When your kid starts dating, you can be filled with pride and uncertainty. It takes a lot of maturity to start dating, but the growing up only continues from there. A lot of harsh lessons can be learned from this experience, and your kids can be finding themselves at risk of being taken advantage of if they’re not careful. As a parent, you don’t want to be hovering all over them, but you should be involved in their lives. These are crucial tips for when your kid starts dating.
- The Power of “No”
It’s a two-letter word that can hold the power of a political speech. If someone tries to coerce your kid into doing something that they don’t feel comfortable with doing, teach them that they don’t need to go any further than just saying “no.” They can repeat it until the other person finally backs down or until they decide to get out of the situation. It’s also important for them to know that they don’t have to stay in contact with anyone they don’t wish to continue seeing.
- What a Healthy Relationship Is
In a healthy relationship, neither partner should hold dominion. Those who are new to dating can find themselves so overwhelmed by the novelty of the situation that they can allow themselves to be mistreated. They might think that a partner invalidating their feelings and chastising them is just a standard aspect of dating. Tell them that any misgivings they have about a partner should be paid attention to. They shouldn’t waste their time with anyone who’s abusive in any manner.
- Safe Sex
One of the more uncomfortable conversations, for both parents and children, is the sex talk. However, your kid needs to have a healthy understanding of sex, whether they choose to be sexually active or abstinent. They need to know about proper contraceptive usage and how to establish consent. You should also tell them about the value of things like STD testing for good sexual health.
- Keep Yourself Calm
When you learn that your kids are dating, you might have the instinct to feel apprehensive about this development. Even if you’ve geared yourself up for this possibility, it can still be a shock to your system when the news finally comes. To help yourself stay calm, remember to listen without reacting. Take deep breaths and ask questions that don’t place any sort of pressure on your kid to delay dating. There’s going to be a lot of learning opportunities and mistakes made, but you have to trust that your initial guidance will be enough to carry them through.
No matter how old and big your kids get, you may always see them at least somewhat like the newborn baby that you once held in your arms. Reconciling this image with one where your pride and joy is dating can be difficult at first, but you need to open yourself to the reality that they’re growing up. Great dating advice can raise your child’s self-esteem and let them know that they don’t have to do anything they’re not comfortable with.