Friday, November 18, 2011

Friends with Benefits

Today I found myself in the position of asking my 14 year old daughter what her “boyfriend” meant by a “friend with benefits”.  No parenting class and no amount of research in the world on how to raise a teenager could have prepared me for this.  Am I that stupid??
This is how it went down:
The Teen:  Mom, can I go to the movies with [insert boyfriend’s name here] and his one friend who is a girl?  She’s one of his friend’s with benefits.
Me:  What movie?  Whe…..WHAT??  Did you just say “friends with benefits”?? 
The Teen:  Yes.  Can I go?
Me:  What is this “friends with benefits”??  The name of the movie?
The Teen:  Um….No?

The Teen: 

hiding face

I’m trying to figure out if “friends with benefits” has some other meaning when you are talking to a 14 year old.  Does it mean “a friend that pays your way to the movie”?  Does it mean “a friend that will let you cheat on the test”?
I consulted a friend about this situation and she thought maybe it was “a friend that was gonna help them get free popcorn at the movie.”
I was afraid, yet I consulted the spouse.  Oh gawd, I know right??!! 
His response?

images (11)

Oh yeah, I’m thinking he KNOWS there is no other meaning to FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS other than the one we know as adults.
So I researched it. 
According to Mark Cichocki, R.N., a nurse educator, this is what he found out after talking to a few teenagers:  
 “While talking to a group of teenagers recently, I heard a term that was completely new to me. Many of the teens talked about "friends with benefits". Being a naive father of three teenage daughters I had to ask what that meant exactly. I was shocked to find out that many teenagers from 14 to 18 years of age were developing a new type of sex only relationship. It was explained to me that boys and girls were "hooking up" for sex, both intercourse and oral, but did not consider themselves to be dating or in a intimate monogamous relationship. They considered one another to be "friends with benefits". The more questions I asked the more concerned I became.”

Excuse me while I puke  now.
Seriously.  I just don’t know if I am going to survive these teenage years.  How can I keep my baby safe?  How can I keep her from making the bad decisions??
Is she THAT naive that she didn’t realize what [insert her             EX - boyfriend’s name here] was referring to when he said that??  Did she think “Friends with Benefits” was the new TEEN CLUB?? 
Holy effing schnazzballs!  Can you imagine??


How do you keep your teenage daughters AWARE without putting ideas into their heads, yet giving them the knowledge to know right from wrong?  How do you keep them SAFE??


Singedwingangel said...

OH I knew what it meant. I cannot understand how this society has allowed sex to be so desensitized that it is simply something we do now cause it sounds like fun. I don't know any ideas except lots of prayer, lots of letting her know she is worth much more then what she can do in the sack and that those girls who do the FWB thing are less likely to have any self esteem or self respect in the long run. Nor will they have a lot from any decent boy, simply because a decent boy would not stoop to that level. LOTS of prayers.. LOTS of them

Amanda said...

Oh Terry, I wish I had some sage advice on that one. But having been a teen myself all I can see is, either she'll get lucky (and I certainly hope so for her) or she'll have to find out the hard way like I did.

Laura W said...

About 10 years ago, when I was teaching in a middle school, I became aware that kids were having sex (oral or vaginal) on dates, partly because it was easier than talking to each other, cheaper than going to the movies, and made you popular. I think we do a great dis-service to kids, when we leave out the emotional and social aspects of sex education. See:

Kat said...

OMG this is hysterical. Friends with benefits...I can't wait for your next tale! It's me...follow me!

Patty B. said...

One day, when Leanne was in about 6th grade, she stayed home sick from school (she wasn't sick of school, she was too sick to go to school). Anyways, we sit down, and Dr. Phil comes on and the teaser says the show will be about topics mom's and their adolescent daughters should know. We get all comfy and it's all about the rage of the time: the multi-colored bracelets and what they meant. Thinking this will be a learning experience for us both, we sit and watch and inevitably Leanne looks at me and asks what is a lap dance and what is oral sex? Knowing oral sex=boys getting what they want in this case, I did my best to explain it. I must of done a bang-up job because she looked at me in that way which made me realize I needed to re-explain it. THIS time, when explaining oral sex I said, if a boy is pressuring her to do it, she should look him in the eye and say: "You first. If you do a good job, I'll think about it." We had a good laugh, we discussed how sex is NOT just about what a boy gets and that if he is presuring you, he's not caring for you. Also,respect for a girl begins with respect for yourself. Also, the "You first" comment is now a family legend.