A Cougar and My 15 Year Old

Updated on September 12, 2010
T.N. asks from Las Animas, CO
21 answers

Okay, so she may not be old enough to be a cougar, but she's 19 and he just turned 15. Some how he fell head-over-heals for this girl and the feelings seem to be mutual. I do not condone this and want it to stop immediately, but I can't bring myself to bring the police into the matter. I don't think they are having "relations" because they live in different towns.

I am divorced from son's father who lives only 30 minutes from this girl. Son and his father thinks it's okay for son to move with his dad come Christmas time. I think it's a bad idea. Surely if you put enough space between them things will fizzle out, right? Problem is, they have been "dating" since the beginning of summer and it is just getting worse.

My question is...how do I put a stop to it without pushing them closer together? I know that sex is likely to happen and have done a good job keeping them apart, but they both seem "Hell bent" on being together.

NO. the girl does not have mental issues and NO son does not seem older than he is. He is actually very small for his age (he looks 12 or 13) and she is very tall. But no, she's very normal. Yes she's in college and she lives with her parents.

EDITED TO ADD: I would absolutely feel the same way if he were the older one. The reason I am so opposed and concerned is because he has his mind set that he is going to leave everything and every friend he has ever known come Christmas break to move with his dad so he can be 3 hours closer to her. His father is a "That's my boy!" type and thinks it is a great idea that son move up there to be closer. Does that make any sense? lol...I am just seriously concerned.
ANY advice would be greatly appreciated! Thank yoU!

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answers from Washington DC on

INVOLVE THE POLICE!! She is an ADULT, he is NOT!! This is truly weird. We all know that girls dating older boys isn't as strange as boys dating older girls, especially at these ages. I'm thinking that there must be something mentally wrong with her. I can't imagine ever falling for a 15yo boy at the age of 19. When I was 19 I was falling for men that were in their mid twenties! She must have some kind of mental illness, even if it's just control issues and she likes younger men because she can control them easier.

Keep them apart and call the police. What she is doing is indecent and there has to be SOMETHING they can get her on!

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1 mom found this helpful


answers from Denver on

I appreciate that there are so many perspectives, but I would keep it simple. It is wrong that she is interested in him- period. They should not be together- period. You are the mom here and you do get to say that they shouldn't be together.

Having said that, it's tricky with teenage boys because, as others point out and you probably know, being too firm and forbidding something will push them closer together. But by no means does this mean they get to run the show and you have to make rules around things you aren't ok with. Just don't come on too strong.

Ask him questions and let him know you are hearing him. What does he like about her? She seems really important to him, tell him you can see that and ask him to tell you about that. Tell him you wish it could be different for him, that you wish he were older or she were younger. But he's not older, and she's not younger. Put some of the blame off of you- it's not just that I'm not ok with this, it's the state of Colorado!

If they end up seeing each other and having sex, he will tell someone, and someone will call the police. Whether or not you end up in any trouble I don't know, but you won't feel like the mother of the year for knowing and not reporting. You shouldn't be put in that position when you are being a good mom and trying to do the right thing.

So in a nutshell- empathize with his feelings, hear him out. But as his parent, you can not and should not let this happen.

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answers from Austin on

15 today isn't like 15 when I was in high school. And it wasn't *that* long ago. Is he mature for his age? Big? Mature "looking" at least? If so, that might be why the older girl is into him. He looks like a man. They are both still teens. It will fizzle out, space or no space. Just make sure that he knows what a condom is and about STD's and pregnancy. I was a "first time" baby. I would even go so far as to bring it up around the girlfriend. A little embarrassment never hurt anyone.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

He's an underage minor.
She is not. She is a legal aged "adult."

Sex, is bound to happen ya know.... he's a 15 year old boy... and she's older... and sex, will happen...
I hope he does not get her pregnant.
Boys, will not be able to control their urges. Especially a 15 year old boy... who has no experience.
He won't even know, what STD's are.... ?

This is a REAL problem... and will be.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

Why does it bother you so much? I couldn't really get a feeling as to why it's really a problem from the post, and I don't think it's a big deal for 15 and 19 year olds to date. I have SERIOUS issues with people bringing police into it over this type of age gap because it can ruin a 19 year old's life, so I think you're right about that. Would you feel differently if your son was 19 and into a 15 year old girl? Quite honestly, you're really not going to be able to stop it, and you're only going to fan the flames by being so opposed. They may be soul mates, but chances are it will fade sooner than later (especially when a 15 year old boy is involved). PLEASE make sure that he knows he should always use condoms and has access to them. Don't forget to tell him that some girls/women lie about being on birth control to trap guys, so he needs to wear condoms and discuss what would happen if a pregnancy occurred with her. I hate to tell you, but if they've been dating for 3 months or so -the sex is probably already going full blast!

For those who think she's mentally slow or something -that's ridiculous! He's 15, not 5! Have you seen some of the 15 year old guys out there? She's STILL a teenager! In my school growing up there was an 18 year old senior girl who dated a really hot 14 year old 8th grader. People thought it was a little strange, but no one (including parents or administrators) freaked out about it. They were both brilliant by the way. She's not even in her 20s and things have really changed in this day and age. It's not a huge deal if the girl is older now.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Columbia on

alright... now as a teen who has done this myself... i was 15 and dating a 24 year old i can tell you that pretty much anything said will push them closer together. My mom told me i couldnt move in with the guy... I told her she would either let me or i would run away. She told me i couldnt see him, i told her i would or i would run away... Nothing she did could keep us apart. finally the relationship died. Too much different about us, i wanted to go out with my friends and he wanted to stay home or he would go out partying with his friends and of course at 15 i couldnt go.

I say keep things they way they are for as long as possible. as bad as this sounds... shes in college shes going to find someone else, nevermind the distance between the two. Be prepared for heart break if your son cares that much about her though. let him know that he cant move out until he graduates.

i totally understand where you're coming from, i wouldnt want my daughter (whos 9 months lol) dating a 19 year old when shes 15. i know exactly what it does to you and well all my life ive been dating older guys and its caused me to grow up way faster than i would have liked.

oh & one more thing... if by some chance you think sex may come into play... you NEED to call the cops. make sure he knows about protection and all those other things just in case! but the last thing he needs is a child or an STD... that would be toture for your son and a lot worse than just not being able to be with her. lets face it, who knows what shes doing while shes 3 hours away....


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Denver on

You can send them to my house to babysit for the weekend two toddlers 15 months apart should be some really good birth control.. Just kidding... Can you really do anything but express your concerns and hope for the best and let time take it's course. Probably is it a good idea to call the cops probably not but a little hint here and there might not hurt. My brother in law handled it this way he told his son and cougar that he did not approve and that they were not welcome in his house as a couple until the cougar and him came up with some very strong reasons as to why they should be a couple. They all agreed on a date for dinner. Turns out when the 'kids' were preparing for the dinner the cougar dissed the family and the son realized she was what she was all along WHITE TRASH! :) Worked out well in the end.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Houston on

I don't think she is quite a cougar yet;) If they were both older it would be no biggie at all, heck I have four years on my hubs, but we were 25 and 29 when we met;) Teens of any age should not be engaging in sex, I realize they do this, but I don't think they have more of a chance than any other teens in the world. I mean I think all parents hope and pray their kids don't get into sex etc so young, I would hate for my 19 year old to be engaging in sex outside of marriage as well as my 15 year old. I think it would be good to chill out about it. You know what they say about forbidden love. I don't think she is some kind of pervert or anything, maybe a little immature but that is no crime. If you don't feel their relationship is good, you can tell him to call it quits and see if dad will come online about it. But I think if you go too far with forbidding, you might just push them more together. If she were like 23 or something, yeah really weird and big deal. 19 to me is kind of borderline but I don't find it totally crazy. Have you considered telling them they can date under very specific guidelines. Maybe like only chaperoned and with specific times he can call her etc. You are in a tough spot granted, but I just think if you decide what you will and won't allow and make it kind of hard for them but don't totally forbid they might both decide it just isn't worth the trouble. Good luck mama!!!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Austin on

So is he a sophomore in high school and she just graduated or is she a senior in high school?

I do find it strange that a girl this age would be interested in a boy so young. She must be pretty immature.

Have you met her? Is there a way to have her come to your home to have dinner and spend time with the 2 of you?

Maybe she could have her surprise him and come over, especially if his room is a mess and help him clean his room. Maybe help him with his homework.. hang out with his "little friends".. She could help him do his laundry or better yet, teach him how to do his laundry..

You could make his favorite meal of chicken nuggets, mac and cheese and chocolate pudding.. You could send them on an errand to the grocery store to pick up a gallon of whole milk so he can have cereal for breakfast the next day.. she could drive him?

You get the idea.. Do not be this obvious, but if she sees him for his real age, she is going to realize he is just a kid.. Sometimes it is good for a girlfriend to see how her "boyfriend" treats his wonderful and cool mom..

I am sending you strength..

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

Is he a visiual learner? (Most males are.) Give him this visual: sit down with him and a new tube of toothpaste. Have him squeeze some (a few inches at least) out onto a plate. Now ask him to put it back. Let him know sex (or pregnancy, some STDs, and definitely virginity) is like that....once done it cannot be undone. There is no way to unring a bell!

IMHO, this is a relationship that should not be allowed to continue, and at the same time I know if you put your foot down he may do it despite you and behind your back throwing caution to the wind. I hope you find the right answer. Pray and it will come.



answers from Denver on

Take back the reins! Just say NO. You are the parent, he is the child and clearly his father has trouble thinking with his brain.

Have a sit-down with your child, the young woman, AND her parents. I'm going to guess her folks don't know exactly what's going on.

And, begin right now to teach your son about SAFE sex.



answers from Los Angeles on

I am sending u my prayers, I know that this is and is going to be a very difficult situation. That said I respect every moms opinions but I do think it is absolutely crazy that some advice says to leave it alone and that the age gap is not a big difference. Maybe it wouldn't be a big deal if he was 20 and she was 24 or even 18 and 22 but does no one remember what a bog difference in likes and dislikes and friends and just overall mentality when your in high school? Eveb from freshman to high school. Maybe its not the best decision but personally I would give then both stern warnings and if they are not heeded then I would definitly get the police involved. Overall the whole situation is absolutely innapropriate and I do like the other moms advice on putting them in situations so the girl is aware of their age differences more. Good luck to u


answers from Norfolk on

I'm kind of surprised she's not a bit ashamed to be going out with someone so much younger than her. Why isn't she going out with collage guys? Can your son even drive yet? At 15, why isn't he playing the field and dating several girls? Exclusive relationships early on is a bad idea. The dating process is suppose to help you figure out what you want in a future mate (and more importantly - what you don't want). Have you talked to her parents? If she's not collage bound, then why is she not working?
Sex? That means the possibility that he might be a parent sooner than later. You might want to have your son be around as many young babies as you can right now (especially the screaming crying colicky ones), because if they get pregnant, he's going to have to get used to it, and child support and when you are taking care of a baby or working to support one, you don't have as much free time as a 15 yr old wants for himself. When you have a child - YOUR childhood is over. There's a right time to have and raise kids. Very few people would recommend 15 as being that age.



answers from Phoenix on

He's young enough for you to put your foot down. Talk to him about it and don't allow him to date her. Tell him that he can date her when he's 16 or 17 (or whatever age.) He may be head over heals in love with her now but things might change in a few years.



answers from Dallas on

I don't have real personal experience, but my aunt's son had a similar experience in the opposite direction - being the older in a couple where the girl was 16. She was mature for her age, he was more like her age even though he was 4 years older.

You may not want to bring the police into it, but both of them need to understand that the relationship, even if it's emotionally real to both of them, is a CRIME if it becomes sexual. I don't think you should turn her in or anything, but do your best to be honest and bluntly direct with her and your son. You understand that they care, but for HER sake, as well as his, the relationship MUST stay at a friendly level or her future could be at risk. Help your son understand that if he truely cares about her/ help her understand that if she truely cares about him, they will wait for him to become of legal and be responsible. Forbidden fruit is more attractive - I don't know if pushing them apart will work against you, especially since you can't monitor your son's whereabouts all the time.

Best of luck!



answers from San Francisco on

Ok, the age difference doesn't sit well with me. Its one thing if you are in your twenties and dating someone in their thirties etc. But the girl is 19 and your son is 15! First, she is an adult. She should be dating other adults-not teenage children. I would do everything in my power to stop this relationship. Hope this helps.

Take care,




answers from Pueblo on

As a parent I would be upset but as a once 15 year old girl with a 19 year old boyfriend its not that big of a deal. We were together for 3.5-4 years. We went to school together for one year and didnt become a couple until after he was out. He joined the navy and once I turned 18 I moved to VA from Ca to be with him. I went on trips with him and his family over night out of town once I turned 17. He was a good guy and my parents liked him. He even staid with us (in different rooms) when he was on leave a couple of times. In the end it didnt work out but it was a good experience for me over all. Now would I want my 15 who lives with me moving to his dads to be closer to her? No but if I was in your shoes I wouldnt want my child moving away at 15 period. I would tell them they can "date" how they are dating now seeing each other when they can and if at 18 they still feel the same way then he can move out.


answers from Tampa on

Maybe because I'm a young Mother (comparably speaking - I'm 31)... I don't think the age difference is a problem If anything having an immature male around when this girl gets to be about 20-21 will probably make her dump him, unless being with her matures him too. A simple 4 year difference usually isn't even considered illegal in most states either.

What you seem to be more concerned about is him wanting to move away from you to your ex's home. That seems to be an issue you must come to terms with, talk it out with your son and tell him how that makes you feel. I would be majorly upset if my child - who've I've birthed and cared for alone for so many years would just up and leave for the other parent's home - especially for a young love relationship.

Sex is going to happen, and no amount of you trying to separate him from the reality will stop it. Think on this - - would you rather him have sex with a woman he cares about, with the knowledge of what can happen and knowing he can come to you for emotional support and advice... or screw whatever girl he's around when he can get the opportunity, without knowledge about sex and without you around for support?


answers from Los Angeles on

Most people are thinking that the girl should be considered a molestor..... and I'm not sure that is not the case. Going to the police could destroy her life tho, and I doubt your son is being "molested" in the true form of the word, especially to men this is not a problem. The problem you have is that he's a willing participant and the other problem is that this girl must be a little "off" otherwise she wouldnt be interested in a 15 yr old.. he can't even legally drive yet!
Is he a physically and mentally mature 15 yr old and she an immature 19 yr old? Your main concern would be to hope that she doesnt get pregnant. Gosh the more I talk about it the more I think it IS pretty messed up. Does the girl live with her parents? Maybe you could talk to them and they could get her to back off.
I'm sure your son has a major crush on her, and of course is only thinking with his twig and berries and you probably cant rationalize with him.
I've talked myself into not having any good advice at all. I dont know what I would do, maybe confront her yourself and really find out what the hell is goin on. Invite her to dinner and make sure its for communication purposes and get all the cards on the table. If they are just buds you should be able to feel that vibe maybe? Or you could just threaten her and make her stay away.... your son will get over it eventually as I'm sure he has many conquests ahead of him. It's touchy for sure. Wish I could be of more help.
My bottom line answer is that you go have lunch with her and let her and your son know that it needs to end and if she loves him she can wait till he's 18. Show him some of the mug shots of the female teachers that were caught with male students.. maybe that would hit a note for the both of them?
Basically it depends on how uncomfortable you are with it and I agree with the other posters that he needs to know about birthcontrol.



answers from Hickory on

All I can say here is tell them that if any one else finds out like at his school they can turn her in. When she gets any kind of sexual mark on her record it is there for life and she has to tell the state every move she makes. It will also limit the jobs she will get through her life because every where does background checks. If they really want to be together they should use their heads and wait till he is of age. This is not saying they can't talk and get to know each other it is just they need to stay away from alone time so things can not be done or said that could really get ugly. I think the move should not be done just because of a girl. If he really likes her maybe she could come to your home where they watch a rented movie with you home. On a side not when I was 19 my husband was 13. I did not know anything about him at that time. I meet him later in life. So having an age gap is not the problem as I see it, it is the timing here. Both parties need to be adults. Also my grandmother was 10 years older than granddad and they loved each other dearly and spent their whole lives together,



answers from San Francisco on

If you freak out on them you are going to push him closer to her. Make sure that he is aware of birth control and what the consequences could be if he isn't careful. I think the relationship will fade quickly on its own due to the age difference if you don't interfere. However, they probably have already had sex and do you remember being a teenager and what your hormones did to you? I think adults sometimes forget what it was like... those crazy hormones make for impulsive behavior/feelings/etc. He may look 12 or 13 to you but to her it could be a whole different story. Try to put yourself in her shoes and solve the problem from that perspective. I hope that makes sense, as I wouldn't be thrilled either if it were my child. I just know that being an immature teen is hard and no, 19 really isn't an adult.

Next question: Inner Cougars? :)