Opinion

Caught in aisle of dilemma over buying condoms for teen

I HAVE a confession…..I buy condoms for my 16-year-old daughter and her boyfriend.

Is that right or wrong? I'm still not sure I know the answer to that, so I'll let you be the judge.

The first time I did it, it was nerve wracking - it had been years since I had found myself stopping at this particular section of the supermarket and I was surprised to see that, just like milk isn't milk anymore, condoms are not condoms anymore - the choice is ridiculous.

So how did I end up red faced in the health and beauty aisle of Coles? I guess it's because I try to be a good mum, the kind of mum who will do the right thing for my kids and support them in whatever decision they make, even if it makes me feel a little uncomfortable.

When my girl started dating a boy who was a little older than her we had "the talk" - you know the one where the experts, whose names are splashed all over those parenting books, advise you to say "come and talk to me if you think you are ready to have sex".

Well, a few months later she came to me saying it was time. Of course I forgot what the book told me  to say next so I had to wing it.

Miss 16 and I have always had a pretty good relationship so the following discussion was not that awkward, although I was a little sad that my baby was growing up so fast.

We covered all the basics about not being pressured into anything, about feeling comfortable with her decision and that she wasn't doing it just because everyone else was.

There may or may not have been some eye-rolling going on - I can't say for sure because I was too busy trying to sound all casual and cool, which is not quite how I was feeling on the inside.

 

What would you do if your teen was contemplating having sex?

This poll ended on 30 December 2012.

Buy them contraceptives - 64%

Tell them to buy contraceptives - 19%

Encourage them to change their mind - 15%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

I might be hurtling towards middle age but I can still remember being a teenager "in love" so I understood feelings. And they are a cute couple, he adores her and she is so happy when he is around. Best off all they are happy to spend time just hanging out at our place, which makes me very happy.

The other reality is that I can't control her every move - he has a licence and if my memory serves correctly plenty of my friends lost their virginity in the back seat of their boyfriend's car. And despite the generation gap there are some things that never change. So, in no time at all she was on the pill.

But guarding against pregnancy is not enough is it? So that's how I came to be standing in front of row upon row of condoms, considering my options and feeling just a little hypocritical for having once judged another parent who admitted to me that she was buying condoms for her son.

"Ribbed for increased pleasure"…I think not. No way was I picking the variety boxes of rainbow and fruit flavours because THIS IS NOT A GAME PEOPLE.

This is real life and this is serious.

The conversation going on in my head was enough to make me blush and think about walking away.

But this is not a time to chicken out, so a decision had to be made - sensible and basic it was. And even better, they were on special (Score ....hmm maybe that's not best word I could have thought of). In the trolley they went, well and truly hidden under the loaves of bread and bags of fruit.

That night I handed them over to Miss 16 with a lecture about how protection was not just her responsibility but something they both had to take care of.

I also told her that part of my role as her mum was to make sure she was in a position to protect herself from sexually transmitted diseases as well as pregnancy and that was why I would buy the condoms for them.

I didn't want there to be any excuse for them not having protection whenever and wherever they needed it.

Sometimes I worry that my decision is wrong and that I'm encouraging them to have sex, but then I think that if they wanted to have sex they would do it with or without my blessing, just as teenagers (excluding me, of course) have been doing for generations past.

So, now it's over to you: What do you think of my decision and have you ever bought condoms for your teenagers?

* Life with teenagers can be like an out of control roller coaster ride and when there's no one else to turn to for support or a second opinion, I go undercover to blog about the everyday dramas of raising my otherwise perfect teens.

Topics:  editors picks opinion parenting



Foodies' scavenger hunt: are you up for it?

IF YOU want to give your tastebuds the flavour sensations of a lifetime, here is the ultimate foodie’s scavenger hunt through Brisbane.

5 minutes with Israel Folau on footy, life and love

Israel Folau and Silver Fern netballer Maria Tutaia announced their engagement last last year.

WE CAUGHT up with football star and Brisbane ex-pat Israel Folau.

10 reasons to head to South Bank this summer

Head to the only inner-city beach in Australia!

South Bank has a ridiculous amount of fun things to do.

Five mammoth events you need in your life

No Caption

BRISBANE isn’t known for doing things by halves…

How to make your child's every dream come true...

Take a dip at South Bank in the inner-city beach.

‘I DON’T want to do fun things, Mum and Dad’… said no child ever!

How to do Eat Street the right way

Know where to start and where to end to avoid a huge food coma before you get to experience all the goodies!

EVERY Friday and Saturday night, Hamilton comes alive.

You can do WHAT in Brisbane?!

Talk about arriving in style! Take your pub crawl to the next level with a helicopter!

BET you didn't know you could do these things in Brisbane...

'Night stalker' suspect arrested over rapes, was on bail

A number of sexual offences spanning from 2008 to 2016 are believed to be linked.

"Night stalker" suspect was let out on the streets on bail last year.

Roosters, lions and Chinese culture for club

Celebrate Chinese New Year with Seagulls Club on Sunday

Celebrate your second New Year's at Seagulls

Airservices to test for contamination in Cobaki

Toxic chemicals found in firefighting foam previously used at the Gold Coast Airport have spread to the boundary of the site.

Airservices Australia will test seafood in Cobaki Broadwater

Local Partners

Lion roars to straight to No 1 at Aussie box office

Nicole Kidman, David Wenham and Sunny Pawar in a scene from the movie Lion.

THE Australian-made movie a hit, while Rogue One nears record mark.

Ozzy Osbourne fell asleep during his driving test

Not a good idea to give Ozzy a Ferrari

Kristen Stewart to host SNL

Kristen Stewart will host a pre-Super Bowl episode of SNL next month

Search for Merseybeat magic continues

The Searchers are coming to Twin Towns in February as part of a national tour.

"It's a free spirited country with a relaxed attitude to everything”

Louis Tomlinson celebrated his son's first birthday

Louis Tomlinson and Briana Jungwirth celebrate son's first birthday

Kylie Minogue will take husband's name

Kylie Minogue will take her fiancé Joshua Sasse's surname

Why investors are flocking to Moranbah

Moranbah homes are selling like hotcakes, creating a supply problem

Investors are scrambling to get into the market

Casuarina tops Tweed house market at $870,000

Casuarina recorded the region's top median prices for both houses ($870,000) and units ($435,000).

Buyers jumping at chance to get into Tweed property market

Beautiful Terranora acreage

77 Mahers Lane, Terranora.

Check out this week's feature property.

Thousands of jobs part of $1b retirement village project

THIS YEAR: An artist impression of the new Aveo retirement village in Springfield.

Aveo Springfield unveiled this month, homes ready by July

KNIFE-EDGE: The housing tightrope we now face

Even the smallest interest rate rise will be hard for some to handle.

One if five home owners at risk, according to new analysis

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!