15 Yr Old with 18 Yr Old Boyfriend

Updated on February 23, 2010
M.Z. asks from Santa Clara, CA
71 answers

my daughter is 15 1/2. very bright. she has always wanted to be older then she is. she recently met a guy 18 and likes him a lot. she has only known her for 3 weeks. he does not go to her school, in fact he is going to a school for kids who couldn't cut it in regular school. he does work full time. because she doesn't see him during the day, she cut school and track practice to see him. she was grounded for two weeks and she has been told not to see him. she agreed, but she continues to text and talk with him. would you ban the relationship totally, let her remain friends, let it go and see what happens?

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So What Happened?

thanks to everyone for their responses! I am going to talk with my daughter. no dating until 16. if she wants to see this guy, it will be with restrictions and supervision. I do plan to meet him and maybe even his parents. I am curious to see if the relationship continues once we bring it out into the open and invite him into our home. thanks again everyone!
new update....it has now been a month since this boyfriend surfaced into our life. after reading all your comments here is what I did. I told my daughter she could see him. invite him over etc. I also decided to restrict her freedom as much as I could. I found reasons to take her phone away and take her computer away. they were all legitimate reasons. that basically cut off her communications with this guy. after one month he is history. he either didn't like the fact that she was restricted more then other girls or their relationship just fell apart on it's own. either way, it's over.

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T.S.

answers from San Francisco on

I would call the police because he is an adult messing with under age child.he can't find someone his age? She needs to understand that he only wants one thing and then he will go on to the next girl. And most likely has other girls. You should sit her down and have a long talk and explain to her that men age only want one thing and only want someone that age to control.tell her she has plenty of time enjoy her young life while she can don't rush herself.

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P.W.

answers from San Francisco on

It might be a little early to ban anything, if she only cut school once. In parenting I really try to avoid making anything a "forbidden fruit." I believe in helping them learn how to make the correct choices in life, not removing them from anything I may consider unsafe, unwise or unsavory. In three years she'll be able to do what she wants so if you just keep her away from things now what will she do then?

To me the point was that she cut school and track practice, so she should be disciplined for doing THAT, not for seeing the guy. If this guy is the right guy for her (I doubt it) then she should be able to see him without messing up her life in order to do it.

So I say, at this point, make the focus be about not cutting school, not about the guy. He's sort of secondary to the main offense, in my opinion.

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K.F.

answers from San Francisco on

Yep! I agree also with those who have said to make friends with this guy. Have her invite him over, invite him to family functions, etc. I did the same thing at 15 and snuck out and such to see him because it was "forbidden." One day, my mom suddenly decided it was ok if he came over. After a few weeks of my parents pretending to like him I got bored and moved on.
That's exactly what I plan to do when my daughter does this, which I am CERTAIN she will!!

Best of luck!

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T.V.

answers from San Francisco on

Dear M.,

I can hardly believe the responses that recommend the GREEN light to a 15 year old girl/18 year old male relationship who is in a continuation school because he couldn't "cut it" in public school? Even in a group setting I see a red flag...because kids who want to be alone will find a way unless parents take immediate action.

Some even mentioned a dinner invitation after your daughter's grounding is over. Well after giving it some thought, I think a dinner invitation would be great as long as the boy’s parents are invited. Am I that old, but do people still want to meet their kids friends and parents? I suspect that an invitation in that respect will be turned down (hopefully politely turned down) and I can almost predict that the young man's parents have no idea he is seeing a 15-year-old MINOR.

An 18 year old who hasn't managed to finish high school, has most likely caused his parents a little grief and perhaps has been in trouble with the law. This is not FIRST BOYFRIEND material for your 15-year-old daughter.

On the other hand if the boy and the parents DO accept your invitation, all interested parties will have an opportunity to meet and evaluate the situation. You're not saying NO to you daughter and if the boy and his parents don't want to meet you...a lot of potential heartache and real trouble can be avoided, and your daughter can see that it's not ALL your fault.

No use taking away her cell phone, she will use her friends cell phone..and at least you will be able to check the numbers she's calling (if you feel the need).

So dear M., I hope it works out and your daughter finds a nice boy her own age, continues to do well in school and has a happy high school and college experience.

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C.C.

answers from Fresno on

When I was in 8th grade and showed interest in an older boy, my parents sent me to a Catholic girls' boarding school. Where I did not so much as SEE a boy until I graduated from high school and went to college. I was mad as anything about it, but in hindsight, it kept my focus on schoolwork and sports, and off of boys (hard to obsess about people who just aren't there). It kept me on the straight and narrow having nuns hover over me, and having to go to confession (where the worst of my sins were impure thoughts, LOL!) and mass all the time. Now, college was a whole other story, but at least by then I was 18 and a little better prepared to deal with grown-up realities.

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J.Z.

answers from Sacramento on

Banning while it would also be my first instinct only adds to the taboo excitement. I would have a serious talk with her. First of all she completely disobeyed you which has broken a trust, second of all the relationship should it turn romantic or heaven forbid, sexual, it is illegal. The cell phone should be gone, for at least a week. She used it to sneak around. She needs to know that Mature people do not do that, they accept their punishment and move on. You need to have a serious straight up talk with her, about choosing friends let alone boyfriends very carefully. If they are meant to be, then they will happen when she is legal and respectful enough to not disobey you. Tell her a relationship based on sneaking around, may seem exciting, but it will not last, because it isnt honest.

I would even go one step further, and tell her that you understand her feelings, and how it feels to first fall for someone and the excitement of something new, but that can happen with someone her age or at least headed in a positive direction. If this boy is really on the up and up, then he should come to you, not slither in the background. No alone time, no alone dating when there is already deceit, they have to earn the trust by being upfront and you have to put in the effort to meet this guy and get to know him, that will take the taboo, the excitement right out of it. And probably also shock the heck out of her. Tell her after his grounding is over, she can invite him to dinner at your house. See what that does, who knows he may be a good guy with a bad start. It is the deceit that isnt good. Bring the relationship to the light she may lose interest, or you may actually like him.

Sorry to ramble!!!! I have been through all of this with my much younger sister.

J.

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R.U.

answers from San Francisco on

There is NO way that your daughter should continue to have contact with this young man. As long as she is "talking" to him, she will be influenced by his suggestions and "mac"! do whatever is necessary to save your child! I am a retired high school principal and have seen way too many cases such as the one you describe when the mothers have felt that if they allow their daughter to at least "talk" with the young man that that contact will be sufficient. I wasn't and the moms are now grandmothers! SAVE YOUR CHILD!

R.

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M.B.

answers from San Francisco on

My parents who were not outrageously strict did not let me date an 18 year old when I was 15 and now that I look back they had good reason. They did let me talk to him on the phone and sometimes he could come over to our house in the day time only but I think that 15 and 18 are worlds apart. I thought he was so mature but it took me away from the normal things that a 15 year old likes to do and none of my friends had a car and he did and I think that alone speaks for itself. Good luck and keep an eye out. You don't want to alienate her but you should always trust your insticts.

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C.S.

answers from San Francisco on

You already received a lot of responses but I just wanted to throw in my bit; I agree with those who said you shouldn't ban the relationship. It's a lot easier to find yourself alone with a guy when you're sneaking around to see him. When I was 13 I had a fifteen year old boyfriend (he went to my dad and asked him if he would mind us hanging out together-my parents were clueless at that time and he said sure. He didn't know any better)It was disastrous. Any mom's worst nightmare is everything that ended up happening. At least I didn't end up pregnant by the guy; thank GOD. Not that your daughter's guy is this way. But creeps are out there. And 30 something creeps that beat their wives and children are, at some point, teenagers. They don't turn into jerks overnight.
Anyway, I think it's a good idea to keep the relationship out in the open as much as you possibly can. I know from my own experience, you can't watch her ALL the time. But try to. Be the parents that invite all the kids over all the time and take the kids everywhere all the time. Watch this guy. And watch your daughter. Don't let her grow up too fast, even though she wants to. She'll regret it later. Do what you can to keep her from trading in all her other activities for boys, too. I gave up sports for boys and still wonder what might have happened if I hadn't. (Sad, right?lol)Make sure she respects herself and loves herself! I know that sounds a little silly but it's something girls nowadays (and 15 years ago) need to learn how to do.
One more thing-At 21 and 24 three years isn't a big deal, but from 15 to 18 is a big gap. SOMETIMES there's a reason older guys like younger girls. Just be careful. Watch them. If your daughter changes in any way, talk to her about it. If she loses weight, gets head aches,changes the way she dresses, stops eating, stops talking to her other friends, anything like that, talk to her about it.
Sorry it's so long.

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S.M.

answers from Sacramento on

As unsettling as it may be, this seems like a typical crush relationship......younger girl likes older boy. Unfortunately this older boy doesn't seem to have a lot going for him. And that just might be the problem. Think.......would I care if he was a smart 18 year old with so many things going for him?

I would be just as worried as you are but be careful not to be too stern. You might end up pushing your child away from you (even into the other boy's arms). I would be sensitive the fact that she really likes him. Yes, there's this big age difference but it's not likely she'll marry the guy, and I'm sure it will soon pass. Remember she is only 15. Girls at this age like what they can't have. It's sort of a power trip with them. My advice to you is to be understanding. Explain your concern and the reasons why you feel the way you do. Hopefully she will be as understanding to you as you are being to her.

And remember, if she wants to see him, she'll probably do so. You might want to except that and go from there. I'm sure your daughter will see the light after the chase is over. Good luck!!! I wish you all the best and a good nights sleep.

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S.G.

answers from Bakersfield on

Hi M.,
I would "allow" (there's really nothing you can do to really stop it anyway) the relationship to continue, with the condition that the boy must meet you and your husband so you can get to know him (at least a little). I would use those interviews as a time to have him explain what his goals and dreams are for the future, in what role he sees himself will he become a professional, a dreamer and poet, a handy man ??? I would also ask about his parents, how they are getting along and how he perceived his childhood (good, horrible, difficult etc) Be prepared to listen and offer very few comments, accept him for what he is. Also ask his views on religion, politics, if he intends to vote, why/why not and so on. In other words give him the impression that you accept him as an adult after all he is 18. I would invite your daughter to participate in the interviews. It might be a good idea for you and your husband to decide on the questions ahead of time, and let your daughter know, that you understand she thinks this young man is something special so you want to meet and get to know him too. Might even be nice to have him over for dinner, make the meeting a little bit of an occasion so your daughter can see that you are taking ehr serious.

In the meantime ask her to continue her school and track practice, tell her, that you are willing to accept the relationsip and that you want to get to know the young man which is the reason you are inviting him over.

I'm willing to offer more suggestions/ideas or to talk with you further if you like.
S. [email protected]____.com

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C.B.

answers from San Francisco on

M.,

Don't know if this will help, but I did the exact same thing when I was her age. I was 15 and my boyfried was 19, got his GED 'cause he didn't finish high school. He worked full time. I would sneak around to see him because my parents wouldn't allow it. I dated him from November of my freshman year until January of my senior year. It took me that long to realize he wasn't what I wanted. I'm not sure if I would have realized it sooner had my parents allowed me to date him. I think the sneaking around was part of the excitement.

Unfortunately, I don't have a clear answer for you. I'm not looking forward to my daughter's teenage years. The big question: How do we keep them from making the mistakes we made????????? Good luck to you!!!

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M.H.

answers from Sacramento on

Remember the saying--Keep your friends close and your enemies closer-- Therefore have him over all the time the more you include him in your family life the more you can get to know his character. Also, include his parents into the equation.
Furthermore, many 15year olds are attracted to the forbiden. So, the closer you bring him into your family the less attractive he will seem.
Word to the wise do not let the go out alone, but welcome him into your home.

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M.D.

answers from San Francisco on

You have your hands full M. and I am feel for you . I went through this with my granddaughters and one is 19 now and has a year old and lives with her boyfriend . They have no furniture ,live in studio apt. Still brain dead. The other granddaughter followed in her sisters footsteps about school and is loosing her social security because of not going to school and will be 18 in August , no baby but has for a year lived with her boyfriend .Another braindead bites the dust . So really the only thing you can do is make trade offs . Like she really will need to finish school . The dating is really not good and plus he is and adult in the eyes of the law and could be arrested for hanging out with a minor.Tell hher the straight up facts as soon as he gets into her panties he is on to the next girl .Guys only want one thing and your daughter might end up hurt and with child .Use all you can to keep her from the dirt bag after all he is an adult and she is a child.Teach her how to handle herself and how to say NO !What is with a guy that old anyway ?You should let her read all your responces about her situation before it becomes a real " SITUATION " Surley she wants a good life and proms and the education . Now that it is to late my granddaughters are moaning the oh I need a education -well hello !

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J.C.

answers from San Francisco on

When my step-daughter was young, yes elementary school puppy love, she would bring boys home. There were several different ones, they would eat with us, one spent the holidays with us (his family life wasn't so great). When she was 14 she started actually dating an 18 year old, and she hid it from us. We had always allowed her friends over and we were blind-sided and terrbly hurt, we tried to stop it and it didn't stop for four years at which time it fizzled out on it's own. There are many good relationships where one partner is quite a bit older than the other but few that start in high school continue on. My guess is they will grow apart and go their separate ways. Your daughter was open with you and that says a lot about your relationship. She will be in contact him, one way or another. Perhaps you can sit down with both of them, or just him, and explain your concerns and your expectations. Kids go to alternative schools for all sorts of reasons. He's going to school and he has a job - that's not bad. Know that the trust that your daughter has had in you is invaluable and alienating her is something you don't want to do. The one thing that I tried to tell our daughter was that breaking trust was one of the worst things she could do and it takes a long time to repair that. The solid foundation that you have given her up to this time will prevail!

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K.H.

answers from San Francisco on

Hi M..
I feel your pain, believe me! I know my teenagers would 'find a way'. The one question is, do -you and your husband- like the boyfriend? Just because he didn't do well while 'mainstreamed' doesn't mean he doesn't have potential. There could be a lot of reasons (and working f/t says there's something else going on), as to why he's not w/ the others...If you took your daughter out of the equation, would you be interested in guiding him a little? If you think he's the devil, there's no hope. But, if you haven't gotten to know him, you might want to.
Talk w/ your daughter and tell her you gave great consideration to telling her she couldn't see him any more. But, after consideration, you're thinking you raised a smart girl who is learning to make her own decisions, etc. (showing support), and you would like to get the boyfriend better. While she's restricted, perhaps he could spend time (1-2 hrs) per night or weekend with the family. Try to get to know him. As corny as it may sound, we spend time with our kids and their friends by playing cards, board games, basketball, etc. It makes them more relaxed and we can a chance to see their sense of humor, reasoning skills, sense of right and wrong (playing fair or not), etc. After getting to him a little better, then make your decision on whether or not it's a good move for your daughter. If it isn't, then you can -encourage her- to seek other guys. (You'll actually have ammo to use.)
If you don't know him, she will feel as you don't know what you're talking about and just don't trust her judgement, etc...
Good luck!
K.

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T.K.

answers from San Francisco on

My sister had/has the same problem with two of her daughters. Several years ago, she completely banned one of them from going out so they found other ways to go out and see each other. This encouraged lying and sneaking around which are both habits you do not want to instill in your children. To this day they are still dating.

With her other daughter, my sister decided to take a completely different approach. She lets them go out only in groups. She also lets him come over to the house while she is home. My niece learned that she did not want to get grounded all the time like her older sister, so she wants to be open with her parents about her relationship. So far, this seems to be working. My sister would rather see and know the person who her daughter is dating rather than not be able to guide and help her have healthy relationships.

It is really important to have your husband check the guy out and talk to your daughter about how to select a good guy. She will really know that you two love her, understand her and care.

Good Luck!

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N.L.

answers from San Francisco on

SHE IS ONLY 15 SHE DOES NOT NEED TO BE DATING WHO EVER SAID THAT TO M.,

Hello M.! First off i wanted to say that as long as she lives under your roof she needs to obey the rules. Just because in three years she turns 18 doesnt mean (as Page said) she will do what she wants, that's a no no. The day she gets a job and pays some bills in your house then maybe she can have a little to say about something. But until then she better listen to her mother. Also if she has to cut shcool and her sport to see this boy now imagine what she might do when she starts having sex with him?! its best if she cutas it off completely and if she has to have a boyfriend, then she should do it with someone at school because technically she should only be worried about school and not boys. For GOD sakes at 15 they barely have started thier period, what would they know about having a man. Parents lets be a little more carefull on what our teens are doing behind our backs, lets be more involved rather then being involved with ourselves. And that goes out to all parents, believe me I'm still young I know what I'm telling you parents I did it too

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S.M.

answers from San Francisco on

My Mom used to try to stop me from seeing older guys, so I just got sneakier. No matter what she did I found a way to do what I wanted.
I know this sounds crazy, but if I were you, I would tell her you thought about it and you realize that she has good judgment about people, so she may see him, but under certain restrictions. The idea of this is to get her to respect you a bit more. It also teaches her to admit when she makes a mistake, by your example.
If you tell her NO - cold turkey - she is way more likely to completely rebel, and let's face it - you can't lock her in her room until college. She's already skipped school 2X.
Rather than fight her on it, tell her (for a while) she can only see him if he comes to the house when you're home. Tell her you would like to get to know him. When he comes over (even if you think he's scum) try to relate to him rather than intimidate. I'm not saying befriend him - don't have a cocktail with him or anything (I can't stand it when parents are more of friends to their kids and neglect their parental duties,) but I think there is a way to make kids like you and respect you at the same time. Try to make them WANT to follow your rules.
I only have a 7 moth old, but I've been a nanny/surrogate mother for 9 years now. The family tragically lost their mother to cancer suddenly about 2 years into my employment. I'm the closest thing they've had to a Mom for some time now. Anyway, the way I establish rules in the house is we all sit down and talk about "the problem" and the kids are encouraged to problem solve. We all come up with the rules together, that way the kids feel the rules are fair, and they rarely (if ever) break them. I intend to do this with my daughter as she grows as well.
Anyway, if you use this as a way to better your communication with your daughter, you will "win" either way. My sense is (knowing that she's 15) that sneaking around is exciting. As soon as you bring it into the open and tell her you accept her judgment in friends, the "romance" or excitement will fizzle. There is nothing exciting (or cool for that matter) about dating a guy your parents like.
Hope that helps. Either way, keep us updated, I'd love to hear what the out come is.

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L.B.

answers from San Francisco on

M.,

I was in the same boat, but it wasn't my kid it was me. I was 17 he was 25. And now we have been married for 21 years. My mom said I couldn't see him. I cut school to see him. She would take my car keys and I would take the bus to see him, I crawled out my window, got rides from friends and I was a good student and never got into any trouble until the BOY BAN was on.

I have 2 daughters and try to put the ball in my court. Let him come to your house (so you can keep an eye on them) We do lots of family activities and include the boyfriends. (bowling, play cards or dice) My husband and I go upstairs to watch TV and give them alone time, but they know we can walk down at any minute.

When they do go out, they have to call when they arrive at their destination and call before they leave. I know they can lie and know that they have especially my youngest. Then psychology has come into play. I'm dissapointed, I hoped you would make the right decision etc...

If they have a problem with that, you can always use the statuatory clause. My mom tried that.

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Z.M.

answers from San Francisco on

Hi M.,
I am a marriage and family therapist and teens are my specialty-- I think your instint to 'wait it out' is the way to go. Make sure your daughter is well-educated about safe sex, and then bite your tongue if you can. The more you try and prohibit the relationship the more she'll want it. Do, however, make sure that whatever consequences she earns for cutting school and track fall right on her shoulders. If she thinks she's old enough to make those choices, she's certainly old enough to live with the consequences.
Good luck!

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D.M.

answers from Sacramento on

I think it is important that you make this relationship very difficult to keep going. Keeping your daughter involved with her activities and more if you can. Since you are working from home, you have the opportunity to be around and make sure things are moving smoothly. In these circumstances, I would probebly ban the relationship, however it is important that you are careful that you do not push your daughter away. She needs you. Talk to her and love her. She needs a lot of touch and reassurance. This stage is very similar to ages 2 and 3 and we see many of the same defiant behaviors. This is a very tricky situation. I have a 15 yr old and I am a counselor and I have worked with this age group. It is very important to work with these kids rather than bump up against them. These kids need strong boundaries so they can feel safe. I hope that makes since. I hope for the best for you and your daughter. You may want to look into getting her a counselor. I know of many great counselors in our area if you need names. My daughter did not want to see a counselor at first, but now she can not wait to go.

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D.F.

answers from Redding on

Hi M.,
Wow, you have your hands full. Your doaughter sounds like she's a smart girl. Maybe helping her make good choices for herself would be best as opposed to eliminating this young man from her life. It may come back to bite you. I would be very open and honest with her and ask her what her feelings are for this boy and what her goals are for her future. Then help her to see what her options are. You might be putting a huge wedge between you and your daughters communication by not letting her have at least a conversation. This also sounds like a big trust issue on your part. Let your daughter know how you feel,be real and honest. Like most parents we want to just lock them away and protect them from all of lifes woe's but the reality is they have to learn for themselves even mistakes. All you can do is point her in the right direction. I think you will be amazed at how much your daughter really does listen to your advice and wants to do the right things. Put some trust in her choices and give her the benefit of being able to use her brain. Keep an open relationship but still be the parent. You can do this~ You were 15 once before. Have a great day~!!!

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C.G.

answers from Sacramento on

Hello M.,

Your daughter, although I'm sure probably very bright, is still too young and ill-equipped to maneuver through the avalanche of her hormones and his at this age.

This is not a good formula: 1) his age, 2) their age difference, 3) the fact he couldn't make it in a regular school (for whatever the reason; doesn't matter) and 4) the relationship isn't candid among her own peers or you.

The fact that she has already cut school and track is reason enough to believe this boy is not a good influence on her. If she were my daughter, this decision would be a no-brainer.

There are plenty of boys her age and actually I think she's too young to "date". Sixteen is early enough!

YOUR DECISION CAN MAKE OR BREAK HER LIFE'S PATH ... MAKE THE ONE THAT PROTECTS HER ... IT'S YOUR JOB AS HER MOTHER TO DO SO!

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S.H.

answers from San Francisco on

Headstrong 15+yr old girls are "HARD" on us. Mine has been that way since 13 and is now 19 and I have gone through the paces on this subject. Be very firm with your criteria and guidelines on what she can a can not do and then be very consistant in consequences especially with the "Boy" thing. One thing I did try with the boys was to sit them down and explain my rules about them having a part in my daughter's life especially because she's 15 1/2 and he's 18. I think he would be the one getting in huge trouble if anything got out of control. That might scare him enough. Stay strong, be confident that you raised her right and she's just acting out in this part of her life. Always explain consequences and her happiness and safety are your only priorities, but she's still a child in your home and needs to respect you. There's so much to say and unfortunately, if she's as smart as she thinks she is, she'll listen only to so much...Good luck. I wish there was an easy answer.

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S.C.

answers from Sacramento on

once-apon-a-time I was that 15 year old dating an older guy, and I agree with the other two moms. Banning the relationship will only make her more interested, more stubborn and she'll do anything to see or talk to him. If you succeed in cutting it off (unlikely, since you can't watch her every second of the day) she will wind up resenting you, making even more poor choices like cutting class, and will not want to talk to you about this or future relationships.

My mom wisely allowed my relationship but we could only see each other at school events or at my house with the parents home. I got to see how he interacted with my family and learn the answers to their questions that I wouldn't have known to ask myself. I decided to break things off after a few weeks. More importantly I learned to trust my parents' judgment and that they really DID just want what was best for me (not to ruin my life).

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E.P.

answers from Sacramento on

I would suggest meeting this boy. His family would be next.
Tell her she can talk after school for a hour after homework.
If you alienate him completely she will run to him and away from you. Just set the boundries. Have him come to dinner. Agine you set the rules tell him if he would like to see your daughter it can only be during certain times. and no more sneeking around.
He needs to honer and respect her and you as her mom and dad. The fact is she is under age. Also, remember 100 years ago girls and boys got married young. Hormons run rampid at this age so keep them close. Check him out in a way and try to make him feel excepted so you can see whats going on. Give her lots of love and do special things with her or them. Do healthy outings with the two of them as a family. Engage in conversation ask her opinion alot.
Take care E.

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R.C.

answers from San Francisco on

Of course their is no perfect answer but I was banned from seeing my love when I was 16. We found ways to sneak around even though we lived a great distance apart. That made it horrible for me because I was a good compliant kid, otherwise. Anyway, it came to the point that we were both asked to leave our homes(we had the race issue to deal with as he is hispanic and I am anglo) and we ended up living together my senior year of high school. Here we are 36 years later, still together and most would say we have a great partnership/marriage. If this young man is respectful of your daughter, he works and isn't doing things that you can identify as harmful, it may be a good idea to allow them to see each other. This way you have a bit more control. Have him to the house so you can get to know him. Have him for dinner or weekend get togethers, which gives you the opportunity to get to know him better. This way you create a bond instead of creating a great divide. They will appreciate that you are validating their feelings and less likely to rebel. They will have no problem respecting your rules and advice Talk to them about your concerns and ask your daughter to comply with some simple restrictions in regard to dating away from home, if that is something that you will allow. Set clear boundaries for curfew etc. That is the most important thing. Try to keep her out of situations where she is forced to make choices that she isn't ready to make. When they understand that you are trying to cooperate with them and they are clear on why you have set those boundaries, I am sure they will be grateful and will do their best to comply. Most likely the relationship will burn out shortly, but if they should by some chance remain together, you won't have to spend years of your future mending the relationship due to past behaviour and a multitude of hard feelings. Good Luck

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M.B.

answers from San Francisco on

Let me start out by saying that the advice you are about to receive is from a 32 year old woman who got involved with an older guy at the age of 16 and whose life was forever changed because of it.

I too always wanted to be older than I was, and I was always attracted to guys who were much older than me. My mother didn't like it, but she was never a disciplinarian and felt bad not giving me what I wanted.

Within 3 months of meeting a much older guy, I was pregnant. Granted, he and I have been together ever since....and of course I don't regret having my son. But I can sure as heck say that my life did not have to be as hard as I made it....and as much as I love my mother, I often wonder what the heck she was thinking allowing me to go out with older guys. When I was focused on partying and hooking up with older guys, my mother should have been there to steer me back in and get me focused on my education and my future. She didn't do that for me. She gave in and let me do what I wanted.

So, as you can imagine, my advice would be to absolutely FORBID her from having any contact with this guy. If they love each other that much, they will still love each other when she is 18 years old and can make that decision for herself. Until then, you are her mother and it is your job to make these decisions for her.

Sorry if that sounds harsh....obviously I have a personal stake in this issue and you can take that for what its worth. Just keep in mind that while I was out partying and hooking up with older guys, I was maintaining a 3.5 GPA, taking my SATS and on the "college" track. Everyone in my life was shocked when I got pregnant....but that's because they just weren't paying enough attention and my mom wasn't keeping a tight enough rope on me.

Best of luck to you in your situation and kudos to you for caring enough to come onto this page and get advice about it. I wish my mom had done that!

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V.R.

answers from San Francisco on

I would cut the relationship off completely....sit down and have a heart to heart talk with her though and let her know why. Explain to her how she a lot of things going for herself and to mess things up by have a much older boyfriend could just ruin everything. Make sure to listen to her side of the story as well so she knows that you care about her feels as well! Good Luck! Hope this helps Ginger

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K.R.

answers from Sacramento on

M.,
Oh, these teenage loves. I remember thinking my first real (he was 20 and I was 17) love was "the" one. The forbidden fruit is that for which we will continue to climb.

I would talk with your daughter and tell her your concerns, however, I would also insist on meeting the boy. I would try to include him in as many activies as possible with the family. I would set reasonable limits - no seeing him on school nights, no texting after 10 pm etc. and I would closely monitor the relationship, but I wouldn't forbid it.

Kids who can't cut it in the regular school can't cut it for a variety of reasons and some of them are very valid: their home life may make it hard to concentrate on school work; their family situation may be that they have to work to make ends meet for themselves because the total family income would not support what teens are pressured into wanting these days, nor what they need. In some cases these kids are extremely bright, and sitting in a desk all day listening to boring droning on information they will never use again is something they can't handle. Remember, Einstein, Tony Robbins, the Founder of McDonals, Ray Croc...they all dropped out of regular school.

Intead of grounding your daughter use the TEASPOT technique - take everything away short periods of time. Everything - cell phone, ipod...all the toys and media. I suggest that for 3 days. If she breaks the teaspot by using something behind your back it starts again from that time and is extended for another 3 days. If she breaks a curefew, you can ground and Teaspot - again for short periods of time, being very specific about her adhering to the rules. This is not a place to get slippery as a parent.

This is a time to keep communication open and to pull your daughter in with understanding, not push her away through your actions. While I understand you feel you are trying to protect her, your actions are fear based and will therefore draw in the very thing you don't want for your daughter.

About me: Mom to a 20 and 25 year old; Former Executive Director of a drop out prevention program and Parent Project Coach and Faciliator. Currently I own my own business.

K. C. R.
Transformation by Design, Inc.
###-###-####

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K.D.

answers from San Francisco on

If you ban him totally she will just keep in contact behing your back.
I know from my own experience. My parents were way too protective & I did everything I could do to get away with.
Talk with her & see if she really cares or maybe it is a phase. Maybe let him visit at your home.(Only when your home tho) No closed doors.....(this has to do with respect for your parents home & for herself.
She needs a bit of freedom but, with guidance and support.
I was the oldest & never got to go to any school games, junior prom or senior ball. All you can do is guide, and pray.

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T.M.

answers from Sacramento on

Dear M....

I must just comment on your termenology...I have three learning disabled now adult children...One of which had to go to a "school for kids who couldn't cut it in regular school." My son is neither "round" nor "square" and regular school could not accept or accomidate his learning style...Just know that boy could be brilliant and not just a slacker loser...As for the relationship...I always took my issues to the source...I would have "lunch" with him one on one...see what is on his mind...If he is man enough to meet with you and discuss his feelings and respect your concerns he may be a worthy human after all...T.

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M.S.

answers from San Francisco on

It's a hard hard thing, but I spend years working with teenagers and learned that anything that is "banned" only gains more appeal. As difficult as it is, my personal opinion is that we have to help our children take ownership of their own decisions. We can talk to them about our concerns and more importantly listen to them and understand their feelings. Ask lots of questions (such as, "what is it you like about this guy?" "What kind of influence is he on you?" "Do you like who you are when you are with him?" "Can you see any drawbacks to getting involved in this relationship" etc....whatever makes sense in her situation) As she processes the experience and you respectfully share your feelings, bot don't force her, she'll take ownership of the situation and learn to make good choices. I know it works - it's hard, but it really does work and you and your daughter will be better for the learning process. Good luck!

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J.C.

answers from San Francisco on

Hi M.,

Although I agree with bits and pieces of the responses below, I agree with every word of Jenn Z’s!! The rest talk about ways of avoiding the little girl who is maturing and feeling something new and to her very exciting! You can not “distract” a 15 year old from boys.

There needs to be more communication between mom’s and their daughters about love, and respect, men and sex, lust and infatuation.

I would absolutely sit down with her and talk about her feeling for this boy/man and find out what she likes about him, what she sees in him, what they talk about, etc. And absolutely invite him over for dinner and have dad ask him what his intentions are with his 15 year old daughter…in a way that won’t totally humiliate your daughter <grin>. They may just be at the same maturity level, his being way below his age, and have things in common, or she could be the helper in the relationship and like to be needed. You may even find you like the guy and enjoy his company.

Whatever you do, don’t close the line of communication between you and your daughter!

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M.P.

answers from San Francisco on

The more you try to keep them apart, the more she will want to see him. If anything it will add a bit of an added thrill to their meeting. Try to talk to her about seeing him when she doesn't have to cut class to do it.

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J.M.

answers from San Francisco on

Make sure she's on birth control!! I did the same thing when I was 15. I think my mom was heart broken.

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M.F.

answers from San Francisco on

Tough call. I would be nice to just ban her from seeing him if that works which it sounds like it is not.

My kids are only 10 and 2 but I was a teenage girl once so I've always thought when time comes, I'd embrace any relationship my child makes. Invite him to your home, get to know his parents. Really get to know him and maybe then your daughter will listen to your suggestions. Right now she doesnt think you understand because you don't know him-How could you, you are just old and judgemental. Maybe one you do know him and like him you can tell her positives sides to him however he is in a different phase of his life right now and she should be experiencing high school. Also by getting to know him he will respect you more as her parents.

This is an idea in theory...let me know how it works or what you think. [email protected]____.com

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S.S.

answers from Yuba City on

I don't have kids her age but I do remember when i was younger and my mom told me not to see someone. I don't think its a good idea to tell her to not see him cause she will figure out a way to see him obviously 'cause she's ground for ditching practice. But it wouldn't be a bad idea to invite him over for dinner with the family (if your husband is okay with that. She is too young to be dating someone his (my opinion) but it wouldn't be a bad thing to meet him. Just because he goes to a special school doesn't mean he's a bad guy.My husband now got his life around because of me. And he wasn't a bad person he just made bad decisions in school and outside of school.My mom loved him and 9 years later, two kids, things couldn't be any better for us. I say do ground her if she ditches school and gets in trouble for not listening to your rules. But I do think you should give him a chance and see how you feel about him in person. I say, if she wants to text him while she's grounded, go ahead. As long as she's still grounded at home and not ditching school, it won't hurt a fly.

Well I hope this helps and good luck! please let me know how things work out.

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S.C.

answers from San Francisco on

The more you tell her not to see him, the more she will try and see him, I think the best is to allow him to come and visit her at home, and that should be a condition.
that way you have control of the situation without her knowing.
It is better for her not to see him outside her house.

S.

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J.R.

answers from Modesto on

Hello
I just know that when my mom baned me completely i did so more than ever If it were me I would let it go be do not let my Daughter see him agine she can talk all she wants but no see for no sex just my opinon at 400am

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S.R.

answers from San Francisco on

Dear M.,

Since your daughter has no other sibling at home with whom to talk and play. maybe she needs somebody to share her ideas and feelings. For my part, I feel her relationship with herr boyfriend should be allowed to continue but with close supervision; like allow her to share with you the kind of relationship she has with her friend.

Sr.Luz R.

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P.G.

answers from Modesto on

There is nothing wrong with being friends with an older male, and I am very proud of you for being involved- that is what it takes. If she likes this boy, find out what she likes about him, invite him over for dinner- invite him over for games, and family night- you can watch why this guy is her dream guy, and even if he is worth being around your daughter.. Keep an open mind. If you cut all relationships off, you will only find out she is going behind your back because you wouldn't allow it. You are my idol- my daughter is 12 and she is mature for 12 and is already on her period and has pubic hair- so I am headed towards that direction and it is good to know we are not alone.

G.P.

answers from Modesto on

I see this all the time. My son likes a girl who is older than him and lives out of town. I would monitor her, boys at that age are beyond puberty. She has plenty of time to be with a guy, she's young. My son told me he wanted his girlfriend to move in, I was blown away. I am not ready for that kind of thing.
I know a 14 year old guy who is so over the hill for a girl, but she's not ready for that yet. When we were that age, we didn't think that way. Teens think their ready, but really their not. Teens don't understand they can't rush into things, they are not ready. I know teens with broken homes being active at age 12. I think she needs one on one about the dangers of older guys. My youngest is 12 and he wants to kiss his girlfriend. I told him that's too young. As long as the guy has respect for your daughter, I believe its ok. You gave her rules to follow, if she starts breaking them, than I think that's the time you should take action.

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L.W.

answers from Sacramento on

Do you remember having relationships? How do you want her to feel about you? What if he is the right one for her? Let them talk, if it's not right, it won't last long. This is about trusting her. You've had the right "talks" I would assume.

If you ban her from communicating with someone, it is sure to make communication difficult with her. This is a simple fact.

Love, L.

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T.T.

answers from Yuba City on

I don't have a child that is a teenager but I NEVER dated a guy my age - to immature. I was the youngest of 3 and the only girl. My brothers and I are 7-9 years appart. I was with them all the time, so it was natural for me to be interested in older guys. The one thing my parents did so that it would deter me from cutting and falling behind, they always asked me to invite him over, mind you I was 17 and he was 24, for dinner, they would invite him for family gatherings, soon he became part of the family and did everything with us. Guess what he encouraged me to study, stay in school and do the things that I loved that I was doing before I met him. Sure I did some things that still got me in trouble but at least I wasn't cutting, I maintained my grades and he was welcomed in our home. I hope this provides some insite.

T.

FYI - we dated almost 3 years & I left him.

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C.C.

answers from Sacramento on

There's a huge difference between a 15 and 18-yr old. I think I would keep her on reins. Invite him to the house... this way you can see what is going on. I certainly would not let her date him until she was, at least, 16. You can attempt to ban the relationship but it won't work. If she wants to see him, I would say she could if they were both at the house under your supervision. Good luck!

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J.A.

answers from Evansville on

My daughter is "dating or spending time with" an 18 year old boy. They have been together for over 1 year now. He is a senior and very responsible. You must keep boundaries though. They will respect you for this later in life.

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T.L.

answers from San Francisco on

Pray about it. Personally I would say no dating yet, I started dating at 15 and it was not a good idea. Is she involved with youth at church, does she know about Gods devine purpose for her?

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V.V.

answers from San Francisco on

*SIGH* My daughter is only 3 months and I am dreading these things. I was troubled in my teens and have helped raised teenagers so I know a little about this. You CANNOT prevent a teenager from seeing a boy (and I do men boy). Not only will they always find a way, i.e. cutting school and track practice, but it will drive a wedge between you and your child. What you can do is stay strong and let her know that there are consequences for her actions. Some people would say he is too old for her, however girls mature faster so they tend to date boys a couple of years older. If she is grounded enough times she will get the message that cutting school is NOT ok. Furthermore, if she is dating him outright, as opposed to behind your back, you will know more about what is going on in the relationship. Have him over for dinner. Check him out. You will still have issues with her. She is 15 and thats part of life.

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M.M.

answers from San Francisco on

Hi M.. I had to write because this is something I feel very strongly about. I myself was in a very similar situation when I was 15. I met a boy who was a very bad student. He would convince me to cut school with him weekly. My grades dropped tremendously. I ended up wasting 6 years of my life with him and he actually became abusive. I am not saying that the same thing would happen to your daughter, but anyone who allows her to cut school for him is not a good influence. Because of my ex-boyfriend I never got into a good college. I'm surprised I was even able to obtain an associates degree with him in my life.

I do not blame my parents at all, but I truly wish I had had more communication with them regarding my relationship. They did not know any of the details until I finally left him. Granted, at the time had my parents forced me to stop seeing him, I probably would have resented them. In hindsight, I can honestly say that I wish they had intervened.

I'm happily married now and am expecting our first child in October. I will definitely keep an open line of communication with my child regarding his/her personal relationships.

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K.J.

answers from San Francisco on

Allow the boy to come over to your home to visit your daughter for supervised visits. You can get to know this kid and find out if he just isn't a good student or just isn't a good person. Offer to rent them a movie where they can watch it in your home, under you supervision. You do not have to be sitting next to them while they visit, but you can be in a close room monitoring what is going on. If they want to spend time together, this is a great way to do it. Once you get to know the boy better, then maybe you can allow them to see eachother outside of the home, going to movies, cafes, etc.

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M.W.

answers from San Francisco on

Invite the guy over for dinner and tell your daughter afterward that you like him very much and that he eminds you of her dad when he was that age. That should do the trick!

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A.S.

answers from Redding on

Hi M.,
It is to early in their relationship to really do anything. They themselves are trying to figure things out. I met my husband when I was 18 and he was 15, my brother and him were friends and we became friends and didnt go anywere further. I graduated and didnt see him again for a few years and it was at that point that we realized that there was something there. As for her boyfriend not cutting it in "regular" school, maybe its not that he cant cut it. My brother went to a different school (he was doing good in school) but he did better with more one on one time with teachers (something "regular" cant offer). So maybe regular that isnt cutting it. Maybe your daughter feels that nobody is being supportive towards her decision to be with him so she feels that she has to sneak out of school to see him. It doesnt make right and she should be disaplined for skipping school. But maybe if everyone around her shows more trust and support she wont feel that she has to go to that extreme. Try inviting him over more often etc. But you cant try to stop something that they feel so strong about. If you try to stop it all together it will be worse than just skipping school.

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S.S.

answers from San Francisco on

I was once 15, and had an 18-yr-old boyfriend. My parents made many mistakes, including prohibiting me from having any contact with him. Didn't work. Hindsight, training and experience helping people has given me insights into other ways of handling the situation.

Encourage her to get involved in planned activities, like school clubs, sports, and charity volunteer work, to fill her schedule. When she does go out, require it to be as part of a group, more than three girls included. Let the new guy be an optional part of the group, but require your daughter to stay with the group rather than being alone with the boyfriend.

Expanding her social horizons will likely introduce her to more potential boyfriends. Restricting her outings (movies and such) to a group setting will decrease the opportunities for the boyfriend to pressure her for sex, and eliminate the venue where sex could happen.

Even if she cleaves to this guy while in group outings, she will be able to observe how her peers relate to one another, develop healthier social skills, and build and maintain a support network of friends.

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P.M.

answers from San Francisco on

As soon as you ban it .....I think you are in trouble. Sit down and talk to her about your feelings, about honesty, and about your fears..be very truthful and honest.
have the two of you come up with some realistic dating boundaries.
If this relationship gets serious sit down with the both of them and do the same thing.
good luck P

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C.J.

answers from San Francisco on

What a tough spot you're in! I definitely don't envy you, though I'll go through this in the future. It's conflicting, I know. While the statute here in California won't permit them to date (look up your codes), let her know that while you don't mind her having a friendship with this boy, it may put his freedom in danger should they decide to cross certain boundaries. If they did and you decided to press charges, he could be labeled a 290 sex registrant for the rest of his life, just for caring about your daughter. On the other hand, if you're not opposed to meeting this guy, invite him over and get to know him. Explain to him the same circumstance that he could potentially face if they don't wait a bit. I'm sure he has enough common sense to want a good future not only for your daughter, but only for himself as well. If you forbid them to see each other, it not only may drive a wedge between you and your daughter, but could push them closer together, if not only because of the circumstance they'll find themselves in.

Good luck and I know that your gut already tells you what to do. You always want to the world for your family, but sometimes we forget what it was like to be that age and feel the stirrings of a crush.

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B.S.

answers from Sacramento on

It appears that she is taking your advice by not seeing him and staying in school. That's a positive. See what happens. Have conversations about what he is like, what she likes about him, why he's in a special school because it maybe that he is supporting his family. Ask about his job, what he does, does he like it. Keep it superfical unless she backslides again and cuts school. Keep the communication door open.

Dr B.

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J.T.

answers from Sacramento on

I have found that it is easer to be supportive and set good boundries with both of them and get her to agree with some terms by allowing her to spend time with him, them trying to keep them apart.

It is a good thing to get them and set some ground rules with both of them present, so you can help both to be accountable with their behavior and this also will allow them to see that you are supportive of them.

If you get him to agree with some boundries and time and not allowing her to cut school and all that stuff, she will agree more then likely so she can be with him and spend time.

I have gone throughh this same thing with my daughterand she has not gone from D's and F's back to A's and B's, and her boyfriend is NOW applying himself in school too.

Kids need continual positive direction and while they want get so caught up in fatuation they do NOT play it all the way throught.
By giving them pieces of information and allow them the to answer the questions like..... 'Ok, I understand you both really want to be together, and if this relation is one you both feel will be a lasting on , you both need to focus on your future as well", Ask them how they will do this? and direct them in an understanding of having a job flipping burgers for a lifetime with NO education, or a job that allows them more flexibility and money to not be so stressed out in their relationship like soooooooo many people"

ask the to relfect and respond....

this si something that is good to continue ding with them to both mold and monitor the situation...

If you want them shaproned, you set time that they spend together while your around, but do not be up in their face...

allow them some privacy in another room, but with the door open....
No laying on the bed persay.... no doors shut, things like that, but only when it starts getting more then you feel is approate, and be kind about how you say it to them.

I always say, Ok that's enought please and i will wait there for them to stop or i will callthem to both come join or help me with something.

I have found that this works better then trying to control and stop...... I would rather have control of the issue then none at all.

this has worked great for me!!!!!

My daughter is now 16 and her boyfriend is in Phila. and they are a great couple and working towards their future.

His parents and I work together to help them acchieve their objectives.

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K.G.

answers from San Francisco on

I think your husband needs to sit down and talk with this boy, and with your daughter. I wouldn't allow this but other people can do as they please. I just know if a boy that age was trying to see my daughter at 15 my husband would be all over him with some serious respect talk. I'm also not a believer in allowing kids to do things because you're scared they will sneak. Let em TRY and sneak. I don't recall my parents just letting me do things that were wrong becuase they were afraid. There were rules and dating adults was not allowed. I would be afraid to sit and see what happens, because sex and pregnancy can happen. 18 year old boys are not going to just want to hang out and have a milkshake. This seems like way too much trouble.

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C.F.

answers from San Francisco on

if you have the control over her to ban it totally, then yes. He's too old for her and it sounds scary to me. You may mention to her that it is illegal also. that might be a deterrant.

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M.T.

answers from Sacramento on

I would not ban her from seeing him. Because that is just going to make her want to see him even more. But if she wants to see him he can only come to your house when you/husband are home.

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L.S.

answers from San Francisco on

My advice is that as much as you may not like this new "boyfriend" I would for her sake invite him to your home for lunch or dinner and try to get to know him. The more you say no the more she is going to go behind your back to see him and who knows what could happen then. When he's over make sure he knows she's only 15. You never know he just might be an alright kind of guy. Or maybe she'll realize he's to old for her. The only reason I suggest this is because I've been in her shoes and I rebelled and ended up on the streets at 16 and I'm not trying to scare you or say that this is whats going to happen but I know in this day and age it's alot different from when my mom was 15. The pressures to being accepted and looking a certain way (style & clothes) is alot harsher today. I wish you luck and hope it turns out the way you want.

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C.F.

answers from Sacramento on

I would be wary. Why couldn't he cut it in regular school? Behavior problems interfering with his learning maybe? I would definitely meet him to judge for yourself what sort of influence he might have over your daughter. Maybe he is a real good kid but he might be more experienced in certain ways that your daughter is not ready for too. That would be my main concern. Limiting her time with him to the weekends is a possibility. I would let my daughter see him on weekends only at first until I trusted him to take good care of her. Good luck!

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J.A.

answers from San Francisco on

Rember how passionate you were when you were 15? I certianly was, and I was ALWAYS right. If she really likes the guy, for bidding her to see him will just make her more passionate, unrequited love and all of that (I was a very dramatic teenager). What worked for my family was to really make the guy part of the family. Have him over for dinner. A lot. Invite him to any family oriented events (game night, bbq's, movies, etc.) Anything that you do as a family, make him feel like he is welcome, and liked by you and your husband. This worked wonders for my family. I could spend supervised time with the boyfriend, and my family could get to know him. We did the same thing with my younger brother and his girlfriend. When they broke up, I think we missed her more than he did! My daughter is 5, I am not looking forward to the teenage years. Good Luck!

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P.L.

answers from San Francisco on

As a 38 year who had a boyfriend at that same age when I was 15 I would highly recommend to not allow her to see him. ALL he wnts is sex and don't fool yourself or your daughter that he wants anything different. It could be a real detriment to her self esteem. Good luck!!

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K.U.

answers from San Francisco on

Hi M.,

I agree about forbidden fruit. I would do something completely different: invite the guy over for dinner some weekend, or for a bbq in the afternoon. Get to know him, and have the opportunity to supervise their time together. This way you can find out if he has some inner qualities that supercede his educational challenges, or you'll find out if he really isn't very good for her. Either way, knowledge is power, and it will help you understand where she's at. It could be that traditional education just doesn't work for him, or maybe he came from a troubled home, had trouble believing in his abilities, but otherwise is a great human being. Good luck.

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L.C.

answers from Yuba City on

Do not ban it. Get your daughter to talk about him. A plus point is he does go to school, and he works. It seems that maybe 15 a little young to date, but soon to be 16. You could make a compromise let her have him over for dinner,and a movie night with the family. That will give an opportunity to see them together, to see how serious they are, and to get to know him without him feeing threatened. If you feel comfotable with rules about dating and limits. Let her try it out at home while you and the husband have some guidence power. Because all to soon she will turn 18 and go crazy because she was told no,no,no. Simple guides like she has to make school commitments first,and family things. That way she will learn balance in her life also. Obligations with desire.

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T.H.

answers from Stockton on

This is hard, because later on this age difference won't be bad. Right now see's a kid and three years is big. It's hard because she really likes this guy you taking him out of her life totally she might recent you and go behind your back to see him. Maybe try talking to her and tell her you would like to have the two of them be friends right now and if she does see him then it's to be with her at the house or with a group of friends. that way your not cutting him out totally but putting guide lines to it.

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B.L.

answers from San Francisco on

First, if you haven't met him, invite him to your home for dinner. If she doesn't want him to meet her family or if he won't come, that is a red warning flag. If he comes to your home, reserve judgement until then. When I was 15, I dated an 18 year old. Granted, he did go to my school and was a good student but my father was very weary about this. I would be too.

Good luck!

+B+

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B.V.

answers from Fresno on

I am grandma with a suggestion....

I would invite the boy over to the house for dinner, etc.... Get to know him that way. I think if you tell her not to see him, she will find a way to see him one way or another by lying to you.

Maybe the reason the guy is in the special school, is because he wasn't raised in a loving and caring environment. At least he has a job and is not being a bum. He has quite a load for a young man. Going to school and working. That is a lot of responsibility. He may not be all that bad. Give him a chance in your home, so your daughter doesn't have to sneak out to see him.

B.

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