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“Parents should never minimize or ridicule a first love,” says Tucson pediatrician Dr. “It is a very important relationship to teenagers, and it’s important for another reason, in that it is their first intimate relationship with someone outside their family.” When “going out” evolves into “going steady,” it is natural to worry that things are getting too serious too soon.
If you see schoolwork start to suffer and friendships fall by the wayside, it is reasonable to restrict the number of times Romeo and Juliet can rendezvous during the school week.
Parents need to treat a brokenhearted youngster’s feelings seriously.Just look at the words used to describe affection between two young people: “infatuation,” “crush,” “puppy love.” If it feels like love to the two puppies, isn’t it love?To reiterate a point made earlier, it wasn’t all that long ago that many couples got married in their teens.If anything, youngsters in the group spend as much time interacting with their same-sex friends as they do with members of the opposite sex. Ron Eagar, a pediatrician at Denver Health Medical Center, views group dating as a healthy way for adolescents to ease into the dating pool rather than dive in.“The number-one benefit is safety,” says the father of two grown children.