At What Point Does Age Matter?

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Now I know this isn’t an advice column and I don’t want those reading this to feel like Dear Abby. However, everyone has an opinion about everything, whether the opinion is positive, negative, or neutral. You either feel strongly for an issue or against it or you feel it isn’t your place to say. I’m guessing every single one of you has some idea of how you would feel if you put yourself in someone else’s shoes.

As Tony Soprano says, “Enough with the preambles. Get on wit-it.” I love watching that guy. He makes me laugh. So…

My daughter is a freshman in high school. She’s fourteen years old. My son is eighteen and he’s a freshman in college. While he was in high school he was on the basketball team and all the guys hung out at our house for three years.

I’d always predicted one of these days one of his friends was going to like my son’s “little sister”. Well, that day has come. I think. The reason I’m not totally sure is because kids these days don’t communicate through the “normal” channel of talking to one another. This young man, who is currently a senior at her school, told her he likes her in a text. She told me she’s had a crush on him for while.

Now my daughter wants me to decide whether it’s okay for her to like him back. AACK!

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I talked to my son about this situation and though he thinks his friend is really a good guy, “morally” my son feels this dude is too old for our daughter.

My thoughts are: a senior’s expectations will be different than a freshman’s. Here I’m talking about S-E-X. My daughter isn’t interested in sex, she says. And if this young man is, she told me she’s going to tell him “no” and back out of the relationship if he doesn’t agree.

What do you think?

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Posted on March 15, 2013, in Blog Posts and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 20 Comments.

  1. I am thinking that in the end we just have to trust our daughters and all we have instilled in them (besides the disappointed looks and the infinite threats- here i’m talking from personal experience and how my mom did with me)… Girl and boy siblings grow up with a very clear idea of how the opposite sex works, thinks,reacts, plus the special connection between them… Our daughters, i think (hope) will tell us when they are ready to share their time with a boy that’s not their brother and they will know how to handle it (please God!)…all the luck, Alexandra

  2. It sounds like she is a very intelligent young lady who knows what she believes in. Due to that, I think you can allow her a little more freedom of choice than you would be able to with many other young teens. And I think this is because you’ve kept the lines of communication open (at least it sounds that way).

    • Wow, Leanie, you’re on the same track as I am. She tells me everything (at least at this age she does!) so I trust her judgment at this point. Her openness amazes me since I would not tell my mother the things she’s told me!

  3. Patti,
    That’s a tough one. I believe we have to trust our daughters. That being said, I’m still not above a little stalking if the situation warrants it! πŸ™‚

  4. I agree that there is a huge difference between 14 and 18, but at the same time, 14 YO girls are pretty smart. And if you always keep the communication open, Patti, which it sounds like you do, then trust comes next. Of course, trust and worry seem to go hand-in-hand, don’t they. πŸ™‚

    • Trust and worry, Sheila, they DO go hand in hand. But, as Tracy said, a little stalking might be in order here. I know I’d be in a position of looking “up” to a boy so much older than I and that could bring up problems. Ah, this is most definitely a WIP.

  5. Oh, Patti, I just don’t know… You don’t want to ruin the trust you have with your daughter, but that is a big age gap. Do you think she’s asking for permission because shes searching for a way to say no to this boy?

    • Well, Christy, she’s had a crush on him for awhile now but never thought he’d like her back due to the age difference. We’ll see how this shakes down since after she told him she liked him (this was after HE said it first) his response was something like, “I’ll have to think about this.”
      WHAT???

  6. Pati, as the grandmother of 16 yr. old boy/girl twins, I’ve been there … done that … and I wait to see how my son and daughter-in-law handle the “double standard” of sex politics.

    It never changes … from great grandma’s long johns to the kid’s thongs.

    My father was almost eight years older than my mother. He saw her when she was a little girl (15) and promised her that when she grew up he would marry her. He came back four years later and asked permission to “court” her and they married a year later. He was the one that knew she had to grow into their relationship. Four or five … even ten years makes a big difference at one point and not much later.

    Trust what you have taught her, trust her. But like my granmother did … keep one eye on the boy just in case πŸ™‚

  7. Oh dear. This is stuff I don’t want to have to think about for at least five years. Maybe ten! (I know I won’t be that lucky.) I agree with the first commenter; trust in our daughters goes a long way. Giving her a chance to decide from her heart (with her head attached) might be good… But I’d be curious, too, as to if there’s a specific back story about the friend your son knows, which is leading him to discourage a relationship. Is he looking out for sis?

    • Well, Janna, this is a real TBC (to be continued) story because when last my daughter spoke with this young man and reiterated their conversation about how he liked her and she liked him he said, “I’ll have to think about this.” WHAT THE HECK? Which leads me to believe that he may have been joking originally?? I don’t know what’s really happening right now. But I DO trust her head and heart and we’ll see what goes down from here. My son thinks the age discrepancy is just “gross”. And he’s being a “big brother”.

      • That is so not cool. Heads games are a no-go! I’m sure your daughter will do exactly what’s right for her!

        Sounds like you’re handling it just right, mama. πŸ™‚

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