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16 year old DOESN'T want to drive


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What are your thoughts on this. We of course want all our children to launch into life knowing the basic necessary skills - including driving.

 

My about-to-be 16 year old son feels this way, I think:

 

1. It's going to cost money for insurance and he knows he's going to foot at least part of the bill.

 

2. He's really into being "green". Doesn't want to use the car much, anyway. There's basically nowhere in town he wants to go he can't walk or ride his bike to.

 

3. (Possibly) He doesn't feel ready for the responsibility. He says this. I don't know if it's a cop out because he doesn't want to pay for insurance. He's already paying to rent a piano for his lessons (he has too many activities to get all of them paid for). He doesn't want to spend any more of his discretionary income and doesn't feel like he has enough time to pick up a paying job just to pay for something he doesn't really want anyway.

 

I honestly don't know where I stand on this. I feel like he could easily wait until he's 17 to start the process. Why rush into adding costs? On the other hand, he's 16....

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What are your thoughts on this. We of course want all our children to launch into life knowing the basic necessary skills - including driving.

 

My about-to-be 16 year old son feels this way, I think:

 

1. It's going to cost money for insurance and he knows he's going to foot at least part of the bill.

 

2. He's really into being "green". Doesn't want to use the car much, anyway. There's basically nowhere in town he wants to go he can't walk or ride his bike to.

 

3. (Possibly) He doesn't feel ready for the responsibility. He says this. I don't know if it's a cop out because he doesn't want to pay for insurance. He's already paying to rent a piano for his lessons (he has too many activities to get all of them paid for). He doesn't want to spend any more of his discretionary income and doesn't feel like he has enough time to pick up a paying job just to pay for something he doesn't really want anyway.

 

I honestly don't know where I stand on this. I feel like he could easily wait until he's 17 to start the process. Why rush into adding costs? On the other hand, he's 16....

 

My son didn't drive til his was almost 19. His choice. It's different from when I was 16 -- kids all wanted to drive right away. Some kids today simply don't feel ready and aren't worried about saying so.

 

Driving is a big deal. He should wait for this and other major life decisions until he's absolutely ready, IMO.

 

In the states, a driver's permit does not raise insurance rates at all. So our compromise was that ds got his permit and practiced driving, but got his license when desire or necessity drove him to it. (Necessity won out, btw.)

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My 17yr DD feels the same, I am happy for her to wait a few years and get a bit more maturity, but I would like her to learn by her early 20's as I feel that an adult needs to know how to drive in case of emergencies. I am sure in the next few years as she spreads her wings she will feel the need to have more independence, as I wil not be providing Mum's taxi service to someone who is capable of driving themselves.

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I don't want our 16 yr old to drive yet, different reasons, but still....There's a learning curve, but if they're older and careful...I think it's a great idea. If it were my decision, I'd have my kids wait until 18 or so. That's how I feel the law should be, actually. It's a loaded weapon, and I think with age comes some maturity.

(And yes, I was too young for driver's ed(I was one day too young, and my mom was late for registration..anywayI never asked....I got my license right after 16)

And, I really want to have lots of info about defensive driving...and I'm scared to death of my kids drinking and driving...no real reason I should be...I have responsible kids.....

Ok, So I'm paranoid...but 18 years old sounds good:-)

 

Carrie:-) Who lives right by the highschool and warns my kids of the crazy drivers who are putting on make-up, talking on the phone, eating, and starting and braking hard...all while driving down our street...No joke...every day...all school year! Lucky Us!

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Can he get a learner's permit without having to pay so much? Years ago when I started driving I didn't have to pay for insurance with only a permit. If he can, that might be a good place to start. It also wouldn't hurt to wait til he's 17 and revisit the situation. Maybe then you can tell him that he it's a skill he needs as an adult, even if he doesn't drive much.

 

BTW, because I didn't get a job (and hence the $) until I was 17, I had a permit for a looong time.

 

HTH!

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There's nothing wrong with waiting!!

 

My oldest dd got her learner's permit at 15 years 6 months, which is the age you're allowed to receive it in Virginia...and she drove maybe once a week with her dad or me when she first started driving...and then worked her way up from there.

 

She really wasn't in a hurry and she wanted to make sure that she really knew what she was doing!!

 

She just received her license about 3 weeks ago (she's 17 and 8 months). We can tell that having a learner's permit for over two years has made her a very responsible driver.

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Most of the teens in our homeschooling group are not that interested in driving. They could take it or leave it. I plan on ds15 taking a couple classes outside of the home in 18 months. If I didn't need my son to be able to drive himself to these classes, I would be pushing the issue. DS15 started drivers' ed this week and he is the first of his friends to do so. I am hearing from more and more moms that their kids are not chomping at the bit like they used to.

 

I commend your son for thinking outside the box. Like I said before, ds' driving is for our convenience.

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I got my driver's license at almost 19. I came home from my first summer at college and spent that summer learning to drive a car. (My birthday is in October. I started college at 17 almost 18.) I didn't get my license until days before I left again and my parents sent me the actual license in the mail because I was in New York and the license was for CA.

 

It didn't cause me any problems to wait. I had a state id card for all the picture id issues that happened. It really worked for me.

 

Jenne in CA

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I didn't drive until I was 18. Well, I drove, but not by myself. I could not fathom taking on the responsibility for driving solo at 16. I've always been a "what if" person and I didn't like the "what ifs" i was coming up with.

 

I must add that my dad died when I was 15. This was one of the MAJOR events that I had always imagined my dad taking the lead on. I would not be totally honest without saying that I'm sure this played a part in my hesitation. Not a big part...but a part.

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wasn't interesting in driving either. She, too, likes to use "green" options. We did finally convince her get at least her Learner's licence (like the driving permit in the US). This gives her the option to learn to drive when dh has time & it gives her a picture ID. Just before Christmas she found out about a program that will prepare her for exactly what she wants to do. One of the requirements for entry into the program is a Full Drivers Licence. As she ony got her Learner's Licence on 1 Dec 08, she has barely enough time to work through the levels (Learners, Restricted, & Full drivers licences) before entering the program. There isn't any time allowed for not passing any tests & takes into account her taking a defensive drivers course to take 6 months off her restricted time. Ds#2 is planning on getting his Learner's licence as soon as he is 15yo. This will give him more time before he needs his full licence. Many jobs here, too, require a full driver's licence.

 

JMHO,

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I wouldn't push it. If he doesn't want to drive and it won't be a hardship for him, don't make him do it.

 

I didn't drive until I was 18...almost 19 and married. There was no need for me to drive before then. Anywhere I needed to go I could walk, hitch a ride with friends/family or take the bus. When I got my license I was READY for the responsibility.

 

Dd wanted to get her permit and actually passed the test twice to get her permit. But the state of Miss. won't give her her permit unless Dh or I get a Miss. state license...we are Alaska residents and don't want to give up our residency so we won't do that.

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My ds, 17 now, took drivers ed last year when he was 16...he really had a poor teacher at school, and does NOT like to practice driving at all! I do not think it helps that he was in the van when hubby had an accident a few years ago (no one hurt but the van totaled) and knows how easily and fast something could happen. Out of the 50 required behind the wheel hours he has done maybe 13 in the past 10 months!!!!

 

His kid sister, 15 now, is champing at the bit to take drivers ed!!!

 

I might add - I did not get my license until I was 18 and needed to get myself to the local CC. I had had drivers ed at school at age 15!

 

My teen dd can champ all she wants - the plan is drivers ed at 16...no license until 17 and insurance rates go down a bit.

Edited by JFSinIL
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I wouldn't worry about it at all. 16-18 yr olds have really bad statistics when it comes to driving. They just generally don't have enough LIFE experience to be safe enough behind the wheel. Though behind-the-wheel experience is important, life experience plays a bigger part in driving.

 

I would let him wait.

 

My daughter has wanted to drive since she was 10! Thankfully, she's a very responsible driver (only has permit--she's 16). Still, I wouldn't let most 16yr olds drive. My son almost definitely won't be doing so.

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I didn't want to drive at 16 either. My dad made me take private lessons when I visited him one summer (my parents were divorced and they lived in different states)and I did get my license at 16, but I never once drove with it and I let it expire. When I needed to be able to drive - in college when I did my student teaching - I finally got my Virginia license at age 20. All through college I was able to work at the USDA in D.C. by taking the metrobus and subway system. I walked every place else.

 

I agree with those who said 16 is too young. If your son is feeling as though he is not ready, he's probably not ready. A car is a weapon of sorts - one poor judgment call and you could end up doing something that could have lifelong ramifications. He's right about it being expensive, too.

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Let him be.

Mine wanted to drive. Learned to drive. Cost me a small fortune in insurance. Plans to spend the rest of his life in cities with public transportation or walking. He thinks there is a better way for humans to get around than have personal cars which are wasteful and inefficient. He is now in Tokyo and a big fan of efficient, public transportation.

 

I work with several people who bike more than 15 miles each way to work. They have given up their cars and cycle in Colorado in all kinds of weather in an effort to be more responsible.

Edited by Karen in CO
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One of my BIL's didn't drive until he was 18 or 19. He is quite a bit younger than dh. I know he said that he just didn't feel ready to drive at the time.

 

In a way I think it is a good thing. They aren't out there on the road. On the other hand I wonder about experience and such while living at home.

 

I don't think I'd push it, but I'd at least like to see dd with at least a year of experience before leaving home for college.

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I agree with the others. Let him be. He'll drive when he's ready, and not before.

 

Ria

 

:iagree:I don't know your son, but could he truly be a bit apprehensive, but giving you all of the other reasons? Either way, I too would be thrilled. I don't want my dc to learn before they are 18.

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My logic was that driving in rural BC is a necessary lifeskill. It will never be easier for her to get it than while she's living at home and has the family car and friends' fields for her lessons. I wanted to start the clock ticking so she could have a full license when she leaves home at 18. It actually didn't cost that much to add her to our insurance and since it was my decision, I didn't make her pay for it.

 

Our compromise was that I wouldn't force her into actually driving for awhile. I really don't care if she ever drives regularly. I just want her to have that skill. That was 6 months ago and she's just decided that she now wants to learn to drive as soon as the snow goes. She's grateful that she's started the process.

 

There seems to be a lot of fear of driving among her peer group. I'm not sure what that's all about.

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What are your thoughts on this. We of course want all our children to launch into life knowing the basic necessary skills - including driving.

 

My about-to-be 16 year old son feels this way, I think:

 

1. It's going to cost money for insurance and he knows he's going to foot at least part of the bill.

 

2. He's really into being "green". Doesn't want to use the car much, anyway. There's basically nowhere in town he wants to go he can't walk or ride his bike to.

 

3. (Possibly) He doesn't feel ready for the responsibility. He says this. I don't know if it's a cop out because he doesn't want to pay for insurance. He's already paying to rent a piano for his lessons (he has too many activities to get all of them paid for). He doesn't want to spend any more of his discretionary income and doesn't feel like he has enough time to pick up a paying job just to pay for something he doesn't really want anyway.

 

I honestly don't know where I stand on this. I feel like he could easily wait until he's 17 to start the process. Why rush into adding costs? On the other hand, he's 16....

 

 

I would normally agree with the others about not pushing, but in our province it's a 3 year decision he's making. He has to drive for a full year with a Learner's Permit (and sticker) and then two full years with the "N" designation. By the time he's 19 he may be tired of all the restrictions and wish he just had a regular license.

 

I would take him to get his Learner's now and work on teaching him to drive this year. Perhaps by this time next year he'll be a little more motivated and will want the "N" designation (which gives him a little more freedom).

 

I didn't get my license until I was 19, but when I got it I had it without any restrictions. It's quite another thing entirely to go through the entire 3 year process at a late age.

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Here in Iowa, kids get their drivers license at 14 yo!! It's some sort of 'farm' thing, but I think it's terribly irresponsible on the part of both the parents and the law-makers.

 

My ds got his license at 18yo. He was fine with that,didn't even get his permit until he was 18. He's a good driver.

 

Dd just got her license this summer, when she turned 19yo. She didn't like to drive, doesn't like to drive, and...well...she doesn't drive. The only reason she agreed to get it was "in case of an emergency" when she would "have" to drive. I'm ok with this.

 

We asked youngest dd to get her permit when she turned 16yo, and she has practiced with dh some, but has stopped due to the bad weather. Actually, she no interest either.

 

I'm ok with that. Just one less thing for me to worry about, and one less thing for them to worry about.

 

As with other things in life, I believe they will learn it and step up to the plate when it becomes something they need or want.

 

Let him wait. He'll be fine. Promise.

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I definitely wouldn't push it. All of his reasons are very valid in my book.

I didn't get my car license till I was 26. I survived quite well before that :). Actually it was a good thing I didnt have it before then, I have often thought, because I was quite an emotional, flighty and unstable thing in my late teens and early twenties. I got my license when I felt ready.

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DS will turn eighteen next April and is just now going through the permit stage.

He has been driving on the property since he was twelve but he was in no rush either to get out on the road, neither are we since we know we will pay a majority of the insurance bill.

 

I personally think that most people continue to become more mature with time and that sixteen is too young to drive anyway.

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I didn't get my licence until after I moved out of home, and my parents certainly didn't drive me anywhere I couldn't get by public transport. My mother's step son is 21 and won't get his licence. Hardly surprising though, when his parents and all his mates will drive him wherever he wants to go. I think he pays his mates petrol money, but doesn't pay his parents. I'm pretty sure if they started charging, or even better, pointed him towards the bus stop, he'd change his mind and get his licence!

 

:)

Rosie

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I plan on ds15 taking a couple classes outside of the home in 18 months. If I didn't need my son to be able to drive himself to these classes, I would be pushing the issue.

 

This was the case with my oldest dd -- she's been taking classes at the community college for the last 5 semesters. I didn't mind driving her, at first, but as she begins to take more and more classes, driving her became more inconvenient (it's a 45-minute trip, one way). This is the first semester she's able to drive herself and it's helped our family tremendously!! I'm actually sticking to my homeschool schedule! :blushing:

 

Our oldest son will be old enough for his learner's permit in November, but he has no desire to drive, and he doesn't plan on attending the community college until after he graduates from homeschool (so not for another 3 1/2 years), so we plan on having him get his learner's permit next year, but keeping that until he turns 18 and actually needs to drive.

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It was small enough that I don't remember. I do recall saying that it wasn't nearly as much as I expected. As I recall I expected it to be $100 or so.

 

And yes, it's the length of time that I was concerned about. I wanted it done here in small town BC - not the big city.

 

On the other hand, I totally agree with what the others say about 16 being young. But I think the graduated nature of the process sort of solves that problem. Even if a 16 yo starts the process, they'll be 18 before they're driving off on their own (I think).

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Saying that every kid is ready to drive at 16 is like saying every kid should be reading by 6. Many may be ready, willing, and able, but many are not.

 

IMO, it's like saying that every kid is ready to read at 3. Many have an interest, can do a little, can learn a bit more, etc, but few are really ready and will be able to do it well in a short while. And even when a 3yo can read at a 5th grade level, it doesn't mean they should be reading the content at those levels.

 

I'd really rather driving wait til 18.

 

And I realize that sounds a little hypocritical, but it's just how I feel.

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I didn't get my license until I was 20, and my dw didn't get hers until she was in her late 20s. Most of my friends growing up didn't get theirs until they absolutely needed to get to work on their own (after high school); insurance was just too expensive. I have friends in their 30s and 40s who've never learned to drive; they live in big cities where owning and parking a car is a major hassle and expense.

 

In other words, I wouldn't sweat it.

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I'm 26 years old and I still don't have my license. When I was 16 my family didn't have a car. I joined the military at 18 and left for my LPN training with them. That took a year and a half. I got home and went strait to college, where I got 1 semester under my belt before being deployed. I got married shortly before I shipped off (I was already engaged at the time) and spent another 14 months away. I was kind of glad I didn't have a license while there, because I wasn't able to be put on the rotation for 24 hour driver duty. I've had my permit, but never really cared that much. I've never had much ambition to get my license really. I usually lived where there was great public transportation and it was never an issue. Now though we live in the suburbs where there is only the most basic of public transportation and everything is spread out. I would like to get my license soon, but now it is an inconvenience for me to do so because my husband will have to take off work, take me and the 2 kids down to the dmv sit around forever while I wait to take the written exam, and then repeat when I've had enough practice to take the practical. So I kind of wish I had gotten it at a point in my life when it would have been easier on everyone involved. I wouldn't push him at 16, but it would be easier for him in the long run if he at least gets it before he goes to college.(or whatever path he chooses)

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On the other side of the fence...ds is 14 and he really wants to drive with liscence and all at 16. We told him that he will not get his license until he is 17 or 18 but will get a learner's permit at 15 or 16. (Here in Indiana you can get a learner permit at age 15 unless a law changed that I do not know about)

 

I would have him get his learner's permit so he can drive with you teaching him for the next 2-3 years or until he leaves for college. He will have to get his license when he leaves home. Use this time to teach him to drive. With more experience the better off he will be. I think that would be a good compromise. Also cut the insurance cost during this time. I would gladly pay for insurance while my child is learning to drive under my direction.

 

Holly

Edited by Holly IN
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My 16yo ds is currently in the same boat. A lot of it is financial. (He has not expressed any fear / anxiety.)

 

I don't want to push it, nor am I inclined to send him (or anyone else) on errands; however, he's going to need to get a job soon, and he'll be starting college classes next year.

 

Here's the thing. Just as I don't like sending people on errands, I DO NOT want to be the one driving him to and fro from work and / or college. I have enough errands of my own, thank-you-very-much.

 

So, while I've been trying to be patient, it's about to become mandated.

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I wouldn't push, especially if he feels he's not ready. My dh wasn't in any hurry to get his license. He biked just about everywhere, which I think is great for multiple reasons. He did end up getting it at 17. I am seriously considering having my kids wait until past 16 anyway. I believe that there are a lot of 16 yos that are not ready for driving.

 

~Staci

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I'd really rather driving wait til 18.

 

And I realize that sounds a little hypocritical, but it's just how I feel.

 

I don't know why you think that sounds hypocritical. Based on what I read about brain development, I wish that we would just require kids to be 18 before they drive. We'd all be safer.

 

My son got his permit at 16 1/2 and was almost 18 before he had full driving privileges. THere is such a maturity different between 16 and 18.

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My ds just got his regular license a few weeks ago and he's almost 18. We told him it was financial concerns but that was only part of the issue. We also knew he needed to be more mature and have more experience.

 

I was pleasantly surprised that his insurance only added $35/mo to our bill. And he pays it....part of the driving deal in our house is that you have to be able to pay your insurance cost.

 

It is honestly a relief not to have to haul him to everything. This morning he drove to band--it's 14 degrees outside and I was plenty happy not to get out. Our schedule works so that he can drive to cc classes. It's just nice to be able to take those trips off of my agenda!

 

Neither of my drivers were all that anxious about driving nor did they push to get a permit or license. I don't know many hs kids here who DO get a license at 16 so it's normal not to. I think it's a skill everyone needs and I'd encourage your son to learn in the near future and practice for a LONG while before actually obtaining a license.

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my dd, age 14, told me that the other day some of her friends, ages 16 and 17, were racing each other in 2 cars down a residential street going 75 mph! and yes, the police caught them. DD said that she will never ride with anyone under the age of 18 (she has a couple of 18 year old friends that are very responsible friends that she has rode with). I told her that is fine with me that she never ride with anyone younger than 18, that I will drive her where ever she needs to go.

 

In our sparsely populated area, we have 3 to 5 teens killed each year in car accidents, one of which was my neice who was driving one night and was hit by a drunk driver (she was a senior at the local high school and one of 3 that year from that school that was killed in seperate accidents)

 

My dd is very responsible but she will still be 17 or 18 before she drives, there are just may too many drunk drivers in our area and a younger teen may not have the experience to be wary of other drivers and to be always on the lookout for other drivers that are being irresponsible.

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I want my dc to wait as long as possible before getting a driver's license, but i also want them to be very capable of driving long before that.

i can think of lots of 'whatifs' where my dc can be helpful in a bad situation by having the ability to operate a motor vehicle --with or w/o a license.

 

So my 14yos has been practicing for some time on private property, will get his learner's permit ASAP and begin driving me around as much as possible, and wait to be 'turned loose' till he's at least 18. His good friend down the street is 18 and doesn't have a learner's permit yet either, and his mom [like me] has no qualms about driving him where he needs to go.

 

So I'd vote for mandating that he at least learn, but leave it up to him as to whether he learns for the sake of getting a license/ permit or just for the knowledge.

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I mentioned this thread to my dh (who, btw, was driving tractors on the farm at age eight). He mentioned that is is much EASIER to teach a kiddoe who DOESN'T want to drive. It is harder to teach responsibility, safety, and all that, when the teen is droooling to get his hot little legal hands on the wheel.

 

I'd do the permit route and allow him to choose when to get the license. Then keep a short leash on him and the car for the first six, eight, or twelve months of driving.

 

I, for one, was delighted to give up driving my sons to band practice, sports practices (varsity practices all the time) and classes. There's only so much mommy to go around.

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In the states, a driver's permit does not raise insurance rates at all. So our compromise was that ds got his permit and practiced driving, but got his license when desire or necessity drove him to it. (Necessity won out, btw.)

 

We have two major roads near our house that people die on on a regular basis. I want my children to be excellent drivers before getting a license. A driver's permit for a couple of years sounds perfect to me.

 

I will be thrilled if my 16 year old does not want to drive.

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