Teen guide to dating dating social coustoms
Roffman says excellent conversation-starters include: Use your child’s responses to talk about the values — such as honesty, respect or trust — that you expect him or her to uphold in any and all sexual experiences, including first kisses, says Roffman, who wrote “Talk to Me First” and “Sex and Sensibility.” “Those very early experiences can shape their behavior and relationships for years to come,” she says.
Roffman and Joseph both suggest talking to children ahead of time about: Just knowing rules are in place makes it easier for kids to steer clear of peer pressure, says Margo Speciale, an Annapolis mom with three teen daughters, ages 19, 18 and 15. Most teen relationships start offline, but they often develop via social media and texting — where the lines between appropriate and inappropriate can blur, Joseph says. Set clear guidelines about what’s OK to share and know your child’s usernames and passwords, Joseph and Roffman say.
Young teens have especially fragile egos, so negative peer feedback on social media can be especially damaging.
Kids today don’t plunge into dating without first going through the “talking to each other” phase.
Today’s tech-savvy teens look elsewhere for information and advice when moms or dads signal they are uncomfortable or unprepared to field questions, experts say.
And without guidance from a trusted adult, new realities — from racy text messages to online pornography — end up shaping the attitudes and expectations kids bring to their early dating experiences.
“We don’t have the vocabulary and we don’t have the experiences to be able to help.