Sunday, May 2, 2010

Bench Talk: 14 is too young to date, right?

The other day my 14 year old son comes to me and declares that he is old enough to date! We have yet to hear this declaration from our older son. Hubby and I were quite content to let hormones lay dormant and school work flourish. Hubby and I both feel 14 is too young to start dating. We both agreed to let him 'group date', that is going to the movies, or bowling with a bunch of his friends. What do you think?

(Carolin)Is 14 to young to date? Hmmmm let me think......... YES!

Think about the reason we date. Is it to add another notch to the old experience belt or is it to find a partner for marriage. So, if your son is seriously considering marrying this person then sure go on the date. But if he isn't even thinking that way why does he need to 'one on one' date at 14.

(Louise)Marriage.........OMG! I think everybody just needs to calm down. My daughter is an early teen and she has already started dating. Yes, I would rather she just go out with her girlfriends and have fun as a group. She is not dating anyone at the moment and has decided that she just wants to be free and have fun with her girlfriends. That being said the only way she was able to come to that conclusion was to date, and find that out for herself. I guess I'm of the school that lets them discover things for themselves. To a certain extent and always keep the lines of communication open. The thing is, kids don't really date anymore.......they all go out as a group or they start by facebooking or texting and then start seeing each other. The days of going to movies or dinner as just a date are long gone. I think today the proper term is 'hooking up' or maybe 'dealing'........whatever,,, don't panic kids are a lot smarter than we sometimes give them credit for. Don't you remember what is was like....Come on it wasn't that long ago!!!!!!!!!

(Cathy)It's funny because I do remember the 'dating' thing started happening in middle school. Not to me mind you, but I wudda if I cudda! (date, I mean) Are kids today smarter or is it that they are just exposed to so much more than we were. As parents, we have to help guide them and let out enough rope so that they can experience life for themselves, but boy is it ever hard sometimes. Well, the younger one has accepted the compromise of going out with a group of friends. We have given him ideas of places to go, ie: movies, bowling or with summer coming up, a seasons pass to "Canada's Wonderland". It's funny because he is constantly in touch with her via MSN, or Facebook or texting and he has started using the home phone, a lot! We do not have call waiting so, to all my friends, if you get a busy signal..... call my cell!

(Sunshine) Everyone starts dating at different ages depending on the person. They will go out with (become boy friend and girl friend) no matter what we say. They will talk and hang out with each other at school and they will arrange to go out with friends and meet up with the boy friend or girl friend if they want to without you knowing it if it is forbidden. When do we let them openly date with our approval, well I think that it is a different answer for all of us and for our children. Many things can come into play. Age, the type of person they are seeing, how long it has been since there last relationship and how serious was the last relationship and many other things. Personally I would rather get to know someone that my child is interested in and spending a lot of time with, either on the net or at school. I would prefer that they meet at my house if dating is going to be permitted. My parents didn't let us date until much later in life. I did have boyfriends without them knowing when I was in grade 8 and later in high school but the restrictions made it a situation where there was hand holding only because I could only see them at school. They let me openly date when I was around 18 years old. Lets just say that things can get a lot more serious then just hand holding when you are alone with someone on a regular basis. Everyone must decide for themselves what is right for their children and it is probably what we as parents are most comfortable with. There is no right or wrong answer, just follow your instincts and you can't really go wrong.


  1. Holy Hanna!!! 14 yr-olds dating = marriage?!?!?! That equation doesn't work for 24-yr-olds, 34-yr-olds or 44-yr-olds for that matter. Heck, I'm 47, have dated (that I recall!) and have yet to get married (that I recall!!).
    Think about what a date is to a 14-yr-old - movies (who can afford to go though?) and maybe a burger & a pop somewhere. Mom and/or Dad would have to drive, unless Ontario has some radical driver's licence law and they're 14...tomorrow it'll be something/someone totally different on the radar.
    Wow...I would have liked it if boys even knew I existed at 14...or 47!

  2. I hate it when my words are taken out of context. I did not say cathy son is getting married. I said in general if dating is meant to find a partner to (hopefully) spend you life with, and a 14 year old is not thinking that way then there is know point in dating. "Experience" just what are we looking for here. I would hope it is to figure out what you find attractive in another person, and to learn what is appropriate behavour from yourself to another person. Then that can be learned with out the drama of one on one young teenager dating. And don't kid yourself there are alot of young teenagers who are hopeing from one partner to the next. I hear about almost daily at work. My standard line at school is the one I will use here.

    Boys stay away from the girls and girls stay away from the boys. While in high school and this case JH you only job is school and grades. Don't complicate it with intimate relationships.

  3. Oh another thing, if you want your kids to gain experience then tell them to get a Job!