elephant73 asks:

My 11 y/o wants to start dating should I let her?

she alredy has a crush and a double date offer.
In Topics: Communicating with my child (The tough talks)
> 60 days ago



Feb 18, 2011
Subscribe to Expert

What the Expert Says:

Hello and thank you for writing to JustAsk!

The teen years can be a challenge for both parents and the child.  However, it is up to the parent to help show guidance and clear parameters during these times.  

These are few suggestions that come to my mind.  

First, host a parent supervised gathering for your child, her "crush" and others.  Have a fun movie night, pizza party, etc. so that your daughter can be in the company of her special friend but also under the watchful eye of her parents.  Make your home THE place that kids want to hang out.  Sometimes, this means stretching the budget a little for Friday night snacks. But, don't hover over the kids when they are there.  Simply keep visiting their area with bowls full of popcorn all while letting them know that they are being watched from "afar".

Second, if she insists on going out be sure it is a school sponsored event or a group event with other supervised parents.  

Third, let her know your rules.  Such as NO double dates until 8th grade or later.  And certainly read up on the basics of the tween and teen development years- such as why middle school students should not date high school students, etc.  See Michele Borba's books on Parenting to help you with these areas.

In additon, there are many good books that help kids this age through the difficult years.  I suggest the Middle School Confidential series by Annie Fox and the American Girl Series.  Both available online and in bookstores.

Both give excellent and sound advice.  They are relatable to tweens and also help as a springboard for discussion between child and parent.

http://www.AnnieFox.com also give parents some assistance, as well.

Good luck!

Louise Sattler, NCSP
Nationally Certified School Psychologist
Owner of Signing Families™

Did you find this answer useful?

Additional Answers (3)

Answer this question


You are about to choose ${username}'s answer as the best answer.

Cancel | Continue

*You can change the best answer in the future if you think that you received a better answer

How likely are you to recommend Education.com to your friends and colleagues?

Not at all likely
Extremely likely