Thursday, February 17, 2005

Oh, the anticipation

I am sure you are tired of hearing about my DH, but I have to brag again. My almost 17 year old niece, who I am very close to, is DATING. I am glad kids don't come out of the womb as teenagers. They come out as little, defenseless babies that are completely reliant for a reason. So that you have to invest your whole being into taking care of them and then you become VESTED. Then, when they become teenagers you have all this vested interest and you HAVE to deal with them instead of throw them back like a fish that's too small (I'm kidding, of course...sort of. :) Anyway, I'm just her aunt and I'm getting gray hairs watching this.

Because her dad is absent and has been since she was about 5 or 6 years old, my husband is the only male influence. He decided that before she gets too serious with this boy (it's just a puppy love mutual crush right now) he is going to take her on a "date" to show her how she should be treated. And he is going to tell her if any boy treats her any less, dump his ass. AND he is going to warn her about teenage boys. I think it's sweet he is willing to do this. And the kid is pretty open to it, so that's good.

Actually, she's a good kid. She is very moral, sensitive to others, and generally responsible. She IS a teenager, so she isn't perfect, but she has a good head on her shoulders. The thing that scares me the most, though, is she's CUTE, too. I've decided if I have a girl she is going to wear her hair in a bun, turtle necks, and baggy pants until she is 30. That ought to do it.

Question: At what age is it appropriate for kids to start dating?


cesca said...

What a nice thing for your husband to do!

I never "dated" but I had my first boyfriend at 17. As it seemed to work out well for me at that age, I'd go with 17!

laura said...

I would say 16 or 17 too... and I think your husband is just ducky.

Elle said...

Oh boy. I feel sorry for the kid that has to follow the minister's practice date with his niece. The standard set won't be too demanding will they? Give the kid a sporting chance!!

I hate to tell you, but at 17 I was doing a little more than dating. ;) I was a little fast. I would go to the drug store monthly to buy my carton of Marlboro's to smoke at the keg parties and my birth control pills. And I had a step-father and a bio-father. Go figure.

Don't tell my boys. The official story is I was a virgin on my wedding night.

I hope this doesn't tarnish you're pristine image of me.

Carol (Smiles and Laughter) said...

LOL Elle. I figure if we set the standards high maybe she'll have a fighting chance! Because I'm sure her standards for herself will be lower than OUR standards for her. And my minister husband is actually more LIBERAL than I am, so he's a good one to do it.

I know she's not doing THAT yet (unless she is a REALLY good actress). She had her first kiss the other night and told her mom about it and how it was awkward. lol. It was cute. Ahh, to be 17 and innocent.

Bryan reminds me that I MARRIED the guy I started dating at 17. Yea, I started a bit early too. No girl should have a boyfriend at 12. That's too early.

Adrienne said...

What a good idea!

I don't think kids should date at all. I think it's a stupid idea and they should go back to arranged marriages. I don't think that way either just because my daughter is approaching THAT age.

Karen said...

Carol - disagree about the "no girl should have a BF at 12."

I used to be pretty awkward around guys... I have girlfriends who still are, and approaching the end of their 20s. No contact with boys when they were growing up. It takes practice! A 12 or 13 year-old girl should be allowed to date:

1) boys her own age (give or take a year), and
2) go to innocuous places (coffee shops, the movies, *maybe* dinner.)

She should also:
a) know that kissing and hugging is okay - anything else might be a bit much;
2) know that she is HOT STUFF and will date lots of guys in her teenage-hood. Dating is just to have fun and doesn't have to be serious.

It is awesome that your husband is taking her out on a date to show her how she should be treated. Sure, don't set the bar too high, but also, let her know what is NOT okay. (A few years ago, I took one of my girlfriends out on a "date" - flowers, dinner, the works. She wasn't getting treated right by the men she was keeping company with and I wanted her to see how good a date should be. Well, I think it was too late for her to learn anything - she didn't change her behaviour and things didn't improve.)

(Oh, and let your niece know - the kind of "naughty fun" she can have in her teens is NOTHING compared to the damage she can do when she's through school, on her own, and making her own money. ;)