Thursday, July 30, 2009

When Is Your Teenager Allowed to Roam the Mall

When my kids were younger, I had decide when they were ready to cross the street alone or walk down the block to a friend's house by themselves. Things don't get any easier! Now that my daughter is a teenager, I have to develop a whole new set of boundaries.

When is she ready to roam the mall alone with her friends? Back to school shopping is in full swing. My daughter was invited by two separate groups of friends to go shopping at the mall. I let her go with one group and I made her tell the other friends that she couldn't go. I explained to my daughter as to how I made my decision.

Well. being in the information age, my daughter posted on Facebook that she was shopping with the one group of friends. The other friends saw it and asked why she couldn't go with them.

How did I decide? The group that she went with was being driven by a mom who I know well. They went to the nearest mall and the mom was shopping the mall also. Also that group of girls is very trustworthy.

The other group of friends was going to a larger mall that is about 1 hour away. They were being driven by a dad who works near that mall. He would drop them off on the way to work , come have lunch with them, and then pick them up after work. So the girls would basically be at the mall from 9 am to 5 pm. That seemed way too long to shop. Plus a few of these girls have bent some rules in the past. Not really bad things but just things that were wrong.

While my daughter understood my decision, it was hard for her to explain to her friends. It is important to remember that teenagers are still really kids. But now my decisions are based more on circumstances than hard rules.


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