Do you think 16 is an acceptable age to have a girlfriend?

Whether or not a sixteen year old is mature enough to date depends on the sixteen year old.

It may not have been the case for your parents, but your ‘interacting with women’ skills need to be honed now, while your whole cohort is somewhat awkward and nervous. Failure to develop these skills in high school can really be a stumbling block. Being awkward, inexperienced and ill at easy around women will be much more off putting once you are out of high school.

Now is the time for you to learn these skills, that’s part of what high school is for!

Let me tell you what I did.
I didn’t do it on purpose but this is how it happened.

My parents were against me having a bf. Anytime I wanted to date they gave me a hard time. Who is he, how did you meet him, how old is he. what does he do, what does his father do, what does his mother do…
Pity the poor boy when he came inside to pick me up.
I called it the Spanish Inquisition.
So I gave up and hung out with my female friends, there were four of us. One of the mothers (friend B) was from Baltimore, Hon and she always called us girls Hon. One of my other friends, A, started teasing friend B by calling her Hon all the time (can you see where this is going?). It became a big joke between us as we all started calling each other Hon, and Babe, especially when some cute guy walked by that we knew one of us had a crush on.
What started as a joke became a habit and before you knew it we were always calling each other Hon and Babe. We didn’t think too much about it until we started getting some weird looks from our teachers and classmates.
What I didn’t notice was the effect it was having on my parents.

The next time I told them I had been asked out my mother asked, ‘With a boy?’.
Of course with a boy, what else?
My parents were so happy and excited that I got all new clothes, there was no inquisition, my curfew was extended, and my father slipped me a $20 just in case we needed it.

I guess I had them a little worried.

As far as age goes, I think you’re old enough to date when you screw up enough nerve to ask someone out.

What?! Finding secluded spots to have sex - and sometimes even risking it in a not so secluded spot - is one of the highlights of being a teenager! Besides, two teenagers can get pretty creative when properly motivated. :smiley:

Out of respect for your privacy and desire not to embarrass you.

By pointing out the changes, they opened the door for you to bring up the subject yourself. You didn’t, so they’re keeping their mouths shut for the time being.

Did it never occur to you that your parents may actually have filters between their brains and their mouths?

I think Green Bean has it. They’ve noticed that you are maturing, and they’re not daft - they know that part of that process will likely involve you becoming interested in girls. But since you’re not, apparently, neglecting your studies or hanging out in drug dens with six different girls each week, they’ve decided not to press the issue, to let you talk about it when you feel like doing so.

…and then your auntie (or whoever) on the other end said, “is there a girl?” and…

Yes, they know. Everybody knows. It’s okay.

At this point, why would they? I can guarantee they’re not looking forward to the fight about girls vs. school any more than you are. They’re going to play dumb with you as long as possible until they see how this plays out. They may even have no problem with you dating, as long as your schoolwork doesn’t suffer. Slack off though, and they’ll drop the facade right quick.

But yes, I very much agree that you should ask her for her number and see how it goes. If she gives it to you, then you’re one step closer to the discussion with your folks.

People have such different cultural backgrounds! When you’re 16 you can’t even imagine what all you’re going to experience and feel in your life, every nerdy guy I knew in high school (yeah, I was kinda nerdy,too) grew up to be a real person with a real and complex life.
You won’t really know how much you love your parents til you’re about 30.
I was banging girls in the backseat of my dad’s Chevy at the Denton Rd Drive In when I was 16.

only if you are a girl yourself. lesbianism is fully accepted. but not monogamy


What are you trying to say? What’s you point?

When I was sixteen, I wanted a girlfriend more than anything. Didn’t get one until I was 21, and I probably wouldn’t have gotten involved with her if I hadn’t been so desperate. Didn’t have another until I was almost 30. Third time was the charm, we’ve been together 18 years and will be the parents of a sixteen year old boy. If he wants to date, no problem. I mainly hope my sons develop some confidence with girls and don’t let the heartbreak of rejection get to them as much as it did me.

What held you back? Was it your disparity or were there other things holding you back from getting one?

Because I am in the exact same boat as you were at 16. I would absolutely love to have a girlfriend.

However, I am not so concerned with rejection. I get it’s a part of life and understand that most girls say “no”. But I could really use being more confident and not getting so nervous and derpy around my crush. I am working on it…

Okay, since you’re saying your parents are Indian, I’m going to assume they’re immigrants and you’re either 1st generation or came to the US when you were very young yourself. So, I can understand your socialization to things USA is different.

You and your parents should understand that dating a girl at age 16 is NOT the same as being engaged to get married. And you should try going on dates (not necessarily the same as steady dating) girls you like but don’t have crushes on. You might be less nervous and more relaxed about it. Just practice smiling and saying “Hi” to girls you see. You never know what’ll happen and it could turn out nicely.

At 16, I couldn’t be kept off of a girlfriend with a high pressure fire hose. Then again, I took a plug of chewing tobacco offered to me by Jesse Ventura, and it made me a goddamn sexual tyrannosaurus.

As long as you aren’t my kid, sure. If you are my kid, better wait another twenty years.

(Kidding, mostly).

Everyone gets nervous and derpy around their crushes. Everyone. Even women, even old people, even movie stars. It’s one of the natural results of a crush.

In my experience, crushes are best left as crushes. There is a certain sweetness to the longing, and crushes bring a little something extra to one’s life. But when the crush actually comes to something, it’s rarely that great. Keep the crushes crushes, and date people you are comfortable with.

You may want to consider trying to expand the horizons of what you find attractive. I know teenagers can be very tribal and a lot of the people around you seem to have bad traits, but as you get older, you’ll realize that even the seemingly superficial people have their own complexity, and really there is value in a whole range of the human experience. Rather than trying to hone in on the “perfect” girl, try to get to know all different kinds of girls- including some who seem dumb or trendy or superficial. It will help you clarify what you want in a mate (which often is quite different than what you think you want), it can be fun, and it’ll build your social skills.

This thread is so interesting, along with others like it. Now I’m wondering how baffled my parents must have been, since I largely avoided showing signs like those discussed here.

I’m wishing I had received any advice like this… but I don’t want to hijack things.

I dealt with several rejections in high school. Part of it was that I was a socially awkward, liberal, laid back teen in a part of the country where that wasn’t the norm. I also never learned how to tell when a girl was interested in me. Since I’ve been married there have been a couple of times my wife said, “did you see how she looked at you?” ( Both were women I’d known professionally before we met). Honestly, I didn’t. What you’re dealing with is, IMHO, just a hump you have to get over. Hope it gets better for you soon.

I’d say closer to 14 than 16.

How are you going to not have sex?