I have four children and they go from 16 to 6 months. As a parent of teenagers I have had to deal with the tough request of having boyfriend/girlfriend sleep over at our home. This is not surprising. While I did not want to deny this request I asked that the following rule be observed: for a boyfriend or girlfriend to sleep over they must pass the “year in love” test. If my kids are able to stay in love in a relationship for a year, then the person they are with can stay over at our home. I must say it was not easy when it happened but I rather have this rule than one that does not promote the association of sex with love and anyone can stay in, or the opposite, to never have them come in and have them do it in the back of a car somewhere. Basically I believe that sex is much better when you are in love and that´s what I try to promote with this rule.

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ChivaCongelado on April 28, 2007  · 

I’d say when they’re 18, but that may be too conservative and not very practical. Your year in love rule may be more enforceable.

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Alex on April 28, 2007  · 

I don´t have kids myself, I am not even married yet, but the ´year in love´ rule sounds like a good idea. Whether the ideal age is 16 or 18 depends on the level of maturity of the child, i think knowing how mature/immature the kids are will make these decisions a lot easier.

Peace ´V´

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Claudio on April 29, 2007  · 

I think it’s a great idea, I wish my parents had been as reasonable and far-sighted as you. Of course, I don’t know what it must be like to be the parent in this situation, but I do think that from the point of view of a teenager it would be promising system. One thought though, there is the possibility that they may be incentivised to ‘stay in love’ for the benefit of staying over, so there is potentially the risk of putting the cart before the horse….

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Elliott on April 30, 2007  · 

With 2 adult children now, I am past this point. The most important approach is to provide your children with knowledge of your values, morals, ethics, and the importance of love in your life and how it resulted in your children having a nurturing environment in which to grow, and finally, but importantly, for them to wait until they have the mental maturity, not just hormones, to make the proper decision. Combine the foregoing with a minimum of age 18.

Dating for a year at age 14, 15 or 16 is not necessarily “love”. I also agree with Claudio about incentive to make it to 52 weeks.

In most states in the US, sex with a minor of either gender [i.e., under 18] is statutory rape, even with parent’s approval, which will probably make the parent an accessory.

At any rate, whatever the rule [sex, drugs, alcohol, etc.] the parents will be the last to know when it is broken.

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Martin Varsavsky on April 30, 2007  · 


Yes, system can be hacked 😉

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euronerd on May 2, 2007  · 

You also may be promoting out-door sex and may get very “obedient” children.

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Jayce Ooi on May 9, 2007  · 

Better do so only when they are mature enough…

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Martin Varsavsky on May 9, 2007  · 

Of course Jayce!

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