So that'll be a big fat NO then, ds1!! AIBU?(82 Posts)
DS1 is 16 (just) and has just asked us - in full expectation of us saying yes - whether his girlfriend can come and stay with us from 23rd to 27th December! Apparently her parents think it's a fine idea
DS1 is a mature 16, but bloody hell. He's currently only just doing full days at school again and having therapy with CAMHS for self-harming and suicidal thoughts, he's vulnerable and volatile, and the girlfriend has severe anorexia and has attempted suicide several times. He has high-functioning autism as well. It's been a tough couple of months all round.
I'm not the happiest about this relationship, tbh - especially since DS1's birthday party, where he had sex for the first time with this girlfriend, with us IN THE NEXT ROOM, by the time we realised they were shut in his bedroom together and banged on the door to tell them to get back downstairs, it had already happened. Girlfriend was also the only guest to sneak in her own alcohol and get horribly drunk (not dangerously so, and dh and I were on hand and looked after her) so she's a bit wild. We were supervising the party and tightly controlling access to alcohol, but they'd been planning their "first time" for weeks apparently and got away with it. Finding the condom wrapper on his bedroom floor was a low point (although I am glad he used one).
AIBU to be reeling that the two of them thought this would fly? And to feel helpless that he's now upset/volatile/I'm going to be worried all night about him cutting himself because we said no? He's been calmer, happier and more stable this week and I'm scared of upsetting his equilibrium, but this is an insane request, surely? He was genuinely surprised we refused outright; his first response to me saying "but you have your friend XXX over for the Boxing Day buffet!".
Sorry, it's a ramble. At the end of my rope with ds1, he seems to have undergone a personality transplant over the past couple of months.
I personally would rather they were under my watchful eye than him going somewhere else.
It would be a no for me also. I can't quite believe the cheek of her family!
Maybe her family don’t celebrate Christmas? Very odd of him to expect that to be ok, especially if you don’t like her.
Is it because of the sex that you are concerned? If so, they will be having sex regardless. It's better for them to have sex in a safe loving environment at home rather than down some dodgy alley or in a public toilet.
If it's because you're not happy with her staying over christmas because you want it to be family time then I think that's reasonable.
Why not say she can stay for 1 night rather than 4?
I would compromise and say could she come Boxing Day for a couple of days.
Do you know why the girlfriends family are happy to not have her around for Christmas? Do they not celebrate Christmas or they don't like her?
Sounds like they're at it anyway, but assuming both her family and yours celebrate Christmas, it's really a family time.
But you can't stop them having sex or even drinking really. Just make sure your son is really well informed on the consequnces and dangers of both.
I think there's maybe a compromise to be had here.
Is it the stopping over, having sex in your house or the fact it's over Christmas that's the biggest issue?
Or likely her dps fancy a break from their wild child!!
Boxing day and home at a convenient time for you.
It's not that I don't like her, it's just that I worry for him - she's very needy. He reads her a bedtime story every night on his phone, for example, and he's taking the emotional load of her friends' problems because he doesn't want her having to cope with them.
I am a bit blindsided by the intensity of the relationship - it's so sudden. I never in a million years thought ds1 would be sexually active at 16. And he really has been acutely mentally ill recently - concrete suicide plans and quite serious self-harming, out of school for two weeks, violent tantrums. As I said, it's like a complete personality transplant. Maybe I am just instinctively recoiling from this relationship because I'm not ready for it. I don't know.
It is family time, really. His grandad will be staying with us and his brother will be sleeping in his room (grandad has ds2's little room when he stays, ds1 has bunk beds in his room so they move in together when we have guests). There wouldn't even be anywhere to sleep - I think ds1 thought she would just sleep in his bed.
Am I being a stuffy old fart, then? I am glad they did it for the first time in a safe, warm home with protection etc, rather than in some skanky alley or a field. I think I just haven't quite wrapped my head around the fact that it's happened yet alongside everything else that's happened with him lately.
If you fight this relationship you might find he pushes away harder. Like other posters noted its better to be in your home. My brother had his gfriend live at my mums when they were 16. Hes got 2 children by her and a happy relationship 8years later
Curious why were you surprised that a 16yo was sexually active?
Not "a 16yo" @LaBelleSauvage, my particular 16yo. It's a departure from his usual persona, for sure. But then so is pretty much everything he's done over the past couple of months - it's been hell, tbh. I know there's nothing inherently wrong with a 16yo having mutually respectful sex with his girlfriend, but you'd have to know ds1 and us to know how big a shock it was to us.
In your position I'd say she is welcome for a night or two, for the reasons you said of it being family time. I think it's reasonable for you to not want her over the whole time, as two potentially volatile teenagers, one you hardly know,over that time might be more stress than you need. But I think you should have her over for a day or two for your son's sake - I think discouraging the relationship would be counterproductive, but at the same time you're entitled to manage how many people are in your house over Xmas!
Her family might just be delighted she has a bf and not be being cheeky about it, they don't know how much work and anxiety there might be on your side.
Well if my kids want to have sex at 16 they'll sure as hell have to have it in a field somewhere as it wont be in my house. Or at least if it is, they're going to have to sneak around a bit because I'm not facilitating it.
And in your case OP Id have her round for Boxing Day or something (and make her welcome) but I wouldn't encourage the relationship to get any more intense than it is because they both sound pretty fragile.
Leaving aside the sex issue, the mental health and codependent relationship issues, having any extra teenager for 4 days over Christmas is just a horrible proposition!
I'd tell DS that she's welcome for dinner on Christmas Eve and Boxing Day for example, or whatever you are happy with.
The sex though - they are going to do it. No need to give them your blessing and you certainly don't need to condone it but don't freak out.
If you haven’t got room then can’t you just say no for that reason?
I suspect they would spend the entire festive season squirreled away in his bedroom ...
It doesn't sound feasible until after his GF has left.
I'd be very worried about a relationship between two such fragile kids.
I don’t think a no is unreasonable on the basis that it’s already a full house. If grandad is coming to stay and that means little brother moves into older brothers bedroom then that bedroom is full surely? It’s not a case of them being able to share a bed, sharing a bed is not appropriate with the little brother in the other bed in the same room.
I would think logistics alone would mean it’s a no in this instance?
Do you know the girlfriend's parents at all? I am surprised that they are happy for their 16 year old daughter to be away for 4 days over Christmas. Just seems a bit odd to me (unless of course they don't celebrate).
Fwiw, I would say no to the plan on the grounds of no space, and the holiday being family time.
I am worried about it diddl. They're both extremely vulnerable and his emotional state is so reactive to hers, it's terrifying. But they are nuts about each other, he absolutely adores her and it does seem to be mutual. So we have to engage with the situation as it is.
Doesn't help that she lives 50 miles away. So nobody is going to drive her over here for the afternoon on Boxing Day. Her parents (according to ds1) aren't great, and her dad actually abusive.
We're thinking now about inviting her for New Year's Eve, just for one night. My dad will be gone (he has dementia, so it would be even more of a nightmare). We'll all be up late on NYE, she can get to know us a bit, stay the one night and go home in the morning. Hmmm.
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