14 year old ds and sex(6 Posts)
DS is 14 - well 15 in a few weeks. He's my youngest and has always been well-behaved, bit of a homebird, good at school etc. At the start of the summer he suddenly changed and started going out all the time. He and some boys from school hang around with a group of girls from another school. I was pleased that he was getting a good social life.
When he's in the house he spends hours in his bedroom on his phone and laptop. We've had arguments about this and he promises to cut back, I make an effort to ensure this happens and then it slips.
Anyway, on one occasion I found him asleep with his phone in his hand. Removed it and looked through some of his messages and found one where he was bragging about having tried weed. Of course I challenged him and he said it was just once, somebody offered him a go but it wasn't one of the people he normally hangs out with. I've no reason to think he's repeated that.
Last week I walked past his bedroom and his laptop was making a hell of a noise. I went to switch it off and when I opened it I saw that he had been looking at a really explicit porn site. We talked about it and I said how disappointed I was. He said he was a teenage boy - what did I expect!
Anyway, the real problem arose this evening. I went to put some money in his wallet for his lunch tomorrow and found a condom. I opened his door to find out if he was awake and he was asleep plugged into all his various contraptions. I picked up his phone and read a long exchange with a girl. She is clearly self-harming. He mentioned to me before that this particular girl gets depressed which is why he needs to skype her/text her so much on an evening. The exchange I read this evening referred to her having been cutting herself. She then went on to describe how she was masturbating and other very explicit comments. DS was also very explicit about the effect she was having on him. They went on to talk about what they were going to do on Saturday - clearly planning to have sex. Neither seems to have done it before as much chat about how long it ought to last etc and ds said he would know what to do as he'd watched porn ....
What do I do?!!! Obviously i need to talk to him, but I'm not sure what line to take. My gut reaction is to ground him, confiscate his phone and his laptop. If he's out I've no way of knowing if he's gone to someone else's house when their parents are out. But I can't keep him a prisoner for ever!
Is this normal behaviour for teenagers? (it hasn't been for my other two - or maybe they were better at covering their tracks!!)
Any advice on how to proceed would be most welcome.
I think the desire to have sex & interest is entirely normal.
Do you not have filters on your WiFi / Internet server to try to keep out the porn?
You've challenged & invaded his privacy before so I guess no principles to violate there.
What about the girls' parents, are they approachable?
It's funny but sad how he think she knows what sex is supposed to be like from watching porn.
Oh longing, they do keep us on our toes, don't they?!
Personally, I don't think grounding is the way to go. For a start, I don't think it will actually work: you can't stop a teen from having sex by grounding him. You know this already.
Secondly, he hasn't actually done anything yet, so it wouldn't be a sanction/punishment, but rather some kind of attempted prevention, and that's going to be perceived as very unfair. I think you risk sparking a rebellion - something like him refusing to be grounded and going out anyway... And while many of us experience that with our teens at some point, it seems generally to be the start of a couple if years of trouble, so I'd say avoid it if you can.
Personally, I'd opt for talking
until his ears bleed . I'm not sure how effective this is with teenage boys (I know mine think I talk too much)... But I'd want to know he knows about emotional maturity, about the emotional power of sex as well as the practicalities; and how/why people get hurt by casual sex; the difference between love and lust; the law and how he risks being placed on the sex offenders register if he has even consensual sex with someone under 16; and risks and how to avoid them.
Then I'd invite her round. Tell him if he's planning a relationship with this girl, then you want to meet her and get to know her. If he refuses, it's tricky, because of course you can't force a meeting.
I also think I would tell him quite straightforwardly that you need to protect him - and her - because at 14 they're not old enough to be having sex, so you'll need to speak to her parents. I've had a conversation with my DS2's girlfriend's mum about 'ground rules' we're all happy with, including bedroom doors always staying open, and I must say it was a huge relief to be talking openly with her and sharing anxieties. They're 13, so a similar age.
This girl sounds quite vulnerable. I'd be worried about the self-harm & masturbation combo tbh. Doesn't sound like an ideal way for either of them to start healthy sex lives.
Honestly, the most you can do is make him fully aware of risks, dangers, precautions, etc. and make it specifically clear that it's not something he HAS to do! Maybe get his dad or another male figure to talk to him as he may feel more comfortable talking about it in front of a man!
We have quite a good relationship and we both feel reasonably comfortable talking about these things. I have told him that he is too young, that it's against the law, talked to him about the pitfalls and he has said he will wait. Of course I don't really believe he will say no if the opportunity arises and, short of following him wherever he goes, I have no way of knowing when they will find an opportunity.
The problem I have now is that, having told him he is too young and got him to agree that he is, if I then go on to give him guidance on buying condoms, how safe or not they are etc etc it sounds like I'm saying 'no' on the one hand and 'but if you do .....' on the other.
The comment about knowing what to do from watching porn was, he says, a joke. Which I can see now it might have been. He does have controls on his pc but some of the really explicit stuff he's seen seems to be on a social networking site (tumblr or sth like that?).
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