26 Healthy Children
It makes all parents nervous, to put it mildly, butadolescent dating and love is undeniable and universal.Learn how to help your teen (and yourself) through thistime of transition.
By Tamekia Reece
emember what it elt like when you were a teen and inlove or the rst time? Did you get butterfies in yourstomach every time that special someone came around?Find yoursel doodling his or her name on yournotebook? Did you eel it was the best eeling in theworld and never wanted it to end?Now think about your teen in love. Chances are, the warmeeling you just had thinking about your rst love have nowevaporated! As a parent, it’s only natural to wish you couldprevent your teen rom having a relationship, get starteddating, or even having an innocent crush until they’rewell into their mid-twenties. However, the act is, oncekids approach adolescence and puberty, most becomeinterested in dating. Here’s how to help your teen(and yoursel) through this complicated thingcalled teen love.
Take It Seriously
One o the biggest mistakes a parent can makewhen it comes to teen love is to dismiss it. “Duringadolescence kids are going through a lot o changes, andpart o that is developing relationships with other peopleand eelings in intimate relationships,” says PaulaBraverman, M.D., FAAP, an associate proessor o pediatricsin the Division o Adolescent Medicine at CincinnatiChildren’s Hospital Medical Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.Is teen love real? “Yes, it’s real and is part o the normaldevelopmental process teens go through as they become adults,” saysDr. Braverman, a member o the AAP’s Committee on Adolescence.Telling your teen it’s only puppy love or hormones running wildwill shut down communication because it tells your teen that you don’t