how much freedom should I give my 16 year old daughter?(22 Posts)
I agree with most of the comments, though a lot of 16 year olds are very different and so both the child and the event should be dealt with on an individual basis. I totally agree that insisting your DD makes her own way home alone, rather than wait an extra hour and travel with friends is scary.
My recently turned 18 year old never bothered with pubs/clubs etc at 16 because she just couldn't get ID (though some of her friends did). They mainly went to house parties or hung around at each others houses, sometimes till past midnight but I always insisted she got walked home by some of her male friends or I encouraged her to have a girlfriend to stay over (or she stay at theirs) so that I knew she travelled home with someone. If she had to be home earlier or travel alone, I would go and fetch her, even though it meant me waiting up.
Now she is 18 she has hit the club scene big time and goes out 2 or 3 times a week..coming home at between 2 and 4am. She does travel alone in taxis but I always ask her for a time when she will be home by (I never sleep until she is in ) and tell her if there are ANY problems to ring me immediately and I will go and get her (which I did at 2am a couple of Saturdays ago).
I don't think you can have a blanket curfew- I think you should discuss each evening out on an individual basis.
My DD is just 16 too, and beginning to develop her own social life. They only go to each other's houses or occasionally into Leeds for a gig, but no interest in clubs so far (wrong sort of music!). I insist on a plan, and if that's going to change she must text and check with me. One night she slept over without telling me ('I thought you knew...') and I threatened toughness, but since she's been pretty good.
I guess you know your own child. I know my DD is at heart pretty sensible (but she has some interesting friends!) and have to trust her.
I would definitely give my DD, who's the same age as yours a curfew too.
We are London too, and I would allow that with dd, also 16.
She has broached the subject of going to Spain for a week with a few friends post gcses and I have agreed in principle.
I live near Manchester. Ds usually has to be home for 11 unless there is a reason or occasion. It is hard to let go but I agree with a pp who said that they can get into a lot of trouble whatever the time if they are of that disposition.
Whenever ds has gone into town he's come back much earlier. I know that drunken crowds make him nervous and that's fine with me. Also boys are less likely to be served alcohol anywhere so there's really no point in him being there.
At 16 my parents tried to give me a curfew so I moved out and married DP way to early to get some freedom
yeah but when we little there were no seat belts in cars, at 7 we all walked to and from school alone every day, at 8yo were chucked out the door at 8am with a packed lunch and our bikes, told not to be home until dinner time (no mobiles in those days, too), and by 12 we were babysitting the neighbour kids (babies & toddlers too).
Times Have Changed. Expectations of parents & child safety have, anyway.
11:30 sounds reasonable to me, OP. Generous, even. I live in a sleepy town in a safe rural country & can't imagine sanctioning my 16yo out after midnight.
Amber that use to happen to me (before 16) I would end up walking home alone in the dark because my curfew time was so much earlier then everyone else's. They never saw my reasoning that later but not alone was safer then walking home alone in the dark an hour earlier.
She was home by 11, and had a good evening at winter wonderland.
She is only just 16, so yes I do feel justified in giving her 11 30 - 12 00 time to be home. And I agree with you, it's the kind of people they will come in to contact especially on the tube on the way home late at night to be wary of. I wonder if its different outside London and if people are more relaxed as far as curfews go?
My Mum would give me a time to be home say 12am
I would be with a group of friends who would go home together at X o clock ie when they decided their night was over.
That meant that often I had to travel home by myself which was far more dangerous than travelling home in a group at a later time.
That was when I was 16 and had left school so yr 12 age rather than a year 11 who happens to be 16.
She's home by now if you stuck to 1130 and I hope she had a good time ... and btw I think 1130/1200 is reasonable. Especially if it's a first time and she's a just turned 16, but still reasonable for 16 unless they have a specific something to do. What are their plans that would involve being out at the small hours? If there is a specific club or gig they are planning to attend then I'd probably be more relaxed but if it were after midnight I'd want to know they'd booked a taxi or were being picked up by a parent.
I'm not London or even big city so it may be different but my DD 16 and her mates would struggle to get into some pubs and most clubs without the age specific id. While I trust them to look after each other and I am well aware that if you're going to do something silly you can do the same silly thing at 1130am as you can at 1130pm there is an increased risk at the latter time partly because of the large amounts of alcohol some young people consume on a night out and it's who they meet out in the small hours that will impact on the kind of experience they have. . If 1130 feels reasonable to you tonight then it is reasonable tonight ... Next week might be different.
Ps...I'm interested to know how far off 16 are the DC of those who've said that they plan to drop curfews etc when their DC reach that age. I have two DD's 7 y age gap so done this once before and its completely different with DD2, I am having to adjust my thinking to suit the social and cultural realities of today which are belive it or not very different from even 7 y ago.
Sorry to go off topic ... Just crossed my mind when reading the responses.
At 16 I worked went to college and lived alone
I also got pregnent just as I was turning 17 and did heaps and heaps of stupid things that make my blood run cold thinking about it.
I won't really give curfews to my dc when they're that age, I'd prefer them to be with their friends and they all go home at the same time.
thank you, I feel a bit more reassured now, she is my eldest, and I just needed some reassurance of how much freedom to give her .
At 16 I had a curfew of 11.30, unless it was something specific that went on later or I was staying at someone's house. At 17 (not entirely by choice) I was living on my own, so never had one although when I lived with my Mum again I always gave her an idea when I'd be home (or if) as that's just a polite thing to do
Just talk to her, I'm sure she'll reassure you that she will just be dancing until her feet hurt then eating mcdonalds in those extra hours. If she was an irresponsible girl, she could get into plenty of bother before 11.30. So long as she has a charged phone and sticks with friends, it'll be ok.
At 16 I was working 2 jobs and living in my own flat, I think its the time they need to start deciding for themselves what to do, I'll be stopping curfews when my lot are 16.
At 16, I was coming home well after midnight at weekends. I'd have just stayed at a mates if my parents told me to be home by 11.30.
She is sensible and responsible and has been travelling in to london since she was 12,
i was just looking for advice on how much freedom to give her, and how late I should let her stay out really.
Some of her friends are allowed to stay out until the early hours of the morning and I feel a bit uncomfortable about this, but on the other hand I dont want to feel I am smothering her.
Easier said than done but at 16 ypu need to hope you have taught them well and let them get on with it within reason.
When I was 16 my best friend and I flew from Belfast to London and stayed for 3 days. DSis went to Tenerife at that age. I was working part time, and was responsible, and was treated appropriately.
My 16 year old daughter has gone in to london tonight. I have told her she needs to be back by 11. 30. is that reasonable? she has gone with a group of people.
how much freedom is it usual to give a 16 year old?
I am aware she needs to be independent, but im not sure how much.
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