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Teen Dating Issues/break it to my parents


QUESTION: i want to tell my parents that i have a bf thati love a lot but im afraid they wil make us breakup or disaprove or do something like that. they always joke about how im going to be 50 when i start dating. but it also doesnt help that my 17 year old sister is pregnant. my bf is allowed to date and has been really suportive and hasnt told his parents even though hes alowed to. how do i tell them???? im 13 btw

ANSWER: Celia, I hate to be the one to break it to you, but your relationship with your boyfriend is not legal.  Most places have laws about how much older one person can be than another when one of them is under the age of consent, which you are.  More than likely, your boyfriend is not allowed to date a person more than 2 years younger than him, and it appears there are 4 years between you.  The problem is that the law takes this VERY seriously, and your boyfriend could spend the rest of his life paying for this illegal act.  If he is found out, he could be prosecuted and be forced to register as a sex offender for the REST of his life.

You need to tell him this, and you need to break it off.  The law says you are too young to know better, so if the two of you are caught, everyone will say YOU are the victim, and he is your attacker - whether you have sex or hold hands.  It doesn't matter.  He will be seen as the bad guy, even though you say you are in love.

Don't compare yourself to your sister.  She made a mistake.  Don't make the same one.  Instead, break up with this boy and date a boy NO MORE than 2 years older than you - if you date at all.  13 is actually very young to be dating.  

Like you, my parents were strict, so I was not allowed to date until I was 16.  I had boyfriends, but we only saw each other at school or at my house with my parents watching, until I was 16.  Most of my friends had the same rules.  It's the same way in my community today.

No matter what this young man says, you cannot see him again.  I'm sorry, but if you do, it could get him in a world of trouble.  He needs to know that as an "adult."  He has to be aware of the laws, especially if he's going to break them.  The world won't understand why a 17 year old would want to date a 13 year old, so they will see him as a weirdo with an attraction to little girls.  And the idea that my husband is almost 8 years older than me doesn't matter.  Once you are past the age of consent, age will just be a number, but now, at 13, age is significant.

It'll hurt, but do it immediately, and don't tell anyone you dated unless he did, indeed, victimize you.  If that is the case, tell your mom.  But if that's not the case, just end it and don't allow it to become a case of statutory rape.

I wish you both the best.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: there rnt 4 years between us were both 13.., im confused...... my sisiter is 17 not my boyfriend...... that wasnt helpful

Celia, I apologize.  Your question was short, so I shouldn't have been confused, but I admit I was.  I often get questions about people dating WAY outside their age range, and I simply jumped to conclusions.  If your boyfriend is 13, as are you, then you are right. I was not helpful, and I was completely wrong.  

In that case, simply talk to your mother.  Tell her, girl to girl, that you have strong feelings for a boy and are trying to understand those feelings and need her help.  Try to listen and understand her point of view, because you are VERY young.  If you show a great deal of maturity, show her that you are listening, show her that you respect her point of view and are willing to do as she asks, she may put limitations on how you are allowed to continue the relationship.  If you push to get your way, act like you have the right to do whatever you please, and so on, she may tell you to call it off.  

I can't predict how she will act, because as you said, your family is going through some difficult times.  She will probably compare you to your sister.  It will be your job to show her that you are NOT your sister and that you understand sex and how to avoid getting pregnant.  You should talk to her about your plans for sex so that she knows you are comfortable talking to her and will come to her when you are ready, so that you will not become pregnant before you are married.  

Again, I apologize.  I answer many questions, and I simply got confused on yours.  I will be more careful in the future.  Thank you for pointing this out and for helping me to be a better "expert."

I wish you the best,

Teen Dating Issues

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Suzi Zimmerman


I am a teacher and I write books on teen dating, self-esteem, and values. I can answer questions on making healthy choices, self-improvement, liking yourself, relationships and friendships, goal-setting, values, and how to handle making difficult choices.


Today 1 in 5 sexually active people has HPV (linked to cancer and genital warts) and 1 in 4 has Herpes. 90% of girls who do NOT use condoms become pregnant each year, and AIDS cases are on the rise. Those who do not have sex will not have to deal with these issues, nor will 99% of those who use condoms correctly and consistently. In short, abstain from sex or use condoms - and use them correctly. Parents of adolescent and teen girls should research Gardasil, a vaccine against many forms of HPV. You may not think your daughter will be sexually active, but this will also offer her certain health protection in the event of rape - or should she become sexually active.

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