Kids & Parenting

Teenage dating rules

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Teenage dating rules for parents

Teenage dating rules are an important step toward providing structure for your son or daughter as they mosey out into the relationship world. With more knowledge on your part and a better understanding on theirs, you can discuss potential problems before they occur.

Below, we'll look at statistics involving teens and ways in which you, as a parent, can help to combat these potential issues. It's important to be there for them while keeping a watchful eye on their activities. But, in the end, you will eventually have to trust them and their decision-making.

To give them the best possible knowledge base and to construct guidelines that they must meet is a great way to take some of the uncertainty out of the situation.

Why Is It So Important to Have Guidelines?

Here are some startling statistics involving teens:
  • According to a recent CDC article on dating violence, in the past year, 1 in 10 teens has reported being hit or physically hurt by a boyfriend or girlfriend at least once
  • Half of all teens in relationships also state that they know of a friend who has been verbally abused by their significant other

For more information about preventing such violence, head over to the CDC page and its Dating Matters Initiative. To help to curtail these sorts of acts, it's imperative that parents speak with their teens about proper (and healthy) relationships.

Parents can discuss peer pressure, sex, abuse, and other important issues, even before laying down guidelines for starting a new relationship. Sites such as,, and can be places your son or daughter can go to find out more.

Below, we'll talk about teenage dating rules which can help a parent to set guidelines while teaching their child how to be both safe and responsible in their actions.

Start Slow

Set a time table for the start of your child wanting to date. Try to discourage early and frequent relationships as it's been shown to lead to increased sexual activity in young people. Put your foot down and choose an age that works for you.

When you do decide that it's time for your them to enter into a relationship (and they feel they are ready), put family laws down that are -- quite literally -- set in stone. Have a set curfew, ask for a call once they get to their location, and work through accepted activities on the date.

Talk to them about peer pressure, sex, safety, and common sense. As we all know, sometimes kids don't listen. But, it's important to try and get the message through to them. Hopefully, they'll think twice about breaking the regulations set in place.

Be the Greeting Party

On certain occasions, you've seen cars pull up. Your son or daughter runs out, cell phone in hand. And you haven't met their new friend. To combat this, have guidelines in place where they must come to the door and meet you before heading out for the evening. 

Do this each time and don't stray. It makes a point that you are watching and it also provides a good opportunity to speak to the new friend. You'll get to know and understand who your child is heading out with, as well.

Don't Allow Your Son or Daughter to Date Older People

According to the Better Homes and Gardens New Teen Book, teenage girls tend to have their first sexual experience with partners who are three or more years older than them. For boys, it is usually with girls who are less than a year older. Use common sense and allow your child to date in their own age group.


BHG: Six Rules for Teen Dating.

WebMD: Teen Dating: A Mom's Guide.

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