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Redditor's sexually active 13-year-old daughter is giving me nightmares

I'm the senior site editor at SheKnows.com.

I'm never going to let my daughter have sex

One day I want my daughter to have sex. When she is much older, in an emotionally healthy relationship and living very far away from home. Until then, the idea of her engaging in intercourse is giving me the vapors.

Hello and welcome to my biggest nightmare, in the form of this Reddit user's question about how to handle the fact his 13-year-old daughter is engaging in sexual intercourse with her boyfriend. And refusing to use birth control. Well, until this same user updated his original post to explain that now his daughter is using birth control, so I guess that's sort of a happy update. Regardless, the idea of kids (and they are kids at age 13!) engaging in intercourse is something that upsets me greatly, and I refuse to believe I'm the only mom who feels this way.

Saturday they were still practicing at dinner time and when she didn't pick up her phone I decided to go there with two plates of food. What I saw when I opened the door was my daughter and her dance partner on the floor without clothes. I quickly walked out and knocked on the door so they got a chance to get dressed. I then gave them the food and left after watching their dance routine.

When my daughter got home a few hours later I wanted to talk about what happened so I started by asking if the boy is her boyfriend to which she replied "no" (sounding annoyed that I asked). I then asked her if they had used a condom to which she replied "Dad, stop it!" I explained as her parent I need to know those things but she replied "I don't want to talk about it" and went to her room.

I get that this is something all parents go through. Sex is natural and normal and when it's consensual and people use proper birth control it can be a wonderful thing. But considering my own daughter just turned 10 and in a few short years will be 13, I can't even imagine what my reaction would be. I'm not a pearl-clutcher and I do want her to engage in healthy romantic relationships, but at age 13 that's just way too young to engage in sexual activity. Not only for health reasons but for emotional and mental reasons as well. It's just too young! But I guess some kids don't feel that way, and some of us parents will have to face the facts. Our kids will be sexually active before we are ready for them to be.

I don't know what the answer is. I'm sure this Reddit dad is a good parent and is also disturbed by his own kid's behavior. I know that communication is important, and that doing your best to make your child feel they can always talk to you about anything is key, but I also know what it's like to be young and full of raging hormones. Even though I wasn't personally sexually active at that age, I also have no idea what kids these days are getting up to.

I want my own kid to be strong and confident and not look for validation in (too early) sexual activity, and as a parent I want to do everything in my power to ensure my children aren't doing anything that can have negative physical or emotional consequences. I just don't know how I can guarantee it. Until then I'm just grimacing at this story and hoping I don't end up in the same situation. And maybe considering never letting my own kids leave the house until they are about 25.

More on teen sex

Hook up culture may be making your teen depressed
We owe it to our teens to talk about sexual assault
How to talk to your son about date rape

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