You trust your daughter. She is a bright, engaging, intelligent and caring individual. You have much about which to be proud. You even like her boyfriend. He is polite and bright, ambitious, thoughtful and, most of all, he treats your daughter the way you believe she should be treated. So what do you do if you find them in a compromising position? Maybe you knocked first but opened the door (as you usually do) to put some laundry away. Okay, so it was just an excuse to let them know you are home. The last thing you expected to find was the two of them involved in a lot more than homework! Especially since they knew you were home. So where do you go from here?
1.) Well it goes without saying that you need to quickly step out of the room in order to give the kids a moment to collect themselves. (And well, yes, her boyfriend a moment to collect his things because study time is clearly over!)
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2.) You may have the urge to rush right into your daughter’s room and have an on-the- spot discussion about the situation, but, actually, now may not be the time. Embarrassment and shame are difficult emotions to manage, especially for teens. Instead of storming in, gently knock on your daughter’s door and request that she meet you in the kitchen in a half hour.
3.) When you do have the conversation with her, don’t be surprised if she presents as angry or annoyed with you. She may be focused on feelings that her privacy was invaded or that you were ‘spying” on her. Remember, a good offense is always a good defense.
4.) Remain calm and caring. This sounds easy but given the situation it can be difficult.
5.) Have an honest conversation with your teen. Share with her your own feelings of surprise, shock, embarrassment , etc. Encourage her to use perspective-taking (i.e. see the situation from your point of view).
Related: 5 Questions You Must Ask Your Kids RIGHT NOW
6.) If the situation resulted in established rules being broken, remind your teen of the reasons behind the rules. If this is not a discussion you have had with your teen, then now is the time. Remember it is not only what you say, but how.
7.) Learn from the situation. If for example, this happened in her bedroom, you may want to rethink where you her allow her to study with ‘friends’ especially her boyfriend.
If you are feeling disappointed or hurt --- remember, she is still your awesome daughter. Even the most awesome kids need their parents to help guide and support them.
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