Ok, picture this scenario – you have a 16 year old daughter, she starts behaving differently, more mature, you find out she has met a boy, she really likes the boy, you invite the boy to dinner. Boy comes to dinner, boy is absolutely perfect. Ambitious, confident, well mannered, everything you would want your daughter to look for in a boyfriend. He is 19. Boy starts chatting to you, honestly, and you find out a few shocking facts about boy, his mother died, he used to be homeless…and an alcoholic. He has been sober 6 months.
What would you do?
This is a scenario from a TV show we watch called Parenthood. (Anyone seen it? Love it?) We watched it last night, its an amazing show that deals with pretty real parenting issues. This one really got me thinking though, what would I do?
I’m going to be honest, Mark and I both agreed we would let our daughter date the boy. He was honest about his past, he didn’t lie. He was trying to get his life together, trying to change. Thats all you can ask for in a person, right? He was in a shitty situation, life dealt him a bad hand. He didn’t have good role models in his life so lived and learned what he saw.
Now, in the show, (I know its only a TV show but go with me here) the family told their daughter that she wasn’t allowed to date the boy, that it was too much for her. He had his own apartment, he didn’t finish high school, he was an alcoholic, etc. I’m not sure what message we’d be sending our daughter if we stopped her seeing someone who had struggled the way this guy had. I’d want to teach her that the opposite is true actually, I’d want my daughter to see what it’s like to have nothing and struggle and come out the other side, stronger. That you can change your circumstances if you want to and you work at it. That people deserve a second chance.
What are your thoughts? What would you do if it were your daughter? Would you date someone with a past like this? Do people deserve a second chance? A do-over?
I know I’ve said this a million times before but parenting is TOUGH, isn’t it?!!
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