Tag Archives: Teen

Dear John: Teenage Daughter Is Dating A Weirdo, By My Standards

My daughter is 19 and lives with me. She is seeing a 26-year-old man who has a child with another woman he didn’t marry.

When my daughter goes out with him, he keeps her out until 3:30 a.m. or later. He has done this twice that I know of. I had a conversation with him, and he assured me he would make sure she is home before midnight, to no avail.

I don’t think he’s good for my daughter. Should I forbid her from seeing him (because she lives in my house) or let her make her own decision? We are not going to raise a baby out of wedlock! — TEEN’S DAD

Dear Dad:

Forbidding a teenager to do something will just make them do it more. Take it from me. When my mom forbid me from watching Who Framed Roger Rabbit because she found the sexy Jessica Rabbit, well – too sexy, that only made me watch it whenever she wasn’t around.

In regards to the other thing, firstly why is a 26-year-old dating a 19-year-old? That’s just weird and a little creepy on so many levels. I get that it’s legal and everything but a year ago your daughter was in high school and this dude has been, presumably, out of college for at least three years…I dunno, maybe I’m being a prude here but he’s a weirdo. Secondly, talk with her and tell her how you feel! You can literally show her an example (her current BF) about what can happen if you have a child young and you are not prepared for it. After that, you just hope she heard you because she is legally an adult and no longer under your “rule” so to speak.

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“Jaw With John” – Typical Teens, Can’t Control Their Volume

My husband and I have a 15-year-old daughter and a 17-year-old son. We both work full time. We are generally happy for the kids to have their friends at our house. We have a finished basement with a 70-inch TV — the largest in the house. The basement is carpeted and has a couch, chairs and a foosball table.

One problem: When our daughter has her friends over, they are SO LOUD.

It is fine when they are in the basement. When they are in the kitchen and we are in the den (next to each other), we have a volume battle. She gets peeved with us because we ask her to ask them to lower their volume.

She shushes her friends and they in turn get peeved with her, saying they can’t make any noise in our house. True passive-aggressive teenage behavior.

This, of course, means her friends don’t want to come to our home because they can’t “be themselves.” We do not think it is too much to ask that they hold down the volume. She suggests we watch TV in our bedroom. Are we alone in thinking this is crazy? Why should we be expected to stay in our room while our daughter entertains her friends? — *A House Divided By Noise

Dear House:

These girls just want attention. They congregate in the kitchen because they want to be heard. It’s a classic teenager move. They are also just that – teenagers – so naturally, they are going to be loud. If I had a nickel for every time a girl in my middle school got loud when talking to another girl, I’d have a shit load of nickels. (I don’t have a good frame of reference on High School behavior since I went to an all guys school.)

You shouldn’t be expected to stay in your room in your house while they are there. You are opening up your house to her friends and they should behave themselves accordingly. The next time they get loud in the kitchen, ask that the girls take their gathering into the basement where they can be as loud as they want. From what it sounds like, they couldn’t care less about the foosball table.

You sound disappointed that her friends might not want to hang out at your house.¬†Given all the drama and baggage teenage girls carry, I don’t understand why. If they can’t behave themselves and follow your rules then they won’t hang out there and you’ll have a quiet house.

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“Jaw With John” – Adventures In Teen Babysitting

My twin 13-year-old daughters earn a few extra dollars baby-sitting neighborhood children.

After my daughters completed the daylong Red Cross baby-sitting class last summer, I sent an email to a few moms who live close by, advertising my daughters’ services. I set their hourly rates at $8 an hour for one baby-sitter, or $12 an hour for both girls to baby-sit.

My husband and I both feel these are appropriate wages for their age(s) and services. The girls only baby-sit a few times per month because homework, sports and social activities are greater priorities.

After baby-sitting fewer than 15 times (for no more than two children at a time, ages 4 and older) they are complaining because their peers are making $12 an hour (which is true).

Since the age of 6 my daughters have received an age-appropriate weekly allowance for doing a short list of chores. The amount grows each year with age and responsibility. I urge them to save a few dollars each week.

Every so often, we make a trip to the bank, and they deposit their savings. I don’t badger them to do their chores, and some weeks they earn little or nothing.

I’m not sure what to do about the discrepancy between what my daughters and their friends are earning for baby-sitting. In our affluent area, I know that $12 is the going rate, but I wish it weren’t.

Should my daughters negotiate with their clients for higher wages? Should I set some parameters if they earn more money? What is the right thing to do in this situation? — Perplexed in Suburbia

Dear Perplexed:

When I was their age I was only making $5 a week by taking out, and bringing back in, the trash once a week. $8 an hour sounds pretty damn good to me.

If these kids want more money then they can negotiate their desired new price with their clients. You could present the argument that by charging less they could earn more than their counterparts. But that only goes so far as they could wind up working more hours, but still earning less than their friends.

You have already started them on the right path by having them deposit their money at the bank. If they do end up earning more, advise them to only withdraw what they need and keep some money stored away for a “rainy day” or emergencies (I don’t know what kind of emergencies 13-year-old girls would have but it’d be there in case).

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