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Feeling uncomfortable with DD's behaviour with new boyfriend

(8 Posts)
PingPongBat Sat 18-Mar-17 21:08:18

DD (15) had her boyfriend over today, they spent most of the day upstairs in the spare room. We've allowed this a couple of times now and I'm feeling uncomfortable with it, but I'm not sure what to do.

She puts the spare double duvet & pillows out on the sofa bed 'to make it more comfortable'. There's a TV in there & they watch Netflix, & I go in every now & again on the pretext of 'do you want something to eat?' etc.

The boyfriend is very shy, apparently, and basically hides from me & DH when he arrives, & leaves without saying goodbye or a thank you for having me etc. I know some will think I'm old fashioned about this but my expectation is that if someone is in my house they at least say hello and goodbye when they arrive and leave.

Today she has two large love bites on her neck. I hate love bites - personally I think they are tacky & I was saddened to see them. I said I thought they were not nice at all (tho' actually I was thinking wtf that's horrible).

This is her first relationship which has progressed past the hand holding / hugging stage, & although she seems very sensible, knows about contraception / STDs, we've talked a bit about sex within loving relationships etc, I also think she's a bit naive despite making out that she's very knowledgeable. My fear is that she will get out of her depth and regret it.

I'm not really sure what my question is, I just wanted to express my unease, & perhaps get some ideas about other people's experiences with their teen DDs. It's SO hard! My upbringing & experiences with boys were so different (i.e. very limited!) it's difficult to see past that sometimes. And this is the sort of thing I would have loved to talk to my mum about, but she died 2 years ago. Shit.

mummytobemaybe Sat 18-Mar-17 22:08:35

I am now 21 and current boyfriend is 23 and I had my first boyfriend at 15 like your daughter, I lost my virginity to this boy and while we are no longer together I am so happy it was done in a relationship in a house where we both felt safe. I think it's good that you have allowed her some privacy and safety for a situation like this. Her boyfriend may just be very shy and worried you won't like him. For the love bites I would say try and ignore it (I don't like them either) but they are not the worst thing in the world (she could be pregnant instead!). Try your hardest to give freedom while still making sure she knows the boundaries and make sure she knows she can break off the relationship on her own terms and shouldn't be pressured into anything.
I wish you the best and I am glad other people's parents aren't so controlling as friends of mine (some of those friends ended up being abused in places away from home and ended up pregnant young) smile

Florida41 Sun 19-Mar-17 00:08:10

Hi , my dd also 15 has a just turned 18 year old bf who is also very shy . They also spend a lot of time in her room watching TV . He seems a nice enough lad still in second year of 6th form
He dose not eat with us very often as shy (even thought I offer every time) and said he will eat at home .
But he always says hi if I see him when he comes in and always puts his head around living room door when he goes and says "bye and thanks for having me" but never much other in the way of conversation.
As I have alway told my kids "hello,goodbye,please and thank you " are very important and mean a lot.
A couple of times she has asked to say the night around his or his friends .
Of course I have said no as I don't think it is appropriate and have explained that she is 15 and he is 18 .
She has excepted it and I have always picked her up however late it is .

It's very hard being a parent and I try to look back at when I was that age , at 15 I had a 17 year old bf and lost my virginity at 15/16 ,and was staying at his house many a night (can't believe now that my parents let me as they where quiet strict and we did not talk about relationships and sex) and we were together until I was 21 so no regrets .
I also feel slightly uneasy , I think because she is only 15 (16 this year) and he is 18 ,
2 1/2 years between them , but I try to look at it as if she was 17 ,he would be 19 1/2 , that seems fine .
Like I said it's very difficult getting the balance right , but she is a fairly sensible girl and only sees him 3 times a week and is studying for gcse the other nights and he also helps her study as well when he is here.

swingofthings Sun 19-Mar-17 08:28:13

He will be especially shy because he knows that every inch of him is being scrutinised, even if you are making him welcome. I expect your DD has said something jokingly about it and that will only make him feel more self-conscious if he is not a naturally confident kid. Still, nothing wrong in encouraging him to communicate a little bit, even if he will act like he can't wait for the conversation is over and want to run to the spare room. Hopefully, he will gradually feel more accepted and realise that you are not going to threaten him with torture each time he opens his mouth.

Your DD likes him, so there must be something nice about him, it is just that he is reserving this to her, not you!

As for the worry about taking things forward, nothing much you can do about it. I was quite taken aback when DD said that she had a boyfriend at 15 and worried it would distract her, but in her case, she was not interested in taking things further at all and she broke up with him after 6 months and hasn't had a boyfriend since 2 years later.

Her friend showed no interest in boys at all at 15, but a year later, met a guy and was all in love after a few weeks and sexually active very quickly. They are now talking about moving in together (she'll be 18 in a couple of months).

All you can do is keep an eye on her so that she is in control of her feelings and the relationship and everything she does, she does so because it is what she wants and is prepared for, whilst not being distracted with everything else in her life.

Teenageromance Sun 19-Mar-17 09:10:46

It's the trend on these boards at the moment to say let teenagers get on with it but if you do a search the opposite view has been held just as vehemently at times.
My dd (15)is in her first relationship with a 17 year old and they are very committed to each other. We let them sit together in the living room but not in her bedroom. Dd is very mature and sensible and has said to me she does not want a full physical relationship until she is older. I respect that. I think we need to be aware that not all teenagers are ready or want this when they have so much else to think about at this age and support that by adding in boundaries.

PingPongBat Sun 19-Mar-17 11:39:12

Thank you for your thoughtful replies.

Mummytobemaybe – freedom with boundaries – yep that’s exactly the message I’m trying, in my slightly ham-fisted way, try to get across to DD! smile I talked to her last night about boundaries & making sure she knows she can break things off / tell him to stop when something happens that she’s uncomfortable with. I think she regrets the love bites, and is covering the marks up this morning. She said last night - 'I'm just learning, Mum'. And I'm so glad she's learning under our roof, not somewhere unsafe.

Swingofthings I’m sure you’re right about DD saying something to him about us checking him out! He’s only 14 so I think even just saying hello & goodbye is probably a challenge for him grin, but I’ve asked DD to tell him that we would like him to do this whenever he comes over - just out of courtesy, if nothing else. They didn’t eat with us yesterday & made pizzas for themselves, I think next time I’ll offer a takeaway for everyone as it’s a bit more relaxed than a family dinner.

Teenageromance yes there are such contrasting and sometimes extreme views about how we should guide and/or control our teenagers and their relationships. Respect and boundaries are key and I just hope I’m getting this across to both my teens.

LoveBeingAMum555 Tue 21-Mar-17 22:38:26

So tricky isn't it? I was brought up to think sex was a dirty word, couldn't talk to Mum about periods let alone relationships with boys and was made to feel that even holding hands was wrong. I rebelled badly and vowed never to be like that with my own.

My advice is to trust your instincts, make sure she knows she can tell you anything - and don't flinch at what might come out, be respectful of this lad and how she feels about him. Oh and be clear on your rules about what goes on under your roof now so there is no misunderstanding.

It's a strange time as parents. In our heads they are still our children and its difficult to think of them in a relationship, especially at 15.

And love bites, yes, yuck. One appeared on DS2s neck the day before we went to lunch at my parents. DS2 had to wear an enormous hoody all day even though my parents house is like a furnace and everyone kept asking him was he not too warm?

PingPongBat Wed 22-Mar-17 08:33:41

LoveBeingAMum that's exactly it, your 2nd para describes how I'm trying to do this. We are 100% clear on what does and doesn't go on in our house! He's coming out with us to a rugby match soon so perhaps he'll say a few words to me & DH! Should be a good day as we all love rugby so hopefully he'll see that we're actually not that scary. But too right it's tricky.

I was sent away to school so any sex ed was done by up-tight middle aged women in tweed, twin sets & pearls... I fact I can't actually remember any sex ed lessons, let alone any conversations with my parents. At least our teens get some sort of sex ed at school and are quite well informed about sex, drugs and relationships, much more than I ever was, that's for sure!

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