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Girls...go figure

Tio became a teenager last Friday and he's going on his first date this Sunday. I've been very reluctant to let him have a 'girlfriend' because he is immature for his age. On the other hand, he's a teenager and unless I plan on following him around 24/7 he's going to be hanging with the girls, making his moves, and picking a fave. My worry is that he develop a healthy respect for women. This is a critical time for this. It's hard enough for boy's in general but Tio was abandoned by 2 mothers at different times in his young life, his father's respect for women is seriously lacking (to put it politely) and I want to be very sure that he develop positive attititudes towards the fair sex. Personally, I've always befriended women much more easily than men since I was a teen, sometimes to the annoyance of my wife, because I understand women and don't have a clue what makes a typical man tick. Tio is the opposite. He's all testosterated sportster male animal. So, it's important to make sure he understands how women think and feel better than his crew of boys who give him ignorant teenage advice about girls (Seriously - yesterday he told me about some fictitious vaginal diseases his friends had told him about that made me cringe).

All that takes time and patience which is why I don't think he's ready to 'date'. However, in the spirit of compromise, I said, "while I won't promote it, I won't oppose it." In the split second that it takes for a young boy to think up a lie, he was looking over my shoulder at his dad. "Say, Dad, can you take me and..." The upshot being he and Buddy are going on a double date to the movies on Sunday. Marcia gave Tio a wad of movie gift certificates for his birthday so he's paying for everyone.

In some ways, I wish I was there for the event. You know, a milestone and all that. On the other hand, it's a good thing for a dad to do. It also lets me stand back with my reluctance while still allowing him to go. In the words of too many populist therapists - that's a win-win for everyone.

Understanding the opposite sex doesn't come naturally any more than learning trigonometry.