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However, even with these guidelines, three out of four of our teens had their first real date to the school prom in their junior year at age 17.
And those first dates were all with friends, not with someone with whom they were romantically involved.
Usually Bill and his daughter made small talk on their brief ride home. Bill was concerned about the growing emotional distance between them. for now.” A tense silence filled the car as it eased forward and stopped in the driveway.* Bill is definitely a courageous dad, pressing into a relational hot spot where most parents fear to tread.
Sure, he knew this gap was normal for teenagers and their parents. “Okay,” he replied, “I’ll take that for an answer . Although it’s uncomfortable, he’s definitely on the right track.
But he wasn’t ready yet to surrender his role as a parent. Just what role should parents play to steer a child away from the traps in the most popular sport for many teens—the dating game? For us, dating or courting is a small part of the overall process of determining God’s will for discovering your life partner in marriage.
He hoped the conversation he was about to initiate would help close that gap. ” he asked, struggling to disguise the wobble he felt in his voice. Bill gripped the steering wheel and shot a glance into her eyes. Bill and his wife had talked before with Julie about God’s standards about sex, but soon she would be dating and making moral choices on her own. They were just a block from home, so gently but firmly, Bill pressed the final question: “Well then, would you mind telling me how far you intend to go? ” He stopped the car a few feet short of the driveway and feigned a look into the mailbox. If he had waited for a month, he wouldn’t have been ready for what she said. In our family the focus has not been on dating, but more on training our teens in their character and in how to develop a relationship with the opposite sex.It is easy to see why there is a movement of parents to replace traditional dating with a formal courtship between a young man and woman.These parents are involved in their children’s lives, seeking to protect their innocence and purity for marriage.Bill smiled and probed: “You know, your mom and I have been talking about you and all those boys who call on the phone.” Julie squirmed uncomfortably in her seat. Instead, we are encouraging our girls who are still home to focus on the friendship side of their relationships with boys.Realizing now where this conversation was headed, she rolled her eyes. When our girls do spend time with a boy, it’s in a group, not one on one.Also, parents need to evaluate the vitality of the Christian walk of the person who may date one of their children.