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To think that 13/14 year olds shouldn't be having 'adult' relationships?

(46 Posts)
Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 17:03:57

Not sure how best to word this but I have to admit to being shocked to see it's considered normal by some for 13/14/15 year old girls to have sexual relationships with boys?

Have attitudes really shifted so much in recent years? Some lovely and well educated Mums I know are very relaxed about this and say that most girls- this young - do it anyway so they are happy to help dispense contraception and advice etc.

It seems that young girls are under increasing pressure to get into these relationships very young to fit in and appear cool/adult etc. I was surprised that many adults I know seem to condone this and think it's increasingly inevitable.

pjmama Mon 09-Aug-10 17:08:22

Perhaps I'm old fashioned but I would be bloody horrified if my 13/14/15 year old DD were sexually active. But I'd probably be realistic enough to realise that there's little I could do about it except educate, educate, educate and hope I've brought her up with some common sense and self respect.

Better to dispense contraception and advice than not dispense contraception or advice.

Most girls don't do it this young, but if they do you want them to be doing it with contraception and after having heard your advice (which will most likely include 'I advise you not to do this, but....')

flibbertigibbert Mon 09-Aug-10 17:11:52

It is a horrible thought that 13 or 14 year olds would be having adult relationships. But I suppose there's an argument that it's better to get things out in the open and to be able to discuss contraception and make sure it's happening at home in a safe environment. Better that than the teen lying about being at a sleepover and having sex in a park after a few bottles of WKD have been handed around.

GetOrfMoiLand Mon 09-Aug-10 17:12:09

I too would be mortified if dd (14) was sexually active.

She had a boyfriend for a while, but tbh they barely saw each other and when they did they were supervised. She told me that they had spoken about sex, and she said that she didn't want to have sex underage.

I think a lot of her friends are like that - they are pretty judgy of girls who have sex underage and think it's a bit grim. DD is a bit geeky though (not a bad thing, i am a geek also) and is not in the 'in crowd', so probably doesn't have such pressure as other girls.

I think the best way to combat underage sex is to talk about relationships, sex, feelings, respect etc from a young age.

ChasingSquirrels Mon 09-Aug-10 17:13:06

not sure about attitudes shifting in recent years, I was in a sexual relationship at 14 and am now 38, so quite some years ago.

Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 17:13:13

I agree. When you say 'educate' what do you mean exactly? I think I may need help for the future . Surely they are still children, boys and girls, at this age.

When I was that age it was the odd one or two girls who had sex, now I fear, it is much greater proportion and from what I've seen recently some are feeling increasingly coerced into things due to peer pressure.

MichaelaS Mon 09-Aug-10 17:21:58

I would be horrified, but thinking back I was nearly in a sexual relationship at 14 (not actually until 16). Physically at this age many girls are adults, even though emotionally they are not yet. It shouldnt' be that suprising that they are exploring. I think what has changed since I was that age is the expectation that it's normal and the peer pressure that results.

NewbeeMummy Mon 09-Aug-10 17:22:32

I'm afraid I'm with Chasing Squirrels, I was 15 when I first had sex and I'm now 31.

If any thing I think it's naive to think that some girls wait until then, I have heard stories from my god daughter who is 12, who has a few friends who are already sexually active.

HappyMummyOfOne Mon 09-Aug-10 17:25:52

I'd be so disappointed if DS is that young, I hope he gets to at least 18.

Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 17:26:02

This is what I fear NewbeeMummy, why, even as young as 12, are girls seemingly increasingly feeling under pressure?

Agree with Michaela S that there seems to be a movement that it's entirely normal. It's this that shocked me.

pjmama Mon 09-Aug-10 17:28:24

By "educate" I meant trying to make sure they understand the emotional and physical consequences of having sex, which probably sounds alot easier that it actually is!!

maryz Cote D'Ivoire Mon 09-Aug-10 17:33:16

I happily dispense advice to dd (14) and to as many of her friends who will listen grin. I would not be at all impressed if they were active sexually at this age, but if they were I would also dispense contraception (with lots and lots of advice).

I have told dd that the only thing I won't forgive and forget is her lying to me - so if she tells me she is sexually active I will have to deal with that without going ballistic. I also feel that many pregnancies are caused by girls insisting they are not actually sexually active and therefore not using contraception. Those in relationships are often less likely to get pregnant, imo.

electra Mon 09-Aug-10 17:33:45

I'm 30 and most of my friends were sexually active from 13-15. I was 16. Although very young is not a great idea, in reality you can't do anything to stop a teenager from doing this and indeed, trying to stop them may well just make them even more determined to do it. So the most important thing becomes damage limitation.

Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 17:35:18

Maintaining a close relationship with your children all through the teenage years and making time for them however busy you are also has to help.

I would find being 'dumped' by a boy I'd had sex with at this young age incredibly difficult to deal with I think, and wouldn't have been able to deal with those emotional consequences at all. Come to think about it, this was hard enough for me when I was 16 and not having sex with my boyfriend!

I fear I see girls going out into an increasingly competitive, dog eat dog, world and fear a situation where you just get incredibly tough about everything. Relationships will became increasingly cheap and devalued. Love and affection going out of the window. How can you not be damaged by giving yourself away so easily so very young?

Why does it ALWAYS have to be about pressure in girls? girls of that age may well want to have a sexual relationship.

compo Mon 09-Aug-10 17:35:59

I'm 35 and most of my friends had sex btw the ages of 17 to 21 for their first time

I agree hairytriangle - not too get too SGB about it but a 15 year old girl might want to have sex becaus sex is enjoyable.

nottirednow Mon 09-Aug-10 17:37:20

Message withdrawn

maryz Cote D'Ivoire Mon 09-Aug-10 17:41:40

I have also pointed out to dd that if she does have sex before she is 17 (Ireland) he is liable to get prosecuted for statutory rape and end up on the sex offenders register. I hope that might put her off.

Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 17:42:05

To hairy, I am just seeing a huge shift in attitudes recently and it scares me. Ten years ago few parents would be comfortable about a 12 or 13 year old girl having sex, now things are changing. Surely girls of this age are not emotionally mature enough to make this sort of decision?

And what about the boys! Why do people go on about just the girls all the time?

And boys that age are???

PosieParker Mon 09-Aug-10 17:44:35

i think the problem is we treat our children too old from about 8 years old. A little girl at my ds's school had her hair cut shorter in Yr one to be more grown up....I had the 'grown up' haircut at around 11.

ChasingSquirrels Mon 09-Aug-10 17:48:39

I was more hurt by my husband who I had been with for 17 years leaving me, than I was by the end (his choice) of the 2 year relationship I had from 14-16, which involved sex, or by the 2 year relationship from 17-19 (I ended it) which also involved sex.

No, I probably wouldn't be overly happy about my 14yo's having sex, but knowing my own past, and those of friends, I don't think things have changed that much.

Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 17:50:19

Agree the same rules and thinking should apply to the boys.

I know of boys, well men now, who were seduced by much older women when they were very young (I know we are talking about girls here but think it's an interesting point). I know a few were very disturbed by the experience too. It's supposed to be laddish and cool to go there with the 'hot' older woman but man I know was very damaged by an early experience like this.

ChasingSquirrels Mon 09-Aug-10 17:51:56

and I had sex at 14 onwards because I was turned on by the bloke who I was with, and I found it enjoyable. Not because I was pressured into it (I think that no 2 was a virgin, and no 3 (ex-H) had only had 1 other partner).

PosieParker Mon 09-Aug-10 18:03:14

thing is how do you move onto sex so early, I can only think you weren't supervised enough before hand.

Heracles Mon 09-Aug-10 18:05:39

It's not that abnormal really. It shouldn't be about age, anyway, but about being ready.

usualsuspect Mon 09-Aug-10 18:09:07

Its nothing new ...I'm 51 and some of my school friends were sexually active at 14/15

Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 18:19:03

Encouraged to hear it's nothing new but that isn't what I'm beginning to see around me. Something seems to have changed.

When I was at school only a few of us had sex at 14, I don't think any before then. Looking at my wider group of friends this was true more broadly.

Our parents were from all class backgrounds as were we. When we did have boyfriends, usually much later, we lived in fear of our parents. They would have half killed us if they found out we were having sex. Ok, this was probably a bit Victorian but fear and maybe a sort of respect for them and their values kept us from experimenting too soon. Looking back I am grateful in a way. It stopped me from experimenting before I was emotionally ready to do so. Perhaps there was some sort of religious fear or influence I am not sure?

Now I am a parent myself and many I know with older children are perfectly ok with their still young children having sex. They see it as inevitable and no big deal really. That's the change. I've been to parties where the girl is in bed with her boyfriend and her Mum will come into her room and say hi etc. We'd have leapt up in horror have blushed and apologised.

ChasingSquirrels Mon 09-Aug-10 18:22:11

Where I lived most 11/12yo were out in the early evening. At 14y I would be getting the bus with friends to the next town to go to the cinema for the evening. And opportunities - well, my parents went out sometimes. 2nd boyfriend had a car, etc
I don't think my upbringing was overly rough - I certainly went to school with people who had a lot lot lot less interest and care from their parents than I did.

Mowgli1970 Mon 09-Aug-10 18:28:15

Cortina, if my Mum had walked in and found me in bed with my boyfriend, I would have emigrated out of embarrassment!shock

I do think if my dd was in a relationship I would talk with her about sex and the emotional side of relationships. If she couldn't be persuaded to wait, then I would help her out with contraception and allow her to sleep with her boyfriend at home, but on the understanding that I disapproved but wouldn't want her healthy or safety to be compromised.

Cortina Mon 09-Aug-10 18:29:24

Sadly parents who show are a lack of interest/care in their children are in every social class.

Vistana Mon 09-Aug-10 19:10:21

In regards to the orginal post this isn't new, some of my friends were playing spin the bottle with sexual favours as the prize ie BJs during the summer between primary school and secondary.
The same friends went on to begin having sex not long after (personally never understood and was corrected after going on a rant with our new secondary school friends that my friend wouldn never be such a sl*t etc etc before being informed I was wrong confused )

Ironically the girls had mature parents (in their late 40's / 50's when they were 10/11) who had informed their children and me and our friends as they weren't embarrased about explaining (unlike my mum, she was happy that I my friends mum could answer questions so she didn't have to).

They did what they thought was reasonable parenting not leaving them alone at home etc prob didn't expect their 11 year old to be having sex in her bedroom whilst both her and his parents were downstairs in the lounge.
I hate that I know what some children do at that age which means for my children and my little sister, lots of info on sex, relationships and contraception (my sister finds me highly embarrassing but I want her know the facts esp as my mum is still embarrassed dispite now being a mature parent) as I'd rather she knows the facts esp STD 's and be able to ask questions without always having the distractions of classmates laughing and being uncomfortable in PSE lessons.

nottirednow Tue 10-Aug-10 07:55:56

Message withdrawn

Chil1234 Tue 10-Aug-10 09:50:16

I don't think 13 and 14 year-olds are having 'relationships', adult or otherwise. They're having casual sex, which is quite a different thing. Some (I'm reliably informed) even treat it as a competitive sport - as in, who can 'cop off with' the most people at a party. This applies to boys and girls alike and is certainly a different attitude to the past.

I think that treating it as inevitable is just giving in, frankly. If we think that all we need do is educate our kids about STDs and arm them with contraception we're missing the point. What price self-respect?

AnyFucker Germany Tue 10-Aug-10 10:49:19

I would be mortified if I discovred my 14 yo DD was having casual sex

my God, she doesn't even know how to make a cup of tea properly ! shock

emy72 Tue 10-Aug-10 11:09:06

I had a really strict upbringing. Yes girls and boys had "boyfriends" in their teens, but were only allowed to see them supervised and nothing happened beyond a kiss.

I didn't even kiss a boy until I was 16 and I was not alone. Nobody had underage sex at all, but there just were not the opportunities there.

(I am from a different country).

Maybe because of my background I am dreading my children being teenagers, as I know I will be really strict and inclined to follow my own upbringing. I am worried though that this will make my kids resent me. Hopefully they will not WANT to have sex that young, but I doubt that will be the case from what I've read so far!!!!

(Weirdly, I don't remember wanting to have sex aged 13-14. I used to fantasise about boys but I would have died of embarassment and horror if anyone would have come close).

maighdlin Tue 10-Aug-10 11:39:48

my two best friends lost thier virginity at 13. i --had mine stolen-- lost at 15.

at the time we thought we were all grown up. now it terrifies us and the more i think about the more i think nun is viable career choice for my ddd

Oblomov Tue 10-Aug-10 11:45:22

One of the girls in my classs had sex just before she was 16. her bf was older. and we had all discussed the progress of her relationship. we were all intrigued and wanted to know all the details.

loveulotslikejellytots Tue 10-Aug-10 11:53:49

It is a shame that girls (and boys) are starting so young. When I was at school there were a few girls and boys that were see as 'super cool' because they had been going out for a few months, were having sex and spent lunchtimes permanently attached to each others faces.

I waited until I was 17 and that was with my now DH. I'm glad I did, but it doesn't always happen that way. My Mum made sure I knew about it all from the age of about 13, and then talked about contraception when I was about 15. And to be honest I was never interested. But then I wasn't in the 'cool' crowd.

I'm not a parent but I think that all you can do, is make sure that the teen is informed about everything, and not just the physical side i.e. STI's pregnancy etc. but the emotional side to. That said I wouldn't be happy or encouraging my 14 year old to have sex, but unfortunately at that age, they know best! They will do it where ever regardless.

ZZZenAgain Tue 10-Aug-10 11:54:06

I'd be freaked out by it. I really hope my dd isn't having sex when she is 12/13/14

not that far away now...

ZZZenAgain Tue 10-Aug-10 11:56:00

when I was 14/15 there was some stuff going on in the direction of sexual activity but it was not that common for girls of that age to have sex. I only know of one girl who was definitely having sex with boys at the age of12 since she told me about it and it was clear to everyone.

I don't know really what the boys were doing unless it involved me or friends of mine

deaddei Tue 10-Aug-10 11:59:52

Love AnyFucker's comment and totally agree with it.
DD is nearly 14 and not remotely interested in boys....some of the fgirls in her year group have"dry sex" with their boyfriends. I suppose at least it is safe sad
I would be appalled if dd was in a sexual relationship at 14/15- I was 18 before I was. Open communication is so important.

mumeeee Tue 10-Aug-10 12:01:38

I agree with the op and I also think the same about boys. These young tenagers are still children and should be encouraged and allowed to grow up slowly.

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