“Hooking up” – “We’re Together” – “Dating” – “Friend with Benefits” – “Talking” – “Hanging Out.” WHAT!!!!!!!! I asked my daughter if the guy she was seeing asked her to be his girlfriend. She said “Does anyone do that anymore? We’re together.” Is being “together” a synonym for exclusivity? What liberties or privileges accompany “hooking up?’ What do those terms mean?
It is crucial that we help our children translate this new “language of love” into something that clearly identifies the parameters and boundaries of the relationship.
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Interesting…..because so much of our conversation with our kids on this subject matter is influenced by their peers…media and movies. It’s such a distortion of what relationships should be that depending on the label leaves our children very vulnerable to people who just want to play the field.
Thank you for your insight and you are sooooooo right about the peer influence and that is why it is so important for us to help our children understand the differences associated with their “Language of Love.” I am still trying to find out what the following terms mean: Hooking Up; Together; Dating: Talking; & Hanging out.
I’m quite sure kids have a grasp of the jargon. Is it really about the terminology? Is it for your understanding? How can parents translate the language if they don’t know what it means? The important thing, in my opinion, is for parents to provide an opening for their kids to dialog about relationships. By the time you figure it all out, your child will be glowing and smoking a cigarette. Parents can sit with their children and “try” to provide some insight into relationships in general and provide some precautionary guidance. Most importantly, parents should listen and not judge or be imposing. Also, what age are we talking about–25? When do these discussions begin?
I don’t think that there is a magic number in terms of age. I think the discussions about values and self-respect should begin as soon as children are able to understand. The discussion does not have to be specifically related to “relationships”, but instead about self-worth. Hopefully, the intent of those discussions carry over into relationships.
I must say, as an unbiased observant, that I think I agree with Denise Jackson-Roberts on this one. At what point/age is it irrelevant to know about or care about the context/definition of these terms? Your child can explain it to you if you wish. But I think it’s most important that you merely provide guidance and support as they attempt to figure it out for themselves.
I found out you can have more than one…..”boo”. Days were simpler when people weren’t trying to escape commitment by creating terms like “hanging out”.
I think the terminology is important, only because it can be used to allow the teen, pre-teen to see that you’re aware….tapped in so to speak as to what they are going through. Making sure children have a sense of self-esteem and values that can guide them to make good choices is an ongoing effort…..and we have to keep supporting them when they do make good choices and there to help them through the hard ones or poor ones.
Relationships are hard for adults, I don’t know how children handle all the “new terminology”.
Claudia, thank you for your insights. The problem is that the children are not handling the “new terminology.” I was watching that show on TV called “Awkward” and the girl said “I thought we were together” and the boy said “No, we just hooked up for the night.”
They are playing adult games without knowing the rules.