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The Relationship Bill of Rights

 
This mom has created a way for parents to deal with the dreaded 'boyfriend/girlfriend' stage.
The Relationship Bill of Rights
By Annie Fox, M.Ed.

Pic: Shutterstock

Article originally in Annie Fox's Blog
As the parent of a young teen you may believe that your son or daughter is years away from a "relationship".

Face it, most young teens are totally focused on the Boyfriend/Girlfriend Zone. What do you think all that IMing and texting is about?!

Most tweens and teens are naturally curious about sex and relationships and they’re under tremendous social pressure to couple up. So they’re going to experiment – that’s a good thing and it’s how they learn. But there’s no reason they need to stumble through the Boyfriend/Girlfriend Zone totally clueless.

To help you have these conversations, I’ve created a Relationship Bill of Rights. Kids need to be able to stand up for themselves in all relationships - friendships and girlfriend/boyfriend relationships alike.

The Relationship Bill of Rights

  • It’s your right to have feelings for anyone you choose. Your friends may have opinions worth listening to, but who you’re friends with or who you love is your choice.
  • You have the right to express your feelings or to keep them to yourself. Just because you have feelings for someone doesn’t mean you have to tell anyone or do anything about it.
  • You have the right to feel safe. It’s important to feel physically and emotionally safe at all times when you’re with another person. If you don’t, speak up and/or get out of the situation ASAP.
  • You have the right to be treated with respect. You deserve the chance to express your thoughts and feelings without fear. You have the right to be listened to by the other person. And what you have to say should be respected.
  • You have the right to your own time (without being guilt-tripped). You can spend all the time you like away from the other person - whether that’s to hang out with other friends, be with family, or do something on your own.
  • You have the right to say no. It’s your body and no one should pressure you when it comes to getting physical. It’s also your right to say no to alcohol or drugs. If the other person ignores your “no” then they’re disrespecting you. (See  point 4)
  • You have the right to open, honest communication. If something’s going on in the relationship, you and the other person need to talk about it.
  • You have the right to end a relationship. It doesn’t matter what your reasons are. If you want out, get out. You don’t have to justify or explain how you feel to anyone.
What would you add to the Relationship Bill of Rights? Add them in the comment box below.
Read more on: behaviour  |  teen  |  relationship
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