonable amount of time. If there is a real connection (an not just a crush) then he will still be around when she is old enough to "date".

As for getting her to spend more time with you why dont you suggest some "girls activities". If finances allow, let her to invite oa friend or two along for a regularly scheduled "mom/daughter" date. You could go to the movies, get your nails painted, get an ice cream, go for a bike ride. Let her choose the activity & the friend.

Good luck. You sound like a great mom. Continue to love your children and trust your instincts.

-LC, tampa

p.s. whatever you do, do not criticize your daughters feelings. they are real. she is just not ready for them.
I know, I have been married to my high school "crush" for 10 years.

Hi my name is R. I'm 18 and can I tell you from experience that she's most likly trying to grow up and feels like you won't let her ... My mom use to be and feels like how your feeling I'm getting marrid this june after I graduate . She feels like I'm living her or don't need her .And thats wrong it's just I grew up I need her to sit back and trust that I will make the right chioce . So just sit back and when you feel the need to get in the middle do but if you don't need to then don't .

I'm coming in a little late with this issue re: the boyfriend and your daughter spending too much time with him and his mother. There were so many good ideas offered and if I were you, I'd incorporate most of them. I think your daughter needs/wants to be heard...so it's important to hear what she says but probably what needs to happen is a compromise. I REALLY liked the idea of family time but also liked the idea of having her boyfriend over sometimes and maybe once every month or six weeks his mom too. I worked with teens for almost 10 years and there have to be limits placed no matter what. Actually if limits are placed they think their own parents really don't care. So, talk about how much time is spent with her boyfriend daily and weekly and she needs to follow through with that and so do you. She needs to spend time doing other things besides being with her boyfriend. If you have agreed upon a few things in a compromise, that should help. If she refuses to compromise, then the parent role has to be put into full swing. YOU ate the parent and if she kicks and screams for a month straight, so be it. It's great to have a listening and compassion ear of course, but don't the "friend" role get in the way of reinforcing important rules that you must as her mother.
I hope this helps!

It is important to remember that a parent is one of the most important influences in a child life, especially when there's no evidence that they care. They really do,but can't let on. You know you love her,so every once in a while tell her you may not understand her but you still love her. The boyfriend is not going to last. As much as possible set up objective rules. Idon't care who you are talking to it is time for...... now. You can also explain that you don't think the boyfriend is a good idea, though you know you can't stop her from what she is doing, and that there is more to life than having a boyfriend. Usually people date to find someone to marry not just as a statis symbol. Young people need to have fun with lots of friends - wait I think I'm preaching to the choir. Be gentle as you can - not permissive, just gentle - and keep talking.

Nelda C M. to 5 mostly grown kids, and a teacher.

Hi T.,
Luckily my daughter is only 2 but I was a little like your daughter when I was 16. I just want to warn you that at that time whatever my parents said negative about him (guy was a total loser) just made me want to spend more time with him. I just want to encourage you to stay present in her life but I think it might be better to not push anything. This age is soo hard since she is just trying to figure out who she is and right now she's likely defining that by this guy. Of course she is also completely lost on how to have a relationship too which is why it seems very co-dependant instead of healthy. If you can ask her about him and her life in a completely open way, I think you'll be a key player even with this guy around (mostly silent but most important). Besides, who is she going to come to when it's over? ;)

13 yrs old is not usually a loving time between mom and daughter. They are really testing, and wanting some freedom.
They need to be busy 24/7 with activities that make them tired, and teach them things like caring for others. Sign her up for a course at a local animal shelter and have her volunteer there once a week. She can be a hospital volunteer, go to a nursing home. She can be in scouts, or in an outdoor club. Start looking around. She has way too much time on her hands if she is spending time at a boys house at 13. I told all of my children, "don't even talk to me about boyfriend-girlfriend till you are 16 and more able to take control of your life.
Mine are 32,34 and 37 now. We had the usual teen mouthiness, but no boy/girlfriends at 13. They are way too young.

I pulled the same thing on my mom at age 14. My (also) 14 year old boyfriend had completely irresponsible parents that let him do whatever he wanted 24 hours a day, he even lived in the basement "apartment" of their house all by himself. I knew deep down that there was no way my parents would be accepting of him, so I kept them out of the loop as much as possible. That was about the time that I remember my mom sitting me down and telling me that no matter what I could talk to her and she would always try to help and be understanding. She told me that some things I told her might hurt her feelings, but she knew I would need someone strong to talk to and she wouldn't ever get angry with me if I told her the truth about anything. Regardless of how calm she was, there were still consequences to my actions.

I'm sure you're well aware that little boys that age are very persuasive. Your daughter might act like its the end of the world when you interfere, but for her safety and your sanity, keep a close watch...teenagers are sneaky. I would also suggest talking to his mom, so you can work as a team. I wish you the best of luck and remember that she loves you more than anyone else's mom---no matter how much she rebels. (I'm 27 now and my mom is my best friend)

Good Morning Sunshine ! My daughter is 26 years old now & we have a great relationship , but your story reminds me very much of our own ....also my relationship with my mother when I was 13.... In my opinion are girls in this age MUCH more busy with living out "Mama-Issues" then boys ...and my suggestion is , that you get together with the Mother of your daughters boyfriend and talk ! That's all there is to it and it will be wonderful !! I'm wishing you much Love and Fearlessness !!

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