Our new series ‘Teen Dating’ will soon appear on the Plum Tree Psychology Instagram Feed.
Research shows that teenagers and parents value different qualities in who the teenager wants to date. Parents: never forget the lessons of Romeo and Juliet. A prohibited relationship is the peak of romantic drama. Nothing will make the heart beat faster than a “forbidden love.” Let your children learn their lessons by dating who they like. AND! Always use your best sense. Mandate that you meet your child’s partner. Be clear with both child/partner about your expectations for behavior.
Parents are way more approving of how THEY themselves dated when they were younger. But they want their kids to be discerning. Remember what it was like when you were a kid. Avoid moralizing. Set your standards, and talk to your child about maintaining their personal values when dating. Then, wave goodbye for the evening.
Parents engage in “daughter-guarding.” The impose stricter curfews and dress codes. There’s nothing “right” or “wrong” about this. It’s just biology. But, be aware. Are you the kind of parent you want to be? What messages are you giving your sons and daughters?
See below for interesting research papers.