I’m trying to convince my 17-year-old daughter to temporarily break-up with her boyfriend.
Summer Vacation is a time to be free. Free from early morning alarms- free from school-work- free from boyfriends…
The morning of February 14th, I received a text from Number Two: I have a boyfriend, Happy Valentine’s Day! Not the news I wanted to hear on V-day.
This is her first real boyfriend, and new territory for us all. While I’m happy for her personal growth, I feel like someone is scratching a chalkboard with nails every time I witness them holding hands.
That’s my hang-up though. I really do have good reasons why a summer vacation break-up with her boyfriend would be good for her!
- Change the “Together Forever” mentality. My daughter jumps in with both feet when she discovers something that she’s interested in. She volunteers for everything she can, and has difficulty saying ‘No’. In other words, she commits quickly and fully to her special interests. The longer they are together, the better his chances are at rounding the next “base”. I don’t want her committing pre-maturely to a First Love. I’d like her first relationship to be a stepping stone to learning about what kind of partner she is, as well as the traits she likes and doesn’t like in a partner.
- Inoculate against the devastation of a sudden break up. Losing a relationship is hard; whether it’s your idea, or not. As a mother, I’m not looking forward to the day my daughter comes home with a broken heart. I know it will happen, but I don’t want it to. Initiating a brief break (versus break-up) will give her small experience in ending relationships, and soften the emotional blow for both of them.
- Freedom to change or discover herself on her own terms. Now is the time teens learn about who they are as a budding adult. I’d like my daughter to take a vacation from who she is with a partner, and just be herself. We all bend and change a bit to conform to the best interests of our relationships. She can take a break from thoughts like, “Will he like this? What will he think about…? Should I be…?”, and worry about herself for a little while yet.
My husband and I have talked to her and let her know our thoughts; knowing that all we could do is plant a seed.
We can understand that she wouldn’t want to lose the perpetual adoration she is showered with (via text messages) all day/night. She knows it doesn’t have to be permanent; just a summer break, and then they can pick up where they left off if they still want to. Ultimately, we left the decision of a summer vacation break-up to my daughter, but I don’t think she will go for it.
I’d love to hear what you think:
Am I not handling this well? Do I need to let go? Is a summer vacation break-up a good idea? Drop me a comment to let me know!