Patented Q & A Database


What is my responsibility regarding other people's children? I heard about the behavior of some of my teen daughter's friends; drinking and some sexual behavior. Should I call their parents or does that depend on my relationship with the other moms?


Dr. Tom Greenspon Replied: This is always a difficult issue! Your relationship with the other moms would certainly enter into the decision: how close are you to them? Have you discussed personal issues about yourselves and/or your children before? Under ideal circumstances, this would be a good time to have a get-together with parents and children and talk, not so much about what you have specifically heard as about the general topics of sexuality and drug use. In most cases, though, the circumstances are not ideal. You may not know much about the other parents, especially how they would react with their kids if they were told about this. You might ask your daughter what she would think about telling them. You don't want her to be in trouble with her friends for being a "narc," so that has to figure in to your decision as well. There may also be a problem with the way your daughter is interpreting, and reporting, the things she sees and hears. She may be responding to rumors, or taking sides in personal quarrels among her friends.This is one more reason to use this incident as a springboard for general discussion, certainly with your daughter but possibly with her friends and their families as well, so that everyone is potentially in a better position to make responsible, family-approved choices about their behavior. You may not end up being able to do much about the friend's choices, but you can certainly help your daughter. Good luck with this puzzle!
Posted On 2008-03-17 10:28:19
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