Teenage daughters and live in boyfriends

by David
(Huntington Beach, CA )

My ex-fiance' that I am still very close with has a soon-to-be 16 year old daughter that I am very close with also. Her father is basically out of the picture. My ex started dating again, as normal, and after about a year of searching, she met a much younger man on a cougar website. Here new boyfriend is 33 and he is near the middle between the Mother and daughter in age.

They have just been dating for 2 months, and now she is planning to have him move in, because he lives in another city of all things. The daughter is at that age doing some, experimenting with boys and other adult things. Because of the mother's successful business, she has always had limited time for the family; I filled the role of the patriarch for many years. Now she is bordering on neglect for this age group and certainly irresponsible by most standards. Leaving her alone during the day and most nights, going away on weekends, not getting to know her friends.

I was going to be introduced to the boyfriend, but he does not want to meet me. In fact, I'm pretty certain that he does not want me to have any contact with my ex at all. I don't want to advise my ex too much, and I don't want to feel like I am intruding, but the daughter is also reaching out, and the mother and I are still close friends.

I feel that the boyfriend moving in after such a short time is very inappropriate. I feel that her neglect of attention to her daughter at this critical stage could have life long affect on her daughter. However, I'm also mature enough to realize that it might not be my place to say anything more based on the circumstances, in spite of my feelings, and for me to just exit.

I'm not trying to win her back. I'm just the only person she has in the USA, she is from China, that is looking out for them and I do care about them both.

Do you have any advice for me or for my good friend?

Comments for Teenage daughters and live in boyfriends

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How much support do teenagers need?
by: Sara

Hey David!

Wow! What a sweet man you are! Your ex is lucky to have you.

Well...I have a ton to say on this subject! I believe you are right to be concerned.

Many people erroneously believe that teenagers are almost grown, and therefore don't require much parenting. While they don't need you to make their breakfast, and wash their undies...they need you at this age, more than ever.

They need your love, your friendship, your guidance, and most of all, your presence. In fact, even though they may protest, or act like it's fine, they crave these.

Teens are acutely aware of whose parents are parenting, and whose are not. Having a parent who is not parenting is a major blow to a teen's self-esteem. Teens without solid self-esteem are more prone to risky behavior.

Further, a teen's brain is not fully working. Check out my page, "Inside the Teenage Brain", available on the navigation bar at the top of the page. It's a great infographic that shows just how vulnerable teens are simply because their brains aren't fully developed.

Two months of dating is too soon. Period. Especially if the relationship has been long distance. There is so much your friend does not know about this man.

She needs to ask herself what motivates a man to give up his life and move into hers after just 2 months. This is a flag. Cutting her off from her friends is also a flag. If she wants to be sure this guy is in it for the long haul, she needs to ask him to wait, and see what he does. If he's into her, he will wait, or; he will move into his own place and continue the relationship, because he too wants a solid relationship.

Finally...and most importantly...she has a 16 year old daughter, and a strange man moving into the house is a huge...let me say it again...HUGE risk. That child doesn't need the stress or hassle, and she does not need to be put into the position of potential assault.

Dr. Phil (and I) recommend keeping a man at arms length from your children until you know the relationship will last. Not THINK it will last...be pretty darned sure it will last. Kids don't need a revolving door of men in their lives. At 2 months, your friend is at the "think" stage, not the "know" stage.

Dr. Phil also shares some scary statistics. Single moms who allow men to move in create a situation where their children are 33% more likely to be abused. That means, 1 in 3 interactions with the male partner results in abuse for the child. That statistic alone was enough for me.

Your friend needs to back up a bit, and make her child her focus. She can have a very full life in 2 more years. In the meantime, she can have the life she can fit in around her child. She only has 2 years left to spend with the true love of her life. She needs to treasure each and every moment.

Thanks so much for caring about both of these ladies. :)

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