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Quill

Can we have a fierce discussion of teens and privacy?

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3 hours ago, StellaM said:

 

Totally ridiculous. If they need that level of supervision to allow their dd out, they need to provide a chaperone. Plenty of mothers are far too busy with more important things to be able to spend hours of their precious time provding constant physical supervision of teens.

 

 if there were some issue unbeknownst by Quill and her Ds, with the girl perhaps having an impulsive tendency or something like that, then it might be safest for Quill to supervise closely rather than have her Ds accused of something he didn’t start. 

If it’s an oldest child , parents might not even realize they have a non nt child, but just have had a feeling that she requires close supervision. 

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4 hours ago, Danae said:

Quill, when you say parent in th room 100% of the time do you think they really mean don’t take your eyes off of them for a second? Like, is it not okay to go into the kitchen to grab a drink or to step out to use the bathroom?  Or are they just saying they don’t want the teens alone in one room while you’re busy with a project or watching a different show somewhere else.  I think that’s where I would draw the line between “closer supervision than I would require” and “ridiculous.”

I think they really mean don’t take my eyes off them for a minute. There are some details as to why I think this but I would rather keep those details off the board; suffice it to say both parents discussed details with me multiple times, on the phone, in texts to me and in person at my house. The mom in particular re-iterated the blankets and going outside multiple different times. 

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3 minutes ago, Quill said:

I think they really mean don’t take my eyes off them for a minute. There are some details as to why I think this but I would rather keep those details off the board; suffice it to say both parents discussed details with me multiple times, on the phone, in texts to me and in person at my house. The mom in particular re-iterated the blankets and going outside multiple different times. 

Do you know what the parent's interpretation of thier relationship is? Do they think they are dating boy/girl friend? Or is the girl telling them 'just friends' but the parents see something else?  This  may explain the parents over-zellous rules.  Maybe they think you are getting a "just friends" story too?????

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6 minutes ago, Quill said:

I think they really mean don’t take my eyes off them for a minute. There are some details as to why I think this but I would rather keep those details off the board; suffice it to say both parents discussed details with me multiple times, on the phone, in texts to me and in person at my house. The mom in particular re-iterated the blankets and going outside multiple different times. 

That seems a bit insane.  A lot insane.  

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7 minutes ago, Quill said:

I think they really mean don’t take my eyes off them for a minute. There are some details as to why I think this but I would rather keep those details off the board; suffice it to say both parents discussed details with me multiple times, on the phone, in texts to me and in person at my house. The mom in particular re-iterated the blankets and going outside multiple different times. 

That’s crazy town.

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2 minutes ago, Pen said:

 

 if there were some issue unbeknownst by Quill and her Ds, with the girl perhaps having an impulsive tendency or something like that, then it might be safest for Quill to supervise closely rather than have her Ds accused of something he didn’t start. 

If it’s an oldest child , parents might not even realize they have a non nt child, but just have had a feeling that she requires close supervision. 

Of course anything is possible, but I really don’t think this is the case. The girl seems neuro typical. They give off more of the vibe of, “gotta keep boys away from her.” The dad said some other things that bothered me, things about checking her phone. His expressed opinion, IMO, was an invasion of privacy. That is specifically why I framed this post as a question of privacy, because I think that’s the important point I’m mulling over. I think kids in general have much less privacy currently than when I was growing up, or even much less than when my 22yo was growing up. Technology potentially monitors everything they do, records every google search, someone can be videoing anything they do or say at any time, parents can have apps that track their kids everywhere they go - I think it’s excessive even without fanatical parents. I think it’s nice to just be able to do something now and then without constant monitoring. 

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8 minutes ago, Quill said:

I think they really mean don’t take my eyes off them for a minute. There are some details as to why I think this but I would rather keep those details off the board; suffice it to say both parents discussed details with me multiple times, on the phone, in texts to me and in person at my house. The mom in particular re-iterated the blankets and going outside multiple different times. 

Sooo odd!! If they don't want them dating...then why let them date?  Does she  have full eyes-on supervision every day, all day?  Is she never allowed to out of eyesight if there are any boys around? Unless there are cultural issues at play here (and then again I  ask..why let her date), there is something really wrong with this situation. 

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3 minutes ago, Tap said:

Do you know what the parent's interpretation of thier relationship is? Do they think they are dating boy/girl friend? Or is the girl telling them 'just friends' but the parents see something else?  This  may explain the parents over-zellous rules.  Maybe they think you are getting a "just friends" story too?????

No, I don’t think they think just friends. They were there when he asked her to go to hoco with him (he used a poster like the girls all like nowadays). I don’t think they would be half as concerned if they thought it was friends. 

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2 minutes ago, Quill said:

Of course anything is possible, but I really don’t think this is the case. The girl seems neuro typical. They give off more of the vibe of, “gotta keep boys away from her.” The dad said some other things that bothered me, things about checking her phone. His expressed opinion, IMO, was an invasion of privacy. That is specifically why I framed this post as a question of privacy, because I think that’s the important point I’m mulling over. I think kids in general have much less privacy currently than when I was growing up, or even much less than when my 22yo was growing up. Technology potentially monitors everything they do, records every google search, someone can be videoing anything they do or say at any time, parents can have apps that track their kids everywhere they go - I think it’s excessive even without fanatical parents. I think it’s nice to just be able to do something now and then without constant monitoring. 

I agree!!! I think our kids have way more freedom due  to electronics (ie..no need for a magazine under the mattress) but wayyyyy less privacy. Everything they do online and in public is subject to scrutiny.  

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2 minutes ago, Quill said:

Of course anything is possible, but I really don’t think this is the case. The girl seems neuro typical. They give off more of the vibe of, “gotta keep boys away from her.” The dad said some other things that bothered me, things about checking her phone. His expressed opinion, IMO, was an invasion of privacy. That is specifically why I framed this post as a question of privacy, because I think that’s the important point I’m mulling over. I think kids in general have much less privacy currently than when I was growing up, or even much less than when my 22yo was growing up. Technology potentially monitors everything they do, records every google search, someone can be videoing anything they do or say at any time, parents can have apps that track their kids everywhere they go - I think it’s excessive even without fanatical parents. I think it’s nice to just be able to do something now and then without constant monitoring. 

 

When I was 14 there weren’t tracking apps etc., but we didn’t tend to have one on one dating yet either.  Nor was it so easy to do something like today’s sexting that could leave pictures or words permanently available to the world.  Two girls, two boys going together to an activity of some sort was more common.

At Ds ‘s school kids are “dating” as early as middle school, but it doesn’t tend to include one on one hanging out together outside of school. 

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2 minutes ago, Quill said:

No, I don’t think they think just friends. They were there when he asked her to go to hoco with him (he used a poster like the girls all like nowadays). I don’t think they would be half as concerned if they thought it was friends. 

Sorry, I wasn't clear.  Is is possible that she is telling them "just friends" but they actually see that there is more going on.   

No matter what I think they are sending mixed messages to her!  You are old enough to hang out with people you are romantically interested in, but we don't trust you to be alone with them for even 1 minute. 

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2 minutes ago, Tap said:

Sorry, I wasn't clear.  Is is possible that she is telling them "just friends" but they actually see that there is more going on.   

No matter what I think they are sending mixed messages to her!  You are old enough to hang out with people you are romantically interested in, but we don't trust you to be alone with them for even 1 minute. 

I’m guessing they realize it would be draconian and probably counter-productive to try to forbid the relationship. So, probably they think, well, since we can’t really eliminate the relationship, we will just monitor it so heavily they have no opportunity to do something we don’t sanction. 

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Just now, Pen said:

 

When I was 14 there weren’t tracking apps etc., but we didn’t tend to have one on one dating yet either.  Nor was it so easy to do something like today’s sexting that could leave pictures or words permanently available to the world.  Two girls, two boys going together to an activity of some sort was more common.

At Ds ‘s school kids are “dating” as early as middle school, but it doesn’t tend to include one on one hanging out together outside of school. 

When I was 13/14 I knew plenty of kids my age having sex and having serious relationships. I was in high school at 13 (started my sr year at 16-which isn't uncommon). I was a sophomore in highschool at 14. 

DS started full time college at 15 (as a high school junior). 

14/15 sounds a lot younger than it really is. 

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1 minute ago, Quill said:

I’m guessing they realize it would be draconian and probably counter-productive to try to forbid the relationship. So, probably they think, well, since we can’t really eliminate the relationship, we will just monitor it so heavily they have no opportunity to do something we don’t sanction. 

Wow. That makes sence but Wow! Those are some mixed messages!

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5 minutes ago, Pen said:

 

When I was 14 there weren’t tracking apps etc., but we didn’t tend to have one on one dating yet either.  Nor was it so easy to do something like today’s sexting that could leave pictures or words permanently available to the world.  Two girls, two boys going together to an activity of some sort was more common.

At Ds ‘s school kids are “dating” as early as middle school, but it doesn’t tend to include one on one hanging out together outside of school. 

Hmm. Well, when I was 14, there was *constant* quick-turnover “relationships” amongst the girls and boys in every setting. Sometimes more lasting relationships. We would go to the rollar rink for “hanging out” and the big deal was who was doing couples skate with whom. Also, at my school (already was the case in middle school), there was a great deal of PDA, with tons and tons of kissing by locker banks and outside of classrooms between bells. I even remember so vividly my 8th grade French class, when we were supposed to report (in French) what we did over the weekend, I remember replying that I went “to a baseball game with David,” who was a guy in my French class. The teacher was like, “Avec David!? Ooh la la!”  And the boy was crimson, lol. 

I don’t know. We never said “dating”; we always said, “going with” as in “Danielle and David are going together.” Not that we were “going” anywhere really, except a baseball game maybe. But it meant we were bf/gf. I think that lasted around three months. And then I met Dennis and started “going with” Dennis instead. 

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30 minutes ago, Quill said:

I think they really mean don’t take my eyes off them for a minute. There are some details as to why I think this but I would rather keep those details off the board; suffice it to say both parents discussed details with me multiple times, on the phone, in texts to me and in person at my house. The mom in particular re-iterated the blankets and going outside multiple different times. 

 

How well do you and your son know this girl? Is it possible that her parents are so paranoid because she has given them reason to worry in the past? Perhaps she has already been sexually active and her parents found out about it? Or maybe they caught her sexting with another boy in the past and they are worried?

Their behavior strikes me as very unusual, and that’s why I’m wondering if there is more to the story that they don’t want to share with you. 

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18 minutes ago, Tap said:

When I was 13/14 I knew plenty of kids my age having sex and having serious relationships.

 

“Serious relationship” meaning what?

 

18 minutes ago, Tap said:

I was in high school at 13 (started my sr year at 16-which isn't uncommon). I was a sophomore in highschool at 14. 

 

So was I.

But I don’t understand the point you are making.

 

18 minutes ago, Tap said:

DS started full time college at 15 (as a high school junior). 

 

And thus he was having one on one dates at his home or a girl’s home at age 15? 

I think a 15 yo college student may be different than a 14yo high school freshman. 

 

18 minutes ago, Tap said:

14/15 sounds a lot younger than it really is. 

 

I expect it differs kid to kid, place to place, and time to time.   

There’s a current kid at Ds’s high school who was born when the child’s mother was a student at the same high school.  It certainly happens. 

And there’s a credit recovery school in our county that has baby and child care available for teenage moms.  I expect the girls parents would like to avoid that sort of thing.

But Im reporting from what is current at the school my Ds is now at it isn’t standard for “dating” at age 14 as high schoolers  to mean time alone one on one at a home or activity.   Double or group dating is much more common.  

The boys together at one house and the girls together st another messaging and FaceTiming each other also seems to be a thing.  

it might be easier to have the kids, Quills son and girlfriend, going on double dates to some activity rather than one on one at either home. 

Edited by Pen
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4 minutes ago, StellaM said:

 

Even close supervision of teens doesn't mean sitting right there with them every second.

That level of supervision is just not something you can expect, as a matter of course, from other parents, regardless of child's neurotypical/atypical status.

 

 I agree.

the situation seems odd though

 

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8 minutes ago, Catwoman said:

 

How well do you and your son know this girl? Is it possible that her parents are so paranoid because she has given them reason to worry in the past? Perhaps she has already been sexually active and her parents found out about it? Or maybe they caught her sexting with another boy in the past and they are worried?

Their behavior strikes me as very unusual, and that’s why I’m wondering if there is more to the story that they don’t want to share with you. 

Anything’s possible. 

I dont know her well.

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11 minutes ago, Pen said:

 

I expect it differs kid to kid, place to place, and time to time. 

There’s a current kid at Ds’s high school who was born when the child’s mother was a student at the same high school.  It certainly happens. 

But Im reporting from what is current at the school my Ds is now at it isn’t standard for “dating” to mean time alone one on one at a home or activity.   Double or group dating is much more common.  

Sure. That may be current at your son's school. I'm not there, so I can't say.

But I have a 25yo, a 20yo and almost 13 yo. They have gone to private Christian high schools, private secular schools, public schools, public theraputic day schools, college and home high school hybrid. There were kids dating at 13-14-15 at all of them. Sex ed is started in middle-school for a reason.  I was 22 when I had my son so I was in high school in the 80's. It was common then too. I remember kids on the back of the bus having manual sex in 5-6th grade. When my sisters were in highschool in the 70s, I remember them dating at 15 back then (it was a big day when they could go on a 'car date' at 16yo).  My mom was married and pregnant at 16 (not a shotgun wedding)

Lots of kids have Zero interest at that age. But lots do!

There are multiple kids born in my family to 14/15yo girls. 

 

Edited by Tap
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Bringing it back to privacy, I see a lot of laissez-faire among my kids and their friends about privacy in general. My kids are relatively careful about what they put online. They're aware of the dangers of oversharing and lewd images and biased "jokes" and stuff like that. But they also feel like duh, of course everyone is watching all the time and of course privacy is a complete illusion and of course corporations know absolutely everything about everyone and are listening all the time. And they're not in the least creeped out by it.

I'm not sure how that transfers to parents as Big Brother. Maybe more teens are more okay with it. Corporations having our data has maybe made it seem normal that your parents know everything you've done all day? I'm not sure. My kids are also very tight lipped with me about things like crushes and reporting on other kids in their lives and the status of friendships. But at the same time, they're very chatty about other things. I think it's more that there's nothing to report. It's hard to suss all out.

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Another thought. My kids would be much more chill about someone spying on their data than about a parent physically following them around, poking about in their rooms, etc. So that's a distinction. Reading someone's texts vs. sitting there watching them intently while they make pizza and watch a movie. The texts they'd probably be mildly annoyed. The latter, they'd find disturbing and offensive. As would anyone, I would think, because that's just weird.

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7 minutes ago, Tap said:

Sure. That may be current at your son's school. I'm not there, so I can't say.

But I have a 25yo, a 20yo and almost 13 yo. They have gone to private Christian high schools, private secular schools, public schools, public theraputic day schools, college and home high school hybrid. There were kids dating at 13-14-15 at all of them. Sex ed is started in middle-school for a reason.  I was 22 when I had my son so I was in high school in the 80's. It was common then too. I remember kids on the back of the bus having manual sex in 5-6th grade. When my sisters were in highschool in the 70s, I remember them dating at 15 back then (it was a big day when they could go on a 'car date' at 16yo).  My mom was married and pregnant at 16 (not a shotgun wedding)

Lots of kids have Zero interest at that age. But lots do!

There are multiple kids born in my family to 14/15yo girls. 

 

 

You replied before I edited.

 

I am not ignorant of the fact that children can have sex and get pregnant.

 I presume Quills son’s gf’s parents also know that and are trying to avoid having their dd be one of the pregnant 14yo girls such as you are referring to.  

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4 minutes ago, Pen said:

I presume Quills son’s gf’s parents also know that and are trying to avoid having their dd be one of the pregnant 14yo girls such as you are referring to.  

 

 That would certainly seem to be the most logical reason for the parents’ behavior.

I feel very sorry for the girl if she has done nothing to warrant her parents’ extreme rules and concerns.

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2 minutes ago, StellaM said:

Re privacy, I have often wished my kids would share less with me! Once they are over 14 or so, there is stuff I just don't need to know. I think establishing norms of privacy between adult child and parents is something to start working towards from teen years on. There is stuff I don't need to know! (Works the other way too..) 

 

Not me! I want to know about everything my ds19 is willing to discuss with me! 

He can have privacy if he wants it, but I am extremely happy that he is very open with me and that he’s not embarrassed to discuss all kinds of topics with me. I want him to feel comfortable coming to me to talk about anything he chooses.

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9 minutes ago, StellaM said:

 

If they want their dd to not get pregnant, comprehensive sex education and access to contraception woud be the most sensible way to meet that goal 🙂

 

 

Sex with temporary contraception at 14 can usually (but not always!) avoid pregnancy, but may still not be all that good for all 14yo girls emotionally.  

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Pen said:

 

Sex with temporary contraception at 14 can usually (but not always!) avoid pregnancy, but may still not be all that good for all 14yo girls emotionally.  

 

I would be very upset if I found out that my 14yo child (male or female) was sexually active. I’m so glad I never had that concern with my ds. 

Contraception would be only one of my worries. I don’t care how much sex education a kid has had — I still don’t believe that 14yos are either psychologically or emotionally ready to have sex.

 

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I didn’t read the entire thread, but if I had to babysit my teen so that they could “date” someone, my poor teen would be exiting that relationship ASAP. 😄 *I’m* not dating that person! I sure as heck don’t want to have to pause what I’m doing to babysit halfway grown people. (My kids couldn’t “date” until 16, though. So that’s a little different than if they were 14...)
 

With that said, when at our house, the kids aren’t allowed in their bedrooms. Our kids’ rooms hold a bed, a desk, a chair & some furniture. Theres nowhere to sit other than the bed or the floor or the desk chair. So. Nah. 
 

But in the den with a huge table (to study at or for games), a couch, a couple of comfy chairs, tv, video games, etc? Lots of blankets and pillows too. It’s wide open and I can (and DO) peek in at any time, but I’m surely not sitting in there watching a movie with them. 🤮 lol! 

I also sporadically check my kids’ phones, but understand that that’s not useful if they were hiding anything from me (too many apps for that). So, we just talk. A lot. A lot-lot.

(Oh, annnnd I’m the questionable-morals mom with a basket of condoms sitting in the cabinet of the guest bathroom. Anyone’s welcome to them. *I* don’t tell the other kids about them, but my kids have always known that they’re there and they’re welcome to tell any/take some to friends who might be in need.) 

Edited by easypeasy
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All this angst about the parents. To me this is over thinking things.  The boys parents just wouldn’t matter to me unless I thought they were a harm to my kid. There’s lots of reasons why they may be acting this way and they have every right to act that way, whether any of us agree or not. But their stance doesn’t become mine just because their son or daughter is attracted to my kid.   And that’s how I’d phrase it to my kid.  Knowing my current crop of older kids, my refusal to accept that as a normative would nip it fairly quickly with no action on my part. 

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3 hours ago, StellaM said:

 

This conversation is getting silly. The parents' concerns, whatever they are, are best addressed within the family and with the girl herself, instead of expecting ridiculous levels of chaperoning from another parent. My comment was tongue in cheek (although I'll point out there's evidence for the effectiveness of sex ed preventing teen pregnancy and delaying first sexual experience and NONE for the technique of 'keep your daughter pure by making her boyfriend's mom chaperone her for every instant!)

I hope for Quill's sake there's a break up after the dance, and that neither teen is all that devastated by it, both move on quickly, and the son, if he dates, finds someone whose family is more compatible with mainstream expectations around parenting teens. Because these parents are outliers, well and truly.,

 

 

There was No way for me to know that you’re being tongue and cheek from what you wrote.

my understanding is that in parts of ? Scandinavia was it? Or Nederlands ? Somewhere.   Younger Teen Sex in parents’ homes is fairly normative.

In my area of US single couple dating / romantic hanging out at parental homes isn’t normative at age 14 for high school students (though public cuddling at homecoming games is) 

I don’t know what’s normative in the place where Quill is located.

I think it matters because if it’s not normative there to have a romantically involved 14yo couple hang out together at parental homes at all, that norm could be followed—and the whole supervision issue  would be eliminated.  

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41 minutes ago, StellaM said:

 

I don't think there are many places in the Western world where it is normative for parents to supervise every literal  moment their teen daughter spends with a member of the opposite sex she may be interested in. 

If she needs that level of supervision, she shouldn't be dating.  

 

She *is* dating.

She is dating Quill’s son.

Quill can’t stop her from dating.

And Quill probably can’t stop her son from wanting to date the girl. 

I suppose Quill could refuse to let the girl  come over and could refuse to give her son a ride to the girl’s house.  But that might be counterproductive. 

 

Quote

In any case,  it shouldn't be Quill's problem, given Quill provides a totally adequate and developmentally appropriate amount of supervision for young teens. 

There's no need for Quill to second guess her very sensible decision to walk the line between giving the teens some privacy, and keeping some boundaries in place.

 

 

 

Thus you would suggest Quill do what? 

Lie to the other parents?

Let her son visit at the other home if he wants, but insist that if girl visits at hers she isn’t going to supervise more than she did with her own older dc? 

Other?

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I think there’s a wide spectrum of normal.  I certainly knew kids at 13 and 14 who were sexually active.  I knew about pregnancies and abortions.  I had a kid who was pregnant in my class every year from sixth grade on.  I saw a lot of horrible relationships, mostly with boys who were significantly older.  Some of the relationships I saw friends have struck me as abusive and wrong even then.  It made me think a lot about what I wanted.  

To be fair, I lean towards the asexual side of the spectrum.  My husband is also not fully there but not far from there in terms of sex drive.  I spent a lot of time thinking about what made healthy relationships.  There was a boy I loved at 15, and he loved me, but I knew that we wouldn’t be healthy together.  We are fantastic friends.  But we want different things from life.  I wanted children.  Even at 15, I knew this was a big issue and so I resisted us dating, even though I loved and still do love that man with many fibers of my being.  He is a good person and I am joined to him by that love, even though we rarely interact.  I knew Michael met my sociological analysis of what we needed in terms of family commonalities, shared hobbies, values, and religious commitments.  We had a strong friendship, solid communication, wanted the same things from life, shared similar visions for children, liked each other.  We could be best friends at partners.  

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21 minutes ago, StellaM said:

 

If it were me, I'd be honest with the parents and the son - an adequate and appropriate level of supervision will be provided. What Quill is already doing is fine. She can reassure the parents that she isn't running some kind of house for loose teens, and that the teens will be in public spaces of the house, with other people also in the house. I would ignore entirely the silliness of 'you must have your eyes on them every minute and they cannot go outside'.

 

 

When I suggested Quill only give level of supervision she felt comfortable with—she said she doesn’t want to do that because it would mean her son would be at girl’s house rather than girl at hers in that case, and she wants them at her home as much as at the girl’s. 

 

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6 hours ago, Catwoman said:

 

I would be very upset if I found out that my 14yo child (male or female) was sexually active. I’m so glad I never had that concern with my ds. 

Contraception would be only one of my worries. I don’t care how much sex education a kid has had — I still don’t believe that 14yos are either psychologically or emotionally ready to have sex.

 

I don’t think they are, either, but I agree with Stella’s larger point. IME, the girls most likely to get pg early are the ones who have the sneak and lie to get out from under the parental constant monitoring. Actually, I have read a statistic before that teens who have a lot of education about it are more likely to delay initial experience and use contraception when they eventually do. 

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46 minutes ago, StellaM said:

 

If it were me, I'd be honest with the parents and the son - an adequate and appropriate level of supervision will be provided. What Quill is already doing is fine. She can reassure the parents that she isn't running some kind of house for loose teens, and that the teens will be in public spaces of the house, with other people also in the house. I would ignore entirely the silliness of 'you must have your eyes on them every minute and they cannot go outside'.

 

 

We haven’t been given the full facts, but I assume that Quill tried but failed to reassure the other parents successfully that her usual level of supervision would be adequate. 

 

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Oh, annnnd I’m the questionable-morals mom with a basket of condoms sitting in the cabinet of the guest bathroom. Anyone’s welcome to them. *I* don’t tell the other kids about them, but my kids have always known that they’re there and they’re welcome to tell any/take some to friends who might be in need.) 

That’s actually a good idea, although I doubt these particular parents would think so if they knew! 😆

My sister had an early pregnancy, and I knew about the activity before the pregnancy. I wonder how that may have gone differently if I knew there was a basket of no-questions-asked c@ndms she/I could have accessed. 

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17 minutes ago, Pen said:

 

We haven’t been given the full facts, but I assume that Quill tried but failed to reassure the other parents successfully that her usual level of supervision would be adequate. 

 

I did explain that this is not my first rodeo and I have two young adults who seem to have “made it” to adulthood without a catastrophe. 

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6 hours ago, StellaM said:

 

I am not temperamentally suited to complete openess 🙂 There are things I do not want to discuss! I make sure my kids know who they can discuss concerns with, but I am happy with a reasonable level of privacy both ways from about 16/17 yrs on.

I feel the same. One thing I *like* about when my two big kids have gone away for college is they have a high level of autonomy. I *like* for them to be largely in charge of their own comings and goings without me knowing much about it. I don’t follow my older kids on Snapchat because I just want them to have parts of their lives that aren’t “overseen” by me or their dad. I don’t use tracking apps to surveil where they are all the time. 

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Quill’s level of supervision is appropriate and I really disliked my teens dating. Was not fun for me one bit. I was usually the stricter parent. 

It was important to me that my kids get through high school without making me a grandma so I did monitor and supervise but at some point you have to let it go and trust. They will make their own decisions, not all good, and there is a limit to parental control. 

Yes, kids can do stuff in the movies. Yes, they can step out for a walk and do stuff. But if my kids who have been raised with our values and are generally thoughtful and cautious people are going to have sex in a neighborhood movie theater where they know half the people there- well there is no supervising that level of rebellion. If they are going to have sex while I walk out to get the mail and chat with a neighbor for a few minutes well then I am in a losing battle and they are going to find a way. Yes, reasonable supervision, but at some point you have to let go. Treating them like they are just hormones that will have sex the first little chance they get is no way to treat someone you want an ongoing relationship with.

The “how did it go?” would get all over me. I was so glad when my kids went to college and had relationships that didn’t involve me. I liked meeting their girlfriends for dinner but that was the end of my involvement. I don’t want to chat with the parents or text or call. It is not my relationship. I don’t want to date! Some of the parents of some of the girls my kids dated wore me out. I understand it is part of teen dating to know the other parents but for my adult kids meeting the other parents at the rehearsal dinner works for me. Lol.

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1 hour ago, Pen said:

 

When I suggested Quill only give level of supervision she felt comfortable with—she said she doesn’t want to do that because it would mean her son would be at girl’s house rather than girl at hers in that case, and she wants them at her home as much as at the girl’s. 

 

 

Yes, same here!

It seemed important to Quill that the kids spend time at her home and not always be at the girl’s house, and it appears that the only way to make that happen is for Quill to supervise the kids very closely.

I don’t think anyone has suggested that the girl’s parents’ requirements are reasonable, but unless Quill wants to lie to them, she can either play helicopter mom for a few hours when the girl visits, or accept the fact that the girl probably won’t be allowed in her home.

My hope is that the parents will loosen up once some time has passed and they become more comfortable with the idea of their dd dating. It’s a nuisance for Quill, but her ds seems to want to date the girl and Quill wants them to spend time in her home, so unfortunately she doesn’t have a lot of options here.

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2 hours ago, StellaM said:

 

If it were me, I'd be honest with the parents and the son - an adequate and appropriate level of supervision will be provided. What Quill is already doing is fine. She can reassure the parents that she isn't running some kind of house for loose teens, and that the teens will be in public spaces of the house, with other people also in the house. I would ignore entirely the silliness of 'you must have your eyes on them every minute and they cannot go outside'.

 

 

I think we all agree that Quill’s rules are fine, but the girl’s parents don’t feel the same way, and if Quill wants the kids to spend equal time in both homes, she will have to either comply with their wishes or she will have to lie to them and say she’s complying. Otherwise, the parents are likely to forbid their dd to visit Quill’s home.

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This all sounds remarkably like many of the Uber religious, borderline Gothardite homeschool families I knew growing up. Very strict control. Constant eyesight supervision, no trust at all. I dated one of these boys and unfortunately fell truly in love with him.  They thought my parents, who homeschooled and had many kids, were on the same page—supervised dating, chaperones at all times, early marriage(like at 16).  Nope.

In any case, it all sounds fairly familiar to me.  I would be very clear with the parents that you don’t hold to their standards and won’t have it imposed on you in your own home.  You don’t allow the couple in your son’s bedroom, you’re always there, etc, but you won’t be line of sight supervising.  I suspect that they’ll wind up breaking up, but what the parents are asking is bizarre and they don’t have the right to impose their draconian standards in your home, making you do the supervision.

Hopefully girlfriend just fades out of the picture with no broken hearts.

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22 hours ago, Quill said:

When the other parent picked kid up, they said, “well...how did it go?” Like, I don’t know...it bugged me. Like there was a desire to know exactly what was happening the whole time, which I did know, because we ate homemade pizza, watched a Harry Potter movie, and then they played a game with me present in the room. I could account for 100% of their activities, but it sort of annoyed me how the parent seemed to be expecting some sort of bad behavior. 

You know, I view this totally differently. I've had many kids over here - some for classes, some for labs, some for parties, some for individual time with kid (friends, date). This question, "How did it go?" was asked by many parents picking up their children. I think it is just something along the lines of, "How are you?" - a generic question of little real meaning. Of course, these kids here were all homeschooled, so the parents might have really wondered if their kid behaved/acted appropriately/embarrassed themselves/tried to burn the house down. The parents weren't after detailed info (because they would get that from their children), and all they wanted to really here was things like - fine, we ran a little late, the experiment was a failure, etc. 

If this is their oldest child, they probably didn't realize what that sounded like to someone who is more laid back in their parenting. I might ask the same question if I were picking up my 14 yo daughter from a sleepover at a friend's house. I would not be looking for a detailed list of everything they did. I'd probably be way more inclined to ask that if I didn't know the parent real well - again, not looking for detailed info, but as an opening if other parent wished to tell me any info that they thought I needed to hear. 

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9 minutes ago, Bambam said:

You know, I view this totally differently. I've had many kids over here - some for classes, some for labs, some for parties, some for individual time with kid (friends, date). This question, "How did it go?" was asked by many parents picking up their children. I think it is just something along the lines of, "How are you?" - a generic question of little real meaning. Of course, these kids here were all homeschooled, so the parents might have really wondered if their kid behaved/acted appropriately/embarrassed themselves/tried to burn the house down. The parents weren't after detailed info (because they would get that from their children), and all they wanted to really here was things like - fine, we ran a little late, the experiment was a failure, etc. 

If this is their oldest child, they probably didn't realize what that sounded like to someone who is more laid back in their parenting. I might ask the same question if I were picking up my 14 yo daughter from a sleepover at a friend's house. I would not be looking for a detailed list of everything they did. I'd probably be way more inclined to ask that if I didn't know the parent real well - again, not looking for detailed info, but as an opening if other parent wished to tell me any info that they thought I needed to hear. 

 

I agree.  Or even if it meant something more, all it requires is a nonchalant “fine”. Or similar.

 

(Or I suppose it could be a time to say, “not so well. you know, to be honest,  I really hate having to wear Depends just because your 14yo  daughter needs to be watched every second so that I cant even go to the toilet.”   🙃

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Quill, what is it like when your ds spends time at the girl’s house? Does he enjoy being there? Are the parents nice? Is a parent in the room with them at all times? Does he feel like they’re staring at him all the time?

I’m curious about how things work at their house.

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23 minutes ago, Catwoman said:

Quill, what is it like when your ds spends time at the girl’s house? Does he enjoy being there? Are the parents nice? Is a parent in the room with them at all times? Does he feel like they’re staring at him all the time?

I’m curious about how things work at their house.

 

Me too. I wonder if they follow their own rules. 

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21 hours ago, Quill said:

See, and I always find this position a bit odd. I mean, “letting” them date. They will be going to Homecoming dance soon. Isn’t that a date? Or would you forbid going to hoco with someone until they are (whatever age - 16, say)? I also just don’t understand how “no dating until age X” really works. He goes to school. He goes to sports events. He goes places with friends. If I was, like, let’s pretend he’s “not allowed” to date, do I think that means he’s not going to spend any time with someone he likes in the romantic manner? 

In my experience, that seems to be when kids get sneakier. And some of the sneakiest kids end up with bad outcomes. 

FWIW, in my FOO, that's exactly what it meant. Going with a group of girls, fine. Going with a date, not fine. And, honestly, I just plain didn't go to dances once we got to the age where everyone had paired off, because it is super uncomfortable to be a third wheel. Or parties. Including the skating parties held by the Mennonite School, because let me tell you, being a single girl there made you just as much as third wheel as at the homecoming dance (and there were just as many dark corners and friends willing to provide cover for said couples).  Or much of anything social, especially once we got to about junior year and almost all of my friends were dating.  I had probably more restrictions than almost anyone else in my high school. And honestly, more than many of my Mennonite friends who went to the Mennonite high school. I was also, on the unofficial "senior superlatives" list that DIDN'T make it in the yearbook, voted "Most Likely to Discover TeA in college".  I never dated when I was living at home,  because there were so many rules and restrictions. But when I went to college, not only were all restrictions basically off all at once, I had NO experience in navigating the dating world at all. Nor did I have a supportive peer group initially who I had been friends with for years locally who could help me, because I hadn't yet made those connections with other students, and even if I had, no one wants to admit that they're still at the stage a lot of people are at in middle school when you're a college freshman. It makes it really easy to get emotionally connected to the wrong person when you are away from home, a little homesick, a little lonely, and extremely hormonal.

In a lot of ways, I think "Dating" at 14 makes a little more sense than waiting until 16, because at 14, a parent is driving the kids to the movie theater, etc, and it is more likely to be an entire group of kids that may contain a "couple" or two-which are likely to be a rather constantly in flux mass as connections are made and broken. At 16, it is far easier to connect to one person and to make plans that don't involve parents, since even if your teen doesn't have access to a car/drive, they can still have friends who do, and privacy is easier to obtain. And even dating at 16, assuming no early high school graduation, makes a heck of a lot more sense than a teen waiting to have those early experiences when they are away from home.

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8 minutes ago, dmmetler said:

FWIW, in my FOO, that's exactly what it meant. Going with a group of girls, fine. Going with a date, not fine. And, honestly, I just plain didn't go to dances once we got to the age where everyone had paired off, because it is super uncomfortable to be a third wheel. Or parties. Including the skating parties held by the Mennonite School, because let me tell you, being a single girl there made you just as much as third wheel as at the homecoming dance (and there were just as many dark corners and friends willing to provide cover for said couples).  Or much of anything social, especially once we got to about junior year and almost all of my friends were dating.  I had probably more restrictions than almost anyone else in my high school. And honestly, more than many of my Mennonite friends who went to the Mennonite high school. I was also, on the unofficial "senior superlatives" list that DIDN'T make it in the yearbook, voted "Most Likely to Discover TeA in college".  I never dated when I was living at home,  because there were so many rules and restrictions. But when I went to college, not only were all restrictions basically off all at once, I had NO experience in navigating the dating world at all. Nor did I have a supportive peer group initially who I had been friends with for years locally who could help me, because I hadn't yet made those connections with other students, and even if I had, no one wants to admit that they're still at the stage a lot of people are at in middle school when you're a college freshman. It makes it really easy to get emotionally connected to the wrong person when you are away from home, a little homesick, a little lonely, and extremely hormonal.

In a lot of ways, I think "Dating" at 14 makes a little more sense than waiting until 16, because at 14, a parent is driving the kids to the movie theater, etc, and it is more likely to be an entire group of kids that may contain a "couple" or two-which are likely to be a rather constantly in flux mass as connections are made and broken. At 16, it is far easier to connect to one person and to make plans that don't involve parents, since even if your teen doesn't have access to a car/drive, they can still have friends who do, and privacy is easier to obtain. And even dating at 16, assuming no early high school graduation, makes a heck of a lot more sense than a teen waiting to have those early experiences when they are away from home.

 

This is an interesting perspective.

I think, reading about different experiences, things depend significantly on what is going on around you.

As a Latter-day Saint kid growing up in areas where that group was less than 1% of the population religious restrictions--including discouragement of dating before 16 but, more significantly in a country where alcohol was legal for teens, religious restrictions on alcohol--meant I mostly just couldn't participate in 90% of what my peers were doing. It is difficult to navigate situations where values and expectations clash with the larger culture.

I attended an LDS university, which was an entirely different situation. I could participate fully in all the social activities, including dating, and group dates were super common even at that stage. Nobody assumed that dating would lead to sex, not that it never happened at all of course but it wasn't the norm.

My kids are growing up in an area with a significant LDS population so their peer group, while of course not exclusively people who share their faith, is made up of people who understand LDS values and expectations. If you don't date until 16 everybody understands; most of the kids going to school dances at 14 are going with groups of friends.

My 16 year old is not yet interested in dating, so far she would rather hang out at the dojo for some quality bonding time with her nunchucks. I wasn't much of a romantic myself as a teenager; I had an occasional crush but even when there was someone I liked they never occupied more than maybe 5% of my thoughts. I didn't get close enough to really fall in love until I was in my twenties, but I don't see that I somehow missed out by not having a huge part of my mental energy swallowed up in teen relationships as I see with some kids.

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1 hour ago, Bambam said:

You know, I view this totally differently. I've had many kids over here - some for classes, some for labs, some for parties, some for individual time with kid (friends, date). This question, "How did it go?" was asked by many parents picking up their children. I think it is just something along the lines of, "How are you?" - a generic question of little real meaning. Of course, these kids here were all homeschooled, so the parents might have really wondered if their kid behaved/acted appropriately/embarrassed themselves/tried to burn the house down. The parents weren't after detailed info (because they would get that from their children), and all they wanted to really here was things like - fine, we ran a little late, the experiment was a failure, etc. 

If this is their oldest child, they probably didn't realize what that sounded like to someone who is more laid back in their parenting. I might ask the same question if I were picking up my 14 yo daughter from a sleepover at a friend's house. I would not be looking for a detailed list of everything they did. I'd probably be way more inclined to ask that if I didn't know the parent real well - again, not looking for detailed info, but as an opening if other parent wished to tell me any info that they thought I needed to hear. 

Yeah, but you kinda had to be there. It wasn’t the words, it was the non-verbal cues and the anxiousness vibe. 

I’m sure I have asked before, “How did it go?” When picking a kid up from somewhere, but I wasn’t expecting negative feedback and I don’t think my demeanor gave off an anxious vibe. 

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