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JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef-, Teacher
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Experience:  K-12 teacher w/ licenses from NV, FL and OH
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My daughter, who is 15, has told me that she has been thinking

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My daughter, who is 15, has told me that she has been thinking about sex - although I;m glad she is telling me this, I'm sort of freaked out - how do I talk to her about this? I want to be understanding but think she is too young -
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- replied 2 years ago.

JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- : Tllhe fact that your daughter is talking to you about her thoughts are outstanding. The fact that she is talking to you opens up the discussion on the boundaries that you have. It is ok for you to tell that you disapprove of her having sex. That being said a girl of her age needs details on the boundaries. This can be a difficult conversation to have. How far can she go with a boy and still stay within your boundaries. I don't suggest that you tell her that you think she is too young. I would give her a none age related reason, as she is at the age that she wants to be perceived as an adult. A boy that cares for who she is as a person shouldn't pressure her. I would also have the conversation with her along the lines... "I don't approve of you having sex, however I will be disappointed if you aren't safe."
JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- : Overall, stay positive about the conversation. Tell her that you are proud that you raised a daughter that came to her mother to have this conversatio. You are proud to have a daughter that is thinking about the decisions she is making. A girl a smart as you will make the right decision when the time comes. Just remember not to judge, set clear boundaries, and listen.
Customer:

The more I think about it, you are riht about the age issue and her wanting to be an adult - I think I would ask her why and why this person - she has not been "dating" anyone yet but at the same time, she has had two "boyfriends" in group settings - I know that "group settings" can turn into more intimate ones so I want to be sure she knows I trust her judgment and that she should venture into this in an adult way - I am happy she told me (through Skype text in Europe, she was too embarassed she said to talk to me) - but wow...I feel ike what I say now is CRITICAL

JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- :

Yes, showing trust in her decisions is very important. Remember she is asking you by telling you her thoughts for boundaries. It may be nice to offer her the ability to continue the non-verbal discussion to remove the embarrassment. Offer her the ability to ask any questions that she wants via skype or email and that you will respond via skype or email. This can offer you the ability to choose your words carefully.


Customer:

Oh...I like that idea! It seems like she can express herself so much better that way and I like that she is talking to me - coincidentally, this boy, who is great, lives four hours away (they've been friends for years) is coming into town when she gets back and she wants to get together with him...I would normally let them hang out alone in the neighborhood park but of course, now, I am nervous - but I don't want her to know that, if you know what I mean. How would you handle? Talk first and trust?

JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- :

I don't think it is unreasonable to share your concerns with your daughter. Tell her that you trust her decisions and she has earned that through her decisions, however you still have worries at the back of your mind. This will do two things, first it will show your daughter that you have trust in her (maybe not the boy) and it will give her just enough guilt to think about it. I don't think I would forbid the interactions.

Customer:

That was my instinct too - thank you - you've been very helpful the txt, email advice is perfect since that's how she started the conversation...this seems so obvious but when you are a parent going through it, it's not!

JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef-, Teacher
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 20
Experience: K-12 teacher w/ licenses from NV, FL and OH
JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- and other Parenting Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- replied 2 years ago.
I hope you and your daughter are having a good conversation about her decisions. Good Luck.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you so much for following up...I mentioned that perhaps we should have this conversation via text or email and she liked the idea...she asked me to initiate so when she gets back from Europe, I will begin!

'll keep you posted!


Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Can I ask you a question about by 11 year old? You were so great with my 15 year old I thought perhaps you could help...

My 11 year old daughter is a tom boy. She has been for the last 3 years, specifically. She dresses in boys clothes (won't wear girls jeans and t shirts), likes to go to barbers and gets boy's haircuts. I've always let her do her own thing because I want her to grow up confident and strong in who she is. I have no issue whether she is gay or straight and have taught her that to me, there is no difference between the two - (whenever the subject has come up) - The concern I have is twofold:

- She looks like a boy and when she goes to a public restroom, women kick her out. She will not speak up and correct people when they mistake her for a boy. How do I handle? She gets upset but then blows it off...she now would rather "hold it in" than go into a women's bathroom. If I ask her about it, she says she's fine and "doesn't have to go"

- When is the right time for me to confront her about homosexuality and asking her if she has those feelings? I never want her to feel uncomfortable, both privately or publicly - I want hr to be confident gay or straight and don't want her to have second thoughts about anything - suggestions?

Any help would be great.

 


Expert:  JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- replied 2 years ago.

This is a tough question to answer. I am glad to hear that you are supportive of who your daughter is and who she might be. I think that it is important to have a running conversation with her about sexuality. With media currently more about sexuality, I would bring up the subject in reference to others and pose it as more of a question to your daughter. For example, Anderson Cooper from CNN just came out of the closest publicly or the talk show host Ellen who is a lesbian. If you bring it up in reference to other people and for that matter, good role models you can allow her to discuss her opinions and/or feelings without having to make it personal. Questions like, "What do you think about Anderson coming out being gay?" or if you are feel confident that it wouldn't be too direct, "How do you feel about gay people?". Referencing her feelings directly must be done with your discretion as it may turn her away from opening up. I would also maybe try to tap into how her friends feel about her. Does she have a close niche of friends that she trusts, are they male or female? Does she get picked on at school for her appearance?
Her sexuality is evolving at her age gay or straight and just as with any kids you have to fight the fight when and how to bring up topics. Keep the comments about social interactions open ended. Don't ask if she thinks any boys are cute, ask if she thinks anyone at school is cute. The attempt just as in the case of your other daughter is to remove the stress from the situation as much as possible and allow her to open up.
I would continue to do what you are doing and be supportive of her decisions of dress and hair. I would start to have the expected boundaries that you have regardless of her sexuality.
In regards XXXXX XXXXX bathroom issue, if you are with her turn it into a help you situation. "I need someone to walk with me to the restroom, come with me." She needs to be told, if she hasn't already that people see her as masculine and that is why they ask her to leave the restroom. They most likely aren't being mean, they are being protective. She doesn't have to be mean or angry in her response she can just be direct. Work with her on her word choice options. "I sorry and I hope I didn't offend you, however I am a girl." or "Thank you very much for noticing me and my female beauty". I don't know if either of these work, however I am confident that you could have some fun coming up with some more creative ones with your daughter.
Keep being supportive, every kid has their battles to fight in life, however the ones that are successful are the ones with a good support network around them. You sound like you are being that support network. With that all being said, you must gauge your daughter. I would at some point in the next few years be more direct with her simply to ensure her safety. It is a different conversation for straight teens vs gay teens on boundaries.

I hope that this advice is helpful to you.
JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef-, Teacher
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 20
Experience: K-12 teacher w/ licenses from NV, FL and OH
JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- and other Parenting Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you once again - I think you really understand where I am coming from - I am a very open parent who accepts many different choices - as long as my kids are confident, smart strong and safe - and that's what's important to me - and I want to be their mom, not their friend - with unconditional love - so...this helps - I feel confident in my "gut instincts" since so many of the things you have suggested, I am currently doing - and then helping me believe in myself too! Thank you once again - Jyst an FYI - I may be back - I have an 8 year old too!
Expert:  JACUSTOMER-jkqny9ef- replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for being a supportive mother and being a guiding light to girls that are a benefit to the world we all live in. Cheesy...yes...heartfelt....yes.... I look forward to hearing about the 8 year old.

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