7 rules for dating my son

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Know your child and take the precautions you think are appropriate, keep them safe, and at the same time acknowledge the legitimate need adolescents have for a sense of belonging and independence.

Even for “good enough” children who tend to stay out of trouble, prom night and graduation parties can be a time of increased peer pressure and more plentiful opportunities for bad decisions.

If you know in your mind that his behavior is not up for the challenge of prom at this time, you need to trust yourself.

Find a calm moment and listen to that voice inside.

Don’t make your child anxious just because you are anxious. However, if you think these events are too much for your child to handle, follow your instincts.

If your child was just suspended again for drinking alcohol on school grounds, going to prom might not be a good idea this year.

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This brings me to our first rule: Be aware of your own heightened anxiety around Prom and graduation season.

Let’s recognize, too, that there are some kids who don’t need strict limits and extra supervision.

Some kids are able to drive or ride to prom or to a party with friends, abstain from alcohol, and make it home safely and on time.

And if you don’t stick to the rules you lay down, your house will soon come to resemble Noah’s Ark, after the animals have spent 40 days on the ship. (One of my house rules was no dishes in the sink.) Tweens and teens can do their own laundry.

A family is like a ship, and hopefully, that ship is well oiled and is going someplace.

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