Teenage is a time when kids start to explore beyond their boundaries and make new friendships and relationships. Yesterday, mom was the prettiest gal and dad was the most handsome guy they had ever seen, today they have met someone just as good and are ready to date.
However, before you let your teenager take this very important step in life - going on their first date - it is important that you tell them about the rules of the game. Knowing and practicing the dating etiquette for teenagers can make their first date a memorable event and set the benchmark for all dates to follow. So, here are a few basic tips your teen should be aware of:
Play it safe
The first proper dating etiquette your teenager needs to comprehend is that, dating is not a license for indulging in sex. Kissing or hugging their date is entirely acceptable, considering their date has no issues with it, but expecting or indulging in sex on a date at their age is completely unacceptable behavior.
When and where
The place or venue of their date should to be a lively public place and not some deserted or lonely spot. A beach or a restaurant is a good option in this regard. Among teenagers it is not considered strange to go “Dutch” on a restaurant bill, but chivalry calls for the guy to pay the bill. The choice is theirs.
Do and don’ts
Consuming alcohol or taking drugs while on a date is another big no. Make your teen understand that they are teens and legally not old enough to drink yet and intoxication of any kind could result in mistakes they may not be able to rectify.
Make an impression
Teaching your teen the importance of making a good impression is important. So teach them to never call a date out. Showing respect for their date’s parents is the right thing to do, so they need to go in and meet them formally. Inform the parents of where they intend to go and when they can expect them back. Remind your teen that decency never goes wasted.
The more the merrier
Until and unless you feel comfortable with the idea of single dating, insist that all dates be group dates. Group dates tend to be a lot more fun and the chances of anyone doing anything prohibited are reduced dramatically.
Most people take running a little late for granted, which is quite rude. Always make sure that if your teen is running late, they call their date and tell them of the situation. Not taking the other person's time and situation for granted is a sign of respect. Also teach them that while on the date, they must be considerate to each other’s feelings. Talk about things which are of mutual interest and not just their own life. Keeping the conversation lively and interactive is a major social skill which they need to learn as soon as possible.
End it with class
Always make sure your teen is dressed appropriately for wherever they were going on the date. If they are driving, make sure they have a valid driver’s license, otherwise arrange a cab. In the end, remind them that decency calls for them to see off their date at the door and not run off from the gate.
These were just a few of the dating norms you should teach your teenagers before they venture out on a date. Remember, the habits they take on now will serve them for the rest of their lives, so make civility and decency a major part of it.