Would You Let Your Teenage Daughter's Boyfriend Sleep Over?
by Dani Alpert
Would you let your 17 or 18, or 19-year old daughter, and her boyfriend, share a bed if he slept over your house? Let's back up - would you ever even let your daughter’s boyfriend sleep over your house?
About a year ago, my boyfriend’s daughter asked us if her boyfriend, whom we like, could spend the night. We were all going skiing the following morning and it would save him a trip. My boyfriend already knew how crystal clear I was on this subject. NO F*CKING WAY!
But after a bit of cajoling and guilt, I caved in. We put him in the basement on a futon. We also made it perfectly clear that this was not to become a habit. For me, this issue falls under the broad category of boundaries (mine) and speaks to the idea of respect, and good old fashioned values. We’re not running a brothel here, people.
When I was a senior in high school, I asked my "consciousness raising meeting host, pot-smoking, Kerouac reading, Woodstock foregoing because the traffic was going to be too intense" parents if my boyfriend could sleep over. It was after nine o’clock and he only had his permit at the time. They agreed but I could tell that they weren't excited about the idea.
He slept in the guest room down the hall. And in the middle of the night, my boyfriend tiptoed the 50 feet down to my bedroom, and we had relations. We thought that we had really pulled one over on my folks and we felt so grown up. Raging hormones will trump parental rules any day of the week. At least it did for me.
The next morning, we all met in the kitchen for breakfast. My boyfriend and I looked at each other, thinking about our dirty little secret. I caught a glimpse of my mother’s face, and noticed her clenched teeth, as she focused on scrambling the eggs. Hmm, that’s odd, she was beating those eggs a bit more aggressively that unusual. Something was wrong.
My boyfriend sat down at the table and he started talking about football with my dad. My dad hates football. I stood by my mother, huddling over the eggs and then she turned to me, her eyes, like daggers, pierced through me to my very soul. She uttered three little words that would affect me for the rest of my life.
“How dare you.”
There was nowhere to hide. There wasn't any point in acting like I didn't know what she was referring to or attempting some lame excuse. “What do you mean? He had a hang nail, so he came into my room looking for nail clippers and then he feel on top of me and.. it was an accident.”
I thought it best so say nothing. What could I say? I was royally embarrassed and I felt like a child. I was a child. Maybe that was the point. I had disappointed her, and I had disrespected she and my dad (who never heard a thing, thank God) I had betrayed their trust in the most sordid and humiliating way. If there was anything that I held near and dear to my heart, and which remains the same today, is my unwavering respect for my parents.
This incident hit me deep and from that moment on, I have gone out of my way (almost to a fault) to do the right thing and to never put my parents, or anyone that I care about, in a compromising or uncomfortable position.
Now, with my boyfriend’s children, I must see to it that it is I who is never put in a compromising or uncomfortable position. Ah, the circle of life. I know that the children aren't mine, and I know that, just because I was a disrespectful whore, it does not mean that the my boyfriend's daughter will be.
But I can’t take any chances. I have my mother's steely look seared into my brain, and that alone ensures that there won’t be any sneaking down hallways, or girl-boy sleepovers.
If they get married one day, and they want to sleep over at our house, we can revisit the topic then but not a day before.
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