Advice for parents on daughters dating

s prom season approaches, it’s easy to conjure romantic thoughts of dating rituals we experienced long ago.

Perhaps the thought of all those sweet young couples slow dancing under paper streamers coaxes a nostalgic sigh or two. If you’re the parent of a child who has recently started middle school, get ready for a decidedly new dating scene.

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If you suspect your child is using alcohol or drugs, do not look the other way.

He feels comfortable with these early forays because “we’ve given him the talk about the need to respect young ladies and what we expect of him.” What to watch for: Smartphones and social media can lay traps for preteens and young teens.

Parents should establish ground rules for texting members of the opposite sex and explain the importance of avoiding any form of “sexting.” Parents should also monitor their child’s text conversations and follow/friend them on any social media sites where they have accounts.

As their parent, it's up to you to set your family's core values and communicate them through your words and actions.

That's being an authoritative parent, an approach that "helps children develop the skills they need to govern themselves in appropriate ways," Lerner says.

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