Parenting 101: How to Talk to Your Child About Dating

Do you think your child has grown enough to understand the concept of dating and relationships? Or did you overhear your son talking to his friend about asking a girl out? If your answer to both the questions is yes, then maybe it’s the right time for the ‘adult talk’ with them. 


While many parents prefer to avoid the dating talk with their growing kids, it’s one of the most important parts of parenting. Before your child steps into the world of relationships, make sure you educate them about the do’s and don’ts of dating life and so much more. 


Considering the fast-paced life of the young generation, it is vital to prepare your kid for each and everything, including dating. So below, we have shared some tips on how you can communicate with your kids about dating. 


Start Early With Basics 


Parents should know that most conversations about dating will naturally evolve from all the discussions that you will have with your kid over time. Try to make them aware of the basics of dating from an early age and develop your talks according to their level of understanding and maturity. 


Do not try to fill their little head with too much information. Let them understand the concept, ask them to share their views, and give them enough time to grasp the information. And make sure you make them comfortable enough to share their experiences with you. 


Teach them the Don’ts of Dating 


While it’s important that you teach them about the basics, what’s even more important is that you teach them the don’ts of dating. The concept of dating has changed drastically over the last few decades. Cases of cheating, sexual crimes, and child pornography have been rising in the states of the U.S. So, it’s imperative that your child knows his/her limits in a relationship to avoid such cases. And even if they get in a rut of issues like a sex crime, let them know that a sex crime defense lawyer can help them get out of the tricky situation.


This also includes making them understand different cases which could arise in a relationship. Both boys and girls need to understand that their relationships should be based on love, loyalty, trust, and mutual respect. Moreover, you should teach about noticing the ‘red flags’ in a relationship like jealous behavior and how to address them at an early stage to avoid future complications.


Set Guidelines for Them 


If you think your child is not mature enough to differentiate the right and wrongs in a relationship, make sure you set guidelines for them. Talk to them about different scenarios that may pose risks and put them in trouble. Moreover, let them know they are accountable for their actions and decisions as this will instill a sense of responsibility, which will eventually help them make better decisions. 


If your child is in their teen years, it’s vital that you know their friends, who they are dating and where they spend most of their time. This might sound like they are invading their privacy, but it is crucial to make sure they’re okay. That being said, many kids do not like their parents to set such boundaries, but what to do if they are just teenagers.


Support Their Dating Life Including Breakups 


Experts advise that parents should listen to their children’s dating experiences and even support them, excluding the toxic cases that might leave your child depressed. As most teen relationships are quite brief and often end in a breakup, parents should take it lightly and ensure their kids deal with the situation with utmost sincerity and maturity. 


You should be there to be empathetic and supportive. That being said, experts suggest parents should not try to indulge too much or get into the details of what happened; rather, they should just listen to their kids and ensure they’re doing okay. Rest, if your child is comfortable enough to share the details, be kind and understanding to accept their side of the story. 


The Bottom Line


Dating and relationships can be tricky, especially if your kid has just entered their teen ages. While they would argue to know possibly everything about dating and other stuff, make sure you educate them from time to time and keep a check on their life. Because sometimes, your kid might not be able to share their dark secrets, but they would need your support to get through it. So, make sure you’re there for them. 

Elements used to create Featured image Artwork provided by Created by Jill.

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